08 November 2007

Adoption Tales

Stacy Hsu, creator of the Original Sock Dogs, is having a contest on her blog. I submitted my adoption story already. If it doesn't win - here's a peek at my submission, in under 500 words, although Stacy has lifted the 500 words or less restriction now.

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We’re a family of 24 legs: three cats, two dogs and two humans. All but Stanley were adopted from the Monmouth County SPCA.

Sadie and Lily joined our family in January 2002 to fill the void left by the three cats who passed on in 2001. As I was cuddling Sadie, who chose us, my husband standing next to Lily’s crate announces, “We’ll take her also.”

Lily was one of 28 cats abandoned in a house along the Jersey Shore. The owner would come in and toss a giant bag of food on the floor, slice it open and leave. When she was rescued, there were 2+ inches of feces on the floor and 6 dead cats in the house. She’s one of the lucky ones and has blossomed into a loving cat who maintains a kittenish personality.

Sadie was found a couple of towns over with kittens. The kittens went on to new homes quickly, but she held out for us. I’m glad she did as she’s really a cuddle cat who wants nothing more than to curl up next to you and sleep or be pet.

Stanley was at our vet in Brooklyn, waiting patiently for his forever home. He had been in and out of homes due to his behavior. We gave him a chance, despite having two cats already. It was a rough 9+ months as he and Jeffrey jockeyed for alpha position – in a studio apartment - and in the end Stanley won. He’s still #1 but has calmed down a bit as he’s aged. One of his favorite pastimes is grooming the other cats, and my husband, while they sleep. Of course, it’s only a matter of time before he goes in for the kill.

Henry came into our lives in September 2007. He was a senior dog (10+ years) who had been in the shelter for 6+ months. All we know is someone tied him up in front of a police station and left him. When he turned out to be “the dog” for us, everyone at the shelter was ecstatic he’d found his forever home. We often go back for alumni events and everyone is delighted to see Henry and remark on how happy he is.

Suki is the newest addition to our household. She’s a Pomeranian, surrendered by her former owners. She’s also a senior dog (10 years) and we fostered her as she went through a rough patch of being spayed, having a (benign!) mammary tumor removed, and all but three teeth extracted. In May, she officially became our second canine companion after getting a clean bill of health. Despite her size and few teeth, she thinks she’s our guard dog; hence her nickname of ‘la petite Cujo’.

I’m glad that we’ve been able to give these animals a second chance. The love we get in return is all that’s needed to turn a crappy day into a great day.

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