14 Love Stories from the SPCA
To celebrate 14 years of serving our community, every day leading up to Valentine's Day, we are going to share a "Love Story" from the SPCA. We are proud of the work we do, and we love to hear how our animals have found their forever and loving homes ... we think you will like the stories too!
Love Story #1: Zazu
Teaching us to live in the moment
We weren't looking to adopt a dog when Zazu came into our lives. We have a beautiful lab/Chesapeake Bay Retriever that we rescued several years ago. We felt like our family was complete for the moment. Then we heard that there was a dog at the SPCA who needed a home. This was a special dog. Zazu has a heart condition that can severely shorten his life. Our kids, Cassidy and Nathan, told us that they didn't care how long Zazu lived, just as long as he had a loving home while he was here. After a visit with the veterinarian at the SPCA, and meeting Zazu, we knew that we had to bring him home.
Adopting "Zaz" has been one of the best decisions we have ever made. He adjusted to our family (or we adjusted to him) immediately. He goes camping with us and loves to cuddle up with us wherever we are sitting. We have a big backyard that he loves to play in with our other dog, Wookie. The love we have gotten from Zazu is beyond compare.
Zazu is very healthy and we are confident he will live a full life with us. He has taught our entire family (and anyone who meets him) to love life right now; none of us knows how long we have. He is a wonderful reminder to all of us to live in the moment.
Love Story #2: Roman
Roman is doing so great! He has his vet appointment today. He's not eating much. I'm sure it's just all the changes he's been through lately, but still wanted him checked out sooner than later.
He is a wonderful watch dog. He had no intention of letting my daughter in the front door until he was sure it was ok. He has a big bark and intimidating growl. He's excellent with my grandkids. He sleeps between their beds and won't let them play outside alone. When they go into the back yard, he goes out and stays out with them till they come back in. He has a dog door that he uses.
We are thrilled to pieces with him. He is exactly what we were looking for and he's already a beloved family member. Even by my extended family that doesn't live with us. Thank you again for letting us have him.
Love Story #3: Hershe
A sweet and loving girl
Just wanted to give you an update. We have re-named Garland to "Hershe" She is so sweet and loving. She likes her new name.
Lucy (which we also adopted from you a few years ago) and Hershe are getting along fantastic. They play together, sleep by each other.
They love going for walks and we take them both for extra playtime up to the school which has a big field they can run and play in.
At night they both have their own bed and love them. The have a doggie door they go in and out so they never have to be to hot or to cold.
I am so glad that we have adopted 2 ABSOLUTELY WONDERFUL dogs from the SPCA. They are both in their forever home and loved very much.
Love Story #4: Marco & Polo
I adopted Marco and Polo, then Purr Baby and Jerry in February of 2009. I went out looking for a kitten though it wasn't yet kitten season, which I didn't know until I started looking. After many trips to the Humane Society and SPCA I finally found two tiny, grey, playful brothers at the SPCA. I was only planning on adopting one of them, but couldn't separate them so I decided to get both of them.
They are the most loving and affectionate cats I have ever had. They are always in the same room as I am, and are my cuddle buddies every night. Polo wakes me up every morning at 7am to remind me that its breakfast time and is my automatic heat blanket whenever I'm sitting on the couch. Marco fetches better than most dogs I know, and likes to romance anyone who visits my home.
Love Story #5: Dutchess
A great companion
We adopted Dutchess (aka Wiggles) from the SPCA 8 months ago. As a dog walking volunteer, I had been around long enough to know which dogs needed a little extra love ... and patience. She is a young girl that really needed someone to commit the time and energy to help her become the wonderful dog that she is. It took time, but we made it!
Dutchess is a great companion for our other dog, Hank. They play tug of war constantly and really enjoy all of the camping and hiking we do together. She went from running like a three month old puppy at a year old to being even faster than Hank. She also learned to swim and loves it very much. Her favorite activity, however, is bounding through the sage brush by our house — no bunny is safe in this neighborhood! Dutchess has quickly become a part of our family and we are so thankful that we took a chance on the "troublemaker" :)
There are so many wonderful dogs at the SPCA that need a forever home. I encourage people to ask which dogs have been there a little longer ... which ones are overdue. You won't regret it.
Love Story #6: Izzy
Finally found her loving & forever home
Izzy came back to us back in April of 2011. She had lived with her family for 8 years and after their kids became old enough to walk and Izzy's sight became impaired the kids would startle her when they ran and she would nip at them. She sat here 10 months before she found her forever home on January 20th.
The lady who fell in love with her understood what it meant to take in a dog that had seeing and hearing problems because she had just lost one that went through that. Izzy found a nice quite home where she doesn't have to share her human with any other kids or pets and just gets to spend her time in a warm home with a comfy bed. Her owner wrote to us telling us that she has adjusted well and has even gone to see the vet. The vet told her that she looks great and that her eye sight may not be as bad as we all thought. She loves her and says she is just the perfect companion!!!
Love Story #7: Boo
When I started volunteering at the SPCA, it was right before the grand opening of the new building. I, not being new to being a shelter volunteer, was certain that like always I would love as many of them I could, but not bring another cat home. Boy, was I in for a surprise!
His name at that time was BoomBoom and he was a little fluff ball in Kitten room B. I had been certain that as soon as we opened on June 11th, Boom Boom would be scooped up and away to his forever home, but he wasn't. So, as days went by, then weeks, I found myself rushing to the SPCA before my volunteer time started to spend time with him. He would always come right to me and that melted my heart. I fought it pretty hard for weeks, but, I should have known I was in trouble because I had already named him Boo (dropping the m) before I even accepted I was bringing him home. And so it was, one day I had stopped in at the SPCA to drop off something to our Volunteer Coordinator and before I knew it, I was sitting in front of my Cat Manager doing paperwork to take Boo home. It wasn't an easy transition for my older Cat, but now my three Kitties are thick as thieves. Boo crawls under the covers with me every night and I don't need an alarm clock, my two older kitties send Boo to wake me up every morning at a quarter to 7 to let me know it is time to feed them. Boo is such a joy and so much fun even when he is bad, which is pretty often. Thankfully it is only minor infractions — like unrolling the toilet paper. I truly believe that our pets pick us and most times they do it when we least expect it. I am blessed ...
Love Story #8: Precious
A happy ending
Precious Kitty came to us as a result of a tragedy: Her owner passed away suddenly and the owner's partner, Ken, was left with nothing. As much as he wanted to keep Precious, he had to leave Reno and her behind. Heartbroken, Ken asked if we could take Precious in and find her a loving home; we did, and Precious was visibly shaken and sad. Ken called weekly to check on Precious, and she slowly but surely came out of her shell with the tons of love we gave her. She blossomed into a beautiful, loving girl with a sweet personality, and a little over a month later, Ken called us saying he had bought a house and was wanting to bring his girl home! They were reunited on September 30th, just as if someone special was watching from above and orchestrating the events that brought them back together! There are angels out there ...
Love Story #9: Vito
Perfect in every way
Vito was adopted out 6 yrs ago then came back because his owner died. He was here for 8 months. Vito also had a tumor on his tail, which we had to amputate here. Vito was very attached to the people here, whenever he went on a walk with the volunteers he would try to drag them back to the shelter so he could be back in his kennel. Our volunteer Ken used to take him into the meet and greet room and take a nap with him on the couch. When vito was adopted, he did not want to leave the shelter and we had to carry him to the new owners car, but now I think he loves being in his new home!
Vito's owner says that he is one of the better dogs he's ever owned. He is perfect in every way! When the owner tells Vito it is time to go for a trip, Vito will run over to his leash, grab it in his mouth, and jump into the truck with it. Vito goes everywhere with him — even his ex-wife loves Vito and she is not a dog lover. The owner says he will recommend the SPCA to everyone he knows because he feels so lucky to have such a fabulous dog!
Love Story #10: Speedy
Not too long ago a Reno resident experienced the tragedy of losing her home to a fire. She not only lost her possessions and a place to call home, she also lost the place her cats called 'home.' All displaced, the woman was given help and shelter, but what about her beloved pets? This is where the SPCA stepped in to offer her cats shelter, love and a chance for a new beginning. However, one cat in particular, 'Shadow' — a large, friendly black male with big gold eyes — needed more than shelter and love.
Shadow came to us with an unknown injury to his back right leg. It hung motionless and useless as his other three legs propelled him along, getting him to where he wanted to go. After examination and x-rays, surgery was preformed to try and repair his leg. Finding what looked like an old fracture, the veterinarian ended up removing the top part of the femur and built a new hip for him.We weren't sure if this would save his leg, but it was certainly worth the try as amputation was the only other alternative. We also knew Shadow would need lots of one-on-one care and extensive physical therapy.
He was placed in foster care with Michelle, our feline manager, where he received daily Reiki therapy and lots of love! Shadow thrived to become an active, playful cat again. About 3 months later, it was determined that Shadow would not need to have his leg amputated. Shadow (now named 'Speedy') was eventually adopted by Michelle where he now lives and plays — continously spoiled — with his 2 other feline friends. He even uses his injured leg by running on the knuckles of his toes! He will always have a funny little gait. But his funny little gait reminds us how making a difference in the life of a special needs animal can make a tremendous difference in our lives. Speedy's big gold eyes convey his unconditional love, and his soft 'meow' could warm the coldest of hearts!
Love Story #11: Carlita & Catdog
A true love story
In 2007, I found myself addicted to walking the SPCA dogs. I had no intention of adopting a dog until I met Carlita. She melted my heart. She had been picked up by animal control after having been dumped alongside a highway. She clearly just had a litter of puppies, however the puppies were nowhere to be found. Carlita was flea ridden and emaciated, having given every last nutrient she had to her puppies. I recall us sneaking away for a hamburger a time or two before I officially adopted her on the 4th of July.
Fast forward a year later when the SPCA called to let me know a stray had come in & looked to be one of Carlita's puppies. The shelter had given her the name Catrina but we call her "Cat" or "Cat-dog." Cat was in some pretty poor shape herself and it took quite a while to cover up her ribcage.
The bond between Carlita & Cat is that of a mother and daughter. Whether the relationship is biological remains a secret to us humans, but the love the two share is touching to say the least. Carlita has shown patience and guidance toward Cat and the two have been inseparable since the day they met. Never a moment of tension, each day is filled with hiking, fetching, road trips, naps and lots of cuddling! Theirs is a true love story!
Love Story #12: Bentley
Perfect in every way
We adopted Bentley a year ago & he has become the best dog we ever had! Bentley is such a gentle soul & loves to teach his new baby brother, Panda.
We are so glad we walked into Petsmart that fateful day last Feb & met our sweet boy.
Thank you for all you do & bringing Bentley to us.
Love Story #13: Danielle & Leo
A perfect pair in the perfect home
Danielle and Leo were adopted out together and what is awesome about this story is that Danielle originally was adopted out back in August of 2009 with her sister Suzette. She was then returned in November of 2011. Since then, she had been adopted out 5 more times and brought back due to house breaking issues. Her whole life she and her sister had been together but we were finding it very difficult to place them together, so Suzette got adopted and Danielle was left alone. We made sure to kennel her up with other small dogs to help her cope with losing her sister, but she didn't seem to mind much because she was always so happy. It didn't matter who came to visit with her she would want to play and cuddle up with anyone she met in the meet and greet room.
My biggest hope for her was that someone with another dog would come in to adopt her so she would still have that sense of companionship with another dog. When Maddie came in to adopt she didn't have another dog. She fell in love with Danielle but wanted to take the night to think on it. Something was brewing in the stars perhaps, because the very next day Leo a young, cute schnauzer went up for adoption, which Maddie had to adopt as well. He came to us because his owner lost his home and he too had spent his life with another dog and was separated.
So fate would see to it that Maddie would fall in love with both of them and they were adopted out together. A staff member and board member just happen to know the family that adopted them and they are happy to report that they have nothing but wonderful things to say about them and how spoiled rotten both of them are right now and that they love them both so much!! I guess sometimes fate has other plans ... there was a reason perhaps that she kept getting returned, perhaps Maddie, Leo and Danielle were all supposed to find each other!
Love Story #14: Panama
Living a comfortable & happy life
Panama was a special boy who needed a special person. His previous owner was taken from him very suddenly and violently; all he knew is that one minute he had a loving parent, and the next minute his world was gone. We could tell Panama had been very loved and well-cared for, but the trauma of his loss was evident in his behavior. He was angry, scared, and very untrusting — but who could blame him? The sound of the cage door closing — as gentle as we were — certainly reminded him of the horrible sounds that took his owner. Soft, gentle voices were only met with hisses. He seemed to be unsure of everything — except love. So love he got, TONS of it, day after day. We watched Panama slowly but surely open up; each day and each little step we took with him softened his anger and brightened his disposition. Soon we were rewarded with a vibrant, handsome and quite flirty gentleman who not only begged for attention, but would talk your ear off too! We knew he would need a special home, and that he got with Judy Klatt! Talk about experienced! Ms Judy was an easy-going lady with funny stories and a warm heart. She was told of Panama's ordeal and that he may not adjust too quickly because of his past. No matter, she understood and accepted him just the way he was (we suspect he did a bit of flirting with her too!)
So Panama went home and is living a comfortable and happy life! Panama shows us that love and patience is a powerful healer, and when we give that to a pet in need we are rewarded numerous times over!