Prior to placement in their new homes, the Keeshonden usually go into a foster (temporary) home for safety, socialization, evaluation, and medical care. These temporary homes are just that, homes. Individuals willing to temporarily house an additional dog in their homes, with their other dogs, children, cats, spouses, etc. This provides the ideal situation to evaluate a rescue dog as to their temperment, training status (such as crate trained, walk on leash, knows basic commands such as sit, down, come) and to provide needed training or refinement to become an ideal companion. All rescues are altered (spayed or neutered) and brought up to date on their shots, tested for heartworms, and veted if needed.
Our first and foremost concern is and always will be for the welfare of each individual Keeshond. The rescuer who is fostering is getting to know their foster Keeshond, determining their temperament, observing the dog in different setts, forming a picture of the best setting for that particular dog and the type of home and environment that would be best as his future home.
Keeshond Rescue is an entirely volunteer organization. No one is paid for helping. We do ask for a non-refundable donation\adoption fee from adopting families and may also require a donation from owners who release dogs to us. The fees do NOT begin to cover actual costs incurred.
The stigma of all rescue dogs are abused, neglected and old is a thing of the past. While there are some who have been abused, neglected and there are certainly some "seniors" in rescue, many come from homes where, for different reasons; like the family is moving and will not take the dog with them, their financial situation has drastically changed and cannot adequately care for the dog anymore, they are a product of a divorce and neither party can or wants to take the dog, members of the family have become allergic to the animals, and the list goes on. It is rare that a "pupp" will come into rescue, but it does occur. The average age seems to be between 4 and 8 yrs old. Normally they have been housebroken, possibly crate trained, no longer have the "bad" habits that puppies are known for such as chewing, puppy biting, etc. These are just the right age where they love to be with their people, go on car trips, go for walks, and are willing to be a couch potato when their people watch their favorite TV show or football game or just reading.
Adopting a Keeshond is not a quick process or is it a metter of saying "I want that one." There is an adoption process. We are looking for the home that best suits and matches each Keeshond.
The process begins wtih an Application to Adopt. This application form needs to be completed and returned to the person listed as the contact person for that particular Keeshond. If you are not wanting to adopt a particular dog, but a Keeshond, you may complete the application and return it to the nearest\local Keeshond rescuer in your area.
The application is a rather lengthy and detail inquiry and is not intended to invade your privacy by some of the questions, but rather get a first glance\look at you, your family, your home, its setting, etc. It also provides information such as you are a first time Keeshond owner, first time dog owner, what other animals you have and are in the home, and what the rescue will be faced in your home. Once the application is received, the personal references will be contacted. A vet reference is also required and you will need to contact your vet and inform them that to expect a call and give them permission to speak to the resuer.
The next step after the reference calls is a home visit. This is not a "white glove" visit; it is to ensure that you live where you say you live, the home is conducive to owning a dog, to get a better idea of the setting and what type of dog would ideally fit with you. All parties living in the home MUST be present at the home visit. Once this is completed, your application will be approved or rejected. If you are approved and have applied for a specific Keeshond, and the FOSTER rescuer agrees that it appears to be a perfect match, arrangements will be made for you to meet the Keeshond and see if it is indeed a match.
If you are approved and matched up with a Keeshond, there is an Adoption Contract required for placement. This contract specifies that the dog will be treated humanely, receive complete vet care during its life, where it will be housed, and the stipulation that if for whatever reason in the future you are unable to keep the dog, it MUST be returned to rescue. Also at that time the contract will state what the donation\adoption fee will be. The normal fee is $150 but if the medical costs incurred by the rescuer is more, than that amount will be requested and due upon signing of the Adoption Contract.
The Keeshond Breed
This breed originated in Holland is part of the Spitz family. The Keeshond was accepted for registration by the Amierican Kennel Club in 1930.
The Keeshond is a very people oriented breed and needs to be an integral part of the family. It should NEVER be chained outside and should strictly be an indoor family dog. The American Kennel Club's description of a Keeshond is "The Keeshond is a handsome, intelligent companion dog distinguished by a friendly, outgoing temperament and a lively interest in the world around him." The breed is not a "guard dog" but can be considered a "watch" dog since they will, indeed, watch everything going on and will certainly let you know in no uncertain terms that there is someone coming up the walk, at the front door, a cat or squirrel is in their yard, or another dog is walking pass the house. They can be barkers telling you who did what, but they also can and will hold "discussions" with you or give you their comments.
They are a double coated breed and will "blow coat" usually twice a year. This is where the undercoat will come out to allow new undercoat to be grown.
Also in its description of the Keeshond, the American Kennel Club indicates "Temperament is of primary importance. The Keeshond is neither timid nor aggressive, but instead, is outgoing and friendly with both people and other dogs. The Keeshond is a lively, intelligent, alert and affectionate companion." While this is true, some dogs coming into rescue may not, due to their breeding--puppymill\pet stores or the back yard breeder who bred to make a dollar--and may or may not get along with other dogs, cats, small animals but still should have that noticable underlying spark of outgoing and friendly personality.
and the Keeshond Home Page has valuable information on the breed.