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2008: Merry Kerry Rescue


© 2016 Kerry Blue Terrier Foundation

Neither rain nor sleet nor snow will stop a Rescue volunteer on a mission. Today that volunteer was Tracy Campanello, and her mission took her on a 300-mile, 7 1/2-hour journey on snowbound, icy roads, past jack-knifed trucks, through detours, in blizzard conditions to rescue 6 Kerries from a puppy mill. This "white-knuckle" drive was her return trip from Ohio back to her home in Kentucky, with her SUV laden like Santa's sleigh with 6 merry Kerries inside, soon to make some lucky families very happy.

When Tracy got home, did she put her feet up and sip a hot coco? No, she got all the dogs vetted, began bathing and grooming them, and then took 4 of them home for temporary foster care. Incredible! This rescue took grit, courage, and determination, and all of Kerrydom owes her a huge debt of gratitude. Tracy, you--and your husband Dave!--were the saving grace for these precious Kerries.

This Rescue represents a complete sell-out of Kerries from one puppy mill. We got them all! Rescued were:

  • 1 female, 4 years old
  • 1 male, 4 years old
  • 1 female, 1 1/2 years old
  • 1 male, 1 1/2 years old
  • 2 males, 3 months old

Because the dogs were apparently kept mostly outside, all have parasites, but have now been treated, along with ear and eye infections, so common in mill rescues. Apart from being underweight (probably due to parasites), all 6 dogs are otherwise healthy. Not surprising, all dogs were filthy, and most were loaded with burrs, nettles, and "garden debris." Coats were overgrown, but only the 4-year-old girl had to be clippered down, as her coat simply wasn't salvageable. (Don't worry, she will grow a better one!)

As a group, these are not our usual shy mill dogs. All are quite confident, fawn on attention, and some gave kisses on the grooming table. The 3-month-old puppies are as playful and happy as could be. Temperaments look to be very good! Conformation is also good, though none have been docked. The 1 1/2-year-old male has a striking silver coat, and will surely turn heads when he gets out and about in the real world.

Tracy has arranged for a local boarding kennel to temporarily house our Kerry kids, but this is expensive, and with Christmas on the way, the kennel soon won't have room for them. And we are short on foster homes! If you have "room at the inn" in your home to help care for one of these sweet Kerries, please contact one of our Rescue Coordinators right away. As this is the season of giving, we hope that some of you will come forward and offer a safe harbor for just one needy Kerry who has no place to go. Fostering a Kerry who needs your help is a deeply rewarding experience. Please consider letting it enrich your holidays, and adding new meaning to the true spirit of Christmas.

The Foundation would also appreciate your support through monetary donations, and your purchase of our fundraising products. These funds assist our Rescue program, and help insure that no Kerry gets left behind.

Not all of us are in a position to heroically execute a Rescue like Tracy Campanello did. But surely we can all help in some way. Your support is greatly appreciated.

Jim, 4 years old

From: ccmarzano@COMCAST.NET
Subject: [KBL] one wonderful dog
Date: December 13, 2007 10:05:30 AM PST

I think I fell in love again last night, just like Jan thought I would.
Carol Cain, bless her heart, and I went to SeaTac Airport to pick up Jim,
but he didn't make the flight he was supposed to be on, so he came a while
later. When he arrived, we opened his crate door and a happy, but tired boy
waited for me to attach his leash and out he came with his tail up and happy
to see us. The workers at the cargo area though he was a beauty and so he
is! He's gorgeous and gentle as a lamb who wants to be held, all 41 pounds
of him. Thanks to Tracey Campanella he's clean, with a silky blue coat.
She was able to get all the mats out along with the nettles, burrs, weeds
and junk that filled his coat. He was also trimmed nicely so that we could
see that he really is a well put together male. I liked his balance and his
size, plus he even had clean- as-a- whistle teeth, the right length tail and
nice sized ears, although un-set. I can't say enough about the work Tracey
did to get him and the others ready for their flights. I would have been
pleased as punch to get a rescue in such wonderful condition.
Unfortunately, he isn't mine to keep and we traveled north to meet up with
Nancy Joyce who will foster him until his adoptive family is back from their
holiday trip.

I was glad to be able to help, but it was more pleasure than anything to
deliver a dog who is that nice and sweet.

Thanks to Linda Grisley for doing all the phoning to make it work, to Tracey
Campanella for the hard labor to get him ready and then putting him and the
others on their flights and to Jan Joers for putting all this together.
Nancy Joyce is an angel to foster him and to do this so willingly. I think
we all have cauliflower hears from the phone calls. Each call we got meant
at least 3 others to check with and get back to. It's so worth the trouble.
I can't thank Carol Cain enough for driving and being there, dropping
whatever she has planned to help with rescue. We also have great talks on
those long drives.

He's a wonderful dog-the kind we all want. He's just wonderful. And
another good thing about him: he's the sire of Pinky and Cleo, our rescue
puppies from last hear! We know where they got their good genes. How we
raise them is another thing!

I love this, can you tell?

Candi Marzano
Tacoma, WA

From: Linda Grisley
Subject: Update
Date: January 20, 2007 8:05:30 AM PST

Black Knight Jim – now Jim - has gone to live on Vancouver Island.

Riley, male

From: Orest.Dachniwsky@BNSF.COM
Subject: [KBL] Merry Kerry Rescue - Riley
Date: February 20, 2008 8:44:51 AM PST

"Big Blaze" arrived full of energy and as healthy as could be. We have
renamed him "Riley", a good proper Irish name in honor of his heritage.
Riley came our of the crate full of love and affection at the airport and
curled up in my daughter's lap for the ride home. He was good natured and
extremely friendly from the start, although we found that he was actually
being a bit shy the first day or two. He has opened up and is full of life.
We are not sure who is getting tired out first, Riley or the kids.

On more mundane facts, Riley is doing well on the house breaking, and seems
to have caught on to the routine fairly quickly, only one accident in the
last 4 days. The other day he actually grabbed his leash and took it to the
door with him. He loves walks and jogs with us often. In terms of
socialization with other animals we are very fortunate, he loves to play
with the other dogs in the neighborhood and has shown no aggression. His
only adverse encounter was with a cat, and that was more on the part of the
cat than Riley. They looked each other up and down, the cat hissed and ran
away. Riley stood his ground and was not agitated at all.

We took him to the vet and were a little concerned that he had lost a pound
since the Foundation had him examined but, he has picked up his eating and
is growing fast. On the bad side, he was found to have ear mites that are
being treated and he seems fine. He is going to a groomer today and should
look spectacular; his coat has started to turn a beautiful slate blue.

On the training front, he has learned to sit, lie down, stay and play fetch
(albeit not perfectly yet). When we walk or jog with him, he heels right
away and does not try to pull away. We are surprised on how easy he is to
train, he seems to know most of this already.

In sum, Riley is as close to a perfect dog as we could expect. He is well
behaved, learns quickly and is everyone's friend. He loves to curl up with
us in front of the television, play in the backyard, and be a part of the

We will give you more updates and hopefully include a few pictures.

Oliver, 1.2 years old male

From: Linda Grisley
Subject: Update
Date: January 20, 2007 8:05:30 AM PST

Silverman – now Oliver – is living in Calgary, Alberta.

Female, 4 years old

Mickey, 3 month old male

From: Eileen Andrade
Subject: Update
Date: January 9, 2007 8:05:30 AM PST

Just thought I would update everyone on several of the kids from the October rescue out of Ohio. Tracey Campanello pulled six 7 month old pups out of a mill and shipped them to a variety of places. Four of them made their way to the west coast and three of these have now been placed. Bonnie Blue is now happily ensconced in her new home in Salt Lake City UT where she has a male companion and is happily bouncing around in the snow. Her sister, Quinnie, now lives in Santa Rosa, CA with a male Lakeland Terrier that she adores. Jack is still in foster care, but improving from his extreme shyness with every day under the tutelage of Larry, Christine and his Kerry foster sister, Ruby.

The shyest of these kids was Mickey. First fostered with my minister and his family of two kids, two dogs and two cats, Mickey was a trembling mass of nerves. In the beginning he wouldn't walk on a leash - he just belly crawled, but he was happy to sit in your lap for hours on end - drooling the whole time but melting into your arms. After the first three weeks he was placed with former Kerry breeder Georgia (Starkdom) Swann and her two miniature poodles.

The following is part of the text of an email received from Georgia several weeks later:

Mickey seems to be trying really hard to be friendly but he still has reservations. We let him come to us instead of trying to force him to come when he doesn't want to. He is very shy about being touched. He plays with Max and he likes for me to play with him in the backyard. He loves to run. He still barks and nothing seems to be a deterrent. We get him on the couch or bed and he turns into another dog. He will come up to me as long as I don't try to touch him. He is still very shy when others come into the house. He loves to watch the Animal Channel with Max. They both stand up in front of the TV and watch the other animals. He is so sweet in the bed and licks my face and hands. When he gets down he turns into another animal. Frightened and shy. It is so confusing to me. He had an eye infection and it is now cleared up. He doesn't have the mucous discharge anymore so I think it is fine. T he vet said he is healthy but can gain a few pounds. He sometimes has his tail at half mast instead of curved under. That makes me think he is a little happy. He loves to take all the toys out of the box so he can experience new ones. He gets on the couch and takes all the covers off and puts them on the floor to sit on. We really love him and hope he decides to trust us eventually. When Bill is gone he sits by me but seems to fear coming around me when Bill is here. I think he has a fear of men for some reason. I would like to know what happened to make him so skeptical. We do care a lot for him. Just wanted to let you know his current status. I will keep in touch. Thanks.

- Georgia

So this past Sunday Lesley Ferguson and I made a trip to visit Mickey. We took scrumptious treats just for him (dried salmon and chicken) and spent several hours cuddling him, observing him and spoiling him with food. Mickey is still very shy and runs if you stand up or approach him, but when you are sitting down he will cautiously approach you and eventually allow himself to be picked up, following which he melts into your arms and will stay for long periods of time. He isn't drooling any more. We worked with Georgia on exercises to build his confidence.

For a dog this shy there are several things that we suggest:

  • Leash him to you on a long line so that he has to go where you go.
  • Feed by hand. Every morsel that he eats should be directly from your hand. On the long line feed at your side without making eye contact with him.
  • Use a crate to define a safe harbor for him. Put him in this when expecting strangers so that he knows he is safe. Once guests are in the house and settled down open the crate door and allow him to come out under his own steam when he is ready.
  • Never chase him down and corner him, instead let him drag a leash and step on it to allow you to approach him.
  • Work on "targeting" by placing food in your hand, put it in front of his nose and praise him when he touches your hand, then give him the food. Change types of treats frequently if he wearies of one type. Use a wooden kitchen spoon with aerosol Cheez Whiz on it if need be (if he won't approach your fingers at first).

Last night I met Georgia, Bill and Mickey at a local obedience class that I have used before. The two trainers there knew that we were coming and knew what Mickey's issue was so they were prepared for us. There were about 15 people and 5 other dogs in the class. While Mickey didn't make any progress towards sit, watch me, wait or heel - he did make progress with his own issues. By the end of the hour he was readily targeting, taking treats from Bergit and Nancy as well as the three of us and hadn't tried to hide under our chairs or startle significantly when other people passed close by. We all feel that he made GREAT strides with this and we're looking forward to the next five weeks of class.

I'll keep you posted on his progress as over the past three years, as in the case of Emma from the Alaska rescue some years back, we are finding that many of these mill dogs are extremely shy of people. If you have a rescue that has some degree of this shyness please have patience and take heart, there is a better life coming for them. Some of these dogs will never lose all of their reserve but we have certainly seen great improvement over time with the majority of them. If you have a rescue who exhibited these issues and has improved I'm sure that others on the list would like to hear about your experiences - what did you do that worked and what didn't? How is the dog now? Let's share and see if we can't improve life for all of them.

Eileen Andrade
- Rescue Coordinator for the Southwest

Teddy Bear (Formerly Little Blaze), male

From: Janet Joers
Subject: "Little Blaze"--Merry Kerry Rescue Pup
Date: December 13, 2007 11:40:49 AM PST

"Little Blaze," one of the 3-month-old puppies from the Merry Kerry Rescue, was transported all the way from Kentucky to Buffalo, NY by Kathleen & Ron MacFarlane (adopters of Maggie [Rocky Comfort #379] and Cavan). Both have graciously fostered this little boy until his family can pick him up and take him home to the Toronto area.

We wish to thank the MacFarlanes for so generously offering to help this puppy, and Linda Grisley, our Canadian Rescue Director, for finding him a home. Thanks to them, Little Blaze will be home for Christmas!


From: Linda Grisley
Subject: Little Blaze - Merry Kerry Rescue
Date: December 29, 2007 8:42:06 PM PST

Mack & Lucy Cameron in Ontario have adopted Little Blaze – now renamed Teddy Bear.

Teddy Bear, a 3 month old male, left the rescue with Tracy Campanello and was brought to Buffalo, New York area by Kathie & Ron McFarlane who kindly upset their own home to foster him for us. He was a spirited boy right off the bat and we were afraid he would terrorize Kathie’s Maggie and Cavan. Apparently they didn’t try to put him in his place, even though he ran all over them. By the next day, he settled in well.
Mack was actually very excited to receive a spirited pup. Although he was placed with them on a foster-to-adopt basis, just in case, they were committed from the start and had no qualms about adopting. Mack started working with Teddy right away and reports that he is quick to learn and walking well on leash. He’s been groomed to a lovely puppy trim and is enjoying the snow in Ontario.

From: Mack Cameron []
Sent: December-16-07 7:08 AM
To: john@kerryblues; Linda Grisley;
Subject: Teddy Bear, was Little Blaze

Hi folks,

To bring every one up to date on Teddy Bear (Little Blaze). We arrived home in Brooklin Ontario, Canada safe and sound about 4:30 pm Saturday Dec. 15. The trip from Buffalo, New York, to the outskirts of Toronto was bare pavement all the way with the traffic moving reasonably close to the limit. Across the top of Toronto was another story, bumper to bumper at less than 5 mph. The saving grace about bumper to bumper traffic was very little chance for a pile-up. Once past Toronto and into my home turf, the roads were bare pavement again with clear sailing for the last 1⁄2 - 3⁄4 hr. Teddy Bear cried once or twice when he was first in his cage in Buffalo, then settled down for the rest of the trip. 

We had a slight delay at the border, -- importing a dog Classification # 0106.19.00.90 (ha ha) pure bread(sic) Kerry Blue. They converted the $50 US rescue value to $50.69 CDN and charged me GST & PST (14%) for a total of $7.10. My treat KBTF.

He learned to sleep in my arms in bed very quickly after a 5 - 10 minute play last evening, and finally did his # 2 twice this morning out in the snow. No accidents in the house yet. We go out every hour or so, sometimes yes more often no # 1.

We just got back from our 1⁄2 hr walk through the neighborhood. We didn't meet anybody. I guess they were all locked in from the snow. He walked reasonably well on the leash, all over the place though. Well for the first time on a leash, (I think) he did very well. He doesn't fight it at all, chews it a little bit and then gets walking.

Out of focus picture of him in the snow in the back yard enclosed. I'll try to do better next time.

I found out last evening he has Kerry paws, very big Kerry paws that work great in the snow. Tomorrow (Monday 12/17/07) we have a vet appointmant and we'll stop at our groomers on the way home to show him off.

Ron & Kathie; thanks for looking after him till I could get to Buffalo. All the best with your guy & gal. They are beauties.

Linda Grisley, Thanks for everything and especially the chance to foster/adopt Teddy Bear. He'll get all the love and care he can handle in our home.

Mack & Lucy Cameron

December 24/07, Teady Bear Reporting

Hi Everyone;

Just a quick note to let you all know that I have things well under control in my new home. I have trained my new people to let me out for a pee when I go to the door.

The man takes me down stairs to his workshop, but I know how to climb up stairs now, so I don't have to stay with him all the time. I also do a lot of protecting around this house. I like to bark at any of the strange noises around here. That keeps those things away that are making the noise.

They don't celebrate Christmas at this house until Boxing Day. I hope you have a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year! If you ever get to Brooklin, come and see me. I am going to be a Big Boy.

Love to all
Teddy Bear & Mack and Lucy

From: Mack Cameron []
Sent: May-05-08 9:10 AM
To: Linda Grisley
Subject: Teddy Boy!

It's been sometime since I messaged you about our Teddy Bear. He's now grown into a magnificent 40 lb. Kerry boy. He has also changed his name to Teddy Boy, it's more grown-up.
Even though he has grown up, his 8 month old brain is still functioning at the 8mth. level sometimes, especially when he thinks he's a lap dog. At times Lucy & I forget he's still a puppy.He hardly leaves Lucy's side ever. He might come down to the workshop to get a treat but he's got to get back upstairs in case she's not there when he gets there. He guards the bathroom door when she's using the facilities, and sleeps on the floor beside her if she falls asleep on the chesterfield, unless he decides there is room beside her. When she goes out for her smoke, he decides he has to go out at the same time. Jealousy is his middle name. Don't get caught petting Maggie, our Boston. He can wheedle his way in to be sure he gets his pets as well.

We are in our 2nd 10 week class of training. He heels on a lightline on our twice a day walk around town. His stand stay isn't very good, since he would just as soon sit stay, or down stay. Come isn't his favourite command as well.

I was hoping to send a better pics, but it's the best I can do. He has the most beautiful soft wavy silver coat, enhanced by 4 black legs. He probably wouldn't place in a Kerry show, but he's #1 in our hearts.

Best regards
Mack, Lucy, & Teddy Boy

From: Mack Cameron []
Sent: Wednesday, December 10, 2008 12:12 PM
To: Linda Grisley
Subject: 54 lbs of Teddy Boy

Well it was a year yesterday that I went to Buffalo and picked up a 13 lb. Teddy Bear. He's now 54 lbs, a big lad.

He's his Mommy's boy. He won't leave her side and must be touching her at all times. He guards the bathroom door until she comes out, and sits on the window ledge if she happens to go out shopping until she gets home. He's turned a gorgeous silver colour with a black muzzle, feet and tail. Hope you like the pics.

All the best of the coming New Year to you and yours
The Camerons
Mack, Lucy and Teddy Boy!

Subject: Teddy Boy
Date: August 22, 2010 6:04:04 AM PDT

Our "Little Blaze" who is now Teddy Boy was rescued by me on Dec. 12/07 from an Ohio Puppy mill as described by Linda Grisley. His DOB is shown as Sep 07, 2007.
I've att'd a couple of pics. The first one is the day after he came home to us, the 2nd is this past April at 54 lbs. He's nearly 60 lbs. now, a great Big Boy!


Mack Cameron

From: Mack Cameron <>
Subject: Up date on Little Blaze (Teddy Boy) Dec. 2007 Rescue
Date: December 24, 2011 6:44:22 AM PST

[...]Teddy Boy has grown into a very handsome young Kerry weighing in at over 65+ lbs. now. He is still very much his Mommy's boy, and has to be touching her whenever the situation allows.

We installed an invisible fence around our backyard a couple of years to curb his propensity to see any person or other dog walking by on the front street. He learned very quickly where his limits were, and now most days can go out without his collar on.

He loves his pack runs twice a week with a lady dog walker that takes him and 5 or 6 other dogs to a dog park. He comes home pooped after a couple of hours. His annoying habit of humping every dog he meets has slowed down immensely since an older female lab in his pack run took exception to him, and put him to the floor in the blink of an eye. She drew a little blood, but that healed up very quickly and he is no worse for the beating she laid on him.

He loves when company comes. He thinks everyone is here to see him, and barks very harshly until they give him the treat he thinks he deserves whenever anyone comes to visit.

Kathleen and Ron MacFarlane started him on a very bad habit when they looked after him for a couple of days 4 years ago. They spoiled him with "Cheese Nip" treats. This terrible habit has been allowed to continue to this day, and Teddy Boy wishes to thank them!

The Cameron's
Mack, Lucy, & Teddy Boy


















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Today is May 22, 2019

In this month in 1900:

The first Westminster Kennel Club show opened in New York's Gilmore Garden. No Kerries were shown.

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