By Ted Brewer
Whenever he receives attention and affection from his caregivers (which happens a lot), Ray goes into a wriggling frenzy.
"It’s the highlight of his life to be around people," says Dogtown team leader Michelle Logan, who has been working with Ray for more than a year now.
Relative to the other Vicktory dogs, Ray was in pretty good shape when he arrived at Best Friends. He was fearful, but not shut down, like many of the Vicktory dogs were.
"He was affectionate and confident right off the bat," says Carissa Hendricks, one of Ray’s caregivers for the first two years he was here. "He was also one of the easiest to work on training with. He came around really quickly."
Ann and Ray
Ann Allums, a trainer formerly with Best Friends, worked with Ray extensively. She remembers that during the first few months he was at Best Friends, he was, to put it mildly, over-stimulated.
"He would bounce up and down and grab your clothes and arms when you entered his run," she says. "He didn’t know how to calm down at all."
Once Allums starting working with him and getting him to pay attention to her, she noted a big change in him. He became a much happier dog.
"I was really impressed that once he started tuning in, he was really happy about working with me," she says. "The more we worked, the happier he got."
Ray enjoying himself
Allums performed basic obedience training with Ray, teaching him to sit, stay, come, etc. Allums says that, with that training, Ray learned how to calm down. Ray got to be so calm that he would fall asleep on his paws and tip over whenever Hendricks gave him a massage.
In 2009 Ray passed the Canine Good Citizenship test — a testament to how well he did in his training.
Logan thinks the only reason he hasn’t yet been adopted is because he’s still not great around other dogs. She thinks he’ll have to be adopted into a home that has no other pets.
In the meantime, Ray is enjoying himself immensely, especially when he gets to ride shotgun in a golf cart around Dogtown. That way, he can bask in the glut of attention he gets from his many fans.
Watch the Vicktory dogs 2011 video and catch up with these rescued dogs at the Sanctuary and in their forever homes.
Photos by Best Friends staff photographers
Join the pit-bull initiative from Best Friends to learn more about how you can get involved.
Read more about some of the other Vick dogs.