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Oliver was abandoned as a pup in Alabama and rescued after a week of attempts. He was only four months old. A kind soul took him him and placed him on rescue sites for adoption. She put a red bandana around his neck, and in the picture he seemed to be smiling. We have had this sweet, intelligent, playful, loyal and obedient dog for 3 years and DOES smile. He is *perfect* and made our house a home.

Jill Nichols
Lyme, NH

Our Gentle Boy

I took my girls to volunteer at a rescue shelter/sanctuary. The moment we walked into Mr. Buffy's room he was there stretching to see me and followed me around the whole time wanting attention. At our hotel that night and for the rest of our trip all I could think about was him. As soon as we got home I put in an application to adopt him. He arrived just short of a month later and has changed our lives in ways I can't express. At almost 15 he still runs around like a kitten with all the energy in the world. When considering a pet please look at rescue animals and senior animals. They have unconditional love to give.

Bobbi Rice
West Jordan, UT

Unspoken Support for Copper

Each week my wife and I find 100 animals patiently awaiting our arrival for their nightly feeding at Indraloka Animal Sanctuary in Mehoopany, PA. It had rained heavily that day. But, as usual, upon approaching the barn the pigs began squealing, the lambs began “bah-ing” and the chickens started clucking- all indicating they were ready to eat!

Taking care of the horses first, I went out to the paddock only to find Copper, an older horse with arthritis, lying in the mud just inside the pasture shelter. Startled, he was shaking and wet and I could see he had bit his lip pretty badly- probably from his fall. Because he was lying on his arthritic hip he had been unable to get up and was exhausted from trying. My wife ran to get additional help.

As we waited, we calmly spoke to Copper assuring him we were there to help. He was lying against the shelter so we worked to pull him away from it and make it easier to flip him over onto his better hip.

The mud made it difficult as none of us could get good footing. But, after several attempts he was able to stand once again. Thankful he was not hurt, except for his bloodied lip, we headed towards the barn to clean him up and get a coat on him for warmth.

Once inside, we noticed the din had subsided as all the pigs, lambs, chickens, ducks and other horses were now very quietly waiting in their separate pens. It was evident they understood one of their fellow sanctuary residents had been in trouble and in their own way were offering their support by remaining quiet and calm in hopes of calming their friend. How heart-warming!

Sadly, Copper left us on October 1, 2010.

Brad Robinson
Factoryville, PA

Tito Chalupawitz Fernandez

We found Tito on our porch one day, covered in fleas, oozing from his eyes and nose, and coughing terribly. It was a particularly cold and rainy winter season in Florida. He weighed 2 pounds and every bone stuck out of his body. I took him to the vet and told them that I could not afford to treat heartworm, but if all else was clear we would take him. Twenty minutes later there was an enormous 'cheer' from the back rooms of the clinic. Apparently, the heartworm was negative, but the whipworm, tapeworm, roundworm, and hookworm were not. He also had an eye infection, ear infection, pneumonia, mites, and a BB pellet lodged in his chest. All he could eat was baby food for the first two weeks. He was 6 months old at the time and now he's a happy 13 year-old 5.5 pound spoiled baby. He's part chihuahua and my son loved Oliver and Company at the time, so his first name became Tito. We are also Jewish, so the rest of his name is a wonderful blend of both our heritages. He is my 'umbilical cord' as my husband says. Follows me everywhere...even to the bathroom. The rain and thunder scares him, we think from all the time he spent in the rain when we first found him, and needs to be held during those times. He found his forever home in our house and our hearts.

Lake Mary, FL

Jazzy is always jazzed.

My son found sweet girl Jazzy at the house of an aquaintence. She was a 3 month old puppy locked in a closet, and rarely fed.

Jazzy was so starved for affection that when he picked her up she filled his face with kisses.

The clincher was when the guy kicked little Jazzy, that sent my son over the edge.

He told the guy, since he didn't want to take care of her he was taking her.

At midnight, in walks my son with this sweet half starved baby who had nothing but kisses for me and anyone else she meets.

After 3 months, she's fat, happy and jazzy.

Now she has a yard to race around and play in. Jazzy is always jazzed and loves people and other animals.

She has brought pure joyous jazz to our home.

Deborah White
Columbus, OH

Breezy the Happy Camper!

Breezy was 7 months old when we adopted her and she had spent the majority of those months at the shelter. She initially wanted nothing to do with my husband or I, but loved our Border Collie, Buddy. She would ignore us, and sometimes downright snub us! Now, 5 years later, she's the sweetest, lovingest, dog ever. She knows when you're sad or upset and will lay her head on your lap. She loves to cuddle on the couch, sleeps next to me at night...and as you can see from the picture, is a "Happy Camper" when we take the 3 puppies to camp!

Shannan Breault
Middleburgh, NY

So, you adopted a Jack Russell!

Eddie, our Jack Russel Terrier, captured my husband's attention with his shy guy routine during an adoption weekend. The sympathy was quickly replaced with laughter when Eddie got home because he raced around and announced to the rest of the family there was a new kid on the block. What a surprise to discover how fast he could run or how he never gets tired of teasing our other dogs then racing away. We had no idea how high a Jack Russel could jump, or that they jump all day long - - every single day! I've noticed a sympathetic nod of understanding between other Jack Russel owners whenever they pass us in the store; maybe it's more of an eye roll.

We have always had dogs but Eddie is the only one able to train my husband to be an incredible companion. Those two share a forever bond that makes the rest of the family laugh, especially when Eddie showed up wearing his own little winter jacket; purchased by my husband of course.

Please consider having your heart enlarged by a furry adoption; it changes lives!

Valerie Jeffries
Salem, UT

Trooder (NoWhere Man)

My Abyssinian died in July of 2008. I was still looking for that purrfect Aby to heal my heart when I went to the pet store. It just so happens they were having an adoption fair day when I went in. I walked up to the cages with so many furry faces but was certain I wasn't ready to adopt.

I knelt down to one cage and saw a small fuzzy beige kitty looking out at me. The lady running the adoption fair asked did I want to hold him as she scooped him up and put him in my arms. As Trooder and I sat there, getting to know one another, tears fell from my eyes. Troo put his paw on my hand, as if to say "It's ok". I knew then he was to come home with us.

Middleboro, MA

Puppy in a Bird Cage

This is Hope. She is about 4-1/2 months old. Three weeks ago, I came home from work to find a bird cage in front of my gate. I thought someone had left me a bird. I looked in the cage and found a 4 month old pit bull puppy, she weighed only 10 lbs and you could see every bone in her body. Obviously, someone knew I was a sucker for pit bulls (I have 1 full-blooded and 2 pit/lab mixes, as well as a boxer, rottweiler, and lab mix already). Two days later, I took her to my vet to get checked out and start on her shots. By then, she weighed 13 lbs and was starting to fill out. She is a darling. I took her to the vet this past Thursday for her 2nd set of shots and she was up to 23 lbs. In 2 weeks, she put on 13 lbs. Amazing what food will do for you. She gets along great with my other dogs, and my birds, so naturally, I'm keeping her. I had lost my rottie/shar-pei mix Jaine 2-1/2 weeks earlier from cancer, she would have been 10 on 11/12/10. I had planned to wait a few more months before looking for another dog, maybe a senior golden needing a home, but obviously the Lord felt I needed a puppy now. Hope now has her forever home. Oh, she doesn't want to be a pit bull anymore, now she wants to be a "bed dog." She takes naps with me and getting her out of bed when I get up is like pulling teeth. She'll cry and hide under the covers. So I leave her there until she wants to get up.

Helen Jones
Picayune, MS

Pick Me!

We had lost our 5 year cat and were looking at PetSmart for a kitten to keep our 3 year old tabby company. There were no little kittens but this one champagne colored manx, about a year old, put his paw out as to say "Pick Me". I asked the staff person if I could hold him. When she put him on my shoulder he burrowed in and started purring. I was a goner. As we were leaving the store, the Shelter folks came in we about 10 kittens, but I had my guy. Baxter is the most loving cat I have ever had.

Linda Downs
Modesto, CA
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