Thursday, May 4, 2017

“FROM ASIA WITH LOVE”

The Compassion Project
By R. B. STUART
                                                           Pumpkin #23


For Visitors, Volunteers, Fosters and Adopters who graciously give their time and support to the Asian Rescues at The Animal Hope and Wellness Foundation. My hope is to assist you in understanding the trauma and torment of the Canine abuse survivors you love and care for. To not view, Marc Ching’s slaughterhouse pictures, the video’s or read his Facebook posts at least once, is to avoid their abuse, while ignoring their experiences. The below is meant to provide you with that missing link to their recovery and survival. To give you the scope necessary in order to understand their plight---fully,


The beautiful, innocent creatures rescued from Asia by Marc Ching and brought to America in the hopes of finding for the first time, a gentle hand, a compassionate heart, understanding, commitment and love in a fur-ever home---is our goal for them.   
The resilient, courageous slaughterhouse survivors of the Asian, Dog Meat Trade, are given another chance at life in a foreign land from which they were born, victimized and traumatized. Through the Grace of God and trust in Marc, they have survived extreme torture and abuse that the average human could never recover from---but “they” have. Although not all make a full recovery, nor ever make the journey to Los Angeles, so the Asian Dogs you’ll meet and share your homes with are the “lucky ones.” The others…too severe to survive, have returned to their creator on the wings of angels. Where they watch and protect their pack mates from above.     
I preface this in such a way, to bring awareness to those noble Souls who will commit their lives to an Asian Rescue from The Compassion Project, a Dog who may capture your heart, or who may sniff you out and desire to share their world---pleasing you. But getting there---will take work…
These are not average American domesticated Dogs or American Rescues who understand English, enjoy car rides, obey commands, retrieve a ball, jump to catch a Frisbee, swim in the brisk waves of the ocean, lick the ice cream off a child’s face, sit for a treat, or roam freely in a backyard---YET.
No, these Dogs are ultra-special, survivor’s from a war of sorts, with battle scars, some visible, some not. Experiencing the darkest of nights, shivering with fear, hungry, thirsty for affection, sleeping in bloody terror that worsens when they wake.   
They need empathy, guidance, patience, respect, unconditional love, understanding, limitations, boundaries, structure, rules, a strong pack leader with calm, assertive energy.
They don’t comprehend English, they don’t know basic commands, they have never been on a leash, they’ve never been on a walk, aren’t familiar with grass, blow dryers, stairs, bathtub’s, cars, fire hydrants, bicycles, tree’s, motorcycles, trucks, or screaming children. 
They are sensitive, psychologically scarred, emotionally damaged, some are insecure, some have the physical limitations of three limbs.
So if you feel you have the fortitude to enrich the life of an Asian Rescue, please keep the following in mind. And remember, their exposure to slaughterhouses wasn’t years ago---but merely weeks ago:
                                                            Maggie #24

§      They need a peaceful, safe, calm environment with their own special area for sleeping and feeding. Establishing routines and repetition is important (it takes 100 times for a dog to learn something).


§      Until they are acclimated to their new environment; they should not be left alone for hours in crates, cages, cars, apartments, locked in bathrooms, left in a fenced in backyard (chained or unchained), or near swimming pools.    


§      Until they respond to simple commands and feel secure in their new life, they may not be ready to socialize with other American domesticated pets who already know the drill. Avoid groups of people, parties, concerts, events, loud noises. Please don’t leave your Asian Rescue with family or friends while they are still learning their environment. As they may not be as sensitive to understanding the plight of a dog recovering from abuse.  


§      Never hit or scream at an abused dog to reprimand. They have experienced severe physical abuse and you want to gain their trust, not make them fear you. They were brought to America to never be exposed to pain and suffering again….not to have the pain and suffering continue.


§      They may be food or toy aggressive, as they’ve had to fight for food in the past, and have never had their own toys before. So be aware when feeding or playing. 


§      Don’t push yourself onto your Asian Rescue. Let them come to you and learn to trust you. If they’re hovering in a corner with a distant stare, or under a table, coax them out maybe with food, but never force them by pulling on a leash or collar, or pushing them into a crate, especially a fearful dog as its only way to protect themselves is by using their teeth. They are still recovering mentally from the stresses of what they saw, smelled, felt and tasted, just like a War Hero, so they may need the time to just sleep, rest and heal. Be peaceful, sit by them on the floor and read a book or the like…with enough dedication they’ll come to you when they sense you are not going to harm them. He/she may begin following you around the house or licking you, which is a good sign as they are bonding.    


§      Don’t overstimulate too quickly with brushing their coat, a message, a belly rub or constantly patting them, hugging them, prodding their bodies inspecting their eyes / ears / mouths / tail / toenails. Nor finger the incisions from their scars or surgeries. Let them heal from that experience of being torched, beaten, hung, boiled or amputated. Allow their body to recover from the numbness of beatings, to enjoy a soft hand. With amputated dogs, they’ll need to relearn how to walk on three legs, and strengthen their muscles to do so. Their balance is altered. Let them learn how to recalibrate their body with a missing limb. They are struggling too, and trying to adapt in a new world. 


§      Have plenty of patience with house breaking. The Asian Rescue was never taught about going to the bathroom on newspaper, a wee-wee pad, or grass. Asian Rescues aren’t accustomed to walking on grass, so it may take some time for them to realize that’s where they’re supposed to “GO.” Carpeting has the same feel under their paws as grass, so you must teach them the difference. Until you’re certain they’ve learned how to hold-it and go the bathroom outside, leave newspaper / wee-wee pads on the bathroom floor, or somewhere away from their food.   


§     Many may “hold it” during a walk, but go to the bathroom when they come back in. So bring treats outside with you, and when they go to the bathroom outside praise them “good pee-pee or good poopy” and give them a treat. Create a word and use it consistently so they can learn that the word is associated with going to the bathroom outside---I use the word OUTSIDE! when I grab his harness and leash. Take them out when they first wake, throughout the day, before bed, especially after a meal within 15 minutes or so. A dog should urinate once for every hour it has held it while in the house. If your dog’s been holding it for 4 hours, then expect him to pee 4 times when he’s out. 6 hours / 6 times and so on. But never let your dog hold it for more than 10 hours as it affects the kidneys. You’ll need to create a solid routine by taking him/her out so they’ll understand what you want. Eventually he’ll learn “to wait”  / “hold-it.”   
  

§     The Asian Rescue may be afraid of unusual sounds or items that they aren’t familiar with: plastic bags, statues, people - men or women, children, people wearing hats, other dogs, cats, slippery wood floors, being bathed, the car, wind from a car window, sound of siren’s, a smoke alarm, an alarm clock, the ring of a cell phone, the ticking of a toaster oven timer, the television screen sights/sounds, doorbell, knock at the door, rain, thunderstorms. So always be prepared and be cautious while they learn a new environment, it’s different from the prison walls and cement they know so well.   
                                                              Dalilah  #25

There are a select few Asian Rescues that have adjusted to their new American life quickly, while others need a longer recovery time. You will need enormous patience, And please don’t give up and leave them isolated in a room, crate, or yard, or give them away to a shelter because it was too difficult. That wasn’t the future Marc promised them.  
So spend time with them at the AHWF center, walk them, sit with them, take them home for a day, a night, a weekend or two, or three before you commit to adopt. Take turns with different dogs to be absolutely sure. They may be timid, skittish, outgoing or aggressive at first, but after your dedication, training, gentle hand, understanding and love, good food, clean water, and walks will build their self-esteem---you’ll see them transform into a gentle, smart, balanced, happy, friendly and well behaved pet. Eventually as you develop a healthy bond, smiles will appear on their face, a tail will wag when they see you. The play time, cuddling and belly rubs you’ve always wanted will be yours…as you have nurtured your Asian Rescue into a domesticated American dog---a loyal companion---and fur-ever friend.   
                                                             Molly  #26 
                                    

     With Love and Gratitude       ----From a Fellow Abuse Survivor, R. B. STUART
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