Deluxe Session ~ Bandit, Demon & Diva in Brisbane
Three dogs, all rescues, all with unique stories.
In late 2013, I ran a free photo session competition to celebrate reaching 4000 fans on Facebook – asking people to share a photo of their dog and why they deserved to win a free session. Megan posted a photo of Diva, with an accompanying story that as soon as I read, I just knew had to be the winner.
Not wanting to leave out her other two dogs, Megan upgraded the prize to include all three dogs and we spent a wonderful afternoon at one of my favourite quiet locations with the whole family.
In a somewhat different style to my usual blog post format, I’ll be sharing Megan’s stories about each dog and including their photos afterwards. Enjoy!
“Diva was a stray on the streets of Townsville and wandered in my husband’s great aunt’s place and made herself at home. Her paws were red and painful. She was skinny but still so friendly, though also seemed so lost. I fell for her straight away.
“We went home to Brisbane saying to call us if they couldn’t find her family, as we would look into flying her down to us. They searched for her family but she had no registration tag and the number on her collar was disconnected. As a surprise (and a wedding present) his family organised and paid for her to get to Brisbane. I still have the photos of her first day in the car. She was so nervous.
“We settled her in then tried to introduce her to our other dog, a husky called Cian. It was then we discovered that she was extremely fear aggressive with other dogs. She tried to attack Cian. We decided then and there that we had committed to her for the rest of her life and we would try to help her overcome her fear. We knew that it may never work but we had to try. After six months of careful training she and Cian became the best of friends. Diva wasn’t able to cope with other dogs but she loved being with Cian. Then Cian became sick and passed away and we were all devastated. Diva was so lost and alone. We decided to start fostering and over time she has found it easier to accept other dogs. She is still afraid, she still cannot be in a crowd of dogs but she is happy and secure in the knowledge she is safe with us.”
“Bandit came to us as a foster dog. He is the very first dog we have ever had at our place that hasn’t required at least a day or two introduction for Diva. We introduced them and the signs were so positive that we just kept putting them to the next step. They could have probably safely played without the steps straight away but to ensure everyone stays safe we put them through it.
“Within ten minutes of meeting they were running around the back yard like loons and they haven’t stopped since. Bandit loves to treat Diva as a chew toy. We love him for being so outgoing and loving and crazy. He makes it hard not to love him.
“He is, however, an escape artist of epic proportions. He wants attention so much that he often goes over the top and has to be calmed down.”
“Demon was surrendered to the AWL in NSW with his brother. Through Arctic Breed Rescue we picked him up from there hoping he would love Diva as much as we do. We knew he had some problems with other dogs but have worked through that before with Diva.
“We got him home and he just could not get along with Diva. Where Diva was scared of other dogs Demon had no idea how to act around them. We decided to foster him for ABR since we could separate him from Diva. Diva at that time had another foster, Tzar, for company and then she had Bandit. We continued to work with him and Diva. Demon obviously had not had much interaction with humans in a home environment so we taught him all about being a pet. The sessions we continued with Diva slowly (very slowly) worked magic and one day they just clicked and started playing. It had taken them a year to get to that stage.
“We might have taught him how to be a pet but Diva taught him how to be a dog. We took him in not long after we lost Cian and while we taught him he helped heal the hole left in our hearts by Cian.
“He went out on trial and letting him go was one of the hardest things we have ever done. He came back because they just weren’t the right fit and we continued fostering then another application and we decided we could never let him go. We applied knowing that ABR might decide the other family was a better fit. We felt so lucky when we learned he was ours.
“Bandit and Demon are still working through Demon’s problem with Bandit but they are showing slow and steady progress. They haven’t played together yet but are pretty comfortable in each others presence now. We just know that Demon needs time and space to work things out on his own.”
Update! Bandit and Demon have now worked through most of their issues and now run and play together! – February 2015
Megan ended up ordering a collection with a large album, some wall art and float blocks. The album turned out beautifully, with Diva proudly gracing the cover!