Today’s blog post is a little different than most. While this blog has been about food, wine, and travel for years, I like the idea of moving it more toward being a lifestyle blog and just getting to focus on things I love, especially with a possible move on the horizon.
Many of you know Amanda from her time in Boston at the Royal Sonesta and ArtBar. Amanda and I became friends through blogging, and I was sad to see her move to Dallas last spring. I was happy to take over her role at the hotel though; I absolutely love it!
When Amanda arrived in Dallas, she started volunteering at her local SPCA, and when I heard she adopted Penny, a blind dog she volunteered with, I just knew I needed to share the story. It makes my heart melt every time I see a photo of Penny, and it makes me look forward to the day we can adopt a dog of our own.
Thank you, Amanda for saving Penny and taking the time to share her with us!
Meghan and I share a passion for animals by volunteering with local SPCAs and sharing stories both happy and sad through our Social Media channels. She saw that I adopted Penny a couple of weeks ago and asked that I share my story here with her readers.
At 9 years old blind Penny was surrendered with her 10 year-old pair-bonded dachshund sister, Titus. They were surrendered because the owner no longer had time for them. Pair bonded means they are better off together and the shelter makes every effort to only adopt them as a pair in order to limit the stress they feel when apart. Because I have a penchant for silly dogs and these two were quite the pair, I went in and spent some time with them. Instantly I fell in love but knew that there was no way I could take in two dogs, already having one at home. Before I left them I promised that they would find an amazing home to retire to for their golden years.
I went on vacation the next day and upon my return they were no longer in their condo. They must have been adopted! I continued on walking the floor and was confused to find Penny alone in a new section. That’s when the news was shared with me. Titus had developed a tumor almost overnight in her throat and had to be put to sleep. I cried. I took Penny out for a walk and sucked back the tears –did she really need me wallowing with her? I wanted to show her that there was still much love and life to look forward to. While on our walk I took pictures and shared them through my network with a snippet of her story and urging people to not pity her, adopt her.
Sometimes you have to walk the walk and after a day of serious thinking I decided that the best home for Penny would be with me. Adopting a dog is not any more difficult then buying a dog from a breeder. If you go for a puppy they are destructive and require constant supervision, adopted dogs have an adjustment period but they are quick to get on to your schedule and are much easier on your home. Unless of course, you adopt a puppy then the previous statement applies! And there are tons of puppies in shelters.
If you are considering bringing a dog into your home, I want you to give rescue dogs 3 days. Meaning, take 3 days to visit some local shelters. Meet the dogs, talk to the staff and then give a day of thought to maybe adopting as opposed to getting a dog from a breeder.
The main problem (and there are many more) I have with breeders and people who purchase dogs from breeders is that it’s feeding into overpopulation. Not only are there more dogs bred then people available to buy them but there are also many who buy a puppy only to give it up to a shelter or animal control for a variety of reasons – too much work, not enough time, etc. If you are set on a pure bred dog they can be found in shelters or there are rescues that specialize in specific breeds. Please, make adoption your first option. The unfortunate truth is that there are too many dogs put down every day because there just isn’t enough space and there just aren’t enough adopters looking for these animals. When you rescue a dog, you are in fact saving more than one life as that dog’s spot opens up for another dog to live another day and increases their chances of being adopted out.
Back to Penny – in the two weeks she’s been home she’s brought me so much love. She came to me only knowing her name but has since learned up & down (helpful for a blind dog navigating stairs and curbs), sit, shake, wait and lay down. And, the other day? She “learned” the path we take every day through her sense of smell and decided she no longer wanted to walk —-she wanted to jog! You see, I’ve always struggled with my weight and wanted to be a runner but never found the motivation. Now I think it might be Penny who is saving me.