Dandy’s trip to America

Photo of Dandy laying on floor
Dandy from Turkey!

As was teased here previously, we have a new addition to our family.  She’s about 50lbs, cute as a button and is named “Dandy”.

Dandy comes to our family from Turkey!  She is one of many rescue dogs (#turkeydogs) that have started coming to America from Turkey.

The stories vary on how all these dogs ended up roaming the streets and countrysides.  We have been told by Turks that parents get these dogs for their kids while on summer vacation and then turn them into the wild at the end of the season.  Unknown how factual this account is.  The more popular story we’ve heard is about how a “craze” of owning a golden came along and people got the dogs without considering whether they should, and ended up turning the dog out to the wild after losing interest or not being able to care for it.  Who knows?

I had been searching golden retriever rescues in the area when these #turkeydog rescues started showing up in the search results.  With Mom having Turkish ancestry and us having a number of Turkish friends, I figured why not add another Turk to the family.

Dandy arrived late one night at the airport with 4 other dogs.  Four large crates, one containing two dogs, and the very nice Turkish couple who shepherded the dogs across the ocean.  Turkish Airlines works with these rescues to bring the dogs to the US.  They require that one person can be responsible for up to two dog crates (or two dogs, not sure which).  So a couple coming from Turkey to the US can arrange to be the responsible party for up to 4 dogs coming to the US.  The Turkish rescue meets the travelling party at the Istanbul airport with the dogs and crates.  The rescue buys the tickets, the passports and pays for the dog’s medical requirements to enter the US.  The “responsible” travellers just hold the tickets and passports for the dogs during the trip, and give their names to TA as the guardians for the dog, or dogs.

Photo of the four dog crates (and five dogs) that arrived from Turkey the night we got Dandy.
The four crates (and five dogs) that arrived from Turkey the night we got Dandy.

Once in the US, the rescue’s members meet the couple and the dogs at the airport, possibly along with, as in our case, some of the adopting families, and take the dogs from the crates, break down and clean out the crates … and done!  The crates get shippped back to Turkey for the next go-around.

We were made aware of Dandy from a “rescue” that is really no more than a couple people working with people in Turkey.  No websites, no formal application process, just people you find out about when you start asking around the local Turkish community.  They sent us a picture of Dandy when she was discoverd in a Turkish dog shelter by one of the local rescues there.

Photo of Dandy dog caged in dog shelter
This is the first photo of Dandy we received. She’s in a Turkish dog shelter before being rescued.

After we said we were interested, the wait begins for them to find a person, or in our case a couple, coming back from Turkey.  Meanwhile Dandy got her medical checkup, shots and spayed.  The people there also evaluate the dog to see how she does with kids, other dogs (large and small), cats, etc.  We told our contact that we own to very large Shepherds, so she told the people in Turkey to have Dandy spend time with large dogs to get as socialized as possible.

As I started saying, we got Dandy late one night.  We met the rescuers at the airport and helped with getting the dogs out to the parking lot and out of their crates.  Another couple was there to get the dog they had chosen.  Dandy had done pretty well on her rediculously long flight.

This is a photo of Dandy's official Turkish passport.
This is a photo of Dandy’s official Turkish passport.

We had come prepared with towels and wipes expecting she probably messed the crate on the way over, but were surpised to find out she hadn’t.  Later we were told she messed the crate right after they put her in it at the Istanbul airport.  So they took her out, cleaned her and the crate, then put her on the plane.

I spent some time walking her around the parking lot, letting her drink etc., and about 30 minutes later we loaded her in the truck and went home.  She rode in the back seat area with Mom who petted her the whole time.  It worked out great.

Perhaps, in hind sight, we should have figured out a way to get her into the house, and into a safe quite place for her to sleep and get rested, but instead Yuki and Pecos met her at the door and I think, by the look on her face, it was a little overwhelming to have these two behemoths decend upon her, especially in her exhausted state.  There was a small fracas as it was a tight space that all three dogs ended up in sniffing her, but other than that we were able to get them all in the house without trouble.  After a while we all went to bed and we took her up with us.  She immediately jumped on the bed and made herself at home.

Dandy lying on dog bed in sunSince that night Dandy has been a surprisingly easy fit into our lives and familiy.  She has a habit of pooping in the house first thing in the morning if you don’t put her out straght away, but other than that, she been a great fit.

As far as the other two dogs go, Yuki is aloof as always when it comes to other dogs, something that has always bothered Pecos who wants a pack member to play with.  Dandy and Pecos (after a few scuffles where she had to correct Pecos’ manners) are getting along great and, I think anyway, are becoming inseperable.  I say “I think” because I’m not sure yet if Dandy is doing her own thing and Pecos is just tagging along and hovering, or if the two of them are actually acting in tandem.

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