Happy Tails

Heartland Animal Shelter
2975 Milwaukee Ave.
Northbrook, IL. 60062
Phone: 847-296-6400
Fax: 847-296-4198
Email: heartlandanimals@yahoo.com

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Dear Heartland,

Little did I know, as I walked the streets of Terre Haute, Indiana, about a year ago, that my life would be changing so dramatically. I was a stray cattle dog mix, lonesome and alone. At first, I was taken in by a loving family in the small town of Terre Haute.  Because this family could only foster me, they contacted a local animal shelter.  The shelter, already inundated with dogs, was unable to take me.  Fortunately, Heartland Animal Shelter was able to give me a second shot at finding a forever home.  I was known as ?Desi?.  

Then one day, my new mom was driving down Milwaukee Avenue one afternoon, and stopped in at Heartland to see if there were any Australian Cattle Dogs that were up for adoption.  After asking the kind trainer at Heartland, he responded ?We have just the right dog for you!?

And there I was ?Dingo Dog? aka ?Desi?, standing tall and proud in my enclosure, showing my strength and compassion to my new potential mom.  It was love at first sight.  My mom quickly ran home to get her son (Adam).  Thereafter, my mom and Adam returned to Heartland.  Adam entered the fantastic facilities at Heartland, and after one look at me (Dingo), there was no question that I would be the perfect addition to their family.  I left with my new forever family 2 short days later.

I just love to run around in my new yard and play with my new family.  I even get to sleep in bed with Adam sometimes.  As fate would have it, my next-door neighbors, Jean and Larry both volunteer at the Heartland Animal Shelter!  They frequently stop by to play with me and give me lots of love.  My new family says that they were blessed to find such a wonderful dog at the Heartland Animal Shelter, their very own ?forever dog?.

To all the wonderful people at Heartland -  I'm sorry this is so late in coming, but I need to thank you for taking such good care of Nicole, who is now called Kaya.  She came into our family after we lost a wonderful border collie and we were still kind of hurting.  When I took Nicole home in March of 2008, she was so quiet and submissive I told my husband that I hoped she would come around a little after she was more comfortable with us.  It didn't take long.  Within a week she was so happy and so rambunctious, and such a cuddler. We all fell in love with her and she helped us heal. We can't imagine our family without her.  All our  children's friends love her too.  The favorite Christmas gift this year was a coffee mug with Kaya's picture on it. I think she's smiling.  With sincere thanks- Lynn T

Hello to all the great folks at Heartland,
Our dog Milly just celebrated her first birthday and we thought we would send you a few pictures. We adopted her in March of 2008. She is a wonderful dog and such a great addition to our family. Our children love her and she is very gentle and playful with them. In less snowy months Milly loves to run with me while I ride my bike (she has a lot of energy!) She also likes to go for a swim in the pool and lay in the sun in the backyard. In the winter she loves to play in the snow at the park. She loves every dog she has ever met and likes to play in the park with her dog buddies. She started out sleeping in her crate but has charmed her way onto our bed at night - which is great in this cold weather. I just wanted to thank you for rescuing her from the shelter and making it possible for her to share her life with us. And thank you for treating her so well - she has no fear in the world and loves everyone and I think this stems from being treated so kindly throughout her life.
Laura, Areos, Luke, Sofie, and Milly L.

I am overdue in writing, as I adopted my boy, Beau (AKA St. Pepper) in July of '08. He is the lap cat I've always wanted! It took a while for him to know that it is OK to relax, and that he does not need to be afraid. Though he's always been super mellow, it took him a while to purr. He seemed to be uncomfortable upstairs, because when I'd bring him up there and place him on my bed, he'd jump off and run downstairs. Well over time, he first started coming upstairs, sitting in the hall, looking into my bedroom. Then, he'd come up and lie on the bottom corner of the bed. A while later, he'd come up and lie on the pillow next to me. Now, he comes ON my pillow with me sometimes, and while I'm on the couch, he comes onto my lap. He loves to be petted, held and he's a great, deep purrer. A month after I took Beau home, I adopted another kitty from a shelter closer to home - and they are great friends, as evidenced by the wrestling t! hey do and mutual grooming. Beau has been a real gift to my home, and fits in great with my original cat and dog too. I am grateful to you for keeping him for 5 months for me until I found him!

Laura S

More pictures HERE!
In April of 2008, I had to put down my 13 year old Dalmatian, Mariah, because she was having extreme hip problems and tumors and was constantly in pain. We actually put her down on my birthday and it was an extremely hard day for me. We had gotten her when she was 1 year old as a rescue from a family that barely ever gave her food or water and had her chained up in the backyard in a sand pit. She was my sister?s dog for the first 8 years we had her and then she came to live with me for her last 4 years when my sister had to move.  After we lost her, I moved further south and started volunteering at Heartland to fill the void of not having a dog. Since Heartland is so fantastic at finding the animals homes, I felt good in knowing that I was helping but there was still something missing for me. I bonded with a lot of dogs trying to find someone I could take home and call my own. No one was ever just right. Then we got in Chipper in October of 2008. He had already been there a few days when I came in for my normal Saturday shift and someone had already laid claim to him but I saw him and said to myself there is something special about this dog. Then I took him out into the yard and we went into a kennel and he came over and snuggled in my lap and I knew this was the perfect dog for me. He was who I had been waiting for. I was completely in love. I put in my application that day and didn?t even want to go home after my shift ended because it was so hard to leave those big blue soulful eyes of his. He must have known I was the perfect owner for him too because I was told later that he was sad and depressed when I wasn?t around. A week later they said he could come home with me and the next day he pranced out of there knowing he would be loved for the rest of his life. While he?s still getting picked on by his older feline brothers in the house, now he?s always smiling and living up to his name and having new experiences (like riding the elevator and getting to pick out his own treat at the pet store) all the time. This past weekend my father fell and broke his hip and I was upset and worried the whole weekend. Chipper did everything to come to my rescue and comfort me the only way he knew how. This picture is from when he got up on the couch to watch over me. My boyfriend says all the time that while Chipper tolerates him, he?s my baby boy. I don?t think I?ll ever know how someone could ever let a dog like him end up in a shelter but I will always be thankful that their loss has been my gain. Thank you so much for connecting us with such a great pup and friend.
~Jill H

Hello Heartland!

I just wanted to drop you a note to let you know how everything is going overhere at our home since we adopted Arlene [aka. Storm], Bettina [aka Frenzy] (thetabby kittens) and Biggie [aka Mr. Big or Big Orange, my son calls him OptimusPrime] (the big orange guy) not quite a week ago.  It has been  incrediblysmooth. 

The kittens, as you might expect, have adapted well to having 2 kids, 2older cats, and 2 medium/large dogs walking around.  The dogs have beenextremely tolerant albeit curious of the kittens and the kittens have gottenused to being sniffed and nuzzled by the dogs.  The older cats have taken towatching the kittens play, but showing no signs of aggression toward them.  Thetwo little balls of love are bonding with all of us and we're reallyenjoying them.Biggie is doing well, too.  He has found his own perch atop a tall TV/mediacabinet and enjoys looking down on all the activity while safely away from it. We set up some comfy blankets for him up there, which is enjoying.  He is stilltrying to get along with the older cats (our large old male cat has been aproblem for him), but he has found peace & quiet on his high perch where thedogs and other cats cat bother him. He comes down for a bit of loving and to usehis litter pan, walks around our large bedroom on occasion, and is also gettingused to the dogs curiously sniffing him.  He is less tolerant of the dogs thanthe kittens are, but that should resolve in due time.  I think he just needs abit more time to transition in, but overall, I am very pleased with hisprogress.  He does love a good snuggle in bed with the adults.

I want to thank you again for making a the whole adoption experience verypleasant and smooth.  Your staff is wonderful and we have recommended yourshelter to several friends who have asked about adoptions.Best wishes for the holidays.-Debra V. and the whole Venckus Slavsky family.
My family could not be happier than we are right now with our newest addition, Flinn!
He is doing awesome!  Thanks to all of you for making this happen for us!

The Norman family

Hello Heartland Shelter!

I just wanted to drop a note and let you know how Matisse (formerly Friar) has been doing.  I adopted Matisse in August of 2008 and as you may recall he was quite thin and ate very reluctantly.  While he seemed happy to be in his new home, his eating did not improve nor was he using his litter box.  After several trips to the vet, a bad case of pancreatitis, and trying virtually every diet, probiotics and cat food under the sun (none of which worked) I decided to have my vet conduct an exploratory surgery to find out what was going on.  Thankfully, the test results revealed a bad case of inflammatory bowel disease and nothing more, which is now under control.  When I brought him home he weighed a meager 6.8 pounds and was nothing but skin and bones underneath all of his fluff.  I am happy to say he is currently over 9 pounds and I?m hoping he?ll soon exceed 10.  Aside from not liking his daily dose of medicine very much, he seems very content and more importantly, is eating more than his fair share.  He cohabitates with my cat of 7 years,  Jagger, and aside from the occasional scuffle, they are getting along great.  Matisse might be the sweetest cat around and even gives Jagger comfort by licking him on the head when he?s upset.  One of the reasons I was looking to adopt another cat was to keep Jagger company and not only has he found a friend in Matisse, but also a groomer and life coach.   Matisse has a huge fan following at the vet office and has an ability to charm all who encounter him.  Thank you so much for rescuing him and helping him find his new home.  I am definitely grateful to have found him!

Andrea Schmoyer

Hello All!

I just wanted to send you a message and a picture of the dog that I adopted on January 16th. I did change her name to Maisy.

She is the most adorable, well-behaved little dog! Just perfect for me. After visiting our vet and getting over a cold, she is getting very used to her new home. She loves to be right by my side, whether I?m cooking, watching TV or sleeping. What a snuggler! She loves to take nice, long walks, although I did adopt her on the record-breaking low temperature weekend, which made me want to head inside as soon as she finished her business. She has never had an accident, or been into any mischief in my absence during the work day. She finally has discovered chew bones and a rope that she likes to carry around.

Maisy brings smiles to nearly everyone we meet, and her personality is great with other dogs. My friends and family want to clone her!!!

Anyway, thanks again for taking such good care of my new best friend while we were trying to find each other? she has already brought so much joy into my life!

Michael D

Dear Heartland Animal Shelter,
Just wanted to send you a note of thanks and an update on how our dog, Juno (formerly Reeses) is doing.  We adopted Juno last June when she was just one of a litter of several puppies at your shelter. We have loved every minute we have spent with her since!  She truly loves life and makes our lives better because of it. Her favorite things to do are take walks, play fetch, eat, and take naps. She especially enjoys visiting with other people and dogs. Her best friend is our aunt's dog, Marley, a one-year-old lab mix that she adopted from a shelter in Naperville right when we adopted Juno. They wrestle and chase for hours when they get together! Thanks for taking such good care of Juno in her first weeks.  We appreciate all you do!  Maria and Adrian Hothem and Juno
P.S. She gets compliments on her ears everywhere she goes!

Attached are pictures of Juno at Christmas and with her friend, Marley.

Hi, I'm Weronika,

We adopted Doughnut (or Graham at the time) from the shelter last summer. I have been meanining to send this e-mail a while ago, giving an update on how he is doing. I am really happy to say that Doughnut has fit in really well with the familly and is clearly very happy. At first he didn't really wanted to be petted and shied away when anyone tried to pet him but now, he willingly come to us and looks up at us with his adorable eyes begging for a bely rub. His eyes have gotten much better since we adopted him and they look perfectly fine, of course his vision is dimmed but it dosen't seem to bother him at all. He and our Tecup Pekingese, Happy have become great friends and they even play together when Doughnut is in the mood for some puppy-play. He and my dad have really taken to each other, they're best friends as if they've known each other since the begging of time. Doughnut sleeps everyday in his comfy blue bed, he had a red one but it just prooved to be too small for him. Seeing him trying to squeeze into the little red bed (which now belongs to happy) was quite funny since his legs would always hang out the side of it and he would always roll around trying to get comfy. Also, Doughnut goes out for daily walks with Happy, twice a day, he loves going for walks and has learned to recognize the phrase "Want to go for a walk?", when he hears that he gets out for bed and rushes to the door. As much as he likes to go for walks he loves running back home, whenever he feels like it he stops, (generaly in the middle of the walk down our block), and starts pulling the opposite way or just refuzes to move. Sometimes, we can coax him to keep going but generally we simply turn around and walk home with him, and when we are close enough to our back yeard we unclip his leash and say, "Go Home Doughnut" and he races towards the garage and then straight to our back-yard gate, where he waits patiently for us to open it, and when we do he runs to the door to get inside. Another, interesting thisng about Doughnut is the way he acts after a bath, you'd really think he is just a puppy! After we dry him and brush his fur so that it is soft and fluffy he waits by the door, wnad when we open it he walks down the stairs and then runs across the livingroom and generally chases happy around barking at him like crazy. Happy and Doughnut will ususally play for about a half hour together after thir bath, which is once a week, they will run like crazy, chasing each other, playfully nipping and they'll steal each other's treats or toys. They act like two puppies in a litter! Summing it all up, Doughnut is doing exellent and we all love him very much!

(I've included some pictures of him and happy in this e-mail so enjoy! ^^ He dosen't like taking pictures though, the flash of the camera scares him so we usually turn it off.)

She was reregestered as "Loosha". She is doing very well and gets along with all "creatures" in the house just fine. Thank you.   Marina.

To the wonderful Heartland Animal Shelter,

Thanks for all that everyone does there at Heartland. This is a wonderful shelter where we got our puppy Kendall. She was born at Heartland and was named "Mary" before. She is such a loving and beautiful dog. My husband and I adopted her August 31, 2008. Oddly enough, that is the day that my father passed away back in 2002. Now that day is a little more special cause we have Kendall. She loves to play fetch and CHEW her little heart out. Her favorite thing to chew is bones, but any toy that is destructible will do as well. She is being trained in puppy classes right now and maybe some agility classes one day. Kendall loves to run and is very fast. In June, she'll be a year old! We got her at around 10 lbs. and now she is almost 45! Thanks again Heartland for our amazing new family member. Here are some photos that we took along the way as she grew bigger and bigger.

Sarah and Paul R.

My name is Linda and I would like to share my adoption story with you.  Back in November of 2005, my father passed away and the grief that I felt for his loss became quite unbearable at times.  I had heard many stories about how the love of a animal can help with the loss of a loved one.  I had felt such a void in my life, especially after celebrating the first set of holidays without my Dad.  I decided after the holidays were over to check into the adoption process and started the process in January of 2006.  After my first couple of visits, I became intrigued with a male Grey and White Tabby named "Pun" an adult cat approximately 6 years old.  He was the only cat that showed me attention on all of my visits by gently "biting my fingers" and making sure that I knew he was paying close attention to me when I visited.  Whenever I started showing attention to another cat, he quickly came by me to remind me to pay more attention to him.  After my 3rd visit to the Shelter....., it became evident and obvious that He ("The Cat")  was picking me out to be his new owner.  I quickly began to fall in love with "Pun" and adopted him on my 3rd visit.  It has now been 3 years and "Pun" is now "Frosty" and he is a gift from God....I can write a book about how "Frosty" has changed my life and how he has brought so much joy to my life.  I would be the first one to say....Adopt a Cat (especially an Adult Cat).. You won't be sorry!!!

I wanted to share some photos of Dalee (formally Eenee). She is a great addition to the family. I forgot how much work a puppy can be, but she is well worth it! Thanks for allowing us to take her home.

Barb L.

Dear friends at Heartland;
  Just an update on two of your finest:  aka Empress Snuggle Face and Lafayette, now known as Nelle and Ripley.  These two are a perfect match!!  They love to play hide and seek and "whose got the ball"!!!  Ripley usually wins. They are our 'babies". Ripley sleeps face to face with my husband.  At times I have to look over to see which one is snoring. We stay busy clipping Ripley's many toes and he is still pretty cooperative. Nelle is so sweet. She loves to watch the chipmunks outside and chatters at them all day.  Ripley likes to watch the birds from the top of their condo. We had a robin's nest outside our window and the two of them really "enjoyed" seeing the robins growing up.  The robins have all left the nest and I think Nelle and Ripley really miss them!  We can't thank you all enough for letting us adopt these two wonderful cats.  Our life is definitely more complete with them in our home. Bless you for the outstanding work you do to help the so many homeless animals!!
Charlene and Ken B

On Sunday 6/21 we will have had Rover for 1 full year. He is a great dog and we love him a lot. Back in the 1960's and 1970's when I was a kid we would bring our dogs to Dr.Prieser. My wife Jean and I are so happy that we got Rover from Heartland. In the last year he has had the run of the house. He has never chewed up anything or made a mess. He loves being around people. Since we have had him he has killed a rabbit and a skunk in the backyard. We like to play with him in the backyard. We are looking forward to many more years with Rover. If we ever get another dog we will come to Heartland. We tell everyone how great you people are. Thank you for Rover.

Sincerely, Tom T.
Hi guys and gals,

I figured it's about time for an update on Simon and PT (and a picture!).  Simon's lyme's disease is in remission and both are happy healthy dogs now, although with the temperatures going up, they like to sleep wherever, whenever!  They've been busy herding the next door neighbor's Chihuahua, keeping rabbits and squirrels out of the garden and greeting customers to our store.  Here they are in they're "alert" posture (this happens for a variety of reasons, not all of which can be understood by us humans).  Thank you so much for taking these two wonderful dogs in and thereby letting us adopt them.  They feel like they've been here for years already.  Have a nice summer and keep up the good work.

Colin M.
Two Rivers, WI

Hello Heartland Animal Shelter!

Thank you for all that you do to help animals and for giving us our amazing cat, Anthony.  We adopted him a year ago this August, when he was 5 ½ months old, and we?ve adored him ever since.  Anthony is very friendly and playful.  He loves attention and gets very jealous when his sister, Claire, is getting more than him.  He likes lying on our shoulders like a scarf, and reaches up to us when he wants to be picked up and held.  Anthony?s very curious and constantly stares out the window and watches what goes on outside.  His favorite activities include wrestling with Claire, running fast throughout our apartment, sleeping on the couch, chasing his feather toy and bugs, hiding behind the shower curtain, and playing hockey with a tennis ball.  Our home wouldn?t be complete without him ? Thank you.     ~Paul, Liz, Claire, & Anthony

Dear Heartland Friends,

It has been a year and a half since I saw you last, that was when my forever family drove from Wisconsin to meet me and take me home.

I have been so happy here, and I think it was only a year ago that I realized I can finally be myself. My big sisters love me like no other and although I love napping with my dad, my mom is my best-est friend. She hears me when nobody else does, she always knows just what I need and to pay her back I keep her lap warm and 'smile' at her in the morning. A big smile that makes some people laugh at me , but mom loves it and kisses me lots when I do it.

I think they have me all figured out and boy am I glad they were patient. I wish I could tell them about my 'sad' life before I met them, but I don't think they speak 'dog-ease'...so I will just keep talking to them the best way I know how.

My big sister Reilly has helped me learn some really fun things, like jumping over a variety of things while running at full speed, playing frisbee, swimming at the river and dog run,chasing frogs, and I even have my own soccer ball and we play in the backyard a lot. Mom laughs the hardest and says something about 'youtube' because I really 'know' how to play soccer with my sisters. I'm just being me :)

I still can't be left home alone, it hurts my heart and makes me sad, so mom takes me to work with her a lot. I visit with all of the seniors that don't have granddogs of their own.  They pet me and talk to me and mom says it makes their day, but she has no idea how it makes mine too, I love the attention! I am very careful to walk gently around their canes, wheelchairs, and walkers....and if they can't reach my ears for a petting...then I stand up for them. Some of them even sneak me treats from their pockets, Shhh, don't tell my mom. *giggle*

You would be so impressed to see me now, I walk on a leash without pulling , I listen to my mom the first time and I make friends fast with the neighbor dogs. Thank you so much for taking care of me until they could find me! I am sending you some pictures of myself and my family. XOXO

Your friend forever, Jack Green
Formally known as Russell

Hi Heartland,

I apologize that it has taken me so long to get these pictures to you! Hopefully you remember Augustina, my boyfriend and I adopted her on Valentine's Day. She has been such a joy and we love her to death. She has been living a spoiled life with us in Palatine. She is so social and loves being around us and our friends and helps us welcome guests into our home. She has the best character and loves to play. I think she is very happy with us!

I remember when we brought her home the first night you told us she might be scared and it might take her a while to get used to her surroundings. You also said she might take a while to come out of the travel carrier, but when we got her home and opened the door she came right out and started exploring! She is so outgoing and we love that about her.

Thank you so much for such a great kitty! Hope you enjoy the pictures.
Sincerely, Meghan, Tim, and Augie

Good afternoon. I am Michelle Yaryan?s sister.  My family and I wanted to thank you once again for allowing us to adopt Teddy.  As you may have re-called, Teddy was extremely timid.  He had never been introduced to children, would not walk on a leash, would spend the majority of his time in his kennel and would not come back into the house once he was outside.   We?ve spent a lot of time introducing Teddy to a number of different social settings, given him a lot of TLC and worked with a private trainer!  Teddy has come a long way!  Although he was not looking at the camera when this photo was taken, he actually did better with the photo shoot than our other schnauzer.  By the way, he LOVES his sister! 

We?ve attached a picture for your wall!  Thanks again!
Kristin G

It has been a while since we adopted Kennedy and all things are going well.  As a pup he was quite the handful, but then again what pup isn't.  Can't begin to thank everyone enough for all the assistance and answering of questions etc.

Below are a couple quick snapshots of our boy and his grueling day!   

Thank you for your time.
Kevin J. M

Hi Heartland,
We adopted 2 dogs, 6 months apart and they are the loves of our lives.  Shorty was 6 months old and came from a divorced home, loved people but was not socialized.
Tried the dog park and he got attacked, was more afraid than ever.  So back to Hearland to find a friend.   Cally  was 1 year old, a stray, undernourished and filthy when she
was found in Chicago  She snarled and snapped at any man who came near her and showed signs she had been abused.  A little love goes a long way and she is the most loving, well behaved little dog you ever saw.  She even let me dress her up for the Heartland Halloween Costume Party where Cally and Shorty won a Medal for Most Creative Pair!

Hi there,
I adopted Justin in May this year and I just wanted to let you know he is the best dog ever! I can't thank you enough for letting me adopt him. I've sent along some pics to share with his foster mom.  He gets tons of attention and lots of exercise as he is my running partner. Thanks again.
Kelly P

Here's my happy tail:
Woody?s not really vicious.  He?s actually yawning in that photo.  We were reenacting scenes from Caddyshack and he got bored with my direction.  The second picture makes him look more docile.  He?s hoping some dinner will fall on the floor.

We got Woody in April.  He is very smart, well behaved, and affectionate (he likes everybody).  He?s very energetic and athletic.  Everyday, he loves to run in the backyard chasing tennis balls and Frisbees and jumping over benches.  He likes to learn tricks.  His favorite one right now is jumping up on fire hydrants.  That really gets the tail wagging.  Feel free to friend Woody on Dogbook (apps.facebook.com/dogbook/profile/view/7129270).  Thanks for the great dog, Heartland.  ?the Chapman family

Hi Everyone,

    I found my forever home a year ago.  I was only at Heartland for three days when my dog mom adopted me.  I was quite timid and insecure but have gotten over this and have found my place in the family. My dog mom thinks I'm just adorable, sweet and cute, because I hear her tell people this all the time. 

    She's helping me to get my service  certificate so I can visit hospitals and nursing homes.   Currently I sit, come, and stay on command, (most of the time).   I've learned a few tricks too,  such as:  stand, rollover and crawl.  I look forward to my walks in local parks and along the lake front.  Thank you Heartland for bringing us together.

Dotty Jo Samantha Walker  aka "Dolly"
Veronica Walker :-)

I wanted to drop you a note as I was feeling sentimental today.  I adopted Tony (brown and white Dutch rabbit) from your shelter on March 28, 2007.  He literally changed my life.  As a kid, we didn?t have very many pets due to allergies.  Tony is the biggest pet I?ve ever had, at 4.5 lbs!  I soon learned how much I love animals of all types, and rabbits in particular.  After moving to Madison, WI for graduate school, I adopted a bunny from the Humane Society to be Tony?s girlfriend.  Her name is Muffin (tan lop-eared bunny).  They are very loving to each other and spend all day long snuggled together, or getting into trouble together!  They are allowed free run of my living room and kitchen (except if they?re making noise at night, trying to wake me for treats!), and are very happy.  Tony is my buddy and I?m so glad I got him.  Now I help out at the Humane Society where I adopted Muffin twice a month, because I love spending time with all the rabbits.  I think if I had gotten Tony before I decided on a career path, I would have chosen to be a vet, and I?m so thankful that he has helped me learn how much I love animals.  I attached a few recent pics of Tony and Muffin for you, because I know how much the volunteers want to know about what happens to the animals they care for once they get their forever homes.  I can assure you that Tony is spoiled rotten and knows it, and is a very positive influence in my life.

Hello everyone!
I just wanted to update you on Levi.....we dropped the h off his name. 

He has completely adapted to his new life here in the city.  We went to the dog beach this weekend and although he had a great time he does not seem to care for water, but the sand and other dogs were a big hit.  We have also been to the regular dog park quite a few times and he plays really well with other dogs. 

Our other dog, Piper a miniature pincher, is even coming around to having a big brother.  We all sleep in the bed together and they are sharing their dog beds as well.  I didn't think that he would fit into her little beds but he makes it work! 

We really could not be happier with him.  Thank you so much for dedicating your time to these wonderful animals. 

Corinne and Tripp R.

Hi!  I've been meaning to email you guys for so long now.  Just wanted to show you photos of our happy pride.  We adopted Audrey and Juno back in Feb 08.  We renamed them Queenie and Filly.  They are doing great, and are very happy.  It was funny, because Juno was not in a good mood the day we adopted her, she had been stuck in a medical cage because of a respiratory infection, was on antibiotics, and was growling a bit when she was brought out of the cage....of course I felt so sorry for her, but at the same time felt a bit apprehensive because of her growling.  Well she is one of the most affectionate cats I've ever had and a total flirt with my husband!  Then last Sept I came across a very sick and emaciated kitty on the street (the black and white one).  she was crying her little heart out, and the neighborhood wasn't the greatest.  I scooped her up, quarantined her and brought her to the vet.  Of course the transition was HARD.  Queenie was not happy but after 3 or 4 months of positive reinforcement and lots of patience, it worked!  Every one is fine now.  The reason why I told you all this is because I know some people will give  up after a week or 2.  I read a few books about behavior modification and worked every night on it.  Take Care,  Carolyn and George C

Dk is doing awesome! The night we brought him home, the minute he saw the bed he jumped on it and it was like we've had him all along. He is a HUGE cuddle-bug and loves to go outside and run in the field or fetch tennis balls. He doesn't realize his size and if we are sitting somewhere he wants to be sitting there with us, which of course we let him...we like to call him our 75lb lap dog:) We are so greatful for him....have a wonderful day!!!!

We adopted our wonderful puppy "socks" in August 09. We renamed her Tessie, after the Drop Kick Murphy song that is played at the Boston Red Sox games. She is the biggest bundle of joy in our lives and we love her as we would our own child. Tessie has the best personality, loves people, and is great with other dogs. We have been visiting the local dog park, meeting new friends and enjoy watching her socialize with the other dogs. She doesn't care for the little ones so much, but loves a big challenge such as 2 great danes!!
     Tessie needs to be touching you at all times and is quite the cuddler! If you are sitting on the floor, she has no problem sitting on your lap!! She gives such sweet little kisses to show her love for you. Tessie also loves playing in the field with her frisbee, tennis ball, and her favorite toy, her tug of war rope!
     We are so thankful to have her in our family and we thank Heartland for their care for her and their help through the adoption. We look forward to many many fun years with the newest addition to our family!

Matthew and Brittany

Higgins & Velma
I want to tell everyone at Heartland how lucky I am that Higgins waited for me to bring him to his new home.  He and Gracie (formerly Velma) have worked themselves very well into my home.  I have a year-old German Shepherd puppy who was used to my 19-1/2- year-old cat who died in July.  However, I had no idea whether either Higgins or Gracie would be receptive to a cat.  Gracie now curls up with him on the bed.  Higgins is still a  little reserved and sometimes hisses at Quincy but I'm sure these two guys will work it out.  It's probably a macho thing. 

Higgins has almost tripped me on several occasions, rubbing up
against my legs.  He has taken over the large chair in the library,
as befits a guy.  But he also gets on the couch with Gracie.  He is
fascinated with my basement and has proved himself by catching a
mouse.  He's earning his keep.  Both these cats are a great joy to
have and are already an important part of my family.

I'm attaching a picture of them sunning on the living room couch. 
You can see that the question of how I would handle cats on the
furniture is not a problem.

Thanks for taking such good care of especially Higgins for so long.
Tom & I set out looking to adopt a dog vs. purchasing one from a
breeder, because we know how important it is to give a deserving dog in
an unfortunate situation a good home.  Our criteria for our potential dog
was pretty simple: we wanted an adult dog, medium sized, and one that
would be a good runner partner.

Heartland was probably the 6th shelter we visited in our search.  When I
first saw Dixie , she was spinning in tight circles in her kennel.  I walked
past, and Tom & I found another dog that was very cute, but after
consideration we decided she was a bit too small for us.  The volunteers
at the shelter suggested we take a look at a different particular dog but
when we went to take a look at him, Dixie , in the next kennel, caught my
eye.  She wasn't spinning anymore, but she didn't seem overly friendly
either.  We thought she was a good looking dog though, so a volunteer
grabbed a leash and we took her outside.  The minute she was off the
leash within the fenced in area, she took off running at top speed.  It was
impressive, but definitely a dog we wouldn't be able to let off of a leash. 
Just about the entire time we had her outside, she showed much more
interest in anything BUT us.  However, when the volunteer put her leash
on and brought Dixie over, she did come up to me and let me pet her for a minute.  As she went back into her kennel, we discussed what to do.  We were interested, as Dixie is a great looking dog, but we didn't quite know if we could handle her.

We were given the opportunity to foster Dixie for a week to get to know her better, which we decided was a great idea.  Between us, we were a bit suspicious of the fact that Dixie had been at Heartland for at least 9 months already, and we had been told that she had been adopted at one point, but returned.  The week that we fostered Dixie had some highlights, but it was also a bit of a struggle too.  It was pretty obvious that she was not used to being in a home.  At the end of the week however, we decided that a home is exactly what Dixie needed so we decided to officially adopt her.

As part of her fresh start with us, we decided to give Dixie a new name.  Dixie proved to be a great running companion, and so we renamed her "Boston " in honor of the prestigious marathon in that city.  " Boston " also serves as a tribute to Tom's previous dog, Boomer.

Boston has turned out to be a great dog. She is fabulous with people, and does really well at loud, crowded functions such as picnics, football games, etc.  She loves her stuffed toys, and pounces on them with playful excitement.   Boston took such a liking to her cushioned dog bed, that we bought a second one so she could be comfortable both upstairs & down. We have noted that we have never seen a dog stretch as much as Boston does, but we view it as even more proof that she is an athlete at heart. Most importantly though, Boston has really come around to our affection. She is very sweet, loves being petted and has taken a liking to curling up on the couch with us.  She has mastered her basic Sit, Down, & Come commands, and we are starting some obedience classes to work on some more advanced skills that we can't teach her ourselves.

We are very very happy to have Boston with us, and we have gotten many compliments on what a pretty dog she is and how well behaved she is. I am still amazed that she lived in a shelter for so long, and we are very proud that we have been able to give her a better life.

Dear Heartland Animal Shelter,
We are so happy with Kai (we changed his name from Carson ). He is so nice and obedient. We love to play with him so much!! We love and care for him really good like you guys. Our friends love him!! We have attached some pictures.....Thank you so much for letting us adopt him!!!

Hello Everyone,

It?s Moonshadow but I have change my name to Salem??????  My mom just wanted to say hi and show you how much fun I am having.  I have toys and more toys.  Tons of food and hugs.  I love to chase my big brother and sister around the house all the time.  Then I become a lap cat when mom comes home from work.  I really enjoy all the windows to watch the birds.  Here is a picture of me and my big brother Frank. 

Take care

Dear Heartland Animal Shelter,
We are happy to let you know that Hershey (previously known as Keiko) has turned out to be a wonderful pet for our family! We walked into Heartland looking for a medium-sized dog that would be good with kids and cats, specifically our fabulous feline, Slinky. I was pretty nervous about the whole thing, never having had a dog before! I passed by lots of barking, "vibrating" doggies and passed up Hershey, who was spotted by my husband and my daughter, sitting quietly and calmly in her crate among the chaos! She looked like just the kind of dog we were interested in. However, I had some doubts when we took her outside to the yard to walk/play with her--she seemed so anxious and not very interested in play. However, we decided she deserved a chance. When we adopted Hershey at the end of July, all we knew about her was that she came from southern Illinois, was part beagle, and was about 2 years old. When we found out she had some health issues, He artland's Christy was very helpful to us (thank you) and got those issues resolved in no time. I'll admit that there were lots of accidents and incidents when we first brought her home and we're still dealing with some separation anxiety (though switching to a small, den-like crate has helped). Given the time and training, Hershey has learned to sit, stay, speak, wait for her food, walk nicely on a leash (the cat walks along too!), play with lots of toys, and (I still can't get over this one) RING A BELL to be let outside to go potty!!!! All in a little over 3 months--incredible! She's used to our routines now and is a loving companion!  THANK YOU, HEARTLAND!

Hi, we adopted Haggar, who is now officially " Walt " in September. I just wanted Tom to know how much we love this dog, and how well he is adjusting to life in Oak Park. Walt was quite thin when we brought him home, but as you can see he is looking handsome now. When we brought him home he weighed 63 lbs. and is now 73 lbs.! He is great with our three kids, and has a girlfriend next door, another Boxer. Thanks for helping us find a new family member! Best of luck to all of you, and please pass this on to Tom!   Lisa L

Dear Heartland Animal Shelter,
Thanks to you, my life has been heaven ever since adopting Precious (formally known as Snowball) last Christmas. To begin, I should say that I have always been a dog lover, primarily because I had only ever owned dogs. When my beloved Sheltie, Ashleigh, passed away, I was miserable. My life without an animal companion is kind of like a fish out of water. My parents were looking for something to help me out of my depression, anything! Another puppy was out of the question, so I thought I was doomed. Until one day at dinner, my dad suggested we try a kitty. A kitty of my very own!!! I was a bit skeptical to be honest, due to the unfair stereotypes of cats having attitude. Boy, is that WRONG!! From the moment I brought Precious home, she has been the most loving pet ever. She has the greatest personality: she?s spunky and hyper, loves to play many games, can jump higher and further then Michael Jordan, but also calms down into a cuddly loving kitty. She loves to be massaged and pet for hours on end, and enjoys a nice game of fetch with a hair tie. She?s a skilled soccer player (with a tennis ball as a substitute) as well as a great softball player! She users her nails to flick hair tie?s all the way across the room, then she runs and catches it. I believe she?s a genius! She?s also a big talker, and I love it! We have many conversations every day, although her response never varies. J I also brought her to my senioheartlandanimalsjessirr picture photo shoot, and the photographer LOVED the cat! She wanted more pictures of Precious! She?s just a gorgeous cat. JEveryone who meets her falls in love. She has turned many dog lovers into cat lovers as well. She brings my entire family together. Even if we don?t talk, we all just lie around and pet our special cat. And let me tell you, she really is special. I cannot tell you how lucky I am to have her. And I have you, Heartland Animal Shelter, to thank for that. She is my entire life, and I honestly can?t imagine life without her. I thank her by spoiling her with lots of love and attention (which she politely bats off when she is trying to sleep) as well as many toys and boxes and towers to climb! We have big plans for our future too! Precious has motivated me to want to start my own animal shelter when I grow up. So in the future, if you ever see ?Precious Haven? or something like that . . . it will be us! Thank you a million times over for saving Precious and keeping her safe and healthy. Thank you for bringing us together, and completely changing both of our lives for the better. I have thousands of pictures of her, but I tried to choose just my favorites for you! Feel free to add her on Facebook ? she has over 630 cat friends!!

With all our Love,
Rachael Quillin and the Quillin Family Mike, Sally, Nicholas, & Precious

Hello to everyone at Heartland!
Just wanted to update you on Cherry.  We adopted Cherry in September.  We have another rescue dog, Lucas.  He is a year old, Labrador mix and when he met Cherry it was like they knew each other forever!  Lucas immediately became very protective of her yet defers to her completely. 

We have a son with Bipolar ll and Cherry has been wonderful with him.  She loves to wake him up in the morning with kisses all over his head.  She seems to know that he needs her to be gentle and he really looks forward to the morning routine and loves her very much.

From the first night she came to our home Cherry slept in mine and my husband's bed.  Always sure to get as close as possible to one of us.  She is happiest when her head lays on top of an arm or leg.  She is the most loving dog I have ever owned.

Not that there hasn't been any problem.  Cherry needed house trained and reminded constantly not to chew chair legs.  She also barks at every dog that walks by "her" yard....We work with her and she is housebroken and crate trained now.  The chewing has stopped.  We can live with barking!

Our Cherry is such a special and loved dog.  Thank you so much for rescuing Cherry and taking such good and kind care of her.  We feel like she was waiting for us to come and take her home. 

We will always be grateful to Heartland for our lovely, sweet, little clown.
The Nomikos Family

PS - The pictures are taken from our bed, which is
where Cherry and Lucas can always be found....