Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Beagle of the Week: Santi of Beagle Freedom Project

We're back from a week of amazing in Knoxville with PetSafe. I will have so much to talk about in the coming weeks. But first, back to business!

Every week I normally spotlight dogs who need to be adopted. I just want to show you an article that really encapsulates the problems in Florida.

According to the Orlando Sentinel article by David Damron, 200,000 pets were euthanized in Florida last year. That's almost half of the pets who enter the shelter every year. The article looks more in-depth at four counties: Lake, Orange, Osceola and Seminole counties. Cats and bully breed dogs make up the vast majority of the pets that are euthanized. Read the article, then head to the counties and see if you can help those animals.

This is Santi, short for Santiago!

Santi was rescued by the Beagle Freedom Project, which means he's a lab research beagle. He was adopted by April Terese Curtis. Curtis has two other dogs too. And before Santi, she fostered Abe and Davey, two other well known Beagle Freedom Project alumni.

 So I asked her the questions about her beagles. Here's what she said:

1) Who are your dogs and how old are they?
I have two beagles and one beagle/basset hound mix. The oldest beagle is Stevie Girl who is 8 years old, then the basset/beagle mix is Isabella who is 7 years old. The little beagle I have is 14 months old and I call him Santi, which is short for Santiago.

2) Where did you get them?
I got both Stevie Girl and Isabella right out of shelters - Stevie came from East L.A. and Isabella came from West L.A.

Santi comes from Beagle Freedom Project, as a rescued lab dog. He has his vocal chords removed by the researchers so he can never bark and he has a long, six numbers tattoo on the inside of his right ear. That is because they do not name these precious beagles, rather refer to them by number. Both Abe and Davey had those numbered tattoos as well but were mercifully still allowed to bark.

3) What's their favorite food?
They love their treats the most! We give them all natural, no preservative biscuits and a product called C.E.T. which stands for clean every tooth. They like their kibble too though - Santi eats so fast and with such gusto!

4) What's their favorite thing to do?
They all have three things in common that they love to do: walking, playing and snuggling with myself and my husband.

5) Favorite toys?
Anything that squeaks and stuffed animals; Santi loves to chew on sticks and many things in the house (I am still training).

6) Do they take part in any special activities (i.e. therapy dog, service dog, spokes dog, etc. )
Stevie is a therapy dog and they all go to the beach at least once per week and on walks each day. Stevie serves the skilled nursing facilities and some children's hospitals in Ojai, CA which is very close to our hometown of Ventura, CA.

7) What's the best part of owning a beagle?
The best part of having a beagle ~ it is all best! They are sweet, friendly, docile little dogs who put smiles on strangers faces and one on mine every day. I love cuddling with them; they feel like velvet. And they are very smart - that amuses me greatly!

8) What's the worst? 
The worst part is knowing that none of them will live that long. I wish, more than anything, that they could be in my life until my life is done. Adding that our basset/beagle was terribly abused when we first got her, she is still shy around strangers but has come such a long way from when we got her in 2009. The power of love transformed her and it was/is a quite beautiful thing to see her experience.

My husband and I always refer to our lives as "before doggies," and "after doggies." Having such loving dogs brings a great deal of unexpected joy. People always stop us on the street; friends pick up beagle-related items for me. They are so sweet and loving with children and even babies - I recall at least three different times when a little baby was presented to Stevie and each time, she would promptly lick them on the face! I have learned to truly live in the moment because of these gentle little souls. They are just always so happy to be alive!

You can follow Santi's journey with her siblings on Facebook! Just "like the Santi of the Beagle Freedom Project page on Facebook.

And, you can join the movement to help lab research beagles have a better life! Head to the Beagle Freedom Project website!

 Check out our previous Beagles of the Week:


  1. Great post! Love following the freedom project on facebook :-)

  2. What a cutie! Thanks for joining the hop and I'm off to share.


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