*Leech Lake Legacy is a 501(c)3 tax exempt non-profit organization

Envisioning a world where every reservation dog and cat is well cared for

Saturday, November 23, 2013

Alex Update: Full circle ... the healing energy of animals

We got an email from Alex's family for the holidays and just had to share the update:

Alex and his new family - December, 2013

Hello Marilou,

I hope all is well with you and your family?  We are good here and enjoying our new family member, Alex.  I wanted to send you a picture or two of our new Christmas gift, Alex.  He is such an amazing dog and his spirit is so big and full of love, I am so blessed that we had this great dog come into our life!!!

Once again, thank you for all that you do!!!  I am hoping to come up there, with Alex and visit you and show you the true power of love, karma, and an amazing aura!!!

Take care.


By Marilou (LLL co-founder):

Alex in his new home
On October 6th, I received an email from LuAnn, an LLL volunteer who lives up in Grand Rapids area. LuAnn and her husband Frank have volunteered at many of our first spay/neuter clinics at Leech Lake Reservation and continue to be a big advocate and voice for the animals. She shared with me that she had a friend Corine who had found an injured dog lying in the middle of the road in Inger with a face full of quills. Her friend Corine took the stray pup to her vet to get care and then was taken in for temporary care by her friend Vicki. I shared with Corine that Leech Lake Legacy was going to be in Cass Lake for a spay/neuter and wellness clinic on Oct. 11-12 and her friend could come to our clinic to surrender the pup. We would then transport the pup to our partner Animal Humane Society and he would be placed up for adoption. I had a couple conversations with Vicki prior to the clinic to assure her Alex would be well cared for. It was clear she cared deeply for the pup. On Saturday, Oct. 11th, early evening a woman walked up to the intake desk for our clinic at the Leech Lake Tribal Police headquarters and asked for Marilou. I was expecting her and happened to be up front when Vicki arrived, “I’m Marilou. Are you Vicki?” Vicki had come with a friend and it was also clear her heart was full of emotions.
Alex on Oct. 11, 2013 being surrendered at our clinic
We walked out together to her car where a gorgeous dog was waiting for her in her car. He looked like a miniature rottie and had the most gentle, kind disposition. There was an aura around him .. and it was clear he had wiggled his way into Vicki’s heart. “Will you please make sure he is well cared for?” I looked Vicki in the eyes, and nodded. “The dogs we bring down to the Animal Humane Society are often adopted very quickly and spend very little time at the shelter. He will find a wonderful home.” We walked back and she filled out paper to surrender Alex (Leech Lake Legacy named him Alex) and she handed the leash over to one of our LLL volunteers, and as she walked away I could see tears in her eyes. She could not keep Alex and was grateful to know that he would be given the chance at finding his own home … but yes, it was clear her heart hurt.

A few days ago, Leech Lake Legacy received an email from Molly:
Alex and his new canine sibling ... yes, napping :)
My name is Molly Smith and I was curious to see if you would like a picture of one of your dogs that we adopted on November 3rd, 2013.  I was looking through some of the photos from your website and I found a few pictures of him, number 5758 and 6041.  His name is Alex and we are in LOVE with him!!!  i just thought you might enjoy an update and a photo or two!!!

Please let me know if this is ok and I will send some pictures as well as an update on Alex's new family.  Thank you for all you do!! Because of what you all do, we have a great new family member!!!

We continued to exchange emails and I shared a little more about how Alex came to Leech Lake Legacy …

“ …. my husband and I got a little misty reading this!!  I am so glad that things happened the way they did, for we received an amazing new family member!!  

We went on Sunday, November 3rd to just look around and take our kids, we have a son who will be 5 in December 24th, and our twin daughters are 3.5,  to the humane society so they could see all of the animals. I have been wanting another dog; in 2011 we had to put down my 12 year old Boston Terrier, and as of January 4th of 2013, we had to put down one of our Pugs who was only 11.  We do have one dog left, a 13 year old pug, and now Alex.  So, as we were at the Humane Society in Coon Rapids, I walked by Alex's cage and I just had to meet him.  There was something about him that just kept pulling me back to him.  He had such an aura about him that I had to bring him home.  I did not realize the connection he would make with me, my husband, and my kids.  The odd thing is I am Native American, Cherokee, not a lot but enough and I swear he and I connected that day.  He is an amazing dog and I actually call him "my boy".  

Alex is a loving boy who spends his day playing with our kids and myself and when our pug feels like it, him as well.  The second he walked into our house, he was apart of the family.  He has a lot of energy and we have a fenced in yard and, I run.  He gets walks almost every day.  We are so blessed to have this boy in our home and our hearts!!!    

When we brought him in for his 2 week checkup our vet who I have known for 14 years says he is an amazing dog and we are very lucky to have him!!  There was however a few bumps with his health and we are working on that now.  He had one broken off porcupine quill in his muzzle but luckily, I was able to grab it out.  He was very happy about that!!!

I will keep you updated and send many pictures!!!  Thank you for all that you do!!!

On the same day that Molly sent us an email, it was the same day that Corine had a phone conversation with Jenny Fitzer (the other co-founder of LLL). Corine had reached out to us about volunteering to help at our clinics and Jenny was sharing with Corine more about what would be involved in volunteering at one of our clinics. Corine happened to ask Jenny, “Do you know whatever happened to the dog my friend surrendered at the October clinic? The dog who had quills in his face?” Unbeknownst to Jenny, I had been communicating with Molly about Alex, the dog Corine was asking about. And Corine, who happens to be on the board of directors for Northern Community Radio in northern Minnesota, wanted to know if we would be willing to go on the radio to share more about the work we do up at Leech Lake Reservation. Thanks to Corine, I was on the radio yesterday (Friday) morning on the John and Heidi morning show sharing more about our work.
Alex, napping with dad .. he makes a nice pillow :)
I also asked Corine to share more about how she came upon Alex … here is how it all began …

I was driving through Inger on my way to town on Wed, Oct. 2 and he way lying in the middle of the road (probably soaking up the road heat).  When I stopped he came up to my car almost like he was asking for help and I noticed he had a face full of quills, many going all the way through both nostrils.  I got out and tried to get him, but he ran off into a nearby yard with a bunch of other dogs (who also had quills).  I didn't feel comfortable following him into the yard.  Two days later I went back prepared with a kennel, treats for the other dogs, and a leash and collar.  He was in the road again so I just picked him up and put him in my car and drove him to the vet.  They sedated him, removed the quills, and tested him for heartworm, lyme and anaplasmosis.  He was positive for both anaplasmosis and lyme so we treated him for that, as well as deworming him and treating him preventively for mange since it is not uncommon in the stray dogs on the res.  I couldn't bring him home because I have 3 dogs; my oldest little pit bull was dying and a handful to care for.  Luckily my kind and generous friend Vicki took him into her home, fed him well because he was quite thin, administered his meds and let him cuddle with her lab and be comfortable.  We were so thankful after talking to LuAnne since she and Jenny reassured us that if we brought him to Cass Lake he would be adopted out quickly.  So Vicki brought him to you on Oct. 11 and you know the rest of the story.  Thank you so much for helping him!  I am so happy that he has a home and is loved.”

Here is yet another example of the full circle of how animals bring so many of us together. Thank you LuAnne, Corine, Vicki, Molly (and family), Animal Humane Society, LLL volunteers .. and most of all Alex, for bringing us all together. 

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