By Amy Ingram
While mourning the loss of my dog, Daisy, a 13-year-old rescue, I decided to volunteer at Saving Grace Animals for Adoption. I missed having a dog around, but it was not the right time to adopt again, as I was in the process of selling my starter home, and buying my next house.
I began volunteering most evenings after work from home, simply by updating the Facebook page of Saving Grace, to show upcoming events, needed supplies, happy stories of recent adoptions, as well as new dogs ready for adoption. My home finally sold, and I bought my new, nicer home and got settled into the neighborhood. All along, my plan was to adopt a rescue in a few months. I pictured an older, calm, housetrained dog in need of a good home.
That plan changed, when Molly at Saving Grace emailed me to post on Facebook photos of a new litter, ready for adoption. So tempting – 5 adorable, chubby, sweet-faced puppies. Rescued at age 3 weeks during a puppy mill raid, with their mom, Ethel, a French bulldog. Dad: unknown, maybe a beagle? I had not planned on adopting a puppy at all, but knew it was a rare opportunity, as they had been fostered in a veterinarian’s office for the past two months, so they were healthy and socialized to people and animals. I kept thinking about the cutest puppy, the white one with tan ears. The next day, I applied to adopt, and was told only two puppies remained, and to arrive by 5pm to adopt. I did not ask which two remained, but was sure the cutest one, was already gone. I arrived and was escorted to two puppies chasing each other in the large back yard – and there was the white puppy with tan ears! I began adoption papers and a name was required. I had scribbled some names earlier while I was at work, but still had not decided: Wiggles, Mr. Pickle, Max, Oliver. The trainer, Karen Sprague, suggested I combine two on my list to Oliver Pickles – loved it! Such a perfect fit to this smiling, happy energy puppy.
I am so fortunate to have adopted that rescue puppy, now almost age two years old. He still has that big smile and exudes happiness. He became a regular dog camper at Care First Animal Hospital at Glenwood, and his litter brother, Tanner, also went to that location, so they reunited to play at times. Oliver Pickles stays very social with camp, local lake walks, and dog friendly businesses in Raleigh, NC. He recently became AKC Good Canine Certified at Teamwork’s by Trainer, Robin Barrows. Future plans are for him to enjoy each day as much as possible in a safe and happy home with me, and for me to be thankful he was rescued in the puppy mill raid, or both our lives would be very different today.
Oliver Pickles has benefited me in so many ways. Firstly, I lost 25 pounds those first few months after I adopted him. LOTS of walks for this high energy little guy. Secondly, I met so many of my new neighbors on those walks, and appreciated so much that my new neighborhood had sidewalks for all the pet owners to enjoy. Lastly, it is amazing how much joy Oliver Pickles brings to all types of people on our walks to local lakes, or dog friendly stores. We get a lot of comments on his big smile, and it really does seem to make a lot of people laugh and return the grin. It encourages me to be more social while we are out and about, which is good for me as well.
I would encourage anyone who wants to add a dog to their life, to please consider any local rescue organizations. Let them know what you are looking for: energy level, breed, age, personality, and they can contact you when they have a good match that will work best for your family.BACK TO NEWS & EVENTS