Story of a Shelter Dog

It started out simple enough. I wanted to help animals in need; animals waiting for adoption at the local shelter. Short on time but wanting to do something, I decided to donate some pet food to my local shelter. I have to be honest… I was a little intimidated by the thought. I have, of course, worked with shelters and rescue animals over the years, and quite frankly, it can be depressing. Too many animals. Too few homes.

I wasn’t sure if I could resist all of those faces in need of a home. We already have many pets and a very busy home life, so I wasn’t exactly looking for another pet to add to the bunch.

Thinking ahead, I decided that my husband would be a good person for this effort. He would donate the food, go about his other errands, and a good deed would be accomplished. I would continue to work on getting more involved. Start with food.

He dropped the food off. No problem. Mission accomplished. Or was it?

Yes, he donated the food. Then he proceeded to tell me about a very sweet dog; tail wagging, calm, looking up so earnestly at him… she was elderly and wouldn’t stand a chance of being adopted.

That was all I needed to hear. We went to the shelter. I was pleasantly surprised by the shelter. Yes, it was still full of pets that needed homes. However, it was very clean, well lit, and the staff seemed genuinely concerned about the animal’s welfare and eventual adoptions. The facility had a large fenced area with grass, trees and a picnic table so that families can meet prospective pets in a more natural environment.

We adopted “Sophie” that day. She was not elderly. She had just lost her last canine baby tooth! But by then we were attached. She was a stray found running the streets, not spayed, and about six months old. Very sweet. Excellent with our small kids. She had that “I’m so grateful” look that rippled all through her body.

The shelter provided so much in return for the small adoption fee: first vaccinations, microchip ID, spay surgery, and various pet food samples and coupons. All that they ask in return is that the animal be returned if the adoption doesn’t work out for any reason. I know that they won’t have to worry in this case!



4 thoughts on “Story of a Shelter Dog

  1. This a really great example of adopting at a shelter gone right. And pretty cool that Sophie’s adoption fee included her first vaccinations, microchip ID and spray surgery.
    By the way, Sophie looks so sweet! And I’m glad it all worked out well. You may have just inspired me to go adopt!

  2. I want to thank you for bring this problem to my attention. Although I was aware that puppy mills existed I didn’t realize to the extent. However along the lines of a shelter dog I want to share my experience. School had just ended and my mom dragged me to ARF (Animal Rescue Foundation) because my sister and her had found a dog that they loved but in order to get it they needed all family members present. When I went to visit the dog, he was great but the other puppy in the room took to me. That day we convinced my mom to bring home the two dogs. Yet, not even a month into our adoption we had to give back both dogs because it turned out my sister was allergic. Before adopting these two dogs, I never believed in shelter dogs and I always had this pre-concieved notion about them. But I can tell anyone that these are some of the sweetest dogs you will ever meet. However, due to my sister’s allergies we had to get a dog from a breeder but I will always consider getting a shelter dog in the future.

  3. Both of my dogs are rescue dogs and they are so amazing! When my family’s Schnauzer died a few years ago we decided to go the rescue route and found Saria a little terrier mix first. And then I found my dog Chloe, who was ironically with the Orange County Pitbull Rescue even though she is a tiny Maltese mix. There are so many dogs that still need to be rescued and so many puppies out there that are born in shelters that need good homes. I’m glad you are covering this topic!

  4. I also had no idea about puppy mills before reading your blog! I think all animals need a good home and it breaks my heart that due to misconceptions, people won’t go to animal sheters. Education definitely is key! I am so happy you are covering such a great topic!

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