Max, Now called Ollie, has found his forever home.

Keep in touch, big guy!

Pauline told us “Ollie was, definitely, meant to be for usand, we are pretty sure, we are just right for him too.

Sadly, both Freddie and George had to leave us for Rainbow Bridge in early 2021 but our amazing Rhani was still going strong at almost 14yrs old. She seemed reasonably happy as an only dog even though she had adored both her brothers but this strange situation had never before happened to us or Rhani. She had always been part of a family of dogs, often a huge family, so it was really difficult to work out what was best for her and for us. 

We knew she would definitely prefer a companion to be male and not too young so we, tentatively, put out feelers and decided to see who came along. We were prepared to offer a home to an older boy of any Retriever sized breed maybe with ailments or who had disabilities, as we had been there before both with foster dogs and adoptees, but, little did we know, it was yet another “bad boy” that fate had in store for us.

Max had come from a small Irish rescue who had asked IRR for help in rehoming him. His original, loving owners had been forced to give him up, after 7yrs together, due to accommodation problems caused by the Pandemic so he was, understandably, confused and frightened and, although he caused no problems when in the home of his initial rescuers, he didn’t do at all well in kennels where he became extremely reactive to the sounds of clanking and barking. He seemed to be particularly aggressive towards men so his proposed English foster home with a very tall man albeit a very kind one, became out of the question and his prospects of adoption grew worse and worse. Fortunately, Steve and I had been there, done that and got the T-shirt, several times, so I found those familiar words “we’ll take him” come pouring out. There was no question he would soon become yet another failed foster.

So, much like the old days, Steve and I collected Max, as he was then, from transport in the very early hours of Thursday 12th August 2021. Michael, the transporter, was extremely patient and understanding, being very gentle and kind with him, and not rushing us in any way despite him having to work to a pretty tight time schedule with several other needy rescue dogs on board his van allwaiting to go into their foster homes around the country.

We had already decided to change the name as, many years before, we had adopted (from the RSPCA) a very special GSD called Max so that was forever his special identity. We also felt pretty certain that our new boy would come with some recent bad associations with his namedue to his time in kennels, which he really hated, so we decided on Ollie, a nice friendly, happy name which was specially chosen for him and was in tribute to two wonderful IRR Golden Retrievers, Max Max Perkin – Irish Retriever Rescue  and Ollie Perkin, Ollie Perkin – Irish Retriever Rescue a very memorable pair of our early foster dogs from 2006 who both enjoyed long and very happy lives before they had to leave to go to join all the other IRR angels at Rainbow Bridge. We hoped our Ollie would be just as lucky as they had been.

Another decision that Steve and I made was for me to be the hands on one, with him taking a bit of a back seat, justto allow Ollie the space to realize in his own time that he was safe and that most men are actually ok. This worked well and, in no time at all, the two of them became good friends although to this day (8 months on) Ollie can still have momentary flashbacks and he will eye Steve with a little suspicion whereas he always trusts me implicitly.

On his first day, Ollie, after drinking gallons of water, peed, poohed and ate his breakfast with relish. Later, he played with Rhani in the garden and she, as she always did with newbies, told him what was what. A bit later, he then enjoyed the freedom of a lovely stroll (albeit on harness and very long line) in our secure field.

Max, our golden retriever/labrador cross, has now been adopted