The Oz Project

History Is Made Kids-Galileo

      GALILEO AKA GALLANT LEO                     JANUARY 2008

   The History Is Made kids had arrived. Along with three puppies, there was one adult male, Galileo. He was three years old and three years sweet. He was free, and he somehow seemed to know it. In just moments after being let out of his crate, he was running in the outdoor kennel tossing his head in triumph! By his actions, one would think that he had somehow engineered his rescue, and that of the other three puppies. Like a knight in shinning armor, he was victorious! Galileo loved his new found freedom. Never for a moment did he resist being taken out to the outdoor kennel. He loved it! Each time that I would enter the crate room he would jump up and start barking to be let out. He didn't care that it was January and that sometimes the temperature was below freezing. He could hardly wait to get outside to run, and run he did!  He enjoyed running so much that I couldn't allow him in the outdoor kennel, or even in the inside kennel, when the puppies were out. He would sometimes run right into them. He never really meant to do it. It just happened. He would be racing around with his head in the air, and puppies being puppies, would walk into his path. They weren't watching him, and he wasn't watching them. Really, how could he see the puppies while he was tossing his head in the air? I knew that there was nothing wrong with Leo's eyes because as we walked through the pole barn he would stop to inspect anything that was on the floor. He could spot a dead bug twenty five feet away. Each time that he would run into one of the puppies, he always stopped abruptly, and then would check to see if they were alright. He really was concerned about them, once that he knew that they weren't hurt, he would start running again. I started calling him Gallant Leo. Galileo didn't have a mean bone in his body, he was just so clumsy, and so happy! Even though Leo was an adult he was just a big puppy. He had never known running, stopping, or turning. He was just learning that things don't always move out of the way. I watched as he ran into the puppies, the kennel platform, and even my legs, almost knocking them out from under me. Leo running into the puppies happened so many times that I started taking him out alone. He loved going outside, even the day after his surgery for neutering, he barked and begged so much that I finally put a coat on over his oneies so that he could go outside to play for a while.








   For three long years, which must have seemed like a lifetime, Leo had spent his days pushing his nose through the dirty wires of his puppy mill crate, dreaming of being free of it. He had spent so much  time dreaming of freedom, that he had worn off the hair and broken the skin on the bridge of his nose. Even though he was clumsy and awkward, there was no way that he was going to spend hours once again standing in a crate. At Oz it would be different. Knowing that Leo couldn't play with the puppies, I found ways to entertain him, and keep him busy. Each morning and afternoon, I would take him out first, then I would put him into the indoor kennel while I took the puppies outside. After they were all outside, I would go in and let Leo out of the indoor kennel. Then together we would choose toys for the puppies to play with. One by one I would take a toy out of the plastic trash can that they were stored in. I would hold it up and show it to Leo, if he didn't show any interest in it, back into the can it would go. Then I would pull out another, finally he would choose one. We would play with it for a few minutes, and then he would carry it outside in his mouth. Once outside we would stop in front of the kennel and play with it, while the puppies jumped up and down and bounded against the chain link fence waiting and watching. When Leo tired of it, I would throw it into the kennel, and we would  watch the puppies scramble to get it. Then we would go back in for another toy, and do it all over again. When the weather was bad I would take Leo outside while I put the puppies in the indoor kennel. After they were done going potty and it was picked up, I would go out and get Leo. Then we would play our game picking toys for the puppies to play with in front of the indoor kennel, while the puppies waited and watched. Leo loved showing off in front of the puppies. After a few days the little cairn snot decided that after he was done choosing and playing with the toy, that I should carry the toy to the puppies, while he walked along with me, why should he do chores? After all, he was a guest at Oz!