Monday, October 11, 2010

In Which October Is An Important Month

Taking a short break from my usual silly fun stuff to let you know that October is Adopt a Shelter Dog Month.

This is a month that is near and dear to my heart. Let me tell you a little story why.

It was January 2007. Our family Sheepdog, Bess, had just died unexpectedly on my youngest sister's 16th birthday. My parents were dogless. Twin, Brother and I were living together and had my frenchie George, who was a year old, to heap love upon.

Then, one night, I received a text message from Twin (who works at the shelter).

This was the text message:

I texted her back - "What is it?" even though I was pretty sure I knew.

"A fawn pied frenchie puppy. 11 weeks old."

I tried not to be excited. I always told myself when I got another frenchie, I wanted a fawn pied girl. But I didn't want another dog for 5 years or so.

Twin texted me another message and pic:

"Her owner bought her at a pet store as an impulse buy. She didn't realize how much work a puppy would be. And also she lives in an apartment and the puppy, Boo, cries and barks a lot."

I didn't want a puppy. George was still a puppy, technically, and two puppies at a time was a lot of work.

Twin texted our parents, to see if they were interested. They said it was too soon for them to get a dog again. But they wanted someone to have that puppy, so they'd pay for half of her adoption fee.

This was an unexpected crack in the wall I was trying to build around my heart. Twin and I agreed she'd bring Boo home the next night to employee foster.

I spent the whole next day trying to come up with better names than Boo. Something to match George's "Georgie Porgie Pudding Pie" nursery rhyme name. I already knew, unless it was a complete failure as a match, that she wouldn't be going back to the shelter.

When Twin brought her home from the shelter, she had pooped in her crate and rolled in it (many puppy mill puppies (puppies from pet stores) don't have a concept of staying clean from their waste).

The first time I saw her in person she stank, she was covered in shit, and I already loved her. Brother suggested we call her Evie after V for Vendetta but Twin and I changed it to Yvie, short for Yvette.

There is not a moment of my life where she doesn't fill my heart with love and adoration. Every time I see her, every time I even think of her, I'm filled with joy.

She didn't need to be rescued by us. She would have been adopted in less than a day at the shelter. But we selfishly snatched her up and every day she lights up our lives.

So, now you know why Adopt A Shelter Dog Month is so important. My family surrounds ourselves with dogs, and Yvie stands out. She was less than 300 dollars and worth a thousand, a million times that. There are so many wonderful dogs out there that are willing to share their lives with someone, all they need is a home, a chance, to show you how they can enrich your lives.


Hannah Kincade said...

Awwww, she's so sweet and stinky!! :D

Justine Dell said...

Dogs make us happy. They make us smile. Adoption is such a great thing. Wonderful post!

Anne said...

it's hard to believe we could love a dog more than we all love Yvie

Falen (Sarah Ahiers) said...

Hannah - yes. yes she is. She always seems to be the stinkiest when we have guests

Justine - dogs FTW

Anne - so true. She's so awesome

Shannon said...

Ohhh...that face! So freaking cute. She smiling! =)

Summer said...

This post made me tear up a little, thinking back on all the dogs I loved when I worked at the animal shelter. Maybe I'll write my own post, but it'll be decidedly less happy-ending... :(

Christine Danek said...

That dog is the cutest. Great post. Sometimes shelter animals get forgotten. My kitties needed a home. I scooped them up and took them home. That was 12 years ago.
Little buggers.

Holly Ruggiero said...

Just from that first picture it was all over. She was coming home.

Matthew Rush said...

I knew it! I knew that was Yvie from the get go. HOORAY for pets!

Anonymous said...

I would have been a goner after that first picture. Yvie is too adorable! Thanks for posting about this.

~Nicole Ducleroir~ said...

Cutest dogs ever! Thanks for raising awareness for the very real need of pet adopters. We adopt our kitties through shelters, and would never go anyplace else when ready to bring another pet into our home.

Teebore said...

Seriously, the worse thing about Mrs. Teebore's job is all the sad stories she tells of pets that come in needing a home.

She knows she simply can't tell them to me, because I want to take them all in. And every once in awhile, she'll let one slip through (most recently such a story involved a three-legged dog), at which point I know she's considering taking in the animal too.

I imagine it's probably like that times a hundred for you with Twins' job.

Someday, when Mrs. Teebore and I have a real house and more resources, we will have even more pets because it'll be harder to say no.

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Pound puppies are always the best!

Falen (Sarah Ahiers) said...

Shannon - she smiles a LOT

Summer - just thinking about how much i love her makes me tear up. And yeah, just because she had a happy ending doesn't mean they all do. There are plenty of Yvie's out there who never get a chance

Christine - i wish we could have cats. There are so many great ones at my sister's shelter. I want them all

Holly - so true.

Matthew - Hooray indeed!

Kelly - yeah i was pretty much sold right away. I was just trying to be "responsible"

Nicole - yay for adoption! There are so many great cats in shelters

Teebore - with anne's job it's a little easier because they have such a quick adoption turn around. But every once in awhile there's a dog there that you just want.

Falen (Sarah Ahiers) said...

Alex - yeah they are. Also i loved that cartoon growing up

Kay Theodoratus said...

Space limitations keep us to two cats (shelter cats) ... but we've been tempted to add a dog to the menagerie ... even if it'd have to be walked.

Talli Roland said...

Aw! What a great story. Thanks for bringing this cause to our attention!

Hart Johnson said...

Awwwwww *huggles Yvie* You were meant to have her. We always have at least 2 pets, and they are ALWAYS Humane Society adoptions. Joel, our dog, had been dumped off on Christmas eve--about a year old. He is a Corgi mix, and people who don't know Corgis or lack the patience to learn would definitely have trouble, but we love him and he loves us.

Falen (Sarah Ahiers) said...

Kay - yeah we're pretty full up with 3 dogs and all the little critters, but if allergies didn't prevent us, we'd squeeze in a cat or two

Talli - any time! And thanks for stopping by!

Hart - awww! We're big corgi fans in our house! But we know they need a lot of excercise so we are corgi-less

yokohamamama said...

Yay--shelter pets forever! My beautiful calico tortoise-shell kitty with paws dipped in paint was a Humane society kitty. She was my Christmas present from mom and dad--best present ever:))

Anonymous said...

Awwww!!! I love Yvie and love you for liberating her from that shelter! It was most definitely meant to be.

Falen (Sarah Ahiers) said...

Yokohama - aww! Christmas kitty!

Kristy - it definitely was

Maria Zannini said...

She is just too adorable for words.

Of course, you had to take her! You can't fight puppy cuteness.

Beautiful story.

Joan Crawford said...

Aw! My Stinky Dog is a shelter dog too! He was 12 hours from being put to sleep when we got him. He's a big black GSD mix and so nobody wanted him (black dogs and cats are always the last to be adopted) but he is the goofiest sweetheart ever!

Falen (Sarah Ahiers) said...

Maria - that is very true. Puppy cuteness is like a parasite that worms it's way into your heart

Joan - that is very true about black dogs, which is just weird to me. Black is just as good as white. Yay for goofy sweethearts!

AchingHope said...

Awwwww... Puppies! :) That's so sweet. I used to be terrified of dogs, but I've since gotten over that. I've even thought about getting one one day *gasp!* If I do I will def go to an animal shelter :)

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