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Gracie's Story

posted Feb 6, 2014, 2:33 PM by Adam Kress

by RJ "Wolfie" Smith, Jr

Gracie was rescued from an Animal Humane Society shelter, here in the Twin Cities area of Minnesota, by us back in May. She was originally brought to the shelter as a stray. She came to us after being once already adopted, then returned to the shelter after 3 months. He previous owners of record were looking for a more “family type” dog, and returned her because she “needed too much attention.” We guess she is about 2 years old now.

We adopted her, not ever having heard of Wirehaired Pointing Griffons before. My experience with dogs up until Gracie had included 13+ years with Collies, and after I had to put the second one down from conditions related to their age, my return of devotion to those friends was a commitment to offer my next friend the opportunity to be the best for what s/he would be, as I was unable to offer that to my Collies.

Gracie has been a God-send in that goal. She’s attended obedience and intro to hunting camp, and while she may never be qualified for pure-bred competition (she has no papers), she has natural talent and spirit that will not be denied. I have never hunted before this year (I am 43), but it is a part of my heritage I’ve always wanted to explore. Through Gracie, I’ve not only been able to explore that heritage, but also fulfill the commitment I’ve made toward my canine friends. I’ve had the opportunity to work with her extensively this late summer and fall. I’ve learned a whole lot about dog training, and hunting, and she’s been both responsive and forgiving, considering I’m a novice at the whole thing.

She’s turned out to be a super dog! She has so much intelligence, intuition, and heart……I’m almost embarrassed to be her partner. I’ve learned so much from her, and have been offered so much opportunity as a trade for my work with her…….I really don’t know what to say……..

For other new Griff owners, I would offer this insight: Be prepared for a dog who is half dog, half snake, half alligator, half monkey, and half chicken. For all who would like detail, they can contact me personally.

Gracie’s now had the opportunity to hunt up mice, rabbits, raccoons, deer, bear, and of course…..birds! She hunts the four-legged critters as a matter of course, but she shines as a hunter of birds. She’s learned to sit quietly in a duck/goose blind with hunters and dogs of other persuasions. She’s run a half a city block in pursuit of a sparrow, which, with a spirited leap in the air, she snatched in mid-flight. She’s trained with, hunted up, flushed under a shooting trainer, and picked up pigeon, even hunting up a pile of feathers from an excursion days earlier.

2 Happy Endings!

posted Oct 14, 2013, 12:05 PM by Martha Ingram

By: Martha H. (Marty) Ingram - August 23, 2013

Kyah had eaten all the floor tile in the bathroom when locked inside. The owner just started a new job and had no crate so it seemed easier at the time just to use the bathroom as one big crate. Kyah didn’t think so.

Bobby Orme was on the AWPGA Rescue list and lived on the Eastern Shore of MD within easy driving distance of Virginia’s Shenandoah Valley. Sure, he and his family would come look at Kaya day after tomorrow, he told me. He had researched the breed and felt a Griff would be perfect for his daughter Helen who had recently developed an auto immune disease and was tired all the time.

The family, Bobby, Bitsy, and Helen left Homer’s that day with Kyah and a pray shawl that Martha Mobley had made for Helen. I checked periodically with the family and everyone just loved Kyah-Bitsy even retired (we think to babysit!)

In January I got an email from Helen

 I cannot thank you enough for placing Kyah with us.  She has brought my entire family so much joy and happiness.  I hope to have a good Christmas picture to send this week of her and me by the Christmas tree.  Kyah has come at the perfect time.  My dad just found out his trusty German Shepherd has lymphoma and will probably have to be put down very soon.  He was causing trouble and jumping on everyone one minute and couldn't get out of bed the next.  So having Kyah around has helped my dad deal with the impending loss much easier.  Kyah is so loved and spoiled and has a real sweet tooth.  She ate an entire box of cookies over the weekend... it never stops with her; any sweet she has her nose in.  But over the holidays, I just want to let you know how much joy you have brought to our family by facilitating me getting that cute girl.  Thank you so much.  Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

But the story didn’t stop there. Knowing about the pending loss of their wonderful Shepherd, the Ormes were first in my thoughts when a Griff about the same age as Kyah became available in Indiana. Her owner had started a new job with home health care and had to leave Chloe alone in a garage for several days at a time. The owner had contacted the breeder who now lived in NC. The breeder was willing to take Chloe back, but she  needed help with transportation. I asked her if she would let Rescue place her direct, and all agreed so I called the Ormes.

I couldn’t get Bitsy and Bob on the phone so I called Helen and told her about Chloe. I said the only real problem is that Chloe is in Indiana. Helen was so excited she could not contain herself. She said “My parents are in Indiana right NOW!” We knew it was destined that Chloe would also go to MD!

Here is Helen’s email to me in May

I am so glad that you set Mama up with this new dog.  Just in the few days we have had her , Chloe’s personality has changed.  She was so sad looking before but now she is smiling and prancing around.  She likes being outside with Dad the best.  Apparently she will ride in his ATV with him; Kyah was afraid of it.   She is real quiet and isn’t in everyone's face like another dog I know... (KYAH).  Plus, she doesn’t have all the bad habits that Kyah has.  Jumping on furniture, jumping on people, demanding constant attention, etc.  I have been sitting with Chloe every night just petting her and telling her how loved she is.  I am just so happy she is in a home where she is loved and cared for.  

Mom calls Kyah, Boo Boo. Now, Chloe is Boo Boo 2.  

I can’t wait for you to visit to see our two beautiful and completely spoiled rescue Griffs.  Next dad will want one of his own!  

These are the experiences that makes me proud to be part of the AWPGA Rescue team.

Martha H. (Marty) Ingram

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