Writing our About Us page...an emotional task
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Amy grew up with dogs, like many of us do. Although she loved all her childhood family pets, Amy's German Shepherd Dog, Duke, made the biggest impact on her young life. Amy married Ken, an Army soldier, in 1994. The first dog Amy and Ken owned together was a German Shepherd/Husky mix. Fast forward ahead eighteen years, three kids, four duty stations, and three dogs to July 2012.
Amy and Ken were actively working with German Shepherd Rescues to add another dog to their family when they accidently found a Craig's list post about a young GSD that needed a new home. They traveled two hours and brought the 5 month old pup home. His name was Tuck, but Amy decided to change it to Moose because he was such a big, goofy boy. Moose loved his entire new family, but he and Amy had a deep bond from the very beginning. They were inseparable. Moose was growing VERY fast and ate like a horse, but he was plagued with diarrhea. The Veterinarian couldn't find an explanation for it and since Moose was growing fast, active and happy they put him on a sensitive tummy food for a few weeks with plans to observe him. One week later, Moose still had diarrhea, so Amy returned him to the vet. Moose had lost 8 lbs. They immediately did blood work. Moose's liver enzymes were off the chart; he needed emergency care. Amy and Ken left the vet and drove 2 hours to the recommended specialist where Moose was immediately admitted.
Moose was stabilized and a battery of tests was scheduled for the following day. Those tests revealed no definitive answers, but showed a possible kink in Moose's intestines and a shadow. Exploratory surgery was planned for the following day with the hope that Moose had a blockage that could be found and removed. The surgeon called Amy while Moose was still on the operating table. His entire diaphragm was consumed with cancer; it wound all around his intestines, his stomach, his liver. It was inoperable and it was not survivable. The surgeon wanted to put Moose to sleep on the table. Amy was devastated. Amy begged the vet to close him up, so she could bring him home and have a day with him. They agreed. Two days later, 8-month-old Moose was put to sleep with his entire family at his side.
Time heals all wounds, but Amy's loss felt so overwhelming that she didn't think she would ever be able to own another dog. Months later, the wound still ached, but Amy knew she needed to do something to make Moose's short life count. Amy decided to foster for a rescue group that she had been approved to adopt from. The very first dog that Amy and her family were asked to foster was named Tucker. Amy knew it was a sign. Moose had led her to where she was supposed to be. Two years and 30+ foster dogs later, Amy sits on the Board of Directors of that same rescue and has played a role in saving and finding homes for over 150 German Shepherd Dogs. If it hadn't been for the loss of Moose, Amy would not have found her way to rescue and those 150+ dogs may have lost their lives, too. With each dog Amy has fostered, pulled from a shelter, rehabilitated, or adopted to a family it is in Moose's memory. In February 2014, Amy and her family fostered and then adopted Cooper. He and Moose would have had a blast together.
So why does an 8-month-old puppy die of cancer? Is it genetics? Is it the food they were fed? Is it the treats from China? Is it the chemicals on the toys they chew on? The shampoo they had a bath with and may have gotten in their mouth? The off brand flea/tick medicine? It's impossible to know, but it changed the way Amy cared for her dogs. She threw out everything that went into her dog's body and was made outside of the USA. Amy vowed to Moose that she would continue to honor him and make a change in the world in his name.
And so, Dog Gone It Goods was born. Amy started Dog Gone It Goods from her home in Virginia. Amy's office window from in the DGIG warehouse looks out at Moose's grave. It's a constant reminder of why she does what she does. Amy's mission at DGIG is to provide an easy to navigate, affordable website where folks can purchase products and treats that are safe, chemical free, organic, eco-friendly, limited in ingredients, and made in the USA. Although not all of the products DGIG carries are made in the USA, the majority of them are and it is clearly listed in their descriptions. ALL of the treats you will find at DGIG are made in the USA--no exceptions. Amy's office and warehouse are dog friendly and both of her dogs--Sage and Cooper--are often hard at work product testing.
DGIG believes wholeheartedly in community. They support their local shelter by donating treats to the dogs awaiting their furever homes. DGIG often donates collars, leashes, supplements, and toys to rescues. Moose would like it that way. <3