New Family Member: Gideon


This post has very little, or maybe absolutely nothing, to do with church leadership. But it does have to do with family leadership and maybe simply living life as a dad, husband and friend.

As many of you know, my beloved dog Tramp died in a tragic way last week. I haven’t shared all of the specific details of his death, but it was traumatic for me and our family to see him hurting the way he was for the final 2 weeks of his life.

He had been a trusted, loyal, protective and loving friend to us. I’ll probably share more memories of him in the future. (there really are some classic stories.)

After his death, our family immediately decided we wanted to add another dog to our family. So I started looking at rescue agencies around the country. There are literally hundreds of great organizations that work with foster care of good dogs and help prepare them for adoption. They test personality traits and tendencies, housebreak, neuter/spayed, and various other steps of placement for these animals.

It’s the best way to find the right fit for us.

We needed a young large male (my preference), gentle but strong, a lover of children, housebroken, good with other dogs, in one of a couple of breeds (Rhodesian Ridgeback, Tosa Inu or some form of Mastiff).

I used Perfinder’s iPhone app to search the country. We narrowed it down to a few dogs. Then we started specific and individual research.

And we found Gideon.

Gideon is just over one year old. He lives in Arkansas with a foster family that has kids the same age as our boys. He is obedient, great with other dogs & cats, protective but kind hearted, gentle but tough. His foster family say that he is by far the best family dog that they have ever had.

His name means “mighty warrior” and is taken from an Old Testament character from the book of Judges who is known for using wisdom and strategy to defeat the enemies of God.

He weighs about 140 lbs now, but will probably add another 10-15 lbs in the next year.

And I can’t wait to see him interact with our boys, Stephanie and… maybe the hardest sell… Mandy (our 9 year old Rhodesian Ridgeback female who will need to become his new best friend.)

Gideon appears to be a Rhodesian Ridgeback/Mastiff mix. He reminds me so much of Tramp. I’m really excited about this.

His foster family will be meeting me in Nashville sometime in the next few weeks. And he will come to live with us.