Recently, after a copious amount of research, rumination, savings, and budget adjustments, I made the decision to add a Great Pyrenees to my home. Having set my mind to it, I knew there was only one place to go to get my new family member: Great Pyrenees Rescue Atlanta. My thoroughly delightful experience is outlined below.
APPLICATION PROCESS: There is a $20 application fee at Great Pyrenees Rescue Atlanta, which I appreciated greatly. Having volunteered on the applications team at the wonderful Angels Among Us Pet Rescue, I had learned that sometimes adopters don't thoroughly plan and think on the details before they apply to adopt. The $20 application fee at GPRA makes potential adopters really take a moment to make sure they're set on adopting a great white giant before just plunging in headfirst. Even with all of the dedicated contemplation I had done, I still took a moment to completely solidify my decision. The fee shows that you are serious about moving forward. Also, veterinary costs to take care of rescued Pyrenees are not cheap, so you can rest assured that the application fee will go toward saving more lives.
As for the application itself, it featured meticulous questions about the adopter's life and pet history, which included a veterinary reference. The questions provided an opportunity for the potential adopter to explain how a Pyrenees would fit into his or her life, how a Pyrenees would be introduced to the family and the children, and why he or she wanted to have a Pyrenees. The questions about fitting in with the family are obviously excellent ones to ask; so often dogs are adopted and returned because the adoptive family never considered the transition period that must take place. And the questions regarding the breed itself are very wise ones to ask, because with a Great Pyrenees it is vital that adopters have researched the breed. They are very special, very extraordinary dogs.
APPLICATION SCREENING AND APPROVAL: Within 24 hours, I received a phone call to review my application; I was highly impressed by this quick response. The kind volunteer I conversed with was incredibly knowledgable about the breed, and she was very attentive to the needs I had listed. After I detailed all that I was looking for, she immediately had two dogs in mind. She was very honest about the rescue and about the dogs for adoption. She knew the names of the foster parents and what kind of home environment the available Pyrenees had become accustomed to. I was vastly impressed by this. When I couldn't contain my excitement at adopting one of these regal dogs, I was pleased when she reciprocated that excitement. She was genuinely delighted that I was so happy, and this meant a lot to me as an adopter.
After a home check, I was approved for adoption. I was given the names and contact information for the foster parents of the two dogs that might be a good match for me. There was one Pyrenees that I seemed to connect with just from his photos online, and so I emailed his foster parent first. Within hours, the foster parent had gotten in touch with me. During our phone conversation, I asked many questions which he was happy to answer for me with total honesty. He invited me to come and meet his foster dog, since I could not make it to the adoption event that Saturday. His openness and willingness to let me meet his foster dog so quickly and at whatever time was best for me made me feel as if I was valued as an adopter.
ADOPTION: When I met Raja, there was an instant connection. He was respectful and gentle with my two tiny Chihuahua mixes that I had brought along to meet him. Raja's foster showed me the correct grooming tools to use for a Pyrenees, and he let me spend as much time as I wanted with the giant dog. I learned that although his name with the rescue was Raja, his foster had realized that the fluffy white canine answered better to "Bear." Bear was everything I had envisioned the Great Pyrenees breed to be, and especially what I needed for my life and my home. I held the sides of his face and said, "Do you want to come home with me, and be my protector?" And Bear broke out into a grin. His foster dad said, "I think that is a big 'yes'." I was ecstatic, and I said that I wanted to adopt him. His foster dad smiled and said, "Take him!" He even sent him on with a rawhide bone.
In anticipation of me falling in love and wanting to adopt, my application reviewer had sent an email with instructions on how to move forward the night before. I had a copy of the contract for myself and for the foster parent. Paying the adoption fee was simple and efficient through PayPal. My new Great Pyrenees' records were sent to me via email, and within days I had received the hardcopies in the mail.
Bear did not fail to disappoint when I brought him home. He is 100% housetrained just as the rescue had said; he is good with my cats, and my little dogs, just as it has been said he was; he is mellow and loving; and he is protective when he needs to be. He is the perfect addition, the Great Pyrenees Rescue Atlanta process made sure I would have nothing less.
I highly recommend this rescue to anyone who is serious about adopting a Great Pyrenees. They have all ages, and their processes and fees are reasonable and reassuring.
If you can't adopt a Great Pyrenees but wish to be involved in the rescue to save them and find them forever homes, they are always in need of donations and volunteers.