Yesterday was the day we decided to call Shady’s birthday. She’s considered four, though she’s really a Permanent Puppy, and those are ageless.
One year ago yesterday, we miraculously got her back after this sequence of events:
- Horrible life with previous owner (she lived under a bed for a year)
- Return to the Humane Society
- A couple of months alone in a visiting room with little attention (the main kennel was too stressful)
- Nine days as a foster dog with Molly and Tess
- Twelve hours placed with a potential adoptive home
- One stupid decision by that potential adoptive home to put a special needs dog alone in a backyard with a crappy fence
- Three weeks on the street in and around Cooper-Young in below-freezing temperatures, apparently including a few trips to some truly scary neighborhoods
- A heart-stopping moment where we followed up a great tip from someone who saw one of our 200 signs and we actually laid eyes on her
- A frustrating couple of hours of being chased by us and neighborhood kids around train tracks and abandoned scrap yards (she was too scared and freaked out to come to us)
- Three days of being actively hunted by us around the clock
- A full-on canvassing effort by several generous Humane Society dog-walking colleagues to locate and help catch her
- Me seeing her cornered in a mess of scrap metal, climbing down in there, picking her up, and handing her to Molly
And now, she’s a wonderful, happy, well-adjusted snugglepuppy. Her meds certainly help, as does being part of a pack in a protective and loving environment. She sleeps between the pillows in her puppy pocket, she snores and grunts and yawns like a beagle, she chases Tess around a huge (and extremely secure) backyard, and most of all, she truly seems to enjoy her life.
A life that started all over, one year ago yesterday.
Photos: Steven Bryant