Nellie was born in the Animal Protection League facility after her mom was brought in as a stray. It was a large litter around 10 or 11 puppies. When they were old enough, they were put up for adoption. In the following weeks, all of Nellie’s siblings got adopted, but she didn’t. Nellie spent the first two years of her life at APL. She had very little socialization. At adoption events she just laid there in her enclosure and did not interact with anyone.
At the PetSmart store where we hold our adoption events, there is also a veterinarian business inside the store. While waiting her turn to set the vet, a lady wandered over to the adoption event, and was inexplicably drawn right to Nellie. The lady, her dog Brandy, and Nellie all got alone wonderfully, and Nellie found herself a foster.
In the next few months, Nellie learned the rules and the rewards of being a house dog. She learned about schedules, household noises, stairways, garbage trucks and mailmen, and best of all, car rides.
As a foster pet, Nellie was still up for adoption. Finally the right match was found for Nellie, and it was time for our foster parent to give up the dog she’d grown to know and love. That had always been the plan, and it was always known that giving Nellie up would be hard, and emotional. But, when the time came, and Nellie’s new dad arrived to pick her up, the emotions were both sad and joyous, for the man had just come from the pet store, and his entire truck was full of her new life. In the back of his truck were beds and a crate; in the cab were her new food bowl, toys and treats, her new harness, leash, and collar, but most touching was the tag already hanging from the collar with her name on it. As he put the collar on her, he held the tag for a moment and spoke directly to Nellie and said “This says that daddy loves you”.