Tuesday, December 28, 2010

meet the dogs: Tiloup

Tiloup, sweet, gentle, comical and intelligent.  This dog has a long story, so I'll try to do this as quickly as possible.  Here goes!  We moved here last January, into our wonderful first home (which I LOVE and will post about soon).  Our street is nice and quiet and we have wonderful neighbours.  Except at one house.  The house next door is one of the only rentals on the street, and it just so happens that when we moved in, it was rented by a crack dealer or meth dealer or maker or just all around bad guy.  Bad Guy owned 2 dogs, a small, yappy white thing and a little mutty dog.  Mutty Dog ran loose and Yappy Dog was tied up most often. Then, one day last spring, Yappy Dog and Mutty Dog are gone and running around the neighbour's yard is a young pup, who I instantly fall in love with.

I ask Bad Guy where the other dogs went.  He laughs and says "I got rid of them".  Nice.  So, the new dog is like a trade in, I guess.  Old ones weren't working out, so reasonable solution for Bad Guy is to get a new pup.  Now, I start thinking about the old dogs.  I'm imagining that they were let loose out along some logging road somewhere, as is standard practice around here for unwanted pets.

As time goes on, the new pup looses appeal to Bad Guy.  He lets her run loose all of the time, and when she's not running loose, she's tied up in the yard, like in this video below.  I know its only a matter of time until she is either hit by a car or ends up pregnant, still just a pup herself.  For the record, I did phone the SPCA, but there isn't much that they can do in situations like this.  Their hands are tied by messed up laws.

One day, I get a phone call from a friend who lives about a block from here that the pup (who Bad Guy named Patches) was hit by a car in front of her house.  I hear yelping and look out in time to see Bad Guy carrying Patches up the stairs into his house, only to come back out a minute later.  My friend calls again to tell me that he's gone back to hang out at his friend's house.  Patches is now hurt, alone at home.  

Our SPCA was closed that day, and it took 3 1/2 hours on the phone before I finally found an SPCA constable who was willing to make the drive to our town to help, and she managed to convince the RCMP to drive by the house.  There, the officer found Patches lying on the couch with ice packs on her broken femur.  

Bad Guy surrendered the pup to him, and she was taken to the vet.  She almost lost her leg, but they were able to raise enough money to fix her leg.  You can see below the scar running along her back leg...

It is at this time that she came to us through the SPCA as a foster.  Timid, frightfully skinny and on major crate rest for her leg, she barked at everyone new, cowered at anything scary and needed to learn to trust something.  Anything.  She was alone and she knew it, but didn't know where to start.  We gave her the time. She began to heal.

By the grace of God, Bad Guy moved out from next door (and yes, cleaned up that mess of a yard) and Patches began to come into her own.  

Her eyes are like supernovas, her spirit is goofy and bright.  She understands how to make people laugh.  And, she isn't "patchy" so a new name was needed for a new life.  Tiloup is French slang and a term of endearment for "little wolf".  It seemed to fit...

She learned to trust humans, and although she's not 100% sure all of the time, especially with men, we understand why.  But the safest place for her soul is with her kid.  She loves a 6 year old boy.  Anything that he does, she does.  She follows him EVERYWHERE, stares at him and wags her tail when he talks (she thinks his stories are the BEST).  She sleeps in his room and comes whenever he calls.  When he leaves on the school bus she cries, and although she's afraid of the giant yellow monster that comes, she barks when it swallows her child and drives away.  Then, she waits until 3 when it returns him and the world becomes right again.

Once he's home, she can resume following.  If he digs in the snow, she digs in the snow....

He is most amazing!  He can make snow fall from the sky!  To her, anyone who controls the weather like this is remarkable and should be held in the highest regard...

We've since learned that Tiloup is a Weimaraner crossed with a Black and Tan Coonhound (small towns are a great way to learn information, everyone knows everyone and someone knows the guy that bred a pup).  She's proof of why you should always fight for the welfare of all animals.  Many people turn a blind eye towards the way the neighbour treats the pets, for fear of rocking the boat.  But in the end, it is the animals like Patches who suffer.  I'm not sure how this sweet soul survived living with a man like that, but if you know that an animal is being neglected or mistreated, please call someone.  You can make an anonymous tip if you have to, but in the end, you'll be glad you did something.  


  1. What a great story. She is a beautiful and lucky pup


  2. Wow, that is a great story. It's always hard to know the boundaries dealing with people and dogs; I literally gasped when you wrote the part that she was just sitting with an ice-pack on her broken leg.

  3. Oh Em, I love this. You are a game-changer, and your good work ripples far beyond Tiloup and the other dogs in your household.
    follow our foster:

  4. Incredible story, really, really awesome!! She is so gorgeous!

  5. You've always been a champion for the underdog and it goes right back to first grade, when you said you wanted to invite Amy, a classmate with Down's Syndrome, to your birthday party. I remember her mom cried when she dropped her was the first birthday or social event that her daughter had ever been invited to. Caring for others is something you were born to do and this mother's heart is so proud of you. Tiloup, of course, will be forever grateful that you persevered and got her the help she so desperately needed. You bring out the joy in everyone, dogs included.

  6. Tiloup is a very lucky girl! She has a great family now and a terrific little boy!!

    Can't wait to meet the rest of the dogs!


  7. typing through teary eyes...
    thank you for sharing Tiloup's story.

  8. Equally teary-eyed girl typing.
    The simple statement of Tiloup (such a perfect name) having supernova eyes that started the tears for me. Those eyes have so much emotion in them ...
    Thank you for being a diligent Watcher; for being the force that started a healing chain of events for this precious dog (your little boy's forever best friend).

  9. SWEETEST STORY!! Thanks so much for sharing and look forward to reading more :)