Thursday, September 14, 2017

Test Drive Your Very Own Knucklehead!

The ever-popular backseat-grinning model. 
Ladies and gentleman, have we got a deal for you. We've got all sorts of knuckleheads in all models, ages and colors for you to take home on lease. And it will cost you nothing! That's right we said nothing, nada, zip. Totally free! We'll even provide the food and medical care!

Like this one right here - 
Such great lines! And dainty paws!
This is Marlin, a 2012 model Doberman. This baby has it all. Hiking? He's in. Jogging? He's in. This baby will look fantastic parked in front of your TV while you catch up all the new Netflix shows with him. He's got a roomy mouth that easily fits two to three tennis balls that he will repeatedly and happily bring back to you. He's great with older kids and promises to be fantastic company. Why are we asking for someone to test drive him? While he does wonderfully in the home, he's not such a fan of the shelter and is nervous and scared here. We'd love to see him happily ensconced in a foster home until he finds a permanent placement. Which is where folks like you - who can't commit to a full time dog - come in! Now doesn't that make you want to do a happy dance? 

Model does not include fantastic dance abilities. 
But wait - there's more! And that calls for another happy dance!


Fan of the blockheaded models? We've got all shapes and colors waiting to spend some time with you. If you like that sleek grey/blue look, Olive or Enzo might be the perfect choice for you. At five years old Olive has all the horsepower you need for hikes and jogging with excellent settle down capabilities. While she'll happily gear up for the athletic fun, she's a belly rub loving lump when it's time for cuddles. Another big plus? She's cleans up easily with a spray bottle or hose!


Olive has been with us for a while and she's pretty over being in the shelter. When you are that much go-go and love sponge in one sleek package you need a lot more that any animal shelter, even an awesome one, can provide. She's going to make some lucky person a great pooch but while she's waiting she'd be a lot happier in a home environment. 

And while we're talking about water...


Did someone ask if we had any amphibious models? If so, your answer is Sidney. Sidney is the epitome of knucklehead - she's adorable, she's loveable and she cannot stand shelter livin'. A 2016 lab/border collie/whatever model, Sidney is one hundred pounds of fun in a fifty pound package. She loves swimming, playing fetch and being out and about. She definitely needs some help being a little more civilized - her idea of hello is similar to linebacker tackle training - and it's hard for her to work on it here. Despite her social skills, she's been going to obedience classes and acing it. Which leads us to believe there's a lot going on in that pointy little noggin and that she's just bored and frustrated. 

Swim in all the water! All of it!
Okay, we'll come clean. All car-salesman antics and gimmicks aside, we really need foster homes for big pooches. We are chock full of awesome, wiggly, happy-pants mega-nuggets who really, really want to get out of dodge. While a forever home would be their first choice, sometimes that takes awhile. We get it. Heck, even Busy Izzy gets it and, to be honest, she can be a bit of an airhead at times.

I like cheese!
We also know there are a lot of people who would love to own a big dog but don't feel ready to commit to a lifetime yet. Maybe they  want to travel. Maybe they rent and are waiting until they own a house. Maybe they're just not ready for commitment. Whatever. But we thought hey, here's a perfect opportunity to enjoy a big dog, see if a big dog is right for you without actually having to OWN a big dog for however many years. Plus you'll be doing something really, really good for a knucklehead in need. 

Let's blow this popsicle stand. 
If you can foster a big dog, please email laura.birdsall@hssv.org. When you foster a dog we provide the food, vet care and everything until they get adopted. You just provide the love. So let's do this. And if you can't do it, let's share this and tag folks who might be able to. It's totally okay to put your friends on the spot. We promise. 

**Wait - if they're such great dogs why do you call them knuckleheads? We use the term knuckleheads as a term of endearment for our larger, goofier pooches who are prone to bursts of ridiculous enthusiasm such as zoomies, whole body wiggles, spontaneous jumping for joy and, in Marlin's case, ability to fit unbelievable amounts of toys in their mouths. 







Monday, August 28, 2017

Suns Out, Buns Out!


We know, you're not a bunny person. We had to lead with the super sensational headline to get you guys to open this at all. After all, if you never had a rabbit why would you open it? Folks tend to think they know everything there is to know about pet rabbits but as a famous TV show once said...


To help everyone out, here's five reasons you need a bunny. And we're going to do this without puns about hopping or grabbing buns. Which is a lot harder than you would think. 


We are, however, going to pepper this post with adorable bunny gifs.



1) Bunnies Have A Perfect Schedule For Busy Professionals And Families. 

Myth: Bunnies are nocturnal and want nothing to do with you during daylight hours. 

Fact: Ready for your fancy new word of the day? Crepuscular. Buns are crepuscular, which means they're most active in the morning and in the evening. When you're home from work and wanting to play with your bun or chill out and watch Netflix with them, they're totally ready and on it. When you're ready for bed, they're ready for bed. When you're at work, they're having a snack, taking a nap, and thinking about all the cool stuff they'll do with their hooman when you get home. So basically they're a perfect fit for you. 


2) The Bun Is Smarter Than You Think. 

Myth: They're untrainable and don't do anything except sit and look cute.

Fact: They do sit and look cute, that's true. The other part is sheer hooey. Bunnies can be clicker trained and do all sorts of cute tricks. They can learn to play fetch, do basic agility courses, all sorts of cute tricks. And they work for carrots - literally. 


3) They're The Perfect Housemate.

They're neat. Most of our buns come litter trained - put a box in the corner and they'll use it. They believe in recycling more than you do - they'd love to give those toilet paper tubes another life as a toy. They can shred a box into the perfect size to fit in even a tiny recycling bin. They're quiet - no barking or meowing. They encourage healthy eating habits. If you're buying them some kale and carrots you might as well make yourself a salad as well, right? Perfect housemates. Way better than that strange dude you roomed with in college who threw beer cans in the garbage and left half eaten pizza slices on the stove. 



4) You Know You Want To Pat The Bunny.

So soft. So calm. Can't you feel your stress level going down just watching someone pat the bunny? Forget the desk sand gardens and weird little chimey bells: it's all about the bunny. Rabbits can be adorable, mischievous little nuggets that will keep you entertained for hours with their antics but they can also be soothing lap buddies and fellow TV binge watchers. If you think sitting on the sofa and patting the cat while watching an entire season of Orange Is The New Black is good therapy, you've never stroked bunny ears. 



5) You Are Still Reading This. 

Seriously, you're five hundred words in right now. If you honestly had no interest whatsoever in bunnies, would you still be here? The gifs are great (huge kudos to our alumni Dewey The Earless Wonder for helping with them) but they're not read-500-words-great. If you've made it this far it's probably a sign that you really want a rabbit. We can help with that. Take a look at our buns. And let's talk. 

Through September 3rd we've made bunny love even easier - adoption fees are waived on all rabbits!







Friday, August 4, 2017

The Seven Dogs Of The Week.

Monday:

Why? 
The alarm goes off. You know what that means. It's coming. Why is the weekend so fun yet so short? Why is the work week so long? Why? Just...why? 

Quick Tip: coming home to an empty house makes Monday worse. You should probably have a pet. 

Tuesday:

No. Just..no. 
C'mon now little soldier - you've got this. Get out of bed and conquer the rest of the week. Besides, with Monday out of the way you're now 20% closer to Friday. It's like a 20% discount on your week. 

Quick Tip: Tuesdays are rough. Need a pick me up? Stop by the shelter and cuddle a kitten or pat a pooch. Plus Tuesdays are generally pretty slow around the shelter so, you know, stop in.

Wednesday:

Optimism mode not enabled yet. 
The week is now half over. It's in the bag, really. There's a light at the end of the tunnel. You made it this far, you can go the distance. Take the long view and keep pushing. But seriously, get that project done. No joke. 

Quick Tip: Can't commit to having a pet but need some loving? Think about fostering older kittens or cats. We have an orientation this Sunday.

Thursday:

Is that light on the horizon?
It's Thursday. You can taste Friday on your tongue. You can grasp it with your fingertips. You can - seriously, finish that project. You're not getting paid to sit there because you're cute. (Unless you're this guy. Then maybe yes, you are getting paid to sit there because you're cute. But you're probably getting paid in cheese or hot dog bits.)

Quick Tip: By this point in the week you probably seriously need a cute fix. Can't make it all the way to Milpitas? You can still stop by our Neighborhood Adoption Centers and snuggle a kitten for a few minutes. 

Friday:

I'm working on the Parker account right now. Swear I am. 
It's here! It's here! Eight more hours and you're out the door and man, you look ready. You can sleep in tomorrow! Heck, you don't even have to get out of your pajamas if you don't want to. Who ordered the Netflix binge? You did. That's right. You did. 

Quick Tip: Senior pets make AWESOME snuggle buddies and tend to love Netflix binges as much as you do. We're just sayin'...

Saturday:

I'm daaaaaancin'..because life is a paaaarty...
Wahoo! Get out there and get to playing. Okay, that involves getting out of your jammies and pressing pause on that episode of GLOW but hey, the weather is soooooo fine and today is your oyster. Besides, there's always tomorrow.

Quick Tip: Nothing will get you out and about more than a blockhead as a hiking buddy. A lot of our pibbles are always down for a day on the trails. Again, just a thought. 

Sunday:

I don't want to talk about the Parker account.
Sunday dog is not amused. Sunday dog has his toy but knows he only has one more day to play with it. Sunday dog is torn between another gallivant around the park or finishing that season of GLOW he started. Sunday dog feels time ticking away between his tiny Frito-smelling paws.

Quick Tip: Counting the days away isn't healthy. You know what the best cure for day-counting is? Living with a pet. No one is a better role model for how to live in the moment. Be it a dog, a cat or even a bunny (great pets for busy professionals!) no one can teach you the simple joys in life better than a pet. So get on that. 

Friday, July 28, 2017

Three Meat-heads That Make Us Swoon.

So lumpy yet so sleek. So active yet so cuddly. So infinitely smooshable yet so....smooshy. They're....

What? What am I? Aside from waiting for you to throw that ball.
Blockheads. 

And we have a fresh crop of them waiting for foster or permanent homes. This might be our most exciting group of pibbly-bulldog pooches EVER and we want you to meet three that set our hearts all a-flutter.

Courtesy of pinterest. Because, well, LOVE. 
What ARE you, Moose?

Snorty. I am very, very snorty. And fluffy. 
Oh, Moose. Your lineage is more mixed up than a smoothie. What made you? The yodeling, the snorting, the long silky coat — we are befuddled and enamored all the same time. The best guess we have is English Bulldog/Australian Shepherd. You snore. You fart. You herd. You are so uncivilized but we just can't resist ourselves. We understand that some of it (the jumping, the shoes-are-not-chew-toys thing) is a product of your youth. At ten months old, you can barely be expected to have Downtown Abbey manners but you still need some charm school. Even still, you have us not only wrapped around your meaty paw but also firmly entrenched in your drooly, endlessly squishable cheek folds.

Who can resist the cheeks of smoosh? 
The Diplomat: Bayou

Kids are cool. I dig kids. 
You're a playgroup rockstar. A Doggy Day Out favorite. A snuggle muffin. A gentleman. Why, Bayou, have you not found your people yet? We know you cannot stand the shelter life. At some point during your five years on this big, crazy orb you had a family that treated you well and we can tell. We know you don't show well here because you don't like it. We know pooches like you get overlooked a lot at the shelter. Maybe this humble little missive will make someone ask about you when they stop in. In the meantime we'll just keep sending you to playgroup and on your Doggy Day Outs so folks can stumble upon you in the real world, where your awesomeness is on full display.

Behold the ears of joy. 
Summer and her never ending smile.

Kisses? Lots of kisses? Anyone?
The more lemons life hands you, dear Summer, the more lemonade you insist on making. You are a veritable lemonade factory and we couldn't love you more for it. You came to us covered in ticks and with infected ears. Even still, the only time you stopped smiling was when you took some much deserved power naps while recovering from the streets. Or fields. Or where ever it was that you picked up that legion of ticks. Now clean, healthy and recovered you truly are a ray of sunshine, an eternal optimist and a dog of the people. You love to par-tay with the other big pooches. You've charmed the pants off of corporate volunteer groups. We know there's a home out there with a Summer-sized hole in it and we're just waiting for them to show up. 

Smoochies?
It's almost the weekend and what are you up to, seriously? Why not stop in and cuddle a blockhead? They're waiting. With ginormous, meat-head smiles. Come by!

Thmoochies?



Friday, July 21, 2017

Chis Make Great Pets. Cheese, Not So Much.

We get a lot of chihuahuas and mixes. So many that they even have their own verbal shorthand: chis. Chi generally means anything small, usually tan and having some traits in common with a chihuahua, which constitute the majority of their lineage. As a group, chis and chi mixes dominate shelter populations in California. So we talk about them a lot. A lot a lot. Which can lead to some confusion when we talk about having a passel of chis:

Adorable little fun happy muffins.
And people think we mean a passel of cheese.

Inanimate cracker ornament. 
The sad thing is due to silly misinformation and prejudice about chis, a lot of people are about as likely to adopt cheese as a pet....

The cat, like most of the readers, is amazed at the ridiculousness of this stunt.
As they are to adopt one of our adorable, bright, silly little chis. Like Baby.

If you're not going to eat that cheese, here I am. I'm just sayin'...
Which is just ridiculous. Let's have a chat about the differences between cheese and chis and the misinformation that's out there about our poor maligned little petite pooch pals.

Chis: Cuddly, snuggly and perfectly lap sized. 

I WAS MADE FOR THE SNUGGLE!
Cheese: Oily, cold, unaffectionate and prone to melting.

Poor companionship. Seriously. 
Chihuahuas and mixes come in as many varieties as, well, cheese. But one thing about most of them? They all love them some snuggle time. Even our most playful, bouncy chis still enjoy a good Netflix cuddle and sleeping under the covers with you. Cheese? Lame. And it melts. 

Chis: Great walking buddies who enjoy a chance to sniff the flowers. 

I'm such a better pet that I'll eat the competition. 
Cheese: Prone to attracting ants. Needs to be dragged, creating scrapes that attract even more ants and possibly hungry raccoons. Melts on hot days. 

Marketing Director Sandy really went all-in to help us make this point. 
Chihuahuas are smart, curious little nuggets who love to know what's going on around them. They're a little nosy and pretty social, like people. While most of them generally don't need a marathon run (thank goodness!) they do enjoy taking a stroll to check out the scene. They'll give you a great excuse to get some exercise and see what the neighbors are up to. 

Chis: Funny, playful and smart. Love to learn tricks. 

When I'm done here I'll start working on your taxes. 
Cheese: It's...cheese. 

We need to know what Sandy's neighbors were thinking when she was doing these photos for us. 
We're pretty sure everyone knows who is going to win the fetch contest here. Hint: it's not wearing a wrapper. Meanwhile our chis are slaying in their obedience classes, playing fetch like machines and (like HSSV alum Lady Marmalade above) having a blast on the agility equipment. Contrary to popular belief, chis are actually super smart little guys who love to learn. Small dog owners are less likely to take their pooches to classes. This is a shame as chis are trick-meisters who love to learn. 

Chis: Quick to pick up housemanners, great apartment pooches who don't mind you going to work for hours provided they can get a walk when you get home.

You can go. We're cool. See you when you get back. 
Cheese: Must be refrigerated when left, otherwise will leave enormous cheesy mess on furniture. Not at all happy to see you when you get back.

Okay, even we admit it looks sad to see you go. 
Our conclusion? It's chis for the win. And cheese for, well, the sandwich. 

If you're looking for a dog but haven't considered a chi, take a second look. We have plenty of amazing little guys who would have been snapped up in a heartbeat were it not for the breed prejudice against them. The majority of our chis are not yappy, not bitey, not shakey and are (shockingly) just....dogs. Like any other dogs. In a more compact package.

We all have that one friend. 
This weekend we're celebrating the magic that IS the chi and chi mix population at our shelters with reduced adoption fees on them. Through Sunday, all our little chi and chi mix nuggets have an adopt fee of just $20. Which is only slightly more than a fairly lame, non-responsive, melty block of....

If that was a cracker we'd have a solution to this dilemma. 
cheese.

You guys pulls some bonehead stunts to get us adopted but this...this...

Tuesday, July 11, 2017

Kittehs, Like Shoes, Go Better In Pairs.

Kittens will be kittens. They're super adorable...

Cup o' kitteh
Super playful....

Gimmee..
Super loving...

Cuddle puddle!
But can also be....

Hooman! I scale you like tree! You WILL play!!
Demons. It's not their fault - they're just wee little things. With youth comes boundless energy and an insatiable need for attention but it can lead to a conundrum. What if you just NEED a kitten?

When I am bigger I will knock ALL of these off this shelf. #kittengoals
(Trust us, dear reader, you do need a kitten. And kittens need you so this works out wonderfully)

I am kitten. Take me home. 
You need a kitten but you're concerned because you work or what-have-you and don't want to feel guilty for leaving the little nugget to it's own devices...

Why you go?
Or you simply would like to sleep without having your toes pounced on at 3 AM? Buckle in, friends, we're going to tell you a secret. Ready?

Shhhh...iz secret.
Kittens go better in pairs. They really, really do.

I smoosh him so I don't smoosh you. Everyone's happier. 
Not only do they keep each other company while you're gone...

They can do this for hours...
They also provide each other an outlet for the type of play that kittens enjoy but humans often don't.

Let's play face-punch!
That punchy, bitey kind of playing. Which means after a long day at work you come home to sweet kitten adorable-ness...

We were good all day. We (kind of) promise.
and not crazy, bouncing off the wall kitties that keep you up all night and make you feel guilty. And they expend those sorts of vaguely-homicidal-but-totally-normal kitten hijinks on each other..

Let's play face-tackle!
leaving your ankles significantly safer...

Note happy, un-bothered dog. 
and giving the poor dog some peace. We're not saying they'll be little saints but they are more likely to sleep through the night..

Power-nap!
Or at least wake each other up to play as opposed to waking you up. It doesn't mean they won't want to play with you...

We take turns...
It just means they'll get some of their ya-yas out with each other so you're not expected to be a 24/7 play machine. Plus they'll get to keep each other company for years to come...

Twinsies!
Leading to years of social-media-ready adorableness.

If you turn the water on we will flay you in your sleep. 
So when you come in to adopt your kitten - because you ARE coming in to adopt a kitten, right? - just say...

Practicing fine twinsie form for later life. 
Make mine a double. 

We make snuggles. 
They'll be happier, you'll be happier - we promise. As Aunt Ethel used to say about her brownies..

Look - we even fit in a bed together. 
Take two, they're small. 

And for the next few weeks adopting a pair is even easier. On weekdays adoption fees are waived on ALL kittens and cats. Check out the available babies here