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Why Rescue?

Why Rescue?

Today’s post is going to focus on celebrating rescue dogs! Here at Puppy Gang Fresh Foods we are huge supporters of Animal Rescue agencies and adoption! In fact, Harley, Kalinda and Tarzan are all rescues. According to the Canadian Federation of Humane Societies more than a quarter million dogs and cats enter Canadian animal shelters every year and more than 100,000 are euthanized. The facts are quite grim and there are many animals in need who need our help.

Today we are going to share our experiences adopting our dogs and provide you with some tips and recommendations for those of you interested in adopting a pup.

Harley & Kalinda’s Adoption Story:

Puppy Gang Fresh Foods was started as a result of Kalinda’s health journey. You can read our story to learn more about Kali’s health issues when she was adopted, and her new happy and healthy life. I adopted Kalinda and Harley two years ago whilst I was living in Hong Kong from a wonderful agency called Lifelong Animal Protection Agency and brought them both back to Canada with me when I returned home. I was very keen to get a dog as I had a Miniature Schnauzer named Shadow growing up who had died of cancer who I absolutely adored.. When I saw Kalinda’s picture her sad eyes caught my eye. I reached out to the founder of the organization Sheila who advised me that Kalinda had a variety of health concerns and though this might deter many potential pet parents, I opted to meet her anyway.

When I arrived, Kalinda was so overweight she could barely walk. But she struggled to get up waddled over to me and plopped in my lap and looked up at me with her big brown eyes pleading for me to adopt her. I knew regardless of her health concerns I had to give her a home. Harley, a beautiful puppy at the time, jumped on top of us and started tugging on my sleeve playfully. Upon conversation with the rescue volunteers I found out the two were great friends and spent a lot of time playing together despite their differences in age and energy levels.  So, I just knew that I had to adopt them both...and I can say without a doubt it was the best decision I ever made. Watching Kalinda’s journey to health and seeing Harley grow has been so incredibly rewarding. I’ve seen first hand what a little love and some healthy nutritious food can do for pups and the resilience of dogs never ceases to amaze me!


Tarzan’s Adoption Story:

Tarzan was adopted recently by Sarah, Co-founder of Puppy Gang Fresh Foods. Tarzan is 8 or 9 years old and Sarah went out of her way to pick an older dog knowing that most people want to adopt puppies (we get it, they are so cute!). Sarah had a great experience with Niagara Dog Rescue who made the process quick and seamless, but did very thorough checks. We took a drive to pick up Tarzan from St. Catherine’s, who had a long 10 hour journey to get here. We don’t know much about his backstory, only that he was surrendered. He came to Niagara Dog Rescue with Heartworm and had undergone treatment successfully. 

Tarzan is an absolute delight - he is so well mannered in the home, he waits to be invited on any furniture and loves snuggling and receiving love. Sarah changed Tarzan’s diet from kibble to Puppy Gang Fresh Foods, and noticed an immediate difference in his energy levels. He absolutely loves his new food and is living a healthier and happier life. Research has shown that feeding your pups nutritious food could extend their life by up to 50%, so Sarah is making sure to have as many more years with Tarzan as possible. Having Tarzan has brought so much joy to Sarah and she couldn’t imagine a life without him.


Based on our experience with adoption, here are some lessons we learned: 

I recognize that adopting a dog with Kalinda’s level of health concerns is definitely not for everyone. So I want to share some of my experience for those of you contemplating adopting your first pup.

  1. Will I have time to feed, spend time with and walk my dog?Dogs are social animals and will want to spend time with their favourite hooman (ie. you!)
  2. What size/personality of  dog best fits my living situation (do you live in a house with a backyard? Are you in a small apartment? Do you have kids?)
  3. If you are working late or have to travel do you have a support system/means to find a reputable sitter for your dog?
  4. What do you picture your life looking like in 5-10 years? Is a dog a part of this?
  5. Dogs have the emotional maturity of a three year old child. I often equate my life to having two little toddlers at home. As a result, they might get into mischief - are you prepared to do some training and help your dog with their behavior?
  6. Can you afford dog food, training, toys, vet bills, etc. for your dog?
  7. What are your expectations for your relationship with your dog? Do you want a companion animal? Are you hoping for an active dog to support your healthy lifestyle?

Selecting the right dog for you and your individual situation is of the utmost importance because dogs are a member of your family. They take and deserve hard work, effort, time, effort and commitment. They can’t speak for themselves, so we have to speak on their behalf! 

Consider if a puppy or an older dog is for you. Often times people opt for puppies, and if so, it is important that you understand how much work, training and the level of attention and care pups need. Don’t forget the older dogs - they also need a loving home, and Kali and Tarzan are great example of amazing older dogs that are already house trained and such beautiful additions to our family..

Questions to Ask A Rescue Prior to Adopting Your Dog:

  1. Does the dog have any health concerns (I recognize that adopting a dog with Kalinda’s level of health concerns is definitely not for everyone though health concerns can change with proper nutrition and care. It is important to really reflect on what level of health care you are willing/capable of providing to your dog).
  2. Find out any history of behavioural issues (questions to ask related to this-how does my dog behave around other dogs and people? Is my dog good around kids). These will help you determine if a dog is the right fit for you and your situation. Take the advice of the rescue - they will often ask you a number of questions and try to match you with the right dog for your situation. They usually know best!
  3. Find out any past history of neglect or abuse (it is important to know the cause of any behaviour issues and also to help you establish a loving, trusting relationship with your pup).

Finally, many rescues end up at agencies in less than optimal health conditions. Feeding your dog nutritious and healthy meals such as Puppy Gang Fresh Foods can transform the health of your new fur baby. Adopting a dog can be an incredibly rewarding and positive life changing experience for you and your new pup! 

Do you have a story about adopting a dog or have any questions about adopting a pup? Please comment below or email us at and we would love to hear from you :).


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