We all know about the 12 Days of Christmas—the famous holiday carol about a lucky recipient receiving a series of gifts from their loved one. Although gifts can be a nice gesture, most can agree that the true joy of Christmas is being able to spend time at home surrounded by friends and family. Pets are entitled to the same comforts during the holidays, but unfortunately for the thousands of abandoned pets across the country, this isn’t always the case.
There are those pets who are lucky enough to receive the gift of love during the holidays—including those who may have not been ever able to experience this luxury before. In light of the season of giving, we’re offering 12 heartwarming pet adoption stories. These once-abandoned pets finally found their forever homes and are able to spend this Christmas surrounded by the best gift of all—love.
By Nichole Dandrea, Social Media Community Manager at Best Friends Animal Society, Atlanta
We have so many dogs that break the myths surrounding shelter dogs. One of the pet adoption stories that comes to mind is Guava’s pet rescue dog story, who I recently just fostered, so I can speak from personal experience.
She was an owner surrender to a local dog shelter, along with her Toy Poodle brother, Kiwi. Many local pet rescues that were at the dog shelter wanted to rescue Kiwi, but not Guava, since Kiwi was a small Toy Poodle and easily adoptable. Guava was larger, at about 40 pounds, and it was a mystery as to what breed mix she could be. Her body was stocky and muscular, and her face looked a little like Beagle mixed with Pit Bull, and maybe a few other breeds.
Kiwi was adopted after less than a week of being at Best Friends in Atlanta. Guava was kenneled with three other larger dogs, and befriended one dog named Gumball. She really loved Gumball! Well, Gumball went into foster care, and Guava became sad. On top of it all, Guava came down with pneumonia.
Since she needed a quiet place to heal, Guava ended up in foster care with me and my husband. Since we have no dogs or kids, we thought it would be the ideal opportunity for her to get some much-needed rest.
She was the perfect dog. The first week, she was quiet and glued to her bed. She was perfectly housetrained and only asked to go out twice a day. Otherwise, she’d prefer to stay in bed and rest. The second week, she was feeling much better and started playing with her squirrel stuffed animal. She loved playing fetch and sitting for treats. She also loved every person on the streets when we went for walks.
She really loved dogs, too; however, on a leash, she had a challenging time channeling her emotions and excitement whenever she would see another dog. She wanted to play! We tried training her by bringing dog treats on walks as a distraction, but she wasn’t motivated by treats. She was, however, a big people pleaser. Therefore, we started asking her pay attention to us and would say, “Focus!” whenever another dog was walking by. She started to calm down after the third time of practicing this, and by the end of the week, she was much calmer on a leash than when we first started the training. She learned quickly!
Guava may not be a Toy Poodle, but she was perfect in every way: housetrained, a quick learner, well-mannered (no chewing), lovable, friendly, silly and adaptable.
After 3 weeks of fostering Guava, she was healed from pneumonia and ready for adoption. After bringing her back to the adoption center, it only took 2 weeks for her to find her forever home. We are confident that they are beyond happy to have sweet Guava as a part of their family.
See the next adoption story: Roxie Recovers at Rompin’ Rovers