"It's hard to put into words how much I love this dog, and how much I want him to find a home."
That's part of the response I received from an amazing volunteer named Rob when I sent out the call for Chipperton quotes. I completely appreciate the weight behind those words. I'm sure most anyone who volunteers or works with APA! or a similar group does too.
I'm running out of words to try and do justice to this most wonderful of all the wonderful dogs. I've written Chipper countless cheesy craigslist ads & another blog post, strutted him all over town in his "Adopt Me!" vest, and tried my best to explain to everyone I know that they too should be completely in love with this goofy, smart, cuddly, stinky dog.
Despite the fact that Chip is so loved at APA! he easily swept the voting on Volunteer Pick of the Month, he has been in our adoption program for approaching 100 days. Knowing that makes my heart hurt. It makes me wonder where his person is and why they haven't come to find him yet.
I wish I could wrap up all the love, hope, and affection I have for this dog and hand it to potential adopters. I wish they could know instantly that they just met the best dog in the world and would be crazy not to take him home on the spot. Since I'm not sure how to make that happen, you instead get the Top 10 Reasons Chipperton is The Bestest Ever!
1. His Gangly Swagger - Chip's a relaxed, confident dog who struts down the sidewalk with legs a little too long for his body. Think of that really cute 13 year old boy all the girls have crushes on who couldn't care less that he's only 4'11.
2. His Smile - Just thinking about Chip's smile makes me smile. It's big, genuine, and impossible not to return. The other day, I went to pick him up for a trip to the greenbelt at the end of what had been a totally lousy two weeks. The smile I got when I said his name reminded me that we get more from the time we spend with these dogs than we could ever hope to give back to them.
3. His Resilience - Chip came to APA! straight from the dreaded "list" at TLAC with virtually no hair. He was way too skinny and looked something like a purple dinosaur. A really cute, wiggly, friendly purple dinosaur. He's now sporting an adorable golden coat, but that's not really the resilience I mean. Despite a far from ideal beginning at life, Chip is ever hopeful and his attitude is something the rest of us should aspire to.
4. His Curiosity - This is easily one of my favorite things about Chip. Whether it's a hike along the trail or a walk through the neighborhood, Chip's sense of curiosity and the way he explores make everything seem better. He has the ability to make me look at rocks & trickling water as something really awesome that I may have missed without his cute need to investigate.
5. His Laid Back Approach to Life - For a fairly high energy dog, Chip has one of the most relaxed attitudes around. Strange dog barrelling at him from across a field? No worries...just a friend he hasn't met yet. A troublemaker squirrel taunting him from a low branch? Oh, he sees it alright, but he won't get dragged into its drama.
6. His Frog Like, Ultra Splayed Feet - Straight from the mouth of Miss Savannah Lightfoot. Chip has big, webbed paws made for swimmin'. You can almost feel them seeking out the nearest lake or mud puddle.
7. His Sense of Humor - Chip is hilarious & I swear sometimes it's intentional. Not only does he appreciate your jokes, he tells his own. You just have to know how to listen.
8. His Sweetness - Chip is snuggly, cuddly, nuzzly, and huggable. Not only is he very affectionate with people, he's extremely tolerant, and even gentle, with other dogs. That's not to say, however, that he won't engage in a good, raucous play session!
9. His Funny Ears - His ears are the bit of him that has brought speculation he's part Sharpei. They're not fully Sharpei ears but they're very floppy, present, & right there in front whether relaxed or alert.
10. His Ability to Be the Best Friend You Could Ask For - One of my new favorite things is riding in the car with Chip. I imagine that he'd make the perfect road trip partner. At this point, he has better self-control than I do. I approach and he goes into a sit while I get wiggle butt. It's because hanging out with Chip is truly the best part of any day.
Chip's fans & admirers have some thoughts to share on the adorable & adored Chippenstein...
"While I love many of the dogs in our program, Chip is my favorite. I fell in love with him when he was half the size he is now, and so mange-ridden I called him "my little hyena," with his little tufts of fur. Now he is growing a gorgeous coat, and is becoming a confident young man ready for all that life has to offer. Anytime I show up and don't immediately go over and say hi to him first, he lets me know with a friendly bark that he is ready for some loving and a walk.
Chip is one of the smartest and most affectionate, eager-to-please dogs you will ever meet! He loves to show you his "sit" when getting ready to go for a walk. One look in his soulful, intelligent eyes and you will fall in love with this remarkable rascal!" -Rob Thurlow, APA! Dog Walking Program Volunteer
"Chip is growing into a fine young fellow, with the sweetness of a puppy and some of the wisest eyes around. And he's got great manners!" - Sharon Chapman, APA! B&E Team Volunteer
Chip is such a sweet boy with a big personality. Plus he's smart and well-trained. A few weeks ago, I had to practice some training techniques with him. He made it so easy because he already knew his name and basic commands. He walked well on a leash and was so eager to please that I didn't have to teach him anything. I just asked and he did it. Chip just wants to be everyone's friend -- people, dogs, you name it. He just needs to find the right person to be his best friend. -Carolyn Yaschur, APA! Photographer
As Volunteer Dog Pick of the Month, Chip's adoption fee has been REDUCED to just $25! He will also come with his very own medium Easy Walk Harness & matching leash, a brand new reflective collar, and a $25 gift card to Cherrywood Coffeehouse so he & his adopter can relax there together after a nice walk. I'm sure there are plenty of volunteers willing to throw in free dog sitting too! For the record, Chip shouldn't need any bells & whistles to help him find a home. He's perfect just as he is...but, making adopting Chipper into a party definitely does seem appropriate!
Are you ready to make yourself the luckiest person in Austin & go adopt our Chipperton? Email [email protected] for more info or check our website to see where you can meet Chip TODAY!!!
Photos 2, 5, 6, & 8 by Carolyn Yaschur, Photo 3 by Lisa Blanda, Photo 4 by Cindy Light