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Maya

My basenji was slowly getting worse. The vet thought it was arthritis. I had been searching on Petfinder.com for two months just seeing what was out there. I saw some favorites come and go but knew I wasn't ready. One weekend my dog took a turn for the worse. We made an appointment to put Keisha to sleep that Monday. She was almost eleven years old and had a tumor on her spine. She could barely walk.

I went on Petfinder.com on Sunday night and was browsing. I saw a "schnauzer mix" that didn't resemble a schnauzer to me. I clicked on her picture and fell in love with her. I showed my youngest son and he fell in love with her too. We were going to wait until after Christmas to get another dog but I knew she would be scooped up by then. The next night I filled out the application. I learned she was a stray from Ohio and I felt it was meant to be (I was born in Ohio and had moved to Wisconsin when I was 12). We were approved and went to pick her up within two weeks. Her name was Skittles and she was living two hours from us with her foster parents. They were three college girls that had taken time out of their busy lives to take care of her. She was underweight and shy when they got her. We took her home, named her Maya, and she is the happiest dog ever!

She is very affectionate and loving. I think she knew she was home the minute she walked in the door!

Stephanie Pierce
Wisconsin Rapids, WI

Luv me, luv my tongue

I am a very nice, older Boxer boy that recently lost his only owner I ever knew since I was a wee lad. I was lucky to have landed in a rescue since sometimes us more mature dogs get passed over for those youngsters. They bark all the time and you can't trust them with your shoes or your remote controls. They even go potty inside the house. How dare any one act that way! I want to tell every buddy about the benefits of an older dog. Now, they don't have to be my age, but most of us fur kids that are more 'mature' have better manners and are easier to work with. And some of the skin seniors like fur seniors to be their pals and companions. Can you imagine being an older skin person that didn't have a constant companion? Well, that's just not right! I am waiting on that right forever home now in a foster home. They get Boxers like me into what ever foster means and then get us great forever homes. There are many dogs in rescue and shelters needing a forever home. If I wouldn't have gotten into rescue, I just don't know where I would be. I know I couldn't live on the streets and have no direction. Thanks to a rescue for giving me another shot at the happiness I deserve. And if you have read this far, why not look to adopt me or another rescue/shelter animal?

Boxer slobbersssss!!!

Jill Young
Groveport, OH

Finding Love Again

When my 21 year old Russian Blue succumbed to kidney failure in February, 2007, I was devastated and terribly heart-broken. My husband insisted on taking me to the Humane Society to try to find another kitten, but I wasn't ready to give my heart to another cat so soon. However, I did go and I looked at every kitten there, although my heart really wasn't in it. We were just about to leave when I saw him...this scraggly looking, wild-haired kitten that was climbing his cage trying to get out. He began licking my fingers when I touched his cage. All I could think was "you pitiful looking thing - who would want to adopt you?!" But I could not turn my back on him and walk out, I had to adopt him, and I did! Months later, that "wild scraggly hair" fell out, leaving behind a beautiful striped and silky coat. His only "fault" is that he cannot meow! No matter how hard he tries all he can produce is a squeak. Kenny has proven to be one of the most loving and affectionate cats I have ever had. He follows me everywhere and wakes me up every morning by resting one of his front paws on my face or playing in my hair. He has given me the love I was looking for and has helped to fill a huge hole in my heart that I thought could never be filled. He is simply a precious gem and a joy to have around.

Glenda Petz
Okeechobee, FL

Adopting Doodlebug

Doodlebug's picture was in our local paper. She was a beagle/hound mix at the shelter, having been turned in by her owner and was ready for adoption. Something told me that she was meant to be part of our family.

Doodlebug was a little shy and scared the day I picked her up from the shelter. I don't know how anyone could have turned in such a sweet and loving dog, but I'm thankful they did. Her first night with us, she jumped on our bed and curled up to the end and slept there the entire night! Now she sleeps on her very own queen size bed! She loves spending her days with Grandma and Grandpa (my parents) while we are at work and playing with her big cousin Man, a Golden Retriever/Yellow Lab mix. Doodlebug has very good house manners, especially at supper time! She sits and patiently waits, never making a sound and just giving a gentle paw on the leg every now and then until she gets what she wants! She's also a great watch dog, always alerting us to the slightest sound or movement with her hound dog bark! She's just a happy girl who loves everyone she meets!

I would encourage everyone to consider adopting a dog from your local shelter. I know how wonderful they can be. Doodlebug has become a very important part of our family. My husband and I can't imagine life without her!

Beth Briley
Harkers Island, NC

From Death Row to a wonderful life.

Fred was abused, injured, abandoned and ended up in a shelter...He is mostly JRTerrier mixed with Chihuahua so between his breed traits and the ordeal he went through, he was somewhat aggressive. He was then sent to a kill facility. Lucky for both of us there is a wonderful group (DART) that goes to these kill facilities on Fridays and takes as many animals as possible that are scheduled to be euthanized the next Monday. They somehow saw past his nervous aggression and saved him.

As for me, it was the first time I was living alone in many years as well as the first time I was living without a dog. I went to Petfinder and there he was...looking lost, scared and totally pitiful. My heart went out to him and I knew immediately he would be mine. He was being fostered in Fayetteville. The next day his foster dad brought him home to me.

At first Fred was wary and fearful, he was also malnourished and a bag of bones. He was afraid to relax, afraid of people & other dogs and needed lots of love.

Well, in the first month I had him, he gained 8lbs.,got all his shots, and was neutered. Soon, he got to meet lots of people and started attending Doggie Day Care.

Today Fred is a new dog. He is adorable, funny, very playful, smart as a whip and a little lover boy. He sleeps under the covers in my bed and is living a great doggie life. He plays well with other dogs and everybody loves him.

I am so happy to have him and can't believe such a sweet adorable little guy almost didn't make it. He is the love of my life and mommy's boy. Spoiled? Absolutely! He deserves it!

Donna Sue Fiore
Wilmington, NC

Our German Shepherd saves our kitten

We recently adopted a ginger kitten called Jasper and after having him inside for six weeks decided it was time for him to venture out and get used to the surroundings of his new home. Our 4 year old German Shepherd called Basil took an instant liking to our kitten and became his guardian angel and when Jasper decided to walk around the edge of our pool, our Basil was quick to nudge him away from the pool and now every time we let out Jasper, our German Shepherd is by his side and follows him around the back yard making sure he doesn't go anywhere near our pool.

Marie D'Alessandro
Adelaide, Australia

Will Someone Love Me?

In January, 2008, we lost our beloved dog, Spud, to cancer. We adopted Spud, a beautiful Jack Russell, from a shelter here in Maine called The Ark. We were heartbroken. Within a short time, I was looking for another dog because my spouse is disabled with a heart problem and I feared for him due to his overwhelming grief. I ultimately went back to the Ark which at the time, only had two choices of dogs. Henry was on a leash tied to a couch in their living room because everything scared him and they were trying to socialize him. He had been very abused since he was a puppy and every noise freaked him out. They were worried he might be aggressive as well. When he saw me walk in, he jumped off the couch and came over to me in a submissive pose like he knew I was *the one* and I definitely knew he was *the one*. It was love at first sight. My husband greeted him at the second visit and that was it...pure love. He has never been aggressive, finally got over being scared of everything and has no problem now with new people coming into our home. He is the sweetest, gentlest dog even more so then Spud and we're grateful to have him be a part of the family! I will always adopt shelter dogs. I have had such wonderful experiences with the unwanted dogs of the world who seem to all have a great heart:o)

Renee and Rick Serrano

Renee Serrano
Machias, ME

Peas & Carrots

When I lost my 13 year old girl Clara to kidney failure, I knew I had to get another playmate for my boxer boy Mac. I didn't want Mac to be alone so I went to secondchanceboxers.com and found my Sasha. I fell in love with her sweet little face but once I read her story I was hooked. I wanted to give her a chance at a great life to make up for the horrible start she had endured for the first 5 years of her life.

She was surprisingly comfortable by the end of her first day home so I knew she was meant to be here. Mac loves his girl Sasha to pieces and they are together every minute of every day. It feels like she's been part of the family all along. Now she knows she's safe and very loved in her forever home.

maggie
Newfoundland, NJ

My "squirrel tailed" cat

I adopted Rascal from an animal shelter a few lights away from my house in March 2007 when he was 7 months old. I was checking out all the cats and having visits with some of them but they didn't have the "it" factor. I was looking at a cat near Rascal when he reached out to pat me on the arm. I looked down into his adorable little face and smiled. I took him out for a visit and we hit it off right away! I saw that he had an amazing "squirrel" like tail that I totally adored. We had a great play session and I was absolutely bummed out when I was told I would have to wait a few days to bring him home. He needed to be neutered. I eagerly waited for the day I could take him home and bought him so many new toys, bedding, etc. It use to break my heart when I had to go to work because he would cry for me at the door. I could hear him in the hallway of my condo complex. Even my mom came for daily lunch visits to keep him company, I didn't know about these until later! He's a total mama's boy and I'm good with that. I brought Bella home 2 months later, she was 7 weeks old. A week and a lot of hissing later, Bella and Rascal became the best of cat friends. Rascal is the most amazing cat I've ever owned, Bella too. He's my little pound kitty. He's my cuddle buddy. I don't think I could have found a more perfect pet, I'm so grateful that I found him and rescued him from the pound.

Deidra
Orange, CA

The Best thing that happened to us!

We weren't expecting to get a new dog. We already had a couple at home. However that day we went to Petsmart, to just look at the animals, we found one who would change our lives forever. She was one of the last to be brought in, and immediately there was a bond. She wouldn't leave me alone, and I knew she was mine. She was a one year old lab that a shelter took from another shelter that was going to put her down. I am so glad they found here. We brought her home, and she was amazing. She was the smartest dog. However we noticed she wasn't feeling well, and her stiches from being spayed weren't healing properly. We then found out she was really sick. We had to give her medicine and watch her very carefully. One morning I woke up to her being miserable, but our vet couldn't see her. So we found another one. They said if we hadn't brought her in that day, she would have died. Instead we had to use a nebulizer and she took so many pills. We spent a lot of money on vet bills that first two weeks. However it was worth it. She is totally healthy now, and is the best dog. She already knows how to sit, stay and shake, but I don't know where she learned it. She was in the shelter for almost all of her life. She loves my brother who is handicapped. We are going to turn her into a therapy dog. She was the best thing that ever happened to us, and I couldn't imagine losing her! I couldn't imagine anyone not adopting her before us. She is very loving and has to be with you no matter what.

Katy
Fruita, CO
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