This story belongs to someone who put a dogs needs first, despite - or because - how much she loved him.
One summer day, we were contacted by a trustee of a dachshund rescue.
This is Normans story....
"What can I say about Norman ? He is a beautiful cream long haired Dachsund... he had spent a a lot of his life in a kennel and was petrified of people in general but mostly men.....he was homed to a lady on her own who had two other dogs but after about a week discovering he was blind, she no longer thought she had a suitable home for him, and wanted him out of her house.
She was about 10 miles from me so one Sunday morning I set off to pick him up... I’ve worked with rescue dogs with behavioural issues, or dogs scared of the world for over 25yrs so I knew this wouldn’t be an issue, but Id never had a blind dog. On paper I would be the worst home... I had other dachsunds, young twin girls, two older girls who have a busy social life with lots of people in and out of my house, our lifestyle is very busy and wondered how this would suit a scared to death little blind Norman.
I got to the address and sure enough Norman was petrified and wouldn’t allow anyone near him. Eventually I managed to get a lead on him and popped him in the car, although nervous he was never aggressive. I took him home and spoke to him all the way back, when I got home I took him out of the car and took him into the garden to meet the other dogs.... he was fine with the other dogs but if a person went near him he would bolt and do everything and anything he could to run, he attempted to climb the fences just to get away so I left him for an hour to calm down and then I sat in the garden with him for a good 2hrs... he got closer and closer but still wasn’t brave enough to let me touch him, so I got him into a comfortable crate with lots of blankets to hide in and took him into the kitchen where he could hear everything without being confronted or feel threatened.
Eventually I sat next to his crate and he was still very scared but was no longer panicking so I opened the door and he allowed me to stroke him so he had some roast chicken for being so brave! I did this many times, the following day I let him out without a lead on and guess what ?! He didn’t bolt he stood next to me looking at me every time I spoke to him and I actually got a tail wag!!! I had tears in my eyes at this point because I knew he would be ok and he was starting to trust ! He still ran away from everyone else but he was using me as his safe space. I was overwhelmed with love for this precious little chap and from that moment he became my shadow.
I wanted the best for him without being selfish so I looked on FB and the internet for someone with experience of blind dogs for some reassurance that I was doing things right.. that’s when I came across Barbara at Blind Dogs: Enabled. I PMd her and she was amazing and very reassuring that all was good. BUT.... I still had the issue of him being petrified of other people so with such a busy house it was still a concern on my part, I didn’t want him to live in fear and anxiety for my own selfish reasons because I loved him so much!
After a few messages back and forth to Barbara I sent her a photo of him and she was smitten as well, I had another foster dachsund coming who would need a lot of care as he had IVDD so I decided Norman would be better off in a quieter home with other blind dogs... so Barbara decided she would love him and I knew he couldn’t be in safer hands.
The day came for Norman to start his life with Barbara... I was a mess with tears screaming down my face as I cuddled and kissed him said goodbye and popped him in the crate but the whole time knew this was the right decision for Norman... I will never forget him but he has come along way with Barbara and he has all the love in the world.. he can now run free and live his best life and although I still think about him and miss him everyday he couldn’t have had a happier ending and for that I will be forever grateful"