Happy Homecomings

We like every dog to know they are special, but when you help hundreds of dogs each year on their journeys home, being original about naming them can be a little difficult. So each month, we turn to themes. Composers, poets, artists…and this month: cars. I know. It’s just wrong.
Meet Mercedes.


And Rambler.


But Odyssey?? Just look at that disgust on his face.


Selecting cars as the theme this month turns out to be a bit apropos – given how much time our teammates just spent in them.
This is Marley.


He is an extremely thunder-phobic dog who happened to live in Illinois: not good a good place for dogs afraid of thunder. He is so frightened by thunderstorms that he will hurt himself if left alone during one. He is very closely bonded to his sister, Harlo. So the decision was made to send them together to a place where thunderstorms are extremely rare. That place is the Sacramento Valley – home of Homeward Bound Golden Retriever Rescue.

Miss Harlo is a mellow girl, who made the trip by plane without incident. But Marley was having none of that. Even sedated, he freaked out. Time for the Golden Taxi!


Three teams of two relayed to ferry him two thousand miles over three days. Last night he was reunited with his sister in a touching welcome home. (Thanks to Rob Kessel for capturing the moment.)


Because special needs dogs need special plans, we had already contacted a family on our waiting list. Previous adopters, they were looking for a canine companion for their Ella. Instead of one, they fell for two. It’s a perfect match!


Tonight, Marley and Harlo are beginning a new chapter together in a loving home.

Meanwhile, I have been reunited with Maria – one of my bonded gardeners who went A.W.O.L. for three weeks and finally returned. I was so happy to have company again, I let her dress the Memorial Garden in silly fall regalia.


Sammy wasn’t so sure about these scary scarecrows – but with Steve by her side…it’s all good!


Happy homecoming and next chapter to Marley and Harlo. Welcome home, Maria! The garden missed you!


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I am a nascent gardener, rescuer, and photographer, chronicling the journey of the dogs at Homeward Bound Golden Retriever Rescue and Sanctuary near Sacramento, CA - and the Memorial Garden we have devoted to them.

19 thoughts on “Happy Homecomings”

  1. The Marley and Harlo reunion, their new home with loving companions, and the capturing of that moment with photos, all contribute to make your blog, and the labor of HB, a precious part of our lives! YAY!

  2. Great post. Glad to see that Harley and Marlo already have a home they can go to. Good to be back in the garden, and thanks for letting me put my “fall” touch to the garden. Love the back of the scarecrow picture.

  3. Have you had a Larry yet? I always wanted a Larry 🙂

    As always, beautiful pics of the pups and the garden!

  4. Oh I loved this post. I have to say, it looks like Rambler fits the name. So happy about Marly and Harlo. What a great ending but also new beginning. As always, the garden is gorgeous.

  5. Gorgeous golden and garden photos, and I absolutely adore the photos of happy Marley and Harlo. And about those car names . . . just stay away from Buick. That one might not be a good name choice. 😉

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