During the art contest, we collected a lot of great stories. Though these are not the winners, they are still worthy of sharing... Enjoy!
Hank - Robertson Family
I am writing to submit Hank's story for your art piece contest. His photo is attached.
Hank is a survivor. I first met Hank through petfinder.com when I began thinking about getting a second dog as a companion for both me and my blue heeler Charlie. Hank is a tripod and was listed as a special needs dog.
On Sunday, April 24, 2016 I visited the Plano Animal Shelter "just to look" at Hank. When he burst out with the handler, it was clear he was a very happy dog. We hung out in the outdoor runs for a little while and he began to work his charm immediately. As I visited with the handler, he jumped up and gave kisses. I decided to retrieve Charlie to see how the two would get along. As Forest Gump says, they were like peas and carrots! However, I was a little nervous because he was a tripod. Charlie and I left without Hank that day.
The following Tuesday I decided to take Charlie to visit Hank again. (Mind you, we were "just looking.") They played in the outdoor kennels again and before I knew it, Hank was in the backseat having his "jail break" picture taken. When we got back home, we were ALL a little nervous. Charlie was curious, I was wondering if Hank was housebroken (he was), and Hank was happy to be in a home.
It never dawned on me to ask the shelter how Hank lost his leg. I think it was in part because he got around so well that I assumed he was either born without it or it happened a very long time ago. Then, Hank refused to go down the stairs. For the first few days I carried him up and down, up and down. At 47 pounds, it wasn't exactly easy - he needed to learn how to do it. I tried everything I could think of and then it dawned on me to get Charlie. Once he had Charlie by his side, he wasn't afraid to go down the stairs. Peas and carrots.
A couple of weeks later, I decided to find out why Hank lost his leg. I called the shelter and all they knew was that he was a transfer from another shelter. I called that shelter and they told me that he had been brought in as a stray in January 2016. Then, towards the end of February two big dogs broke into his kennel and attacked him. He had to have his leg amputated as a result. When I adopted him in April, he had only been without it for about 2 months. I was absolutely shocked.
While Hank is a very happy dog, he has occasional anxiety and PTSD (post traumatic stress disorder) which is understandable given his experience. With the help of dog behaviorist Ryan Petersen of Peach Acres, I am learning how to build Hank's confidence (and my own) and reduce his anxiety and reactions in stressful situations. Hank has taught me that even though we have anxieties and insecurities, these challenges can be met and overcome with support and love.
Thanks for your consideration!
Pippa - Kolb-Torres Family
Hello, this is Pippa. I decided to adopt her after learning that she had been adopted earlier and returned. So we decided to give this sweet girl another chance and so she joined our family in March of 2012. She was about 6-7 (years old). She quickly realized this was her permanent home and family. She was happy, played a little rough by biting your hands but she quickly learned that we didn't play rough. She also came with a heart problem which we addressed and has had a pretty easy cool life. She loves her walk and her treats but unfortunately her heart is giving up slowly and so walks are hard she still enjoy the Plano parks and now travels in style.
Pounder & Dallas - Fields Family
I wanted to share the story of two kittens I adopted from the Plano Animal Shelter. I had just moved out of my parent’s home three weeks prior and was now sharing an apartment with my older brother. It was certainly a time for change for us. I knew I wanted to experience the joy and love of an animal again after my dog passed a few years prior.
I asked my brother Steven to go to the shelter and see what he thought since he would be living with them as well. He arrived before I did, as I was a vet tech at the time, and began to look around. This is September 2011 and the Plano Animal shelter was getting ready to renovate their cat condos. Steven looked around at both the cats and dogs available for adoption, but these two kittens in the front kept catching his attention.
They were very small, just over 2 pounds, 12-weeks-old and insanely precocious. The Animal Shelter was having special to find homes for as many cats as possible to allow for the renovations, and so they were $20 a piece. They were the last of their litter that was born at the shelter from a pregnant momma cat. That's the first day we called them, “the clearance kittens.”
I made it to the shelter as Steven was signing the last of the paperwork and setting the cats into a cardboard carry box. Steven stopped by his job at the movie theater to show off his new kittens and of course everyone fawned and swooned over them.
I went to Target to buy them the necessary supplies and stopped at PetSmart for their first bag of kitten kibble. When let out of the cardboard box, the cats were quite curious of their new surroundings and these two new people in their lives. We watched them grow, took them to the doctor when we discovered one of them had a food allergy and have loved them fiercely over the last six years. We celebrate every birthday with a new cat tree and some yummy "vet-approved" wet food.
We were so fortunate that we adopted from the Plano Animal shelter these two very small kittens that turned into the best clearance purchase I've ever made.