It was a Monday evening just a few short weeks ago. I was relaxing on the couch with my iPad in hand. You know those nights; your body and mind just tell you “you need a chill night.” The wide open spaces of the worldwide web eventually landed me on the website of Furry Friends Refuge, a local animal shelter not far from where we live.
Do you ever feel like you were lead to a certain place, at a certain time, for a reason unknown to you at the time? This was one of those moments. We’d not been actively looking for a new furry friend (and family member), but the topic had surfaced a few times during casual conversation over the past three years.
You see, on August 29, 2013, our furry poodle-person, Shadow, crossed over the Rainbow Bridge. For almost 16 years, he was a treasured and adored member of our family, first joining us when he was just eight weeks old. We’ve missed him dearly and knew somewhere down the road we might look at adding a new furry friend to the family.
Back to that particular Monday evening, it was getting late and time to be calling it a night. Clicking on the link for adoptable dogs, I scrolled down the list. At the very bottom of the list, I found Panda – a one and a half year old Yorkie Poo weighing about five pounds. There was no picture. On a typical worknight, I would be tucked in for the night. I quickly sent an e-mail to inquire about her availability and to get more information on her. Amazingly, I received a response back almost immediately. After a few email exchanges, I made an appointment to go see her at the shelter the next evening after work.
Tuesday night, Andrea brought Panda out to meet me when I arrived. I talked to Panda from across a desk, learning more about her from Andrea – she was definitely going to pose some challenges for us according to her surrender report and the shelter staff. Love can overcome anything, right?
Wednesday night my husband, Mark, and I returned to see Panda and spend some time with her in the courtyard. According to what I learned from the staff at the shelter, it was going to take several meetings to build trust with Panda, and for all of us to become comfortable with one another. No problem, we can continue to visit her each evening for as long as the process takes. On this night, Panda let us walk her around; she loves to go for walks! She also let us pet her; more progress. We also snapped a quick photo of her (below). You’ll see she is a very shaggy Panda bear.
On Thursday, we returned to again visit with our special friend. She was excited to greet us when she spotted us in the courtyard. Tonight our goal was to be able to pick her up (all five pounds of her), without her trying to bite or nip at us. With more petting and more walking, she was willing to let us pick her up! Mark even picked her up twice before our visit was over. How wonderful that was and how excited we were! The staff indicated she was making noticable improvements each day as we visited. When we left the shelter, we knew we’d be bringing our sweet girl home soon, so off we went to pick up the essentials for her at our local PetSmart. Her cute eyes and smile just make you melt!
Friday, July 15, we attended a charity golf outing and then afterwards we made our nightly visit to the shelter. Panda was ready to go home with us! After just a few quick signatures on the adoption papers, off we drove bringing Panda to her new forever home, our home! What a delight it was to watch her run around our fenced in back yard, and run all around our house checking out each and every room. We could tell, she was going to love her new home.
Its been just over 2 weeks since we brought her home to join our family. Much as been accomplished in these two weeks. Most importantly, there has been a great deal of love around our home from us to her and from her to us. She loves going outside and playing in the yard, rolling in the grass and playing with her little tennis ball. She loves to go for walks and for car rides. At night, she loves to snuggle in with us. She is truely a delight and we’ve not experienced any of the long list of chalenges we had been told we might face.
You see, this just goes to prove that love can make a big difference in another’s life.