How Adopting a Dog Changed Me

My old man dog died in October of last year and it was a terribly painful experience for me. I cried for like three days straight. Even now typing those words make me really sad. I had decided I either wanted to foster or adopt a dog but I was DEFINITELY going to wait until the summer to do so. However, life had a different plan for me. I would look for dogs at shelters online from time to time and see if anyone stood out to me. At first, I wanted to find an older dog, give him or her a good last few years. On the week before winter break, I started to really want to find a dog. So much for summer break. Two days before my break officially started I came across Raya on one of the websites. She was a special needs dog, who was only 3 and had been in the shelter and foster home since June. She had a very sad look on her face in the picture and I just instantly fell in love with her.

Carlos and I went to the animal shelter that Friday after I got off work. I just wanted to go meet her. Well as I sit in the meeting room with her on the floor, I fell in love. She was missing most of the hair from her chest, legs and stomach. She had had an infection which was exacerbated by the fact that she has allergies. Her immune system was still recovering from this so her eyes naturally were not making tears at the time. She’s also prone to chronic ear infections. Carlos asked me, “Are you sure you want to do this? You wanted to buy a condo…this dog is going to cost a lot up front with all her medical stuff.” I absolutely was sure and I absolutely knew I was going to do whatever it took to make sure the dog came home with me and got healthy.

And I did. That same night. 25587134_10101121017833793_2234950502221442989_o

We went to Petsmart the next day and when I was walking through the aisles on employee was helping me find things and I told her I had just adopted her the night before. She commented that she acted like we had been together forever. It definitely felt like it. While I have always loved dogs and cats. And I love ALL my furbabies. I had never loved one as fiercely as I loved this rescue dog. I would literally do anything to make sure she is safe, happy, and healthy.

It’s been two months now and I regret nothing. I needed to alter some of my life plans, but she has become the best companion and partner I could have asked for. She is so sweet and gentle. The cats have warmed up to her, even when she’s trying to shove her toys in their faces. She loves all humans and animals, pretty equally. Everyone is her best friend as far as she is concerned. I’m considering putting her into therapy dog training, I really feel she has a natural knack for it.

We are making progress on the health front as well. Hair is starting to grow on her chest and stomach. Her eyes do not need eye drops as often and she has gained 3lbs (2 more to go). I wouldn’t trade the vet bills or my now smelly couch (which she has claimed as her own) for anything.

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