SF SPCA Alumni Profile: Timid Sydney Becomes a World Traveler

Sydney had been in a home for five months when she was returned to our shelter. After bringing Sydney home, her new owners quickly realized she was shy, leash reactive, and timid. They enrolled her in training classes, but to no avail. After months of working with Sydney, they knew she would do best in a calmer environment.

The SF SPCA makes a lifetime commitment to animals, and will always welcome them back with open arms if the adoption doesn’t work out.

Back at the shelter, Sydney began working with our Behavior Team on new techniques to help her reactivity and fear of new people. On walks, she learned to play ‘Find It’ and ‘Touch’, which focused her attention on yummy treats and whoever was walking her instead of the environmental stimuli that she found scary. When she was able to be calm and content, she loved receiving affection and playing with other dogs.

We knew Sydney was a sweet girl who just needed a second chance at finding her perfect home. Luckily, she didn’t have to wait long! In no time, Sydney found a family that was prepared to give her the guidance and attention she needed. We loved getting this recent update from them:

“I wanted to share this photo of the dog I adopted from you on New Years Eve 2019. She was a bit of a problem dog and had been returned to you after her first adoption for being aggressive with visitors and strangers. She has since been traveling with me, living the last year in the countryside in France. She mellowed out very quickly and loves all people — visitors and strangers alike. I just wanted to let you know and thank you!”

Sydney is no longer a timid, reactive dog who is weary of strangers. She’s now a world traveler and loving her new life. We couldn’t be happier for her!

When an animal like Sydney is returned, whether they were adopted ten days ago or ten years ago, we don’t give up on them — we help them get a second chance. Please consider making a gift so we can help more animals like Sydney find their forever homes. Donate today!

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