Humane Society of 
Northeast Iowa

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Luna's family wrote with a great update: "She has been a lovely edition to our family. She is starting to warm up and make herself at home. She loves trips to the dog park, playing in the backyard, walks, and enjoying a nice fire in the fire pit at night. She is learning the commands for sit and come quickly. She greets us every day, whether we are coming home or getting out of bed in the morning. Instead of kisses she puts her nose to your nose. She is a very sweet and gentle girl. She's perfect."


Joanie came to HSNEI scared and timid after her owner passed away. Thankfully it didn't take long for her to find her forever home. She was so frightened at first but came around quickly. She sits on the couch, snuggles and uses her head to nudge her new family for more love. Happy second ending Joanie!


Lucy (Formerly Baylor)

Hello! We adopted "Baylor" on April 28th and wanted to give you all an update! We renamed her Lucy and she caught on to that right away! She's such a sweet and good girl! Our 3 year old and Lucy play all day long! She's so good with children and other dogs! We also noticed Lucy gets protective of our 3 year old and us too. That makes us love her even more (which I didn't know was possible!!) Lucy has been doing basic obedience training and has come a long way within these two months. We are so lucky to have found a dog like her. And we thank you so much for helping us pick her.

Fergus (Formerly Justice)

Fergus, formerly known as Justice, was adopted in late October 2015 after he was thrown out the window of a moving vehicle and then brought to HSNEI. He suffered from road rash and other injuries, but has fully recovered and is now a happy kitty that gets lots of love and attention!

Fergus is a sweet, loving boy who loves being the center of attention. Whether you are working on your computer or trying to make dinner, you can expect that he will crawl on your lap, rub up against your legs, or meow until all of your focus is on petting and scratching him. He loves snuggling up on us and pushing his forehead into his mom and dad’s faces, and can be found sleeping on our pillows every night. He also loves having “meow-offs” as we call them, where he meows and we meow back at him (and this can go on for quite some time!).

However, we’re pretty sure that Fergus’ favorite thing about his forever home is his feline brother, Chester. Where you find one you find the other, either chasing each other around the house or cuddling up with each other on the couch. When the window is open, you can even find them sitting on the windowsill, watching the little critters outside together!

Fergus was the perfect addition to our little family and we are so happy to have him here. It still breaks our hearts to know how awful his past must have been for him, but we are relieved to know that he is safe with us, and we couldn’t have asked for a better companion, both for Chester and ourselves!


Apple has shown so many improvements since October! Somedays it's hard for me to grasp how she acted when I first got her. She still gets frightened by random noises, paces around the apartment when nervous, and has way too much energy, but she's shown lots of growth as well. She's learning how to accept affection from humans and has calmed down so much. Apple sleeps peacefully most of the day in her kennel or on her favorite blanket. She's really made herself right at home; she'll often sleep right next to me on the couch or bed which would never happen early on.

Apple has really enjoyed bluff hikes and walks through the marsh areas in La Crosse. She loves seeing all of the wildlife in the area, I've never seen a more curious, energetic dog. Four hour walks don't even tire her out. I'm looking forward to bringing her up north again this summer. Overall, Apple still has her weird quirks that can make being her owner difficult difficult. She's always going to be an anxious, hyper pup, but it just adds to her charm. Apple seems very happy here and I'm extremely fortunate to have found her.


This is Izzy formerly known as Poppy. Just wanted to send you an update on how she is doing. She has been the BEST addition to our family! She is the perfect fit and is very happy here! We love her so much and can't get enough of her! Thank you so much for helping us find her 😍

Bowie (formerly Toki)

I wanted to send you an update on Bowie (Toki). He is one big cuddle bug, that thinks he is 10 pounds. He tries to crawl right in your lap and give you kisses. His favorite things are of course his toys and eating grass. We are having such a good time with him. He has been growing socially, he loves meeting new people and dogs. He has met several male dogs and has played with them with no problems which makes us happy. Crating him was going well, but he does so well when he is in the house he no longer needs it. We are working on his training, and he is very treat motivated. He walks wonderfully, unless we see a squirrel :) We are so happy to have him in our lives, we are glad he adopted us! I have attached some pictures of him. We hope to bring him by for a visit in the near future. 


From Axle's family: He is such a great match for us! He is so sweet and mellow and settled in right away. Our other GSP, Lizzie, who we also adopted from your organization, loves him! She has also settled down a bit as well because she's too busy playing with him or just following him around.

Axle had also enjoyed getting to know all 17 acres of his home and loves to run and play with Lizzie. He also loves naps and loves snuggling.

Thank you so much for the opportunity to have him in our family!

Hannah and Pat Pennekamp

Jake's Unchained Second Chance at Life

Covered in ticks and fleas, face rubbed raw, nasal passages destroyed, missing half his tail, urinary tract infection, and toes curled into the pads of his feet, Jake, a large black lab was found during the cold Iowa April of 2013 with a small Chihuahua alone in the country on the outskirts of Decorah, Iowa. Jake and his little Chihuahua buddy Vinny were assumed to be strays and were taken to the county impound. The two were quite the odd, scared couple, yet stuck together while on the run and in impound—Jake would cry when Vinny was not with him.

While Vinny was scared, his health was okay and he was quickly adopted; however, the Humane Society of Northeast Iowa (HSNEI) was appalled by the terrible condition Jake was in and was won over by his incredibly sweet, loving disposition. Thanks to a call from someone who recognized Jake’s photo on our Facebook page, we learned Jake had lived much of his life outside all year round on a short chain, left without food and water for days, and out of boredom and anxiety rubbed his lip and nose off. We decided we would do whatever it took to give Jake a second chance at a better life off that chain.

Once with HSNEI Jake’s nails were clipped so they were no longer digging into the pads on his feet, which made it hard for him to walk, and his urinary tract infections were treated, but that still left him with breathing challenges due to his facial injuries. Jake was taken to the Iowa State University (ISU) Vet Clinic two hours from HSNEI for an evaluation. ISU staff fell in love with Jake’s sweet, loving personality and really wanted to help him so admitted him that same day to prep for reconstructive surgery that would repair his nasal cavity and make a lip to cover his front teeth, as well as repair his damaged urinary tract. Because we are a small all-volunteer organization, Jake’s medical bills stressed our budget, however, once we posted Jake’s story in our newsletter and on our Facebook page, and a local TV station featured Jake, we were overwhelmed with support received for his medical care. HSNEI’s supporters fell in love with Jake and followed his story. 

HSNEI wanted a very special forever home for Jake, and found one in September 2013 with Deb Gander and Dan McGovern, who have adopted four dogs from HSNEI. Jake now lives with his four canine brothers and sisters in Harper's Ferry, IA and has a wonderful, happy home on five fenced in acres with lots of room to run and play, never to be chained again. Jake has even learned to use Dan's wheelchair lift on his van and loves to go for rides. Jake is proof that love and care can make life so much better, and the incredible resilience of this wonderful black lab. Jake's story has a fairytale ending.

Dash (formerly Gage)

Dear Friends, 
I am very much enjoying my new home in Monona. I have adjusted quickly to my new family and have had ZERO accidents/markings in the house (My parents are super proud of this and tell me I'm a good boy when I ask to go outside)!!

My new family calls me Dash, and I come running every time I hear my name. 

Mom says I'm really smart because I'm learning so fast! I have sit, lie down, and shake completely mastered and Mom and Dad are talking about taking me to classes soon! I also know "where's Ryan" at which point I run to Ryan and give him a hug. I'm still not sure that I like "Crate Training" ... but I'm getting better at it. 

Santa brought me lots of treats and toys for Christmas. My favorite toy is the blue and green rope. He also brought me a brand new bed, where I love to sleep upside down! 

I went to two family Christmas parties. I met a lot of new people and loved all of them. I was a little disappointed that Mom wouldn't let me chase the cats at Grandma and Grandpa's house though. It was lots of fun, but it took a lot of energy, so today I'm just napping and playing in the snow. 

I'm so happy in my new home. I can't wait to see what adventures I'll have next. 
Thank you for taking such good care of me while I stayed with you and for helping me find a new home! 
Dash (Gage)


He is a true gem - playful but also mellow, and a total love bug.  He is very intuitive, super smart, and extraordinarily sweet.

Most mornings we go to the dog park for at least an hour of romping and exploring, and he's made lots of friends.  Back home he loves to snuggle on the couch, but is always up for running errands, playing with chewy toys or supervising projects around the house.  When Dad gets home in the evening, they go for a long walk together and then spend quality guy time chilling on the couch watching the game.

He eats two squares a day (not the picky eater anymore :)  ) and his coat is slowly but surely growing back.

He quickly learned to "wait" before jumping out of the back of the CRV or taking off down the front steps, and to "stand" for a quick daily brushing.  Along with "sit", he knows "ride", "walk", "dog park", and "all done" with a show of empty hands when there are no more treats.

I could just go on and on about how wonderful our Leo is and how much we adore him!

The photo is of him with his Husky friend at the dog park.


Update on Keetah FKA Louise. We adopted her this summer and she has become a very loved very needed member of our family. She is so gentle and sweet. She participated in dog training classes and has learned many things besides manners (which she had before) like shake and play dead. She aimed to please. She loves all her humans but has a special connection with her 3 year old human. They are inseperable and not only do we find her in bed with her at night but if Laney cries in the night Keetah is the first one there to comfort her. She takes protecting her as a serious matter. Even chasing Laney around house in play...Keetah will step in between and put Laney behind her facing the chaser as if to say,  "you're not getting any closer." This weekend Keetah even debuts in our local school musical as Rufus! 

The only flaw she has is separation anxiety and she can get out of all kennels. Poor thing must have had some challenge before coming to us. On the cute side....she snores! Loudly I might add! But she is so loved! We thank you from the bottom of our hearts for rescuing her from the high kill shelter in Oklahoma and giving her a chance to be loved! She is home to stay fur ever and won't have to worry about that again!


Abie and her brother Astro were surrendered to HSNEI in the summer of 2013 by a family who couldn't take care of them. They were only 6 weeks old. Abie was adopted by a family in Austin, MN where she has a best kitty friend, kids that love her, and toys to play with. She apparently is quite the Momma's girl too! Abie is 6 months old in this photo.

Cuddles and Cubby Find a Home Together!

Remember Cuddles and Cubby - the 2 kitties looking for a home together? We had a great home step forward who was willing to adopt both of these sweethearts so they could stay together. Here's what their new mom saw when she came home from work the other day. Lynx, Cuddles, and Cubby all snuggling together on the recliner. Looks like life is good!!

Aurora (now Harley)

Aurora and her sister Luna were foster kitties together at HSNEI. Aurora got adopted and is pictured here with her foster brother, also adopted through HSNEI. It took a bit to get used to each other, as is the case with most cats, but now they are good buddies. Luna was also adopted and is being loved and petted constantly, as she demands--she is quite the loving kitty.


Just an update on Ronnie. We have changed his name to Gus and he has actually already caught onto it! He's also learned how to sit when asked! He loves camping and car rides! Also as you can see in the picture he loves helping ! Gus is a very sweet dog and we are very happy with him thank you very much for letting us expand our little family :)
The Bruggemans :)

Cici: Blind Kitty Gets A Second Chance

Partially blind, frail and scared, Cici was found roaming the streets of Waukon, IA as a young kitten. No one is sure what happened to Cici before she was found, but we know her first few months of life were rough. One eye was blind and the other was severely infected. A good samaritan called HSNEI and after meeting this sweet kitten we had to do everything we could to give her a second chance at a great life. She never could have survived on her own. 

When Cici came to HSNEI she was in very bad shape. One of Cici's eyes was badly infected and took a toll on her health, and she was blind in the other eye and it was susceptible to infection so both eyes had to be removed to avoid infection. As a small rescue organization we do not have a lot of funds, but appealed to the public to help with Cici and donations came in to help with her surgeries. Cici responded lovingly to everyone that interacted with her and quickly learned to cope without eye sight. Blind felines can cope in the right, consistent environment. Their senses of hearing and smelling are much stronger than that of humans, so they learn to cope in a consistent environment where objects remain in the same place--furniture, the litter box, and food.  

Once Cici's infection was treated she began eating more, gained weight, and was ready for adoption. Cici learned to put her paw out and use it like a cane to feel her way around in a new environment. HSNEI wanted to find a very special home for Cici given her special needs--special needs plus being a black cat made her adoption more challenging since black cats are harder to adopt out. Stephanie and Matt Hughes were the perfect family for Cici. They set up a "home base" for Cici with her litter box, food and water so she knew where to find what she needed, but it didn't take her long to start exploring the house, making a mental map of the layout, and staking out her favorite napping spots. The main adjustment Stephanie and Matt made was watching their step because Cici moves around so silently. Cici also gets disoriented easily if picked up so has to be put down where she was picked up so she knows where she is, she also can startle easily so Matt and Stephanie talk to her before petting her so she knows they are there. Her adoptive family describes Cici as, "a really friendly kitty with a beautiful, tiny 'trill' of a meow. She loves to be petted and groomed with a brush, and she's very smart." Stephanie was showing her how to use a scratching post with her hands and Cici pushed her hand out of the way as if to say "I got it, thanks. Blind, not dumb."

Cici was a cat many would have written off and euthanized because of her condition, but HSNEI believes every animal is worth saving if possible and saw past Cici's blindness and frailty. Now she has a loving home and is a happy, healthy kitten. HSNEI looks forward to breaking ground on our Adoption Center in Spring 2014 so we can help more animals like Cici find their forever homes.


Just when we thought Moki would never find his forever home, Kristine called. Her Dachshund died last month and Moki looks and acts just like him. She brought her mother with her and they both cried when they saw Moki. He took to them and her dog Palmer right away. It was like it was meant to be!  She also has a fenced yard and he loves to run. 

Luke & Remi

Luke & Remi were "wild" puppies rescued from a farm. They were both adopted at our Spring Into Action Pet Expo in April 2013. They are doing well and are social & happy, though a bit puppy destructive. The kids love the puppies, and they love the kids. Luke is so funny when he makes a sound between a growl & a howl when he's playing. They are both characters!

Harley (AKA Scout)

submitted by Harley (with help from his adoptive family)

I thought you would like to know how I am doing in my forever home. I love it here! My new mom takes real good care of me. I have a microchip now and am protected against fleas, ticks, and lime disease. We go on long walks and I'm looking forward to going to Johnson Sauk park this summer. We play in the house and I especially like to catch balls. We have a cat names Julliete. She wants me to know she is the queen here, but we are getting along fine. After all, I'm a prince. I go to Grandpa and Grandma's on Tuesday and Thursday while mom works. On Friday I get to go to doggy day care. I get along with all the other dogs and I play hard all day. Grandpa and Grandma had Stitch, a cairn terrier mix. He died on March 20. He had lymphoma. I miss him. He and I became good buds. Thank you for fostering me and finding me a good home.


submitted by Lynn Martin

I wanted to share a few pictures of Heidi, now known as Cali, and to let you know that she has settled in very nicely.  She is such a love bug and we are so happy to have her. I can't tell if her favorite toy is the mouse or feet under covers; if it moves, she is pouncing! 


submitted by Holly Witt

Merry Christmas to you as well! Patches is doing a.m.a.z.i.n.g.!!  She has gotten used to our work schedule during the week, but definitely would rather have us home :)  Patches is still my dog, and follows me everywhere; however, she has also become attached to my 5 year old daughter as well -- if she can't sleep with me, she is sleeping with her :)  Our 2 year old has gotten used to her -- in the beginning when Patches would lick her, she'd squeal and laugh; now she puts her hand out there for Patches to lick, and just lets her do it, as if it's just a normal thing.  Patches does enjoy the challenge of trying to steal food from counters, but we make sure to keep that up. However, it's the girls' hands that she enjoys the most - Patches is a quick snatcher!!  We couldn't imagine our lives without her and are truly thankful this Christmas--thank you for giving us that gift :)


submitted by Andrea Anderegg

I got the pug Desi from you a year ago. She is great. She is a match made in heaven for our family. My daughter calls herself mom and I am called grandma. We ended up getting a kitten about five months ago and she and Desi are the best of friends. It is amazing how well they get along. I started a new job and I work fifteen hours a day. My neighbors have three little dogs themselves so now they babysit Desi when I'm working. They all get along great. The neighbor lady Fern spoils her. She spends the day wstching tv and sitting on her lap. She loves running with the other dogs. Everyone that meets her loves her to death. She is such a kind, sweet-hearted animal. She is a cuddler too. Always right there to keep you warm. Her favorite thing to do is collect sticks. Any size or shape. She piles them in stacks as presents. She loves the snow, though she gets cold easy so she loves her coat.  Thanks so much even a year later.


Ace was a very large (intimidating) black lab mix that NEVER got any applications for his first months in foster care, until Kate and Ian came along. Ace was a handful, but Kate and Ian were committed to him and took him to training, fenced in their yard, and never gave up when Ace started having behavioral problems. He turned out to be a great dog with a lot of love, patience and training. Ace loves going to the dog park on the river on weekend mornings and running! 

Ace's foster mom Brenda says, "I was fostering him when my son’s (Chris) wife Kim was dying of complications from cancer.  She was in ICU at Mayo in Rochester and was hospitalized for over 7 weeks. I took in Courtney and Dylan, my grandkids, and was caring for them, fostering dogs, working full time, plus going up to Rochester with the kids all the time to be with Chris and his wife.  Before Dylan's mom got sick he was scared of all of our dogs and foster dogs…then he moved in with us while his mom was hospitalized.  For some reason Ace took to Dylan like I have never seen before. It’s like he knew this little boy needed something!  Ace would lie with Dylan and cuddle with him all the time and just stare into his face. He would lay his head in my son Chris’s lap after Kim passed away and Chris stayed with us for a while. It was unreal the connection this dog had with them!  Dylan still talks about Ace and how much he loved him. Ace has a way with kids and is a very special dog!


Roger's first family moved away and left him with a neighbor who then had to move into an apartment that didn't allow dogs. So, Roger came into foster care with HSNEI. After only a week in foster care a family with a love for Boston Terriers adopted him as a companion for their BT Megan. As you can see in the photo, Megan and Roger (front) are best buddies. His family writes, "he is such a sweet heart, kind and gentle, and he doesn't let Megan out of his sight." We are so glad Roger found his forever home!


JJ was turned over to HSNEI by his family who didn't have the time to spend with him. JJ's adoptive family say he is getting along great their boys and their other dog Charlie. He has learned to fetch and loves going for car rides and walks in the snow. They are so glad they adopted him!


Cooper was adopted from HSNEI and was a bit under weight. After his adoption he is 40 lbs and very adventurous. His adoptive family say he is quite smart. They  My are very thankful for him!


submitted by Matt Larson

Mav's doing great! He's sleeping at my feet as I type. Never met a sweeter dog. Can't thank HSNEI enough for rescuing him, fostering him to get him ready, and walking us through the adoption process.

Macy and Zoey

submitted by the Hartz family

Thank you for the second year with our new family members!  We just have been thrilled with Zoey and Macy and they are so part of our lives.  Both girls are doing wonderfully and we can't imagine life without them.  Thank you for making our connection possible. We read your newsletter and thought we would bring you the update.  Happy New Year!

Izzy & Sahara Jane

submitted by Scott & Kathy Landsinger

Five years ago we lost our little girl Daisy to cancer.  She was 8 ½ years old, was our first dog, and my constant companion.  We found Izzy & HSNEI via two weeks later.  A week later we adopted Izzy and she has been the best dog anyone could have.  It was during this adoption that we found out about HSNEI and what they did.  My wife started raising money for them by making jewelry and it was on her trip to Waukon to drop off donations three years ago that we got Sahara Jane, who is happy and loves to play chase with her big sister.  Thank you to HSNEI and all of their volunteers for giving us the opportunity to bring these two wonderful furry little girls into our lives.  This picture was taken on the day we got Sahara Jane.  


Submitted by Lauren Thompson

Six years ago my first pup passed away. She was just 1 year old. It was a very difficult loss for me and I was in a state of depression for a few months thinking I would never be able to move on. That was in June. The end of October that same year I was on the Internet and across the bottom of my screen came a pop up for The picture took my breath away. It was two puppies that looked just like my pup I had lost in June. Their names were Maggie and Murphy and they were looking for new homes. I called that instant and found out that Maggie was still available. I couldn't believe it! I am from Illinois but the 5 hour drive to go pick her up flew by. The moment I laid eyes on her my heart began to heal. I renamed her Macy and it seems to fit her quite well. I have had so much happen to me in the last 6 years. My dad died, I got married, moved to Alaska and then to Wisconsin, and I now have a baby. But my sweet Macy has always been there for me. No matter how bad my day is a few minutes of love from her and I feel better. Adopting her was the best decision I have ever made. I just wanted to thank you again for her. It was by chance that I found her but it wouldn't have been possible without your wonderful organization. 


Despite having two cats and a blue healer black lab, Tarrah added another pet to the group, a terrier mix, Perry. At first he was shy around everyone, but with the help of Tarrah, her boyfriend, and her pets, he has become fun loving and curious about everything.

Tarrah wanted to adopt Perry because she really wanted to help him overcome his shyness. She hoped to bring him out of the box and give him a better life than he had before. The first day that Tarrah adopted Perry, she and her boyfriend went to their farm. “Right away Perry ran to the cows wanting to play,” said Tarrah. He kept barking at them and tried to get to know them.  Then he went on a tractor ride. Since that day Perry has been doing fantastic. “He is hardly scared anymore and will run up to anyone trying to see how everyone is doing,” said Tarrah. Since being adopted he’s started to play so much more and loves to chase Tarrah’s two cats. It took awhile for Perry to warm up to the blue healer black lab Brandi, but according to Tarrah they now love to play tug of war together. Brandi has really showed Perry how to be a dog and to play with the cats. Tarrah couldn’t be happier with how far Perry has come.


Sometimes an adoption seems meant to be. On May 30, 2012 the Walvatne family of Elgin, Iowa lost their Yorkie, named Missy, to illness. Missy lived a long, happy life and her passing left the family missing her terribly.

Flash forward to August 2012 when a Yorkie is found running around Postville without a collar and ends up in impound for a week. Not being claimed, the Yorkie went into foster care in Decorah where her foster family named her Missy. The Walvatne’s had been looking for a new dog and when they saw Missy the Yorkie listed on, it seemed like fate. The Walvatne’s adopted Missy and say, “Missy is wonderful.  She loves to go for rides and walks and expects everyone we meet to talk to her. She sits up when she wants attention and still sleeps on her back once in awhile.” Missy and the Walvantne’s are a perfect match and fate seems to have brought them together.


Even though Oscar was only a year old, he had no socialization with people and was very shy.  He did not have a mean bone in his body and other dogs were his security blanket.  He was in a foster home for two weeks getting acclimated to home life and then transferred to another foster home where he could get more one on one interaction with people.  Oscar was so sweet even though he was so shy.  Over time he began to seek out human attention and even enjoy it.  After three weeks in his new foster home, he found his new forever home.  Oscar fits in perfectly and is adjusting fantastically.  His new family adores him.  He also has a constant playmate at home too that has made his transition that much easier.  While Oscar may always exhibit some type of shyness, seeing a dog come out of their shell is so rewarding.


Lucy was rescued along with Oscar and fostered by my family. She exhibited many puppy mill dog signs: she was scared of noises and sudden movement, took awhile to trust people, didn’t know how to walk on a leash, didn’t seem to know what grass was (she probably had lived her whole life in a puppy mill cage) or how to play. She clung to my daughter and used her for security because she was Lucy’s first long human contact as she held her on the 30-minute drive to our house. After three weeks with us Lucy learned to trust everyone in the family, enjoyed going outside and started to play with us and our dog. She still had a long ways to go to trust all people. She was adopted with another HSNEI dog, Lego, by a wonderful family who reports that Lucy and Lego are great friends who play constantly.  Lucy loves snuggling in bed when she settles in for the evening.

Luke & Lily

It was the beginning of summer and our cat Magic slipped outside by accident. We looked for days, contacted our neighbors, and sent out notices. She was gone. We were all very sad and felt she was gone for good. Right away we began discussing adopting another cat and felt that maybe two would be best so they would be companions. We began looking at online humane society sites and found Oscar, now named Luke, and Minnie, named Lily.  We instantly fell in love and decided to proceed with the adoption. 

After two weeks of Luke and Lily being in their new home, our cat Magic- magically reappears. She had been gone a whole month.  She was healthy and happy to be home.  We could not believe that she made it home after a month! Now we have three cats, when we thought we’d lost the one. 

Life couldn't be better for the cats. They sometimes fall asleep wrapped together or play long hours.   They keep everyone laughing with their antics.  They have the run of the place, we say, the cats rule the house!  Magic is entertained by these two kitties and she doesn’t attempt to slip outside; she knows she has to keep the younger cats in line.

We also have two dogs. Luke and Lily were socialized around dogs and this made it an easy transition for them. It is unbelievable that all of the pets get along together! We are so lucky to have added to our family. 

The Berg Family
Lanesboro, MN


In November, several dogs from an Ohio shelter that euthanizes unadopted dogs were brought to HSNEI in hopes of finding homes.

Nessie was a very active and friendly puggle who was full of energy and expression. She had been dropped at the shelter and no one claimed her. Nessie was in foster care with a family in Decorah for three weeks and during that time was housebroken and gained a lot of confidence.

In December, Jimmy and Maggie  from LaCrosse, WI saw Nessie's listing on They called the same day and came to adopt her that night. The minute they walked into the foster home the match was perfect! Nessie ran right up to her new family wagging her tail and giving them many happy licks. Nessie helped the family pick out their Christmas tree and was fitted for a Green Bay Packers sweater very quickly!

Jimmy says, "Nessie has brought so many smiles and laughs to our family.  She has so much expression in her face and eyes and can definitely tell you exactly how she is feeling with one look.  She is an absolute joy and our family could not be happier!"  Nessie is one of many dogs HSNEI's foster program has saved and helped to find a forever home!


Everyone deserves a second chance. When that someone is a beautiful, kind, trusting, patient, two-year-old yellow Lab named Jackie, it makes second chances even more miraculous.

Jackie and her friend Copper were scheduled for altering and vaccinations at Postville Vet Clinic. Upon examination of Jackie, Dr. Sarah Franzen found Jackie to be completely blind in her left eye with minimal sight in her right eye. Her owners were then notified, and in April 2012, Jackie and Copper (who has since found a home) were taken in by HSNEI’s foster program, as their previous owners recognized the two dogs were deserving of more care than the family could provide them.

Jackie went to Iowa State University for evaluation on April 23, 2012.  There she was diagnosed with a 90% complete cataract in her right eye and found to be irreversibly blind due to intraocular and corneal scarring in her left eye. After a series of tests, Jackie was determined to be a good candidate for cataract surgery to restore vision in her right eye. Her left eye was declared permanently blind but not causing Jackie pain or discomfort. This blindness may have been a result of congenital changes due to mal-development or chronic scarring from a previous inflammation or injury.

On May 15, 2012 Jackie had cataract surgery. The surgery was a success, and she can now see out of her right eye! Her medical bills totaled approximately $3400. Jackie would not have received this life-changing medical care without the help of HSNEI and its many faithful donors.

In June 2012 a family contacted HSNEI about meeting Jackie. After the loss of their 12-year-old yellow Lab, the family was looking to add another Lab to their home. They found Jackie’s picture and were immediately drawn to her story. The family decided they could be the one to give her a good home.

When asked about Jackie, one of her former foster parents said, “[She’s] definitely a dog worthy of a second chance!” She also mentioned that Jackie loves hugs and kisses and is a “retrieving maniac.” Thanks to HSNEI and Jackie’s new family, she now has the good home she truly deserves.


Shiloh was rescued from the Decorah impound, and they wanted to just euthanize her because she was so sick. An HSNEI foster family talked the impound owner into letting them take her and she would be responsible for her vet bills. I took her immediately to Monona Vet. This Great Pyranese mix weighed in at a meagre 40+ pounds at the time (she eventually gained weight to weigh over 90lbs). It took a LONG time to nurse her back to health (she finally started eating boiled rice and hamburger). Judy and her husband adopted Shiloh in 2004! Shiloh lived a long, happy life with her forever family until she passed away in 2012.


submitted by Amy Pranger

Oh my god, I got the smartest dog in the world!  The Duker is crazy smart! He’s ball shyness with other dogs is proving to be a great trait for him to have... he's got Chayanne and Rebar wrapped around his little toe already. He got to hang out with the ranch Great Dane, but still not without me holding him.  Eli, the Dane, loves getting his face licked by Duke, but wants to return the favor and proved that he can fit Duke's whole head very gently in his mouth.  It's still going to be a while before they're allowed to play together!!!!!!!  Potty training is going amazingly fast, he can hold it like a champ while I get my boots on, and he understands the word "outside", because I asked him to go last night when he didn't have to, and when he realized I wasn't letting him back up the stairs without seeing a potty, he faked a squat!  I let him in, I was pretty happy that he knew what I was at least looking for.

He survived his first day of chores yesterday!  He's too little to put him through a full weekend, but yesterday I brought him along as well as his crate so he had a safe place to sleep when he needed it.  He was on task all morning, keeping a close eye on me, and slept through the rest of the day.  He behaved like a champ and took the new environment all in stride. You should have seen how proud he was when we got home... he marched around the house like a little big man.  We've got “no” and “outside” in the vocabulary now, and we're working on “sit” and “stay”... those are halfway there, and he's just a baby!  His learning curve is so fast that I'm starting to make a point of 'down' and identifiers of his different toys. With the crazy new environment of the barn yesterday, I was able to really knock home the meaning of “come”.  We're enrolled in puppy kindergarten, but I have a feeling he's going to start a little ahead of the class!

I have more pics, but they're at home on the camera.  I'll send them when I can... he's growing so fast!  He's all legs and belly right now, and man those legs sure are big boned and sturdy!  I love it!  I'm feeding him a little more than what the Science Diet bag says to, but I feed it in 4 meals, to try and keep his system from dealing with too much gorging.  He eats so fast, I tried putting a little water in to slow him down once.  I don't do that anymore.  He was so intent on getting the food no matter what, that he got a bit too much water and needed to pee every 10 minutes for the next hour or so, he didn't look entirely thrilled either.


submitted by Kay Deward

Luke, now named "Senior Tres Fuerte" which basically means "The Strong Three." We call him Tre for short (pronounced Tray). Tre was a pup that was run over by his previous owner about a month before he was taken to the shelter with no prior vet care. The leg was so damaged and swollen it had to be amputated. Tre is doing very well, he slept through the night and my children were up at 6:30a.m., dressed, and ready to go be with him. Westen, my three year old, just keeps following him around saying "I like that guy" and “Should we get him crutches?  When did he have his surgery?” Since we have adopted Tre we have taken him to the annual dog walk every year!

PS- Tre loves his naps