Rounder (blogs dated 3/19/09 thru 3/21/09) and Abby both had strikes against them when they were rescued. Rounder had been an escape artist, nearly been shot by police, nearly been euthanized by the local vet whose office also served as the pound, and finally, after a lot of rehabilitation, found his home with a great family. Abby was also a stray, an escape artist, scheduled for euthanasia by animal control and was rescued by the same great family. The dogs both had hound in them and liked to hunt, and on the farm there were plenty of critters that didn't belong. Rounder and Abby had a family that loved them, took excellent care of them, and when they found that Abby wasn't good about staying home, they went took the time and expense of putting up a fence to contain her. She managed to find a way out so she could go hunting, and they added more fencing and an electric fence component to keep her on the farm and out of trouble.
The family moved out of state and the dogs went with them. When they traveled back to the farm, they drove some 1800 miles so the dogs could be with them and have a vacation as well.
However, a few weeks ago, I got an email that the dogs had been killed the night of a monster storm. The family had to run to town, the skies were clear, and they didn't expect to be gone very long. The dogs were happy and lying one on the porch in the shade and the other under a tree in the grass. There was plenty of fresh water available, as well as shelter just in case.
While the family was away, a band of thunderstorm activity popped up and blew through with tremendous rain and wind. The electric fence was useless, and the wind and rain knocked limbs down - Abby could see a way to go hunting! Rounder and Abby died doing what they loved - hunting a critter, or maybe more than one.
The family was devastated, felt so guilty, and so empty. They got on Petfinder and found an older pup with injuries from an accident that they felt drawn to. It was at an animal control, a kill shelter, in their area. They contacted animal control and were told they would not be allowed to adopt. Heartbroken, they contacted me. I understand how this could happen - I have a dog that I rescued that would disappear under certain circumstances. I am working on her fear of thunder and loud noises, but it will take time. I contacted the rescue coordinator that I worked with while the kennel manager for the rescue, told her the story, and asked her if she would consider letting the family adopt. She also has had a few close calls with her own dogs and understands that sometimes stuff happens. She told me she would be willing to adopt to them as we both know they are an excellent family that deserves to adopt. Unfortunately, there wasn't a dog in the rescue that would fit. I told the family not to get in a hurry but to take their time and find the right dog, especially since they have three very well behaved youngsters.
Two days ago, they saw a brown face peeking through their front porch window. They couldn't believe their eyes when they realized it was a chocolate lab, probably purebred, very thin, but wanting to be saved. They immediately took him in, fixed him up a nice comfy bed, scheduled a visit to the vet, and took some pictures. He's obviously a young dog and thin from being on his own for awhile. They call him Rusty, and he has five people that love him dearly. From experience, I know that Rusty will be well taken care of and loved.
So, when one door closed, another opened. Rusty was out there somewhere needing a home. Whether he was neglected, dumped, ran off during a storm, we will never know - but we do know that he found his family. Yep, Rusty won the lottery!