Cynthia and Champ: Rescue or shelter: Young Williams Animal Center, TN/ Age at adoption: 12/ Year adopted: 2009.
After we brought Champ home 4 years ago, I wasn’t sure he would be with us for even a few months. He had been dumped at the shelter by his owner at the age of 12. He even had to be neutered before he could leave the shelter. What a traumatic experience he had to endure at a time in life when he should have been taking it easy. We brought him home and knew he had to stay with us.
He settled in after a few weeks and just became part of the family.
Another piece of my heart is missing now but the Rainbow Bridge is a better place with him in it. I sure miss seeing his head pop up every time I enter the room though! Cynthia B.
Geri and Lee: Rescue or shelter: All-Star Greyhound/ Age at adoption: 10 yrs, 10 mths/ Year adopted: Aug 2012.
Lee, an energetic and goofy almost-11 year old retired racing greyhound came to our family in 2012. He had been with his previous owner for 5 1/2 years, when she decided she could no longer keep him due to her college schedule.
Lee has more energy than any greyhound I’ve ever seen! We can’t remember what our lives were like before he got here, with his boundless energy and loving heart. If we leave for even a short time, he greets us at the door like we have been gone forever and he’s ecstatic that we’ve come back home. He makes me smile every day.
Lee moved into our house, into our lives and into our hearts. Oh, and into our chair. Just like a 2 year old, he’s all play-play-play, then sleep-sleep-sleep. That’s a lot of dog to fold up when it’s time to rest! Geri W.
Kathie and Miss Jess: Rescue or shelter: local Golden Retriever rescue/ Age at adoption: 14/ Year adopted: 2007.
In 2007 my then husband and I became involved with transporting dogs for a Golden Retriever Rescue. I guess we failed in that we ended up with three of the best dogs a person could have share their heart and their home. One of these was Miss Jess as we called her. She was a week shy of her 15th birthday(Tax Day) when she came to live with us. Her owner warned me she had food aggression issues and would bite. So home we went with this cranky, warty silver faced girl with the breathy voice of a lifelong smoker. Her back legs would not bend and her teeth were almost nonexistent but she was a true beauty. At first aloof, it took about a week for Jess to come into herself. She liked things her way, would bark only when she wanted one of the other dogs moved out of her way, and we quickly found out those little stick back legs were deceptive. They could carry this old gal away faster than one could ever imagine. We came to admire Jess for the spunk she showed after leaving the only home she ever knew at her ripe age and thrown into a new nest of 8 and never missing a beat. She loved life, love food, loved to ride. We lost her in Sept of 2009. She will never be forgotten as she gave us far more than she ever required. The attached is my favorite picture of our gal as it shows what a quiet dignified beauty she was.
The more people I meet, the more I love my dogs…..Kathie H.
Maureen and Shadow: Rescue or shelter: Labradors and Friends Rescue of San Diego/ Age at adoption: 10.5/ Year adopted: 2012.
Hello! I never enter anything but this is a pretty important topic and if this can help someone else change their mind about adopting an older dog then I have to try!
[Edited for length/talks about losing another dog, Penny.] Our cousin works for placing senior dogs only and knew our only criteria, must be a senior. She spotted Shadow (boxer/black lab) and we had to at least see her. She had one sole owner who after 10 1/2 years for whatever reason couldn’t take her anymore. She’s amazing. She’s not Penny, no dog will ever be Penny, but she was now our Shadow. We’ve only had her for 7 months but… feels like she’s been a part of our family since she was born. Everyday I say who the heck let you go, how’d we get so lucky.
Everyone always says, well aren’t you sad she will die in a few years? I say those years will be the best of mine and hers so why wouldn’t I want to enjoy that. She’s old, but she’s not dead! The picture attached is the first time I took her to the beach since we had her. It was like she’s been doing it for a million years.
Thanks for holding this contest regardless I just hope it brings awareness to adopting older dogs because they are amazing, and for the rest of my life it will just be senior dogs.
Thanks for listening! All the best, Maureen C. W.
Dina and Tripp: Rescue or shelter: Private rescue/ Age at adoption: 14/ Year adopted: Aug 2006.
Tripp was a curious pup who would get out of his original family’s yard frequently and would be picked up by a local shelter regularly. After living with the family for 14 years, and after kid #6 arrived, they told the shelter to keep Tripp, they “had too many kids to deal with” and “he was too old to take care of anymore anyway.” He was missing most of his fur, his teeth were rotten and he had lots of skin flaking off, but he was a kind soul with a happy spirit. He never tried running away from our house in the 4 years we had him. He spent the rest of his life knowing he was loved. Dina D.
Julie and Charlie :Rescue or shelter: Phinney’s Friends/ Age at adoption: 12/ Year adopted: 2013
I already have three of my own dogs and live with my boyfriend who has one. I wasn’t looking for another dog. But, Charlie’s owner could no longer care for him. He was being fostered by the doggy daycare I work for through Phinney’s Friends who were trying to help the owner. I was worried because Charlie is old (he’ll be 13 in August) and didn’t think he’d have much of a chance of getting adopted. And doggy daycare was fine short-term, but wouldn’t work as a home in Charlie’s final years. I contacted Cocker Spaniel Rescue, but I became concerned when they changed their minds about vetting him after I told them a co-worker would take him home and foster him, and may be interested in adopting him. I didn’t feel Charlie’s best interests were being considered. So, after having taken him home for a week, I asked my boyfriend if we could keep him. Shockingly, he said yes. We live in a tiny 3 room home. With 5 dogs. But, I wouldn’t change a thing. I love Charlie more and more every day. I didn’t expect to fall in love with him, but that’s exactly what happened. Julie B.
Penny and Ember: Rescue or shelter: local Petsmart/ Age at adoption: 10/ Year adopted: not listed.
I had been without a cat in my life for 8 years [edited for length], and… had originally planned on getting an adorable little orange ball of fluff, aka: a kitten, but this was a grown cat. Not only was it older, they had figured that it was about 10 years old, but it was dirty, didn’t seem to care if anybody was there or not… had health issues, had been living in a field by itself just trying to stay alive… I asked if I could pick her up, and then did. She didn’t seem to want to be picked up, but once I got her up in my arms, not only did she settle down, but she started purring, and purring so hard, she was slobbering on me! She even had my glasses all smudged up! But, then I started thinking about how I was wanting a young, healthy, perfect kitten, so I put this cat back and left the store. I got in my car and drive away. Imagine my surprise to discover that I was parking in front of PetSmart, and walking up to the guy in charge of the rescues and telling this man, “I HAVE TO HAVE MY CAT!”
The next time I was driving away from Petsmart, I had ‘Ember’, in a carrier in the seat next to me, and a trunk full of cat essentials! People tell me that I probably saved her life, but I think she saved mine as well. Thank you for letting me share… Penny W.
Lee and Rabbi Otis :Rescue or shelter: Found on the Long Island Expressway/ Age at adoption: 15/ Year adopted: Not listed.
im rabbi Otis im twenty years old five years ago I was dumped on the long iland expressway in new York city they dumped me because I had speacil needs I was fifteen then they were going to put me to sleep till lee found me now I,m her asst I go to childens hospitals and hospuses were they have cancer also I go to nurseing homes and me and my mom lee sing to the childen everyone what,s to hole me so I let them I get them to forget there troubles for a little while im seen worldwide I also my moms asst for the bark mitvhas she created… im the oldest living dog on tv and magazines and seen worldwide I just put a like on your page hope we can be friend lots of sloppy licks to you rabbi otis Lee D.
Linda and Tibby :Rescue or shelter: Little Shelter Animal Rescue, Huntington, NY/ Age at adoption: Not listed/ Year adopted: 2009.
Editor’s Note:We loved Linda’s entry (a beautiful poem!) so much – and felt it captured the spirit of our exhibit so gracefully – that we decided to make it a staff pick. You can read Linda’s poem and see a picture of Tibby, the ever-young-at-heart pup who inspired her, by clicking here.
Beverly and Nora: Rescue or shelter: Viola Lawson Animal Shelter, Alexandria, VA/ Age at adoption: 10/ Year adopted: Not listed.
Nora had 2 previous owners and the last gave her up after 6 years and due to “allergies.” I stuck my finger between the bars of her cage and she came right up and licked it! I knew she had to come home with me. I decided that whatever time we had together, I would make sure she was happy and would forget her old life. Her fur was oily, her skin dry, was overweight and needed 7 teeth extracted! She had been neglected because her last owners never held her, petted her, played with her nor paid her any attention (other than feeding her) for 6 years! And, yet, she was the sweetest girl; she would sleep on my pillow with her nose in my ear! She had to be with me on the couch all the time. She truly had 9 lives, and several times we thought for sure she had enough of this world, but every time she must have decided it wasn’t time and stuck around. That is until she was 15 years old and stopped eating and then would vomit what was given her through a nose feeding tube. I hated saying goodbye but it was time. She enriched my life so so much. I still miss her. Beverly L.
Susan and Turbo: Rescue or shelter: South Los Angeles Shelter/ Age at adoption: 9/ Year adopted: Aug 2010.
My name is Turbo, I was rescued from the South Los Angeles Shelter in October 2010, diagnosed with Pancreatic Cancer in November of 2010. I didn’t stand a chance to be rescued because I had a cataract in one eye and was a senior at 9 years in the shelter. My owner never came to reclaim me so I was left for adoption at the shelter. My human companion rescued me and has been my best human friend for the past three years. I have followers on my Twitter account, my Limited Edition 2013 Calendar sold out, and I’m living the good life thanks to my devoted human companion and my excellent doctor at Bay Cities Vet Hospital (Dr. Thornbury) in Marina del Rey. I’m very special, love kids, dogs, treats, rides in the car and sleeping with my human in the bed. I have lost my vision but I am still able to find my human and obey commands. Susan S.
JoAnne and Hash: Rescue or shelter: Private rescue/ Age at adoption: 11/ Year adopted: 2013.
We met Hash back on St. Pats weekend this year and he stole our hearts! Hash was surrendered by his family of 10 years :( he had his 11th birthday at the shelter. I found his pic on FB posted by a woman who pulled him from the shelter and was fostering him until she could find him a permanent home. I scooped him up right quick! Our 10 year old female lab, Chloe took him in like it was her job to do so..showed him where the food was, the bed and where we ‘hide’ the treats. They are the best of buds and love hanging, lounging, camping and walking together. Blessed are we for getting united with this old charmer…our love for him endless. ♥ JoAnne R.
Holly and Lucian: Rescue or shelter: Ingham County Animal Shelter, MI/ Age at adoption: 7/ Year adopted: Aug 2006.
Back in March of 2006 I was at Ingham County Animal control. I decided to pull a senior Doberman to foster. He was clearly a senior and missing 1/2 of his hair. I figured with those 2 black marks, he wouldn’t get adopted. I was worried he was heartworm positive too. I brought him to my house and within 24 hours of arriving, I pretty much knew he wasn’t ever leaving. We were fortunate that it wasn’t heartworm that caused his hair loss, but an unregulated thyroid condition. 6 months after I adopted him myself, I did get in touch with prior owners who told me that “the old man” was around 7 years old. The attached pictures of him (Thank you Express Yourself Photography!) were done just 2 months ago.
Don’t be afraid to lose your heart to a senior dog because they might not be around as long. Maybe they will, maybe they won’t. I can tell you this, if Lucian had only lived one more year, I would do it again in a heartbeat. Sincerely, Holly T.
Karyn and Brittany: Rescue or shelter: Michigan Humane Society/ Age at adoption: 6/ Year adopted: Aug 2008.
I adopted Brittany from the Michigan Humane Society on 3/2/2008. I knew Brittany was meant for us when I laid eyes on her. I did not care that she was 6 years old, had horrible teeth and was getting over an ear infection. I was in love. I spent my entire tax return that year getting Brittany’s teeth fixed and now she chews like a champ.
Brittany fit right in with me and my husband and instantly became our “daughter.”
Fast forward to 2011 – I gave birth to my daughter on 2/2/2011. From the minute Emily came in the door with me and my husband Brittany became her “mother hound.” Brittany looks after and loves Emily as if Emily was her puppy. Emily is now two years old and Brittany is 11. Emily and Brittany have a special bond. “The Girls,” as I call them, are always so happy to see each other when we come home from an outing. Brittany is older now and moving a little slower but always has time for a cuddle with her “puppy.” I can’t imagine life without that wonderful hound. Karyn B.
Doreen and Fred: Rescue or shelter: Michigan Humane Society/ Age at adoption: 6-8 years old/ Year adopted: 2007.
I just wanted to share a little about my dog Fred, who I adopted from the Michigan Humane Society. He is an amazing dog. He was about 6-8 years old when I adopted him. They didn’t know his exact age and I think they guessed a bit older because he has Cow Hocked back legs. He came from the Humane Society in KY because nobody adopted him down there. I have had him for 5 years now. Since I have adopted him, we now do the Pet A Pet program and visit nursing homes. I think he thinks it’s his DREAM JOB!! Having someone pet him for an hour…..I bet he thinks he has died and gone to heaven. He enjoys it so much. My other 2 dogs that I had at the time got along with him from the start. He quickly became bast buds with my one male dog, Happy. they would both lay around on the same doggy bed and lay by each other in the yard after they went exploring together. It breaks my heart to think of how many times he was passed up and looked over in the shelter because of his age. He has proven to be the best dog I have ever had. He could look at you all day long with his soulful eyes. And he’d be happy to do just that. I’m so blessed to have him in my life and have enjoyed every minute he’s been with us. I only wish I knew him since he was a pup. Thank you for taking the time to read about the senior dog that I adopted. FRED!!!!
I LOVE YOU FRED!!! =) Doreen B.
Anita and Jed: Rescue or shelter: Guardian Animal Angel Rescue/ Age at adoption: 6.5/ Year adopted: Aug 2009.
[Edited for length] … Ideally I was hoping to find a dog somewhat smaller than (first dog) Harley’s 70 pounds, maybe one that could snuggle on my lap…
Then, fate stepped in. A family walked up to the adoption table with a large dog. No, a gigantic dog. The man seemed to have been crying. After he talked quietly to the rescue ladies… both of them began to cry… Turns out this family had adopted the Anatolian Shepherd six years earlier from this same rescue. They were now surrendering him because they didn’t want him anymore….
One of the volunteers who saw me watching told me the whole story. The rescue group had saved “Jed” and his sister as puppies from a bag that had been tossed out the window of a car, on a freeway! Both puppies were in very bad shape [but were saved]…
But here we were – Jed was being returned to the very shelter that first saved him… but now he was 6 years old, 135 pounds, scarred up and terrified. I heard the volunteers tell his “family” that in all likelihood Jed would live out his life in a cage at their no-kill shelter… tears were streaming down my face. I knew in my heart that giant dog Jed was “my dog”. [He] might not be the lap dog I was hoping for, but we might be the last hope for him.
The volunteers started crying all over again when they realized Jed had a new family before his old one ever left the building. The four of us have been a family now for 4 years; Jed is the very best dog we could ever have asked for… Anita G.
PS: I kind of did get the lap dog I wanted :)
Rachel and Sadie: Rescue or shelter: Huron Valley Humane Society/ Age at adoption: 7/ Year adopted: 2011.
We adopted our little girl Sadie when she was seven years old from the Huron Valley Humane Society in Ann Arbor. I saw her in a cage with a sign reading she was not ready for adoption. I found out she had heartworm and needed clearance before she could leave. I asked if I could spend one on one time with her anyway which to my delight they said yes. We sat down in the room and she crawled into my lap, instant love. She has now been a part of our family for two years. She is the most loving being! My dad constantly brags about his Grandog and she is a beloved member of our neighborhood. I can’t say enough how great the experience of adopting a senior dog has been. We are blessed to have her on our lives! Rachel R.
Maryanna and Sal Cat: Rescue or shelter: Cat’s Cradle/ Age at adoption: 10/ Year adopted: 2007.
Hello! Here is my senior cat adoption story:
One day my husband went to the store to buy cat food… he came home with a bag of cat chow and a story about this awesome cat that was available for adoption. Sal Cat was ten years old when we brought him home and was a wonderful companion for 5 1/2 years after that. He was a big, lovable boy with bad breath and a constant desire to sit on any lap that was available. Prone to bouts of insanity brought on by anything that involved food, Sal was a constant culinary adviser in the kitchen and a notorious thief with a weakness for doughnuts. Despite Sal Cat’s shenanigans, we loved him immensely and enjoyed every minute with him. I will never regret the decision we made to adopt him, only that our time with him wasn’t long enough. Sal was the sweetest cat I have ever interacted with, and because of him I will always leave my heart open to another opportunity to adopt a senior animal. Thank you, Maryanna Z.
Carin and Buddy: Rescue or shelter: Private Rescue/ Age at adoption: 8/ Year adopted: 2010.
[Edited for length/Buddy was homeless due to owners’ divorce… Carin’s family has had several rescues…] Buddy, however, was by far, the best dog we’ve ever had the pleasure of knowing. He exuded gentleness and joy! His love was strong for this adopted family and our love just as strong in return… We allowed Buddy to sit on our couch with us, walked him daily, played with him – even though he was awkward at chasing a ball, could never catch a tennis ball, and appeared to resonate the word “Dufus” – and he engaged everyone he came into contact with… We only had Buddy for a little over a year. He came down with a liver dysfunction and to ease his suffering, we had him euthanized. People say to me, “How could you rescue an older dog? You won’t get much time with them.” I say, “Yes, that’s true, but the time that you do get – is unforgettable!… Would I rescue another senior dog? Absolutely. No hesitation whatsoever. I’ve even put on my Bucket List to open a retirement home for senior dogs wherein each dog would have their own comfy couch! Carin B.
Tanya and Bruno: Rescue or shelter: Joplin Humane Society, Animal Adoption & Resource Center/ Age at adoption: Not listed/ Year adopted: 2012.
I initially fostered Turbo, now Bruno, but after just a few short days I found myself worrying that the people that dumped him with no regard for his fears, health or age would try to come back to get him. On February 14, 2013, I decided to adopt him as a Valentine gift to him, his now siblings and myself. Tanya G.
Christy and Odie: Rescue or shelter: Chances Angel & Rescue Education and Northeastern Boxer Rescue/ Age at adoption: 7/ Year adopted: 2011.
I remember the moment I received the email plea to save Odie’s life. Odie was in a high kill gassing shelter in NC waiting for someone to rescue him. I am a volunteer with the Northeastern Boxer Rescue so I receive hundreds of emails on a weekly basis. Odie’s picture however was haunting me throughout the day.. That evening I put a call into Rhonda (founder of C.A.R.E.) and discovered Odie had not been spoken for. Without hesitation, I told Rhonda I would take him.
Odie was estimated to be 7 years old. By the looks of him physically he had not been well taken care of and extremely HW+. Odie managed to pull through the heartworm treatment enjoying his senior years laying on the sofa, cuddling up with our other resident dogs, daily walks and playing with our 3 year old son. Odie was our son’s first rescue dog that became his best friend! Unfortunately, Odie had more heart issues than we were aware of and that he somehow managed to keep hidden until his last days. Odie made his journey to the rainbow bridge Memorial Day weekend, 2013. We were blessed to have him in our life! Christy G.
Laura and Tinga: Rescue or shelter: Peace of Mind Dog Rescue/ Age at adoption: 6/ Year adopted: Aug 2011.
We adopted our dog Tinga (adopted name: Daisy) in November of 2011 and she was six years old at the time. We adopted her from Peace of Mind Dog Rescue in Pacific Grove, California. As college students we wanted an older dog, and we hoped to be able to give her a loving home and a happy life. We fell in love immediately; Tinga was everything we ever hoped for. Unfortunately, two months later, the unthinkable happened and her back legs became completely paralyzed. After visiting many doctors we were faced with the choice of a $5,000 surgery that we could not afford or to have Tinga put down. We were devastated at even the mere thought of putting this dog down; although we had only had her for two months, she was already a member of our family. Peace of Mind answered our prayers and offered to pay for the surgery. Tinga went under the knife that day [despite a poor prognosis/ edited for length]… Now, more than a year later, Tinga enjoys two long walks a day and is healthier than ever. She can walk almost completely normal and is the biggest lover of life we know. Peace of Mind saved our dog’s life and we will be forever grateful for that. Laura B. & Hayden M.
Lee Ann and Benny: Rescue or shelter: Kris Kelly Foundation & Pasadena Animal Shelter/ Age at adoption: 10/ Year adopted: 2010.
I got a call from the Kris Kelly Foundation at Christmas time asking me if I could foster a dog from the Pasadena Shelter. I was hesitant but allowed myself to say yes. Within a couple of days of getting Benny (the name I gave him) he seemed quite bonded with me. I tried to take him to foster events and when someone was interested he literally screamed if they tried to take him. Benny and I sat down one day and I looked into his eyes and just saw the pain he had over his owners who had taken him to the shelter and dropped him off. Benny became my soul mate and is the light of my life each and every day. I can’t imagine missing the cuteness of this dog. He is amazing and I will love him for the rest of my life. Lee Ann W.
Kimberly and Charlie: Rescue or shelter: Private rescue/Craigslist/ Age at adoption: 17.5/ Year adopted: 2011.
I wasn’t looking for another dog after having just lost the love of my life a month before – a little 7lb scruff named Twinkie I had rescued and loved for four years before she died unexpectedly. I guess I’d like to think that she had her paws in my actions that night, though.
“17 year old Silky Terrier”read the ad title. Charlie was not only a senior, but blind and deaf and his people had two days to find a home. Two days after he gave them over 17 years. Raging inside, I wrote an email to the reply address. And then I called one of my good friends and asked her to talk me out of going to get him, knowing full well she would offer to drive.
Charlie came to my home covered in mats, nails curled and terrified. I had no idea how long he would last at that age; I only knew I had to give him a home and the love as he deserved and make Twinkie’s death mean something.
And mean something it has. Two years later, I couldn’t love Charlie more if I had been with him all his life. Kimberly B.
Linda and Luke: Rescue or shelter: Animal Aid of Boca Raton/ Age at adoption: 14/ Year adopted: 2010.
I met Luke while I was a volunteer at a rescue in Boca Raton. They saved him from a high kill shelter. He was staring up at me and I could see in his eyes that he wanted to go home with me. I knew if I picked him up that’s exactly what would happen. So what did I do … pick him up and home he went. That was 3 years ago. At first I thought geeze he’s old and my heart will be broken if he was to die so soon. I realized it’s not about me but all about him.” I need to give him everything he needs. He deserves it. When he leaves to go over the bridge I want him to know security, comfort, love and joy. My boy has no teeth, he is blind in one eye, he doesn’t walk very well. He had to have very large oxalate stones removed a few months after adopting him. He also has a 3/4 heart murmur. He’s a survivor. He makes me smile, laugh and is the most friendly little dog I have ever met. He does his best to run with the other fur babies in the house and follows me around like a shadow. Every minute of every day is such a blessing with him. I can only encourage other people to adopt a senior dog. Once you’ve opened your home and heart to a senior dog you’ll want to continue to do so and encourage others. They are the most loving, loyal and funny dogs you’ll ever want to meet. Linda M.
Ann and Milo: Rescue or shelter: Michigan Humane Society/ Age at adoption: 10/ Year adopted: 2010.
Milo, a cairn/silky terrier mix, isn’t prone to frosted face, and in fact, you would never know he’s a senior dog if you haven’t seen his vet records. In fact, his nickname is “Flea” because he’s so bouncy. His vertical is very impressive! A former Michigan Humane Society employee, I first fell in love with Milo when my coworker, who was in charge of the MHS foster program, showed me a picture of him. Milo was an owner surrender, and his former owners indicated that they could no longer afford to keep him. I think that animals surrendered to shelters in their golden years, when they should be confident of their families’ care until the end of their days, must feel particularly betrayed and confused. Milo did not adjust well to the shelter and quickly contracted a respiratory infection. A wonderful foster parent gave him the medicine and TLC he needed to recover. I met him, adopted him, and he’s been part of our family ever since. He will be with us until it is his time to go to the Rainbow Bridge.
The photo above is of Milo enjoying the yard. We call this pose “Noble Puppy Sniffs the Wind.” Thank you for promoting the wonderful gifts that senior dogs have to offer! Best, Ann G.
Lori and Tammy: Rescue or shelter: spcaLA/ Age at adoption: 7/ Year adopted: 2013.
This is Tammy, she is 7 years old. I adopted her almost two months ago from the spcaLA. I had recently lost my other little dog, Doris, to heart problems. She was 11. I wasn’t sure if I was ready to get another dog, but after 20 long days of missing Doris and not even wanting to go into my empty house, I stopped by the shelter. I saw a lot of young dogs and puppies that were adorable, but until I saw Tammy, I wasn’t swayed. When Tammy and I saw each other, it was like we knew that both of our hearts could stop hurting so much and start loving again. I knew Doris would have approved. I went back three different times to see and play with her, and then made it final. She is so sweet and so smart with great manners. I sometimes wonder about her past life before she was taken into the shelter in February. I think she was loved and well taken care of. Maybe her owner passed away or fell on hard times. I wish I could tell them that Tammy is very loved and is having fun almost every minute of the day. I am glad she waited for me to come to the shelter that day, she has helped to replenish my heart. Lori L.