Paige - Dante - Durham, NC

BARC’s Dante Paige
04/13/2003 – 2/26/2012
BG #21459

Dante was rescued by BARC from an Amish puppy mill in Iowa in January 2006 along with several other Berners, including a pregnant female, Gina. Dante fathered Gina’s last litter and the only one puppy survived, Cooper. One of the highlights for us was going to the Louisville Specialty and meeting Gina and Cooper, and their families. The Longshots session with the dogs and their families is a priceless memory for all of us since all three dogs have now passed away.

Dante was an extremely shy dog and progress was slow. But he was a very sensitive dog and our bond deepened with each little victory. Most people take things for granted with a normal dog, but everything was a special accomplishment for Dante.
His first favorite word was as ride. He loved to go for weekend rides with our other dogs in the van.

Many of Dante’s quirks can be explained because of his early puppy mill years. He was fearful of men; he preferred being out at night, rather than the bright light of day; he preferred being in small, close spaces. But we never crated him since he spent too many years in a crate at the puppy mill. His favorite places were on the landing of the stairs and wedged between the sofa and the coffee table. He always hated being brushed and especially hated having his front paws touched.

We worked with a trainer to help Dante overcome his fears. We learned he was not food motivated at all, but actually food was a negative thing to him, especially when given by hand. It took nine months before Dante would take a treat from Don, and it was always a special moment when Dante would come seeking a treat from us.

The trainer suggested we adopt another dog and that would help bring Dante out of his shell. We adopted Bernie, a Blue Ridge rescue who is an outgoing, goofy boy who loves everybody and every dog. The first time we saw Dante wag his tail and the first time he barked was almost a year after we adopted him, when he and Bernie went out to play the night we brought Bernie home.

Because of Dante and all that he taught us, we became involved with our club rescue.
Dante was always the first to greet a new rescue; he would wag his helicopter tail and would do this bucking thing that showed his delight.

He was my heart dog and leaves a legacy we will carry on with each and every rescue we work with in the future.

Dante is now running free of all his fears with so many Berners that have gone before him.

Carolyn & Don Paige
Rescue Coordinator
Blue Ridge BMD Club
Durham, NC