| November 10, 2022
Happy Tails

We adopted our dog Koda (formerly Leo) on June 29th,2022. Every interaction we had from asking about the different dog’s details, to the adoption process, to checking in to see how our dog was doing until he was ready to come home was a positive one. The staff at Toronto Humane Society are very passionate in the care they provide for each animal in their care and to potential adopters like ourselves.

We have now had Koda for about 6 weeks, and he has been doing great! The first day we brought him home, he jumped in my bed and settled right in. I had a crate and a bed set up for him but over the next few weeks he refused to go anywhere near it and instead preferred my bed or the floor. Eventually I moved the crate away and left his bed down, so now he goes between his bed, my bed, and the floor.

We have 2 cats as well who are 8 years old (one of them adopted from Toronto Humane Society in 2014.) One cat has warmed up to him and they lay down close to each other to rest. The other cat has not totally warmed up to him yet but that will take some more time.

In the beginning it was a little challenging to get Koda to go for his walks. I live in an area where there is a lot of condo construction, so he was afraid of the noise and people walking around. We have to walk about 5 minutes to get out of the construction zone to quieter more residential streets but even walking those 5 minutes to get out of the construction zone was sometimes too much for Koda and he would just sit down on the sidewalk and not move.

So, I decided to start driving him to parks for his walks where there are plenty of grass areas for him to walk around (he loves car rides too). I noticed right away that he was much more comfortable in that environment and walked around and explored his surroundings and appeared much calmer.

I wanted so badly to take him to a dog park to play and make some friends. Each dog we passed by on our walks, he was calm with, and after they smelled each other, he continued his way. He was scared of some dogs in the beginning and would whine and come closer to me but now he is great. His first experience was in a small dog park, and he did amazing. Right away he went up to other dogs and started to play. We continued going to the same park and he made some dog friends that are at the park at the same times. I absolutely love watching him run free off leash in the fenced in dog park and watching him interact and play with the other dogs. It brings a big smile to my face and warms my heart!

He has now gotten used to his walk schedule and walks much better in my area now. Although still a little nervous at times, he is doing quite well and gets praised a lot on his walks and at the end of our walks.

I took him to a larger fenced in dog park this week and to my delight, he went right up to other dogs and interacted with them right away. We will visit this dog park more often as he has much more room to run around and play with more dogs.

He has been enrolled in training classes that start next month. Two things that I want to work on him with are recall and separation anxiety. He is very much getting attached to us now and follows us everywhere. I work from home, and he is often lying at my feet while I am on my computer working. I cannot leave him alone yet as he howls and scratches at the door and is very distressed. I have only left him alone with another member of the household. And even then, he does whine a bit until he calms down or is distracted. He is getting better. I will continue to work on trying to leave him alone for short periods of time.

We were told he had no interest in toys. This is still a work in progress, and I cannot wait until the day he is interested in playing with a ball in the park. He has just started to be interested in a chew rope and a couple other soft toys. I bought him a snuffle mat to hide his treats in and he LOVES it. It is quite hilarious watching him stick his nose in the mat trying to find his treat! Speaking of treats, he loves those too! He knows he gets a cookie (dog biscuit) after his breakfast and dinner and sits there waiting for me to give it to him after his meal. It’s the cutest thing.

The past couple of weeks I have noticed a switch in his behaviour towards us. He has loved his tummy rubs from day one but now he is coming up to us with his tail wagging wanting to play and be pet. It is so nice to see how much more comfortable he is getting.

We have also gotten very attached to him! I miss him when I am not with him. And I love seeing his wagging tail and his smile when I come back home.

Thank you again, Toronto Humane Society. We are so happy with our sweet boy!

If you would like to share your Happy Tail on our website and social media, please send us a photo and story by emailing happytails@torontohumanesociety.com.