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Scotty & Emma

We've had Emma since she was a puppy and recently rescued Scotty from a man who is no longer able to give him the time and attention he needs. Scotty's previous owner is now a full time caregiver to his wife who developed Alzheimer's very quickly. Scotty has brought so much joy and laughter to our lives, even Emma who was getting a bit older (9 years old) is now a puppy herself again as they race up and down the hall chasing tennis balls!

Seattle, WA

Gentle Ben

Benny was an abused young street cat, with a hind leg broken in multiple places, when he was found by a young woman with no money and no place to keep a cat. She took him to a local vet hospital, and people pitched in. A nearby real estate office put out a “Benny box” for donations for his surgery, and a rescue group found him a foster home. After a year, though, his foster home gave up on him. At adoption events, Benny always froze in the back of his cage, trembling, and finally he was deemed “unadoptable.” When I saw an SOS on a rescue listserv, I had two elderly cats and no intention of disturbing them with a newcomer, but my heart broke.

When his original rescuer brought him over, Benny was wrapped in a towel and shaking in fear. He spent a week tunneled into a rolled-up rug, only coming out at night. Slowly, slowly, I gained his trust. Skittish but sweet, he never raised a paw or showed a claw. When my older cats passed away and I took in a litter of foster kittens, he tended to them and groomed them like a mom. Benny finally had a family.

I kept two of Benny's adored little sisters, who still snuggle with him. Benny jumps into bed with me (and them), rolls over for belly rubs and passes sunny afternoons in my tiny walled garden. He still hides from strangers and wets himself on the way to the vet, but he is otherwise a happy guy who makes my household happy. Nobody is unadoptable.

Philadelphia, PA

The Flower House kitten

This is Leeloo Lotus – who was found in an abandoned house in Detroit. The Flower House is a great art project, where a derelict home is being converted into a temporary art installation, by filling it with flowers. During one of the prep work weekends, a tiny mewing was heard coming from the wall. After a little investigating, a tiny and dirty face appeared in a hole in the wall. There was no sign of mother or any litter mates. As nobody working on the project could reasonably care for him, a call for support was put out on social media. I instantly knew I had to help, even if that was only fostering him to get his strength and size up. I already had 4 adult cats, and I’d always claimed that was my limit.

Leeloo was estimated to be about 3 weeks old, weighed less than ¾ of a pound, and needed bottle feeding for a week or two. It’s been a learning experience – I’ve lived with many cats over the years, but none so young or fragile. There have been a half dozen vet trips; he’s gone through eye infections, a bloated belly, allergies, and cat flu in just a few weeks! But now, he’s 3 months old, almost quadrupled in weight, in good health, and settling in nicely! Once he got out of quarantine in his own room, one of my adult cats completely adopted him, and now they’re pretty much inseparable.

I’m not sure if I was just deceiving myself at first, but after just a few days it was clear this was no foster – and Leeloo is happily settling into his new, permanent home. His unusual name came as his initial rescuer called him Lotus (given where he was found), and I like to name my cats after sci-fi characters - as the fifth cat, I had to go with the lead from the Fifth Element!

Jude W
Ann Arbor, MI

The Story of Sansa

I lost my pomeranian, Boo Bear, 3 days before Christmas in 2013. He was my first dog and such a love; when he passed away I felt a huge void in my life.

When I was ready, I combed through thousands of dogs in the area but they didn't seem to fit. Then I saw her...This wide eyed little puppy waiting in foster care. Her name was after a character on my favorite show, "Sansa." I felt this was meant to be.

She had been left on the side of the road in Memphis with her two brothers. She looked like a pitbull puppy so she was immediately placed on death-row and had no shot at adoption. Her foster mom saw her in the list of death-row pups and showed up at the shelter door that morning to claim her. By the time I found her on the adoption page she'd been in foster care for a month and had already learned her basic obedience commands.

I put in an application and went to see her within a couple days. When I arrived at the house I fell in love immediately. This little 20 lb bundle of energy bounded over to me, her tail wagging a mile a minute. Her bright eyes beckoned me to fall in love with her from the start. I was heart broken when I couldn't take her that day and had to wait another 2 weeks. The foster mom gave up waiting for the group to give approval and let me take her home on February 8th 2014.

She's now my baby. We know she is 50% Jack Russel. (She has the Russel Springs in her feet!) She's our resident fly catcher, cuddle bug and speed racer. I vowed when I brought her into our life that she would never know fear or pain again and in return she has given me a joy that I felt was lost forever when I lost my pom.

Jennifer Rose
Olive Branch, MS


It was a late October night in 2013 in Kansas when, as my daughter was leaving her job at the mall, a security guard came up to her and said he found a box of kittens abandoned in the nearly empty parking lot. Further, animal control would not be able to come until the morning. "Would she please do 'something'." The box was labeled, "Please take". She looked inside and found 4 little kittens that couldn't have been barely a month old. There was no way they would survive the frigid night and so she picked up kitten formula and headed home with them.

I knew in my heart that once they entered the house that not all of them would be leaving and I frowned at the idea of adding to our existing brood of two older 15-year old cats, one 8-year old cat, and a new pomeranian puppy. She promised to find homes for the kittens once they were stable. And she did. All but one little black female kitten . And truth be told, I didn't put up any fuss by that time.

Pandabear aka Boo-Boo Kitty became a comical companion to the puppy as well as becoming an integral part of our family. Whereas the older cats were more territorial, she crossed all boundaries fearlessly with a blissful young confidence. She is our urban jumper; flying through the house at the speed of light. She practices her hunting skills on her 'brother' dog and loves to sleep under the covers with me when all the lights are out at night time. She has a quirk of mewing at my chair when I'm at the computer which means she wants to crawl under my shirt and nap while I sit there. She also eased our grief at losing our two older cats over the ensuing 18 months.

I feel Blessed everyday for the laughter, happiness, and pure joy Panda has brought to us.

Overland Park, KS

Marie, the ex-neglected Siberian

Just when it was starting to get really cold, someone who my sister had class with was looking for somewhere they could “temporarily” keep their kitten for the winter. So Marie came to live in my mom’s office, at the time we thought it was only going to be for the winter.

Marie was about six months old at the time and had been living in their garage since they had gotten her. She had never been to the vet, not even after being backed into be a car, because “nothing felt/looked wrong”. When we brought her to the vet she had ear mites so bad that she should be deaf, soreness in her lower back from improper healing (where the car had hit), but otherwise a happy, somewhat healthy kitten. Needless to say they were never getting her back.

For a kitten who started her life in a garage, she was one of the most well behaved kitten ever. I had to wear a heart monitor for a month, when she was just over a year old, and she would not leave my side if I needed to phone a recording in. It turned out to be nothing, but since then she has become something of a therapy cat. If I am stressed or upset, she is there to calm me down and make me relax.

She is now a beautiful, huge Siberian, three year old cat. The sweetest cat we have ever had and though she is not a lap cat, she is a huge love bug. Although we were not looking for another cat at the time, we would not trade her for the world.

Mary Bridges
White Bear Lake, MN

The angel called Dustbin

We discovered this feral kitten at a rescue. He was dead scared of humans, and I had no experience with ferals whatsoever, but it didn't matter. I was in love with this ginger boy and he came home with me.He earned his name, Jiskefet (Frisian for Dustbin) by hoovering up his food while standing on his hind legs, before I even had a chance to put the bowl down. Food was the only thing that made him forget his fear of humans.

Within days, he developed a very severe case of cat flu. He was desperately ill, with high fever and his eyes running with yellow discharge. It was quite a challenge to give him his medication and wash out his eyes and put salve in them, but after a few days he seemed to understand we were trying to help him and he relaxed and seemed to be grateful we were treating him. It was a miracle. Within weeks, our feral chap turned into my most loyal admirer, my guardian angel, he worshipped the ground I walked on and followed me everywhere. At night, he would sleep on my bed and cuddle up to me as close as possible. He behaved like he was living in borrowed time, as if he was in a desperate hurry to give and receive love.

For well over 2 years, we were the happiest cat slaves in the world. Then, late one night, a lady found him on the curb, killed by a car. He had broken his neck, but he had not a mark on him. The only proof of the accident was his flopping head when I picked him up to carry him home. My angel had been right, he had indeed been living in borrowed time.

Dordrecht, Netherlands

A Story of Hope

When I was a teenager, I had 5 cats. By the time, I turned 21 , they all had died from leukemia. Back than, I didn't know that much about diseases in cats. I was heartbroken, My mom knew it. I was scared to get another cat.

Flash forward to Oct. 8, 2000. Enter Flossy. my mom was walking Dolly ( our dog) and came across a scared and trembling kitten, nearby with no tags.

My mom saw two little girls nearby and asked for help with the kitten. . I came home fro work that afternoon and found a blue eyed kitten sitting in a cat crate in my bedroom, staring up at me meowing. I let her out and she climbed up in to my arms. My mom walked in and told me what happen.

I looked around for posts on lost kittens. I took her to our vet the next day. The vet said she had no microchip and told me she about 6 weeks old., and there was nothing wrong with her. I continued to look around for lost kitten ads . Nothing. My mom decided to name her. Flossy became my cat. My mom said she was hoping Flossy and I could help each other.

I decided to give her August 1st as her birthday , as that 6 weeks from when my mom found her .

As the months progressed, I became more attached to Flossy . I watched Flossy grow . I started healing. As Flossy's 15th birthday approached, I reflect back on the circumstances that brought Flossy and I together. My mom knew what she was doing.

Flossy became my angel. She helped me heal. Flossy got a forever home with my mom and I . God knew what he was doing that October afternoon when he pointed Flossy out to my mom. I couldn't imagine my life now without Flossy in it. Flossy and my mom showed me that I could heal. We gave each other hope. I got hope that I could heal. Flossy got hope with a forever home.

Adreana F
Glendale, AZ

Dogs Gone Global

If you know me in real life you know that I am single and that I'm very dedicated to my two little dogs that have been with me since their first day on this planet. Simba and Sophie were born in my bed in a little cabin on November 11, 2003. The cabin overlooked Lake Arenal and La Fortuna and was located on the countryside of Tilaran, Guanacaste, in Costa Rica. Their mother was a little long haired chihuahua stray dog with 3 working legs and a big pregnant belly, and considered a nuisance by the owners of Hotel Tilawa where she was dumped. We took the mom in and when she gave birth to those little puppies I totally fell in love... Mama Pequena found a new home with the chef at another hotel in Tamarindo later that year but Simba and Sophie and I were inseparable.

See some snapshots from 2003-2004 : Puppytime in Costa Rica


Sophie and Simba have been with me ever since, traveling from Costa Rica to Chicago to Kauai with visits all over the USA. Todays blog is dedicated to my dogs, they are a huge part of my life and I am so grateful to see them enjoying their golden years. These images were all taken within the last month and although they are old dogs I still call our precious moments together "Puppy Time."

From my 100th blog post:


Heather Ann Ransley
Koloa, HI

Baileys as in 'Grappa' or 'Ouzo'

Since I was a little kid I wanted to have a dog. When I got older the timing never got right with me going to university and starting out on the job. Then I met my now wive and we discussed the issue back and forth, since we were living apart due to work and I travelled a lot for my job. But the topic came up again and again. Finally, in summer 2012, we were on our vacation dogsitting for my sister (which we still do every year). As the vacation drew to an end I was already heartbroken that we had to give the little Jack-Russel-Terror back as a we got a phonecall from friends of ours. They were on Grece at the time and found the sweetest little street puppy at a private shelter quite off the main tracks. The shelter would be closed for winter and the fate of the dogs was unknwon. So, finally, after six years of debating the pros and cons of shelter dogs, pure breds, puppies or adult dogs fate threw us a mixture of all and we took the plunge! Baileys, formerly known as Ouzo (she was from Greece after all but turned out to be female!) flew in all the way from Greece after getting her shots and certificates. 7 days after the initial call we were proud owners of a combination of many pure breeds we were not really prepared for but welcomed anyway. Since we were still on vacation we had no leash and no bed, but lots of love and food, which she junked down like she was starving for quite some time. So she learned to walk off-leash from the very begining... :-) It took quite a while for her to trust us, but patience and treats made us all one hell of a team! She is the star of every party and now proud owner of the major part of our bed (it never hurt her obedience...)! I would not trade her for anything!

Kathrin Kotte
Dresden, Germany
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