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Sushi--The determined cocker

Sushi came into our lives when my neighbor rescued him in the middle of the night as he sat in the middle of the street, refusing to move. Apparently, he was determined to get out of whatever environment he had been in, evidenced by the fact that his two canine teeth had been gnawed practically in half. My neighbor said he was determined not to be left behind, as he immediately jumped right into her car as soon as she stopped to check him out. He was a mess, so much so that she could not tell he was a male until after 10 pounds of hair had been removed from him at the vet's. He is the most loving, sweet, gentle creature I have ever met, and he seems so grateful to finally have a good home. We adore him!

Sandra
Decatur, IL

Noelle

We had just lost our Dalmation, Cinders, who was the love of our lives. While my husband was not ready to get another dog, I missed the companionship and missed being greeted when I came home from work. I was looking at the Pet Refuge website and saw a picture of Noelle. I instantly fell in love with her. Against my husband's objections, we went to an adoption event to "meet" her. For me, it was love at first sight. However, it wasn't for my husband until he held her and she rubbed her head in his beard the way that Cinders used to when she wanted to be comforted. I knew she was telling him that he was her new "daddy". His face melted and he told me to fill out the adoption paperwork. We are so happy that we were able to give Noelle her "forever home" and wouldn't trade her for the world!

Judy Melser
South Bend, IN

Mystery cat

When me and my future husband to be were looking for a place to live together, we found this black fluffy cat, starving, under a pine tree. He was hungry, and I happened to have some cat food with me, as I was going back to my apartment to feed my other cats. He was so happy to be fed, and purred up quite a storm. But I couldn't take him with me at the time. I whispered in his ear, "if you still need a home, in two weeks, come and find us."

I had just learned a Polish word that day – the Polish word for cat. So I turned to my boyfriend and said "I will call him Kotehok."

We moved into the neighbourhood, and with a lot of help from our friends. As my friend Paul was moving in our LAST piece of furniture, in marched the cat. "Well, this is a nice kitty," he said. And he was. But hungry, underweight, with broken whiskers, matted fur, a foot infection and a hole in his ear. When we took him to the vet, he remained calm as he got all his shots, and had all the matted fur shaved. He just lay there, as though to say, "well, if this is what I have to do to adopt you guys." Now Kotehok is a healthy weight (19 or so pounds!) and a huge cat (he always had huge paws, and now looks like a miniature lion to boot). One of our treat-or-treaters mistook him for a dog once! Now our resident breaker of tea cups, Ko enjoys having company over and being our "door greeter."

Jocelyn
Calgary, AB, Canada

Love at first site.

My Grandpa had cancer so my uncle Geoff went to the pound. He didn't want a little puppy because it would jump all over him.

He went into the yard and a dog came running up to him. He knew this was the dog. When he got home the dog ran up to my grandpa and lay down at his feet. His new name is Whisky. That was about seven years ago and he's getting old. He's had a stroke and is a bit deaf and blind but we love him.

Kelly
sydney, Australia

MY BABY "MIA"

I do not own a camera, but I make sure that I love & feed my baby first. She has her shots, treats & license. When I got out of the hospital after 11 months, I was in a wheelchair, & I had lost everything,. I was alone, & lonely, & I felt like a burden to my son who was taking care of me.

My lifelong friend Sandy, called me 1 day & told me she had a present 4 me and she was on her way over. I had already heard about a dog she knew of that had been mistreated & abused. When she got to my house, Mia jumped out of the car & up in my lap & looked me right in the eye as if to say "I'm finally home" and she kissed my face. She was bone thin and afraid of every sound, & of the dark. Now 16 months later, she is a plump, happy pit-bull, who does NOT know she's a dog.

We call her "The Smiling Smoocher", & she sleeps in bed with me.

Gina Corser
Yucca Valley, CA

Born of the Ashes

Ashly was born to a feral mamma during the awful Station fire, August 2009, that burned within a half mile of us. She and her sister Cinderella survived their first 2 weeks of life in dense smoke, 24/7. Ashly has no clue that she can't use her hind legs, she climbs all over the place and keeps right up with Cinderella and her mamma running from one end of the house to the other. Adding 3 at once to the house has been interesting but I'm glad I kept them together.

Jane
Sunland, CA

Love Among the Ruins

On December 9, 2009 my house burned while I was out with my two lab dogs Bedford and Benson. Sophie a small nine year old Maine Coon cat went missing for several days in some the most brutal of winter weather. We called and searched for her, but could not find her. Finally, I took Bedford who Sophie adores to search for her. True to his sniffer heritage, Bedford located her beneath a shed, and managed to coax her out. He really is a true blue rescue dog and Sophie's hero!

Robin E. Crickmer
Lunenburg, NS, Canada

Stray Cats

15 Years ago This young cat came to my window at 7:00 am in the morning

It was a female cat,and she was pretty hungry,so I opened my kitchen window,and I let her in.I asked around if anybody had lost a cat,and the

people in town where I live,all said no they hadn't lost a cat. So I kept her,

and I've had her for 15 years. When she came in the house it was winter,

and she had lost the tip of her ears,both ears,they had frozen off,at the

temputure we had for a few days,was 35 below 0,so you can see why she

lost the tips of her ears,and now she is so spoiled to us,that we hate to

loss her now.Also now she has lumps on the side of her skin,and I'm

afraid that I'll have to put her to sleep,I don't want to,but I have no choice.

She still looks healthy,but I think It's just a matter of time.

Now last year,there was a large group of cats in my town that nobody wanted to clam,so the town had a shelter near by that came in and picked

up all the cats,about 25 of them,and in that bunch there was one black

cat that the shelter couldn't catch,and this cat comes around my house

and I feed the cat every day,now this has been going on for a whole year,

but I don't mind,because I'm saving It's life,and maybe some day this cat

will come to me as a friend,I know I'm feeding it good,because the cat is

getting fat,so I know it will live around my house,even if hes doesn't come

in the house.He's starting to come near me for a little while,but not for long. I love these cats very much.

Lucien from Maine

Lucien Parent
Eagle Lake Maine 04739, ME

My Katrina Baby

Ziggy originally came to me as a foster when my local humane society rescued 60 dogs from the ravages of Hurricane Katrina. She fit in so well with the two dogs I currently had, it didn't take long before I realized she had found her forever home with me.

Debbie
Prince Frederick, MD

Max's Fourth Life

Max (aka Ruffy, Sarge) is a lovable 2 year old chocolate Lab/Chesapeake Bay Cross of some mysterious kind that we adopted from our local shelter. Max had been returned three times. He was likable, but unruly. No one had taken the time to train him. The shelter recommended him because he was good around kids and cats.

He was used to doing what he wanted. I enrolled him in training classes in a first step. In the mean time, I had to break some habits. With love and training...let me say that an 80 pound dog is heavy, but my 4 year old daughter can take Max for a walk. After one year, he is finally coming out of his shell.

Denise
Great Falls, MT
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