It hadn’t been long-3 months that our home had been pet-less. First, we lost our 13 year old cat Snowy. Then we lost our 12 year old dog Lucky.
We were a family of four and my husband and I ran a home day care with a dozen kids daily but the house felt empty. We had never been without a “furry” kid.
We were heartbroken at these losses.
My husband and I knew that we wanted another dog-but we also knew that our choice had to be a very special one. It had to have the patience of a saint! We asked the opinion of a family member who was a vet. We studied various breeds.
Then we saw an ad for a rescue show. The four of us went. There were a lot of dogs and even more people. Right away, we saw what could have been a double for our recently departed pup. But there was a note on the cage explaining that it had been rescued from an abusive home. Count that one out.
Then we all looked a cage that had the sweetest dog. She was about a year old, part Labrador, part Golden Retriever and part Border Collie. The team who found her said she had been wandering around the city of Burbank, California. They left her at the city pound for a week, figuring someone was sure to claim such a darling dog. No one did! So they brought her with them. By their own admission, they wanted to keep her, but with 4 other dogs at home, they decided that she’d be better off with a family who could give her the attention she seemed to crave. All the kids were giving out treats. She took hers with the greatest gentleness from the strangers we had ever seen. We were told she was house-broken. So far-she was perfect. We took her for a walk. She kept nuzzling our hands to pet her while we strolled.
Three other families wanted her-but we worked at home. A plus for our side. Our daughter, Sarah, turned on the waterworks. This always got to her dad. We applied to adopt Sunshine that day. It was decided we were the lucky family! We would be there for her 24/7, we already had a vet (I think the fact that I knew the phone number by heart was the deciding factor!) and we even had a training class/trainer in mind.
Before leaving, we went to her cage to say goodbye. Sunshine seemed to know we were her new family. She unlatched her box and licked us all! It seemed she wanted to go home with us at that moment. We would have loved to have done that as well. But we waited until the next day. The rescue team wanted to check out our home and make sure we were what we seemed as well.
The next afternoon, Sunshine came to stay. She aced her training classes. All the kids fell in love with her immediately, as did their parents. My power-walking once again became the highlight of my day, since I now had a peppy partner!
Turns out even 13 years later, the people who found her gave her the perfect name. No matter what the actual weather is outside, it’s always been filled with Sunshine for us.