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Lollypop Farm, Humane Society of Greater Rochester: Orvis Dog Enrichment Grant Report

How did this grant help your organization and the pets in your care?

Dog enrichment is a key element in helping dogs on the road to adoption. All of the dogs that come to Lollypop Farm are evaluated by our behavior team and many are found to need modification plans.

These plans often include enrichment items like the ones we were able to purchase due to the generous grant we received from the Petfinder Foundation. The Jolly Balls have been a favorite of the dogs in our large fenced-in area for dog playgroups and the slow feeders have been great for our dogs who struggle with resource-guarding and gulping their food.

We gave one of our dogs a chewy bone and that has become his constant companion -- we joke that it's like his security blanket! The enrichment items help to relax the dogs and let their personalities shine. This is a tremendous help when people come through the kennels looking at the dogs.

How many pets did this grant help?


Please provide a story of one or more specific pets this grant helped.

Lowkie (first photo) is a sweet mixed-breed 4-year-old dog with the most expressive ears ever! His former owner told us that Lowkie loves children, but they had to move and could unfortunately not keep him. Lowkie has been with us since October 2022, patiently waiting for his second chance at his forever home.

The behavior team at Lollypop Farm evaluates all the dogs that come here to determine whether they may need any type of behavior modification plan. This is an important step in getting dogs ready for adoption. When the team assessed Lowkie, it turned out that he had a couple of issues that needed work: He was nervous around other dogs and he was also guarding his food.

The team put together a behavior plan for Lowkie to work on these issues in order to increase his chance of adoption. Part of Lowkie’s behavior modification included using slow-feeders, which are food dishes that are puzzles for dogs, which slows down their pace of eating and gives them some mental enrichment. This proved helpful with Lowkie’s food-guarding issue. He also fell in love with his new green chew toy, which was his constant companion and helped him feel more comfortable and relaxed.

Lowkie was put into our foster-care program, where he spent time with a family in a home instead of in the shelter. This also gave him some time to relax and let his playful personality come through. Lowkie is now on an adoption sleepover with a family for the next two weeks.

Behavior enrichment is hugely helpful for so many of the dogs who come to Lollypop Farm. It helps them relax and lets their personalities shine, helping them on their road towards adoption. We are so grateful for the help from the Petfinder Foundation and the Orvis Dog Enrichment grant! We truly couldn’t do this work without partners like you!

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