The place where death row dogs go to find hope
CHRIS Farnham's home is a place where dogs who have found themselves with nowhere to call home go to find a new beginning.
From Dusty the Bundy special to Drop Saw whose life was turned upside-down when her owner died, there's a place for every dog who comes through her door.
Mrs Farnham is a foster carer and co-ordinator for Red Collar Rescue, a local non-profit group working hard to save many of the region's death row dogs.
Dusty, or "D-Man" as he is affectionately known, finally found a home in time for Christmas after being with the rescue since 2014.
Mrs Farnham said she had fostered him since last year and saw him blossom from a cheeky young thing into a fine example of a dog.
"It's fair to say the D-man was quite the effervescent teenage brat," she joked.
"He was very outgoing and very much lacking in the basics of doggie manners."
Mrs Farnham set about teaching him how to behave while recognising his natural quirks.
"Dusty was always one of those eccentric boys," she said.
"He needed to go to a family that appreciated his style and loved him for who he was."
Mrs Farnham said brindle dogs could be a challenge to rehome and he had no specific breed - something that was proven when Mrs Farnham and her husband decided to check his DNA.
"He was such a mixed breed there was no breed of statistical significance to rate him by," she said.
"I called him a Bundy special, he was everything."
Mrs Farnham said it was important not to discriminate when it came to breeds.
"We always say to people, don't get too caught up with breeds as they are just a label," she said.
Dusty had a lot to learn, including getting used to everyday things like TVs and walking on a lead.
One of the final stepping stones in his journey was meeting Drop Saw, a 10-year-old maremma cattle dog cross with a tragic tale.
Drop Saw had been locked up with her deceased owner for a number of weeks.
Mrs Farnham said Drop Saw had been in a "very dark place" but soon found her calling and is now helping other foster dogs by being her larger-than-life self.
"Drop Saw is very good at teaching the dogs to be good canine citizens," she said.
"Her spirit came back."
Dusty was one of the pooches whose life Drop Saw managed to touch, encouraging him not to be so afraid of the world.
"It was like the universe said 'right mate, you're right to go now'," Mrs Farnham said.
Now there is a new success story in the making for Mrs Farnham, in the form of another dog named Hero.
Hero had been in Red Collar Rescue's pens since February with not a single inquiry.
Mrs Farmham hopes Hero might soon have a family of his own.
If you're interested in adopting a dog or fostering, contact Red Collar Rescue on 0438 869 085.