Before the official TAF rehabilitation dog program ever came to fruition… TAF’s namesake Trio was already laying the blueprint for successfully rehabilitating sick and injured dogs coming out of the pound.
Trio had a particular gift that allowed her to earn the trust of the homeless dogs that came into our program and, in turn, made it exponentially easier for us to tend to their medical and emotional needs. When Trio was paired up with a new pup, she wouldn’t leave their side until she knew that they were ready to hold their own. At any given time, you would see Trio cleaning them from head to toe, correcting inappropriate behavior and ultimately snuggling up next to them when they were stressed and needed support. For the truly sick dogs, she would just lie next to them and keep them warm. In any case, the homeless dogs in Trio’s care always knew that they had someone watching over them.
As Trio’s time was coming to an end, she had one last gift to give to a very special pup. The pup’s name was Geiger and Trio nursed him back to health after the horrific loss of his leg and advanced pneumonia. With Trio missing one of her back legs and Geiger missing one of his front legs… these two were the perfect match.
As days turned into weeks and then into months, Geiger blossomed into an amazing and loyal companion with Trio at his side. He looked up to Trio and learned as much as he could from his mentor… Geiger officially became part of the TAF family on November 8th, 2011 and a new era of TAF rehabilitation dogs was about to begin.
It was at this time that TAF came across one of our greatest assets... Sophie. This brilliant, athletic and regal chocolate pitbull would affectionately earn the nickname “panther-bull” and would go on to change the way that TAF has assessed all of the dogs that have come into our program.
When Sophie was adopted by TAF’s Medical & Rescue Director, Bridgid, it was quickly realized that she had an innate gift like none we had seen before. Sophie had a calming effect when introduced to a pack of dogs and quickly earned their respect. When engaging all the new shelter dogs, Sophie was gentle but firm and tolerated quite a bit before jumping over the gates to get out of a situation that made her uncomfortable. If Sophie didn’t engage a dog with questionable characteristics, we knew there was something “off” with the dog and we had some behavioral work to do. This foresight has proven to be an excellent tool in temperament testing dogs coming straight out of the pound.
On the day that Geiger was introduced to Sophie, his big brown eyes lit up and he instantly fell in love with her. He followed her around like he was courting her and the two of them went on to become the dynamic duo. This odd couple was about to take the shelter world by storm and start a rehabilitation program like none seen before. They would also go on to train the future rehabilitation dogs that would be working by their side.