A place to unwind while waiting for a furever home…

Today is Blog the Change for Animals, it is a virtual event that happens four times each year.  It aims to bring together a passionate community of animal bloggers in support of a wide variety of animal causes.  This month I’m going to highlight one of my favorite breed rescues, Glen Highland Farm Sweet Border Collie Rescue.

Early morning view of the fog lifting over Glen Highland Farms in central NY... a haven for rescued Border Collies and a truly healing place for people who love dogs.

After very suddenly losing my heart-dog, Tazzie, to a fast moving cancer, there was a huge hole in my heart and in my life.   Tazzie was probably a border collie/golden retriever/?? mix, but she was very much so Border Collie in her personality–focused, driven, full of energy, and super smart.  When she passed, I started looking to adopt a Border Collie and came across GHF.  While I ultimately adopted Shayne from a local shelter, I really fell in love with the work they were doing.  While I was in college, I volunteered to help transport dogs anytime I made the journey from NYC to Pittsburgh–it made setting up transports easier since I would take the pups for 4 or more hours of the journey to/from the farm.  A few years ago, I had the privilege of visiting the farm during the summer for their kid’s summer program–which is when I fell even more in love with the work they do.

Shayne walking down the driveway of the farm with the early morning fog resting on the fields.

The rescue was started in 2001 when Lillie Goodrich and John Andersen bought a 175 acre property in central New York.  Each year they aim to help about 200 dogs needing homes–some dogs stay at the farm in a beautifully converted and updated horse barn and some get to stay with experienced foster homes.  The farm is truly a place of healing for this frequently misunderstood breed.  Rescue dogs receive the very best food, excellent veterinary care (it helps that Cornell is local resource), plenty of outdoor play/exploration, and most importantly, they are surrounded by people who love them and understand the breed.

Youth at the Camp Border Collie for Kids were learning canine massage techniques. Shayne was clearly very thankful for their effort (just a reminder, this is my very anxious and nervous Shayne--it made ME feel so good watching her relax and the kids being so kind do her!)

GHF is more than just a Border Collie Rescue.  While the rescue and the rescue dogs are clearly the heart of the operation, the important work they do doesn’t stop there.  Each summer they invite several groups of disadvantaged youth from NYC  and NJ to spend 10 days on the farm for Camp Border Collie for Kids.  The youth work one on one with a dog in the rescue, complete science activities, do agility training and get to take advantage of the 175 acres of nature.  It really is amazing program that helps youth learn to value compassion (both between human and animal but also human to human).  The youth also get to feel the unbridled love of the dogs in rescue who are longing for someone to bond with.  I was blessed to meet youth who were participating in the program and was just inspired by these kids.  They were truly fantastic people who grew so much as individuals during the time at the farm.  In the short time I was there, I could see the confidence of each youth increase significantly.  As an educator, I see the work being done on the farm as simply amazing and really life changing for the youth involved.  GHF really opens their arms and welcome each and every youth into their extended family.

Luke, the inspiration for the BC rescue, watching over his farm with his buddy Ashley.

It would be remiss of me to forget about the rescue Border Collies who benefit from a month’s worth of everyday bonding with youth who learn to love them.  Border collies are dogs who need jobs but, unlike some breeds, Border Collies have been bred for  hundreds of years to work with humans–to bond closely with humans.  A Border Collie without a human to bond with is like a painter with out paint.  The camp provides the opportunity for the dogs to bond with a human closely and work with a human and relax with a human everyday.  To me, the most moving moments come with camp dogs are adopted during camp–their youth handler is filled with joy and sadness at the same time.  The closeness with which they bond in such a short amount of time is really phenomenal.

GHF’s amazing work with Border Collies and kids is why I am highlighting the work they do–they really are Being the Change for Animals (and youth).  I hope you will go check out their site, look at the dogs, read their Border Collie information, check out the adult camp options they offer and the seminars/mini-camps they hold, and maybe consider donating items from their “wish list” for Camp BC for kids (wish list hasn’t been updated yet for this year’s camp).  While their camps and seminars are not cheap, the money very clearly goes back to the rescue dogs and I can honestly say just being at the farm is revitalizing and provides this amazing sense of healing.

 

Shayne and I relaxing on a hammock placed in a small clearing on the banks of the creek on the property

My view from the hammock! It's BEAUTIFUL!

Walking one of the trails on the farm with a few new doggie friends after spending some time swimming and playing in the creek.

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About Success Just Clicks

I'm a dog trainer and enthusiast who moonlights as a blogger and custom tug-toy maker.
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35 Responses to A place to unwind while waiting for a furever home…

  1. gotspots says:

    What a gorgeous place. It looks like doggy heaven! It must be so peaceful there ❤

  2. Vicky says:

    Wow, what an amazing-looking place. What a beautiful thing to share. Thank you.

  3. Spectacular! The setting is exquisite. I’m so happy for the Border Collies who are fortunate enough to be taken care of here and for the great work GHF is doing.

  4. Kim Clune says:

    I’ve seen the flier for this amazing place at Nassau Veterinary Clinic, NY. We must be fairly close to one another. What a fantastic volunteer opportunity to transport dogs on trips you’re already taking. I had never considered doing that before – until now.

    Thanks for Blogging the Change!
    Kim
    BtC4animals.com

    • Yep, it was really great, I mean, i was already making the 7hr drive so I might as well take along a passenger or two … and i think it really does help them because they dont have to coordinate as many legs since i’d be driving about 4 of them anyhow. I actually just moved from Westchester back to PA about 6 months ago… so we were close 🙂

  5. Hilary says:

    Beautiful photos. And since I have Border Collies, I was thrilled to read about this work and how you became involved. Very moving.

  6. Thank you for telling me about this amazing place. We have some land in the rainforest where our shelter is, and recently added housing for 20 volunteers. I think I am going to plan a camp for disadvantaged youth in Iquitos, Peru! Thanks fo the idea!

  7. kenzohw says:

    What a great rescue. Glad they are doing so much for BC’s.

  8. Edie says:

    What an amazing program — I love that it’s helping both kids and dogs and helping them help each other. I’m sure the spectacular setting is healing in itself.

  9. janetgot says:

    What a beautiful place and a wonderful concept for the dogs and the kids to come together. I love this story. Thanks for sharing.

  10. Truly a little piece of heaven on earth… thank you for sharing this story.

  11. GHF sounds like such a beautiful and amazing place. I’ve always been impressed with the work they do. Some day, I’d love to go to one of their camps or seminars.

  12. Elisa says:

    Wow sounds like such an amazing place, thanks for highlighting it! and thanks for commenting on Dogs of the Week 🙂

  13. Neely says:

    This looks awesome! Thanks for letting me know about it!

  14. Mary Hunter says:

    Found you through the blog hop.

    This sounds like a great place!

    I really feel for Border Collies—they are a great breed, but I think they do take an owner who understands the breed. Too often they end up in shelters because people don’t understand how to care for a fun-loving high energy dog.

    cheers,

    Mary Hunter
    http://stalecheerios.com/blog

    • Hey Mary… i’m pretty sure we’ve chatted on Casey Lomonaco’s Rewarding Behaviors forum…. (or at least that’s where i found your blog link some time ago!). I think too many people see them running agility, doing tricks, being trained to a high level…but they dont see the work that goes into a dog like that or the …. “special” behaviors that go along with owning a border collie (endless energy, throwing toys at people, being push, being a velcro dog, getting destructive when bored, etc) and dump them at shelters when they realize that their dog is smarter then they are LOL!

  15. Kristine says:

    Gorgeous, gorgeous, gorgeous place! THIS is what I would love to open one day. But until I can I will absolutely throw some support their way. What a postive post! Thanks for sharing this.

    • Thanks Kristine…. I agree… i’d love to have my own GHF type place… just so amazing. I’m sure they would love any support you can give.. i’ve been unemployed for nearly a year and I just wish i had the financial ability to help out… for now it’s transporting when they need it and a temperament test or overnight if they need it…

  16. Pup Fan says:

    What a wonderful place! Thanks for highlighting them… I am in awe!

  17. Chandra says:

    Wow, I am blown away by GHF! I volunteer at my local humane society and while it’s the best shelter environment a homeless dog could hope, I wish I could beam all the Border Collies to GHF. So many BCs end up at the shelter through no fault of their own and it’s so hard for them to show their true selves in that environment. Thanks for introducing me to GHF’s amazing work for BCs and children! I’m happy to have found your blog through Be the Change and thanks for stopping by my blog today! Oh, and LOVE the photo of you and Shayne in the hammock!
    -Chandra at Daley’s Dog Years

    • Any work to help rescue/shelter dogs is important work.. so thanks for volunteering! BCs really are hard… they are smart and awesome… and people see those things w/o knowing the um….. other side of owning BCs so they end up dumped… and shelters, like you said, are REALLY not good for them. Glad you enjoyed the blog (i’m being a little obsessive about reading all the Blog the Change blogs… it’s been amazing to hop around these blogs… i really love it!)!

  18. thatjenk says:

    Stopping by on the BtC hop – this place looks great! Thanks for sharing. They deserve to be highlighted.

  19. veryvizsla says:

    If I put on a Border Collie costume, can I live at GHF? What a lovely place to have a rescue operation!

  20. CindyLu says:

    Oh, I want to go live there!! That is so beautiful!!

  21. I love the youth connection! It’s inspiring and important… what a beautiful place!

  22. Lavi says:

    That is a wonderful place, both for the dogs and the young people who go on camp there…
    Thank you for sharing this and also for your nice comment on my post.

  23. I discovered Glen Highland while at a Pet Expo this past spring. They had a booth set up and were handing out fliers. I just love what they do, and you are so right, it is a win win situation for the dogs and children alike. That is awesome that you were able to help them with transport. Great organization to highlight for Blog the Change!!

    • They really are amazing. It’s a ridiculously expensive vacation but holy cow, if you ever get the chance to go it is an AMAZING place… very… spiritual (might be the best word I have to describe it). Just an amazing place with amazing people.

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