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When I got to the shelter (Lied Animal Shelter), I opened the kennel door to find the little dog huddled in the corner. She let me pick her up without a blanket. She latched onto me with her paws and clung to me for dear life. I placed her in the holding kennel where the shelter staff would administer vaccines and take an intake photo. I told the man there to be careful as the little dog may bite out of fear. He stated he would take care of her. This particular shelter worker was one of my favorites and treated the animals with care during the “processing” procedures. I personally never thought the little dog would make it to the adoption floor. My experience and professional observations showed that most of the dogs with the sigma of possibly being a “fear biter” did not get placed for adoption.
I had been thinking about getting a dog for almost a month prior to that fateful day in December. I had visited the shelter numerous times looking for the “right” one. I had found a little Min Pin I really liked. She was out going, friendly, obedient, knew some tricks, and all around a great dog. Then one day I went to the shelter and the little tan and white dog was there. She made it to the adoption floor! I was shocked. I walked by her for about a week. Then one day I asked the shelter staff if I could take her out. When they got her out of her kennel she cowered in the corner. It was so sad to see. Amazingly, once the leash was on her, she walked out of the kennel! I was pleasantly surprised. I walked around with her for a little bit and sat on a bench. The little dog jumped up and sat on my lap and looked at me as if to say, “it’s about time you came to get me! I’ve been waiting long enough!” Even though this little dog was tugging at my heart strings, I could not get the Min Pin out of my mind. I went home without adopting either dog.
I called a very good friend of mine that night. I told her about the two dogs. She asked me some very important and telling questions. She asked, “which dog needs you the most? Which dog is going to benefit the most as having YOU as an owner?” The answer was right in front of me. The little tan and white dog needed me more than the Min Pin. She needed an experienced dog owner and one who would take the time to socialize her and nurture her out of her shyness.
I went the very next day and adopted this little tan and white dog. As I was filling out the paperwork, the adoption coordinator told me I was the only person who ever asked to looked at the dog. The dog had been up for adoption for 10 days before I looked at her. This shelter kept a computer record of who looked at what dogs and how many times that dog had been shown or taken out.
I picked her up on a Wednesday, hence the name, “Wendy.” She was very shy when I brought her home. She really liked her kennel for the first 6-9 months of me having her. Now she is a complete lap dog, she is social, she barks when someone comes to the door, and she is incredibly smart. I taught her to sit, down, roll over, and high five in less than 10 minutes with the aid of her favorite treats. I can’t imagine not having her in my life. The dog really does pick the person.
When someone tells me they are going to get a dog, I tell Wendy’s story. My experience adopting her has been so fulfilling, heartwarming, and rewarding. Wendy makes every day better. She is proof that anyone can get a kind and loving animal from a place that many people think is so sad. But it is quite the opposite because the animals waiting in the shelters for a forever home, truly are grateful. I see it every day I see Wendy!
Thank you for reading.
By: Summer H