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Teddy Roosevelt’s Walk-a-bout

In Support of the Tama County Humane Society

February 19, 2011
By Jeannie Sieck
Who goes on a Walk-a-bout in the middle of an Iowa winter with frozen snow covered grounds, an arctic wind blowing snow all around causing the temperature to drop well below freezing?

Teddy Roosevelt that’s who!

He goes on a three day and two night adventure to explore and to challenge the elements. Yes, a three day two night walk-a-bout in the frigid winter, leaving his comfortable home a warm cozy bed and great food, just to explore his environment!

Teddy Roosevelt named after President Teddy Roosevelt the great explorer, conservationist, adventurer, and lover of nature and animals, stands about 8” high by 20” and weights about 10 lbs. He carries a bundle of thick blond fur on his back with little covering his face to shelter his eyes and tiny nose from the freezing wind.

He has short legs with little padding on the bottom of his feet where the snow can pack in-between his toes and freeze his feet. He was abandoned so he is bashful and timid when others approach him. Sadly, he has no bark. Teddy is a four year old Pomeranian rescue dog from our local Tama County Humane Society.

Teddy was abandoned to the shelter from someone who had too many dogs and there was not room for Teddy. This four- legged dog needs to heal and come out of his shell and desperately needs a safe permanent home for the rest of his life.

Before he came to us, Teddy had been to other homes for day visits, that ended in him returning to the shelter. Even after a day and one night stay with us, Teddy was just sure he would be passed back to the shelter so he decided to leave first, before given up again. He looked for a chance for the door to be opened and as soon as Gary opened the door, out Teddy zoomed. He ran towards Broadway Street and the new overpass just missed being hit by an on coming car. Teddy began his walk-a-bout that would be a journey lasting three days and two nights.

The search began immediately with Gary running after him calling his name. I was so frightened, as he ran towards the over-pass, that he would go down towards the four lane highway, and he did. I got on the phone and called Laurie at the Tama Humane Society, our local Toledo police who responded right away.

They did see him at our door but once they approached, he took off again. Calls went out to out to Town and Country Veterinary Clinic, business close to our home and groomers, like Sabrina Vest, who is close by.

It was so hard going through the day worrying about Teddy, a small Pomeranian dog with no bark for help.

The night time was so cold and I was stressed worrying about his survival out there all alone . The night was a long one, yet the next day he was sighted twice in our neighborhood, by the cemetery on Church Street and playing behind Burns’ home on Church Street.

More folks volunteered to help with the search. Alicia and Shawn Purk, community service coordinators for the Tama County Humane Society, went of foot around the area he was sighted in, for over three hours without any luck. Joining them after warming up at our home, were Carly Schultz and Alex Haller who also worked with Teddy at the shelter.

They walked and walked, calling his name, believing he would come to them without any luck. Someone at Fareway saw him by the side of the building but when they approached him, he took off running in the field going East.

Darkness descended with a cold windy night and without any more sighting of Teddy. I was a mess-I admit I felt so helpless and was so afraid that Teddy had gotten hit by a car and lay in a ditch somewhere or the dog packs that roam had gotten him. Another long night.

On the third day I went out riding around our neighborhood calling Teddy’s name, until I got too cold and had to go home. Shawn, Alicia, Carly and Alex set out combing the site areas finding many of Teddy’s fresh footprints in the snow over by the cemetery and by the pool area. I contacted local businesses close by and neighbors to find out if anyone had seen Teddy. The answer was the same as before, no. I was losing hope that we would find the little guy alive, when a call came in from Town and Country Vet nary Clinic that they had Teddy.

I couldn’t believe it. Oh my God, he is alive, and how is he? Teddy was alright generally speaking but he had snow and ice packed on his feet they were cleaning out and were also cutting burs out of his thick fur, but over all he was great.

Chris Wilson brought Teddy to the clinic. She had spotted him by the cemetery on Church Street, opened the back door of her car and he hopped in, to her surprise. I guess he was done with his Walk-a-bout and was ready for a warm place and good food.

Chris delivered him to me and stated that he was such a good puppy that if she did not have cats, she would take him home. We don’t know how this tiny dog survived the elements of Iowa’s winter for three days and two long cold night without more injuries, but he did on his big brave heart and courageous adventurous spirit.

Now that he is back at our home safe, he is a permanent member of our family joining two rescue cats, Buddy and Wendell. He is getting used to a house, comfort, good food and loving parents.

Teddy Roosevelt thanks Laurie Schultz and her staff and members of the Tama County Humane Society for never giving up the search, and giving him care and loving attention at his stay at the shelter.

If it wasn’t for Laurie, her staff, volunteers, and members, giving their endless supply of love to the animals that live at the shelter, many would be on the street or dead.

Abandoned kittens and famished feral cats and strays would be lost and having unwanted litters. Some need bottle feeding or suffer from potentially deadly diseases and need immediate care.

In addition to food, cat litter, bedding, blankets cleaning supplies and other essentials, many of our furry friends need emergency operations, medicines, behavioral training, physical therapy and other special care.

For them and I’m sure for you, it is easy to love a dog like Teddy Roosevelt but caring for 26 cats and 12 dogs every day takes more then endless love. It requires a good deal of money and lots of volunteer time. All the cost add up fast and volunteers are few.

There is a great need at our shelter for Volunteers. Someone to come in and bottle feed the kittens or walk the dogs, they need their exercise. Someone to feed the dogs and cats, or just hold them and pet them.

Human contact is so very important for socializing the animals and getting them ready for placement. The shelter is open daily from 9 a.m-noon and evenings 5:30 -7 pm. And on Saturdays, they are open 9 a.m.- noon.

Come visit the shelter and get acquainted with the animals who need your help. If someone has volunteer time, they can do it at the shelter by giving the animals loving care. If someone has community service to do, just contact Shawn Purk, the community service coordinator and he will see that your hours are done helping the animals at the shelter. The Tama County Humane Society has a running list of supplies needed and openings for volunteers for daily help.

The shelter survives with the love and support of caring people like you. Your support will be put to work helping abused, neglected and abandoned animals.

Think about your best animal friend. Thank you in advance for becoming a best friend to animals in need.

Teddy Roosevelt had brought adventure, a generous heart and lots of fun love into our home. Perhaps you will find a special friend like Teddy too.

Thanks to everyone-

Gary and Jeannie, Teddy Roosevelt, Buddy & Wendell

( our rescue animal friends)

Article Photos

'Teddy Roosevelt'



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