Rescued from the property of NFL quarterback Michael Vick, Meryl has worked so hard at Best Friends to overcome her painful past. Encountering strangers could be particularly frightening for Meryl when she first arrived, so a significant step forward for her was learning to meet new caregivers calmly and politely, which she does now with beautiful self-restraint.

Because she has such lovely leash manners around other dogs, Meryl has been tapped to model the practice for other pups lacking the same grace. She adores her fellow canines, and her calm, cool nature puts fellow canines at ease. They no longer feel compelled to react when passing another dog.

Caregivers are still working with Meryl to curb her food-guarding behavior — that is, helping her learn that there will always be enough for her. And instead of toys (which she tends to eat), Meryl enjoys agility course fun. As a gift, she received an agility platform and she’s often found proudly perched on it.

Meryl was ordered by the court to live at Best Friends for the rest of her life. So instead of a traditional family, she has a family of sponsors — a family you are invited to join.

Meryl's Progress Journal

Merly the Vicktory dog playing at Best Friends Animal Sanctuary
Hot Mama!
June 24, 2016

Meryl is wonderful, but this summer her octagon is being renovated!

Of course Meryl wants to help, which isn’t very helpful, so (despite her protests) she has been delegated a supervisory position. Luckily from her platform in her temporary daytime housing, she can oversee from afar all the work being done  ― lucky for everyone trying to do the work that is.

Meryl is as charming as ever and her health is great. Summer brings golf cart rides where she can tour the grounds from the comfort of a cushy seat next to a devoted caregiver. All this takes place while she receives admiration and adoration from anyone lucky enough to see her. She really is a queen.  

Thanks to your sponsorship, we can keep our queen in the comfort and style to which she has become accustomed. She and other dogs like her have the best veterinary care, devoted caregivers and plenty of opportunities for some fun. 

Meryl the former Michael Vick dog
Busy winter
January 7, 2016

Mama Meryl is doing just great. As if she doesn't already get enough treats and princess treatment, she's getting even more around the holidays! It is amazing to see how many people truly love her and keep her in their thoughts without ever having met her. She really is a special girl.  Lately she has been enjoying her walks and some play dates with friends. Since she is such a good girl with great dog skills, she is a wonderful role model for those dogs who may be a tad inappropriate or just aren't quite comfortable in their own skin.  

It's getting a little too chilly for one of her favorite activities: golf cart rides. We told her that we will replace the golf cart rides with car rides, and she seems to be good with that. We are in the process of getting her a platform in her run, since another favorite activity of hers is standing up high and playing queen of the mountain. She and her boyfriend Buddy Arnold are so great at sharing their lives together. We would say we love her more everyday, but we don't think it's possible to love her any more than we do. She lights up many lives and we are so very thankful she has the chance to do so. Thank you for supporting such a wonderful soul who deserves the world and all the love in it.

Meryl the Vicktory dog
New skills
August 1, 2015

Oh, Meryl. How do we love you? Let us count the ways.  

This caramel-colored lady is as warm and fuzzy as ever and still on her lifelong quest to meet new people and create new admirers. Really, she doesn’t even need to try anymore.   

Lately, she’s been perfecting her sits and downs for a particular volunteer who visits her regularly and tosses her tasty treats for showing off her skills. And we’re pretty sure she’s been keeping a little journal about which tricks and strategies yield the best treats and the most attention.   

Meryl’s infatuation with Rottweilers of the male persuasion continues — but don’t tell Buddy Arnold because he thinks he’s the only one for her. A handsome, elderly gentleman named Zero recently met up with Meryl for a play date and they had the time of their lives. It’s possible these two might have been best friends in a former life.  

When she’s not out wooing the world or playing with new pals, Meryl’s chilling with Buddy in their room or yard. She has been pretty scared lately when thunderstorms roll through, so Buddy has been curling up with her inside to keep her calm and as comfortable as possible. Their companionship is truly heartwarming.   

Thank you for sponsoring Meryl and for helping her live such a full and fabulous life. Oh, and she said to make sure to say thank you for her Nylabone Dura Chew toys. She loves them almost as much as Buddy Arnold.

Meryl the Vicktory dog smiling
Everyone's favorite
January 14, 2015

Miss Meryl is everyone’s favorite fabulous lady here at the Sanctuary. We think she might be engaging in some sort of secret competition with the other dogs to see who can make friends with the most people. And so far, she’s winning. For Meryl, all it takes is a short walk and a few tasty treats and you’re her pal for life. 

On the dog friendship front, Meryl and her roommate Buddy Arnold are still in love and going strong. And beyond her octagon living space, Meryl continues to use her fine-tuned social skills to help other dogs as well. She’s one of the go-to-gals for leash walks with other dogs who have a hard time relaxing around their canine companions. Meryl’s cool-as-a-cucumber personality is the perfect model for these other pups in training. 

Recently, Meryl had some fun with a photo shoot for a New York Magazine. And, no surprise, she shined in the spotlight. Many thanks to you for sponsoring this wonderful girl and for helping to make her new lease on life possible.

Meryl the Vicktory dog giving a caregiver a kiss
New friends
April 23, 2014

Meryl is doing very well and has been making new friends with many Best Friends staff. Caregivers are still working on her gate-reactivity issues, and volunteers have been a big help with this task. Volunteers will approach her run, and if she remains calm, she will get a treat. They also ask her to sit, lie down, and even give high-fives! She is doing so well with this training that nowadays, she usually doesn’t bark when a new person comes into the octagon. 

Health-wise, Meryl is doing great. Her irritable bowel disease (IBD) is under control because she is on a special diet of whitefish and potato. She also received a very special gift recently from another Vicktory dog, Oscar, who was adopted in 2012. Oscar and his mom raised almost $5,000 for Strut Your Mutt , and BarkBox awarded them with a free box full of treats, toys and grooming supplies once a month for the rest of Oscar’s life. They donated the prize to Meryl, and she’s really enjoyed this special monthly treat. 

Due to a court injunction, Meryl will call Dogtown home for the rest of her life. She’s made great strides since being rescued, and we can’t thank you enough for sponsoring her. Your support allows us to provide a lifetime of care for Meryl, as well as many others like her.