Gary & Tina
So Happy Together!
We bring you Beechwood Trails Pet Lodge from our hearts. We are dog people
of the most serious kind. Of our sixteen happy dogs, twelve are rescues, and
technically, since Jingle is a part of a much larger rescue program, i.e., rescuing
the New Guinea Singing Dog from extinction, even though she was born in
captivity, we'll call Jingle a rescue as well. While we're bending facts, and since
Lita is one of the rescues, we'll say her four pups that we kept are part of the
rescue effort to save America's only true, native breed - the Carolina Dog. So,
bending the facts around this way, makes the tally come in at fifteen rescues! It
can easily be said that we live for dogs and especially dogs in dire need of a
good, loving home. Your pets will be loved and pampered as though they are ours.
We met in college in 1978 and haven't been away from each other from the
beginning. We married in August of '83 and have been so happy it's a little ridiculous.
We have been involved in pet rescue most of our lives, kicking it into high gear
since we've been married. We have been involved in Greyhound rescue since the
early 90s, having rescued nine in all. We are also involved with the New Guinea
Singing Dog Conservation Society in an effort to save these wild dogs.
Beechwood Trails Pet Lodge is a long time dream of ours, one we've always, for
as long as I remember, talked about. This has our heart and soul filling every inch
of it. This is what we were born to do.
We were rocking along with five dogs for a while, then my parents, while driving in
the Lake Wedowee area of Wedowee, Alabama on a Friday in September of '02,
saw where a low-life had set out a litter of puppies on a lonesome, country road.
From their location, they didn't have much chance of being seen. Dad told me
about it the next morning on the phone. After trying to locate a rescue group, or a
Humane Society near that area, and having absolutely no luck, Tina and I jumped
in our car and made the drive to Wedowee and set out to find the puppies. We
bought a bag of puppy food and several jugs of water on the way over, thinking that
would keep them alive until we could come up with a plan. Once we located them,
we determined there were four pups. They were in bad shape, completely wild, and
didn't show any interest in eating the food we brought them. They obviously had
mange, because two of them were almost completely bald. They were nothing but
skin and bones and had nearly starved to death. From the persimmon seeds in the
droppings we found, it was obvious they had been surviving on persimmons from a
nearby persimmon tree. Having no water supply anywhere close enough to help
them, the only moisture they were getting was from those persimmons. We knew
they were not going to survive and not knowing anything else to do, over the next
four hours, and as the remnants of Tropical Storm Hanna stormed overhead, we
caught all four pups, with the last one being grabbed after a prolonged chase
ending just before dark. She, the last and toughest to catch, has been dubbed
Hanna after the storm.
There's no way of telling what "brand" of dogs they were, but one thing's for certain,
they had to have a good bit of piranha in them. The little darlings chewed my
hands, arms and face up! I made the mistake of grabbing the two males at once
and holding them against my chest, well within grabbing range of my face. They
were too hard to catch and I was not going to let go, so chew they did. Oh well, a
good bleeding's a healthy thing to do every once in a while...I hope. Nothing
happened to me that a tetanus booster didn't fix.
We had planned on adopting all of them out, well, maybe we'd keep just one, but
the only trouble is, we fell in love with them. EVERY ONE OF THEM! From very
homely, mange eaten puppies, they have grown into beautiful, happy dogs, but I
guess they'll always be called "the puppies" by us. They have taken their place as
members of our happy, ever growing family.
We lost our senior girl, Misty, on
October 28th, 2005. She was 14 1/2,
and had lived a long, happy life.
We lost Panama on June 6th, 2008. We only had Panama
for about three years, but Panama was the kind of girl that
if you had her a single day, she changed your life forever.
We lost Butternut on September 16th, 2008. It's been
a tough year. Both Butternut and Panama died of
lymphoma. We loved both of them dearly.