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Rescuing a pound dog is the best way to welcome a four-legged friend as a new member of your family. It is saving a dog’s valuable life and allowing him to live with no more worries, as they now have you to depend on and to love with all that they have. Animal shelters are usually to their capacity points, so if you are willing to adopt one of their temporary residents, you’re also helping them out tremendously by doing what they’re mainly in business to do: to help dogs in need of a clean, comfortable environment to call home. I’m sure they hate having to euthanize most of the dogs they find and lodge in their cages, and with the help of all the people who want canines as pets, we can stop some of this from having to happen.
The story of how my family came to adopt Bridget began on a chilly fall day in 2006. We were riding back to our house when something made my mom take a left turn into the rocky parking lot of the Lafayette Animal Aid. The front area looked so nice and inviting, what with the cheery pictures of dogs and cats that were previously adopted painted on the walls along with their name and the year they found a new home. We were there for something else other than going in the back where they kept all of the dogs up for adoption, but my sister and I did anyway, promising our mom we wouldn’t get attached and ask her if we could take one home. When we stepped through the door marked “dogs”, the happiness in the front part of the building faded into a gloomy place, seeming as though it didn’t belong in the same building we were just in. The front now appeared like a cover-up for what was held at the heart: endless cages holding dogs waiting for someone to take them to a safe place. My heart fell when I witnessed all of them, clawing at the doors of their cages, barking wildly to get our attention.
While my sister stopped in front of this cute little gray dog, I was looking at the big scraggly one next door. He was barking a little bit, and not in an aggressive way, but rather as a plea for my help and he did a cute little turn every couple of minutes as if trying to keep my attention. I knew that if we didn’t take him home, no one would. But I also knew that there was no way we could take in such a high maintenance, bulky dog that would consume a large amount of food and need a lot more room to run in than just our little fenced-in front yard. So I crouched down next to my sister instead of lingering next to the gentle giant, knowing that if I looked at him any longer I’d get attached.
Meanwhile, my sister had already done so with that little gray dog with the huge golden yellow eyes and ears standing straight up, not making a peep, just wagging her tail left and right. Her strategy of keeping quiet was what had drawn my sister to her; that and her eyes, which were full of expression. When we asked the lady showing us the dogs about the little gray one, she seemed relieved that we’d taken some interest in her. She told us they’d been extending her euthanization date for a while now, because the staff had seen something special in her and didn’t want to say goodbye. We had come just in time though, because now it was final that she was to be killed the next day. They couldn’t hold her any longer.
So we took the rest of the day to think about adopting her, and while it required a lot of convincing (and telling her we’d pitch in 70 dollars), my mom agreed to get her the next day. We prayed that the little gray dog would be there, and to our delight she was. But the big dog from the day before was nowhere to be found.
We renamed the dog, who was once called Sherry, Bridget, to help her move on from her past. At first, she was a bit skittish, but she eventually warmed up to us, as we did to her. Bridget’s history wasn’t exactly defined, but the lady we paid at the shelter told us she had been found behind a dumpster with her puppies next to her. That showed that she had been through quite a bit, and we were glad to have saved her from her death and to let her live her later years in peace and in a good home that loved her. It made us feel proud to be the ones to do this, and we still feel proud today.
Article posted October 23, 2011 at 07:55 PM •
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