Read success stories from people who have adopted pets from us!
Happy Tail Tuesday! We love our bigger dogs and honestly we don’t get to rescue enough of them. So here is just the Tail to make your day a bit brighter, knowing someone loved this guy enough to see past imperfections to his perfectly beautiful self:
“I didn’t get Hobson because he was cute. I got him because he needed a home. His head was too small. He looked like a strangely exotic dog. DNA showed he was 1/4 pit bull, 1/8 Rottweiler and 1/8 cattle dog. He was supposed to weigh between 55 and 85 pounds. He weighed 52. I increased his food from 4 cups a day to 6 and saw no change in weight. He had whip worms which are hard to see in the stool. He just had a small tuft of hair on his shoulders. Now he has a full coat of hair and his head looks just right. He gained 5 pounds in a week!
Isn’t he beautiful?”
– Hobson’s Adoptive Dog Parent
We are ARF alumni. We adopted “Hailey”, a Cavalier/Jack Russell mix, in July 2002–16 years ago this month. She was renamed Sophie, and she has been the best dog for our family for 16 years. My kids were 5, 10, and 14 when we adopted her, so they are now 21, 26, and 30.
We re-created this photo on Mother’s Day this year. She isn’t in the best of health now, and we don’t know how much longer we have with her, but we have loved her, and she us, for a doggy lifetime.
– The Brown Family
In 2012, we adopted a little Chihuahua Pomeranian mix dog named Foxtrot. We renamed her Foxy. She is an absolute doll. We have enjoyed her and she has brought so much joy to our family. My husband and I are now empty nesters; and we moved out of our long time home in Broken Arrow to 9 acres in Bristow. Foxy loves being in the country.
Foxy loves fruit and vegetables, (which is kinda weird); her favorite food is apples. Foxy loves to play ball and while she loves her humans; her biggest joy is playing with other dogs.
My children think of her as a baby sister and she is quite spoiled.
After the passing of our other long time dog, Peaty; and the leaving of her cousins who have been visiting for a year- ( at one time we had 5 dogs here) we are searching for another younger dog to be her friend and playmate.
I would highly recommend using ARF- or if you are going to get a new dog- PLEASE get a RESCUE.
Our story with Foxy has been a very happy one.
– Georgia and Craig Philson
Our family adopted Buford back in November of 2016. He is such an amazing little big guy and could not have asked for a sweeter more loving puppy. He has been such a blessing to our family. He even has his own recliner. 🙂
Thank you for everything ARF does to help these animals.
– Kasper and Audra Holmes
My husband and I adopted sweet and wobbly Weebles in October of 2016. We love our littlest family member, and are so thankful for the energy and fun she brings to our house. Thank you for rescuing her and giving us the opportunity to adopt and love her.
– Michelle Cuellar
My family adopted Goose (now called Max) from ARF in December. He was one of the best presents ever. He is 3 years old and acts like a big ol clumsy teenage. He weighs 80 pounds and can knock you over when he is excited! He loves to walk or lounge in bed. Thank you ARF for introducing us to our forever baby.
– Marci and John Carpenter
I just wanted to send a quick note to let you know how Hayden and Azalee are doing. In November 2016 we adopted Hayden and she is such a wonderful dog. She’s a very lovable dog that seems to get along with everyone including Max, our Boston Terrier. Then in January 2017 we adopted Azalee. Azalee seems to be a little skittish when it comes to meeting new people but she gets along with Hayden and Max extremely well. While Max sleeps with me both Hayden and Azalee sleep with my mom. They have the run of the house and the back yard and are such a wonderful addition to our family.
– Bill and Millie Carter
After losing our Jack of 16 years, we didn’t think we would get another dog. Then we met Abby at PetSmart. We still weren’t sure we were ready to open our home to another dog but after I went and spent time with her at Muddy Paws I fell in love with her. So on August 23 of this year she came home. We love her and are so grateful to ARF for saving her from the dog pound. We consider her our best present under the tree!
– Julie Smith
Just sending a quick note to thank you for introducing me to my sweet little sidekick Opie (previously called “Fox”). I adopted him in June 2014 and we’ve been best buddies ever since. He is so sweet and cuddly, and he is the perfect addition to my family. We celebrated his second birthday today (April 12)! I just love him to pieces. Many thanks to you and the ARF team! xoxo
– Kelsey Hewlett
I adopted Baxter from ARF (original name Egus), exactly 6 months after my 15 year old Jack Russell Terrier/Beagle mix passed away. Baxter was a handful at the age of 3 months. But he loved playing around with his big brother, which was an Aussie/Border Collie mix. Unfortunately his big brother passed away very suddenly at the age of 4 on August 9, 2015. Baxter has been a good addition to our family at the age of a year and a half now. He’s the sweetest boy. He loves going for walks, car rides or just hanging out on the couch.
I have adopted a 2nd dog from ARF as well on Feb 10, 2016 for Baxter so he can have another brother to run around with.
– Tracy Tharp
I adopted my toy poodle Curley from ARF in September of 2014 and it has been nothing but amazing! He’s the sweetest, smartest, and most gentle little dog! He’s fit right into our little family and I have no clue what I would do without him! Thank you so much for all you do!
– Kristen Bailey
I adopted a Red and White Border Collie from your organization in late Aug 2011. At that time you had given him the name Finley. I renamed him Zipp when I adopted him, not knowing at the time how well that name fit.
Since I adopted him, he has been quite busy. He went through basic and advanced obedience and passed his Canine Good Citizenship test. After he got his basic obedience down, we started Agility. He recently earned his NA and NAJ Titles from the AKC and is now working on his Open Titles. We are competing this weekend in the TDTC Agility Trial at the Fairgrounds. He is, as of Sept 2015, the third highest dog in Lifetime Performance Points in NDAL, the National Dog Agility League, out of over 400 dogs in the league. Since last spring he has started Herding Training. I have not trialed him yet, but have great expectations for him in that venue also. He also is a very good Frisbee dog. We do Agility Classes three times a week and Herding Training twice a week.
Zipp has never met a human being he didn’t like. He regularly charms everyone he meets. At home he has yet to have an accident in the house and I have never caught him chewing on anything inappropriate. He has a very good off switch in the house and sleeps every night in his crate with the door open. And I should also mention he is extremely quite in the house, rarely barking.
– Jack L. Withrow, MSG USA (ret)
The wee Maltese whose ARF name was Mopsey has been a member of the Wheat household for three months now.
He found us while he was an inmate at the South Memorial Animal Hospital. We saw his photo on the internetweb thing and we arranged a visit. The folks at the clinic were absolutely wonderful, and we could tell instantly that they had taken good care of this previously abandoned dog and that he was ready to adopt us.
Gizmo, as we call him, has been just dandy. This six year old rescue is pretty laid back, and spends his time in our laps, or at our feet, most of the day.
We got him one of those pads that keeps him warm on cool days.
Gizmo doesn’t chew the furniture or dig holes in the carpet. He doesn’t bark much, although he frightens away the night time alley monsters and day time squirrels.
Casa Wheat is safe from the squirrels. And the UPS dude.
We take him to the spa every month, where he gets a shampoo, trim and pedicure.
In between visits to the spa, he gets a bath in the kitchen sink, which is just the right size. The wee Gizmo gets the zoomies after his bath, and rips circles around the house until we can nab him for a good brushing. Giz loves the brush.
I can’t say he is completely potty trained, but in 90 days he has only had about three accidents. We take him outside every few hours, and he gets a treat for being good.
The other day he was able to sneak outside with a chew toy, which he promptly buried in a secret, and very wet place, thus his dirty face.
It is great fun to watch him carry his special toys about the house, trying to find a place to bury them. Sometimes I think Gizmo is going to wear all the fur off his nose when he buries a chewy in a dark corner.
Giz is a great little dog. And we are really happy that he found us through the ARF organization. I really believe that the Giz rescued us!
Keep up the good work!
– Mike and Judy Wheat
I adopted Carob in August of 2013. She was my first dog and the only one I looked at before deciding to make her a part of my family. She is the sassiest little 12-lb pup who enjoys out-running all the dogs (including big ones) at the dog park. We take her on every adventure with us including kayaking! ARF is by far the best rescue, making sure that the dogs are taken care of before and after a dog is adopted. I appreciate them greatly for the many rescue dogs they care for and for giving me Carob!
– Candace Leslie
My ARF “success story” happened a while ago, six years in fact, when I adopted THE sweetest dog on the planet through ARF. She was named Sugar by her rescuers and was being fostered after having surgery on a damaged front leg. I’m not sure anyone knew for sure what had happened to her. Ruby (as I renamed her) was possibly a dachshund-pomeranian mix, about 4 months old. She was a fragile little thing when I brought her home but she healed beautifully and warmed up to her new family (me and my four children AND a corgi we also adopted through ARF) in no time. Now 6 years old, Ruby is happy, healthy and playful and a gentle, loving pet. She even gets along great with our kitty, Liam. Thank you ARF for helping so many animals find their FUR-ever homes!
– Sally LoVoi
We adopted Gordy (né Reverend Green) on May 21, 2015. He is the highlight of my life. Within 3 days of the adoption, my husband and I could not remember life without our little Gordy, nor do we want to.
Gordy is so smart, stubborn, and full of character. He fits in to our family perfectly. He is so funny! He has adjusted fairly well to living with us, though he is not without his quirks. But we wouldn’t have it any other way! Gordy is indeed the king of the household, and he knows it.
His new favorite trick is waving when we say “hi” to him. He also does cute little counter-clockwise circles when he is excited to go outside, or to get a treat. He has the sweetest smile with his crooked teeth!
We just love our Gordy and we’re happy he loves us, too!
Thanks again, ARF, for letting us adopt our sweet Gordy!
– Erin and Jason Walin
Just wanted you to see how beautiful this boy is now. It has taken many months to stop some habits he had but he finally trust me and I love this little guy, I’m sure way more than he loves me. He’s quite a social butterfly though. He loves kids. When he sees someone with a dog he’s more interested in the human than the dog. Likes cats and they aren’t sure if him but he’s so pushy they have no choice. He’s such a sweet boy and I can’t imagine not having him. What a sweet and cute boy I got. Thank you for this sweet little boy. I named him Chewy but most of the time I call him Bubba and occasionally it’s Bubba Chewy. He seems to answer to Bubba.
– Pam Teehee
Just a quick update on Sonny, now Belvedere. He is doing awesome. We are so so lucky to have him. He’s the best dog we have, he’s super friendly and outgoing to everyone, people and dogs. He has had no accidents in the house at all! He loves going to the dog park to play with his friends and he’s all signed up and ready to start daycare next week. He’s only going one day a week. The picture of him is where I find him every morning after breakfast, in our bed. He seems to prefer to sleep in his kennel at night but likes to take a nap in our bed. Thanks so much for saving him and letting us adopt him. He was so worth the trip to Tulsa. He’s an awesome awesome boy.
– Brenda Kerns
On December 31st 2014 I adopted my first cat Sinatra. I LOVE HIM. He is the perfect cat, he is fluffy and loveable. He loves to play with his toys and doesn’t mind being brushed. He’s my first fur baby and I just wanted to share how happy and thankful I am to have him in my life. He is so sweet and smart. He loves Salmon wet food and he has a little castle that my boyfriend and I made for him. I couldn’t ask for a better furbaby!!!! Thanks again!
– Mackenzie Fo
Just wanted to give you a quick update on Louis. Adopted him the end of January 2014 in Tulsa. here are a few random pictures of how he is now ruling my house.
What a fine pup.
– Michael McCauley
I adopted my baby in April. Her name was Oshie and I had been looking for a special needs cattle dog to teach sign language to. A friend of mine told me about Oshie and I contacted Jaynie immediately. Oshie came into our home like a rocket, which is actually what we have named her.
Rocket’s first hurdles were learning how to interact. Since she is deaf, she cannot hear her siblings cry when she plays too rough. She would be so pouty when nobody would play with her. Her next task was learning to look at me, so I could teach her signs. We used a vibrating collar to teach her to pay attention, giving her lots of praise along the way. She now knows almost ten signs.
Rocket has brought so much joy to our lives. She is a remarkable dog and we are so happy that we have had the privilege to bring her into our family.
– Johna Marlin
I just wanted to give you all an update on a dog we adopted about a year ago from ARF. His name was Roan then, but we have since changed it to Biscuit. He is doing very well and everyone just loves him! He’s very playful and loving and he keeps his “brother” Jackson on his toes.
Thanks for everything you do. Without ARF, we would have never gotten to meet this little cutie.
– Lauren Ross
I wanted to share my story with you all and thank you for what your organization does. I adopted McGill (now Miguel) a year ago while I was volunteering at PetsMart in Tulsa.
It’s hard to believe how much a dog can change your life and become such a huge part of a family! Miguel has so much personality – he is the perfect combination of sweet, playful, and downright hilarious at times! He loves to watch TV and bark at the various dogs that come on or look out the window and bark at rabbits. He has also figured out that if he acts like his leg is hurt during a walk he will be swept up in the warm arms of whoever is walking him and be carried home. Upon his arrival into the warm house, Miguel is running around and happy as if nothing is wrong. He has done this numerous times in cold or rainy weather, but he is smart enough to never do it to the same person twice!
I have found that a very special bond exists with rescue animals and I certainly have that with Miguel. Miguel has completely won over the hearts of all my friends and family as well! I hope to help out this organization and other rescue animals in the future. You all can be assured, however, that this dog had a very happy ending and is extremely loved!
– Jenna Fleming
I adopted Franklin (formerly Destro) two years ago in June. He quickly became a huge part of my life and he brings me so much happiness every day. He is definitely an indoor dog who loves any type of pillow, blanket or soft surface he can curl up on! I learned he is also a healthy little dog as his favorite treats are carrots, pumpkin and zucchini. Franklin quickly became friends with my parents’ two dogs Sophie and Ralphie (also rescues) and he loves to go visit them at their house. Franklin is a very sweet and gentle baby who is always by my side. He is the absolute best little dog and he adds so much joy to my life. He is always there to make me smile when I’ve had a rough day!
I wanted to give a big thank you to the foster family who took care of Franklin before I adopted him and thank you to ARF for helping me find my best friend!
– Lauren Smith
We adopted Coco July 2013 when she was 12 weeks old. She was a year old on May 4th. We have named her Coco Chanel but her adoption name was Crouton. She was one of the puppies that was born to a Labradoodle that was rescued from a hoarder in Arkansas. Coco’s dad was a parti colored poodle and as you can see she takes after her dad. We love her so much! She has been to puppy kindergarten and Obedience Training 1 and I plan to take her to Obedience 2 in the fall. Everyone who sees her thinks she is a beautiful dog. She also loves her siblings Lily the Shih tzu and Vegas the Maltese.
– Vicki Smith
She is amazing and has made herself right at home as if she’s always been a part of the family. She even answers to Harley so I’m guessing she likes her new name! I named her Harley in honor of my late husband because we used to ride our Harley Road King all the time! Thank you for allowing Harley to come home!!!!
– Deanna Lowry
Macy continues to grow and is getting smarter every day. She is fully settled in to her home, and is so friendly and loving to everyone who comes to visit. She is about 65 lbs, and when fully stretched out toe to toe, is about 6 feet long! She loves tummy rubs and lots of attention. She also likes to go out into the back yard and lay under the pine tree and watch for birds, squirrels and the occasional bunny that comes by!
Very good dog and a welcome part of our family!
– Bruce Wallace
My wife and I adopted a 1 year-old female Maltese named Annie about a month ago. I just wanted to take some time to let you know we are SO HAPPY with Ellie in our family (we renamed her).
Ellie (formerly known as Annie) has brought much joy to our family. When we got her she was already house-trained and really well behaved. After getting spayed it took about a week for her real personality to come up one more time. Right now she is playful and loves to sleep! She is a real cute girl and my wife enjoys buying her different outfits (they are all pink and purple).
I am very pleased with the service that ARF provided when I wanted to adopt Ellie. Every person I dealt with in the ARF team treated me in a respectful and tactful way. I also received prompt service even though ARF is run by volunteers. From the time I contacted ARF and applied to adopt Ellie it took even less than a week to have the process completed.
Everything is going really well.
PS. Thank you for working hard at what you are doing. We are very satisfied with your work!
– Agustin Banuet
We wanted to check in and let you all know how happy we are in our forever home! They changed our names to Sparkle (Cribbage) and Shimmer (Parchesi)…We are completely crate trained and are working on house training…we sure hate going outside to do our business in the cold… brrrr! We are full of energy, but our brother and sister are lots of help! We sometimes get to sleep in bed with them! Mommy and Daddy said as soon as we can be trusted not to wet the bed we can sleep with them anytime we want! We are saying our prayers for our friends at ARF to find their forever homes too!
Thank you for taking our Mommy in and taking care of us all!
– Sparkle and Shimmer Dunsmore
We adopted Calypso in May and couldn’t be happier. She has adjusted well into our family. She loves the lake and going for car rides. She has become a great companion to our jackrat and has a very sweet, funny personality that everyone falls in love with. We are so glad ARF picked us to be her family.
Sherbet has put on some weight and it totally works for her. She is a HUGE cuddle bug and loves to play with string…even if that string is attached to the shoe that you are trying to tie. Haha.
About a month after we adopted her, we adopted another cat, just a little older than Sherbet. The first month was pretty rough, but now they get along incredibly well and are just too cute together.
– Suzanne and Devin
It’s late but I’ve been thinking for two weeks that I should first of all thank ARF and second of all update you on Twizzles. Although Twizzles was a very unique and quirky name, just like him, I couldn’t get comfortable calling it in the dog park. So Twizzles is now Royal (after one of my favorite films. Plus he’s pretty regal) and “owns” his name.
Everywhere I take him people immediately fall in love with him just like I did. I had “puppy fever” for almost a year before I met Royal. I knew I had found my dog when I met him (so sappy I know) and I am so happy he’s a part of my family.
I had a bad day and as I unloaded my groceries from the car and walked toward the front door I thought about how much his face lights up when I get home. Even when things are tough seeing that sweet face look at you with unconditional love makes it all so much better.
So thank you ARF and all of your affiliates for what you do. I know you’ve changed two lives (possibly 3 but the third is a grumpy old cat).
And sorry for being so sappy but we all have experienced those heart warming moments worth sharing.
Just want to give you an update on Bogart. The kids wanted to give him a new name for his new life, Scooter Bug! Scooter – he’s fast! Bug – because I went to PetSmart to buy crickets for our lizard and fell in love with a cute little doggie needing a home!
He is doing great, we have had such a ball with him. Scooter is such a perfect little dog… sweet, happy, minds well, loves to play, the BIGGEST snuggle bug and so much more. We keep him in a crate during the day if I happen to be gone, but goes most places with us when possible… taking/picking up the kids to school, football/soccer practice, trips to KC. He goes into his crate at night with no problem, but he’s just too cute and loves to snuggle so much that he sleeps on our beds… sometimes ours, sometimes the kids! After some research pretty sure he is a Blue Merle Schnoodle. Our vet said, “You know people pay big bucks for a dog like this?” He is priceless!
My 5-year-old daughter said, “Mommy, my life was so happy before… but it’s just so much happier now! Thanks again for saving this little guy, he’s an angel!
– Stacey & family
Just want you and the group to know that Georgette (now “Mercy”) has been a perfect fit for Alex and our family. She is a very sweet, very teachable friend! She attached to Alex immediately, just as we’d prayed. The very first evening she was home she sat whimpering outside the bathroom door while Alex showered. That first night, and every night since, she has slept in bed with him… snuggled right up under his chin, most of the time. She is not making it any easier to get him out of bed in the morning – neither seems happy to see me when it’s time to wake up! So other than the fact that she is not a “morning dog,” she is just perfect!
She is playful, affectionate, obedient… we all just adore her.
Thank you and yours for allowing us the blessing of adding her to our family!
– Martha Meeks
I thought I’d let you know how Polo is doing. It took him about 2.1 seconds to feel at home in our family – and vice versa. He spends his days following me around the house or sleeping at my feet while I work. Our daughter loves him and he adores her, too. He loves walks and playing in our yard (shown here). By the way, our daughter Piper decided to keep his name Polo because she felt it went with her name so well.
Thank you for rescuing such a fabulous dog!
– Karen Szabo
Hi, I just wanted to share that I am the person who adopted Wesson. He is now named Cricket and the name suits him beautifully.
I adopted him after my beloved Circles passed away. I had another cat, Hudson, who seemed quite lonely without Circles.
Cricket and Hudson bonded immediately. Cricket has been with me since May of this year and I can’t express how much joy he has added to my life. He is such a loving kitty and quite smart. He loves to fetch little rubber balls and brings them back to you.
I have included this picture of him so you can see what a beautiful cat he’s turned out to be. Thank you ARF and City Vet for bringing this amazing friend to me!
It has been a long time since I wrote to this organization with an update. Almost 8 years ago, Columbus day weekend of 2004, I drove from upstate New York to Tulsa to pick up our new family addition. He has made great strides since coming into our home. From New York he moved with us to Yakima, WA and has lived the last 3 1/2 years in Germany. He is quite the world traveller. He has attended dog obedience school while in Germany and always gets the looks from his wolf-like appearance. When adopted his name was Sebastian and we changed it to Trooper. He has adopted this name very well.
I wanted to thank this organization for taking a chance and allowing us to adopt him from out of state. He has ran on a 4 dog sled team and now spends his winters skijoring throughout the area that we live at in Germany. He also participates in day care and spends this time running with the owners female German Sheperds. His best buddy, adopted from the SPCA in Watertown, NY has just turned 12 and is still running strong.
Many thanks to this organization and the things that they do. The volunteer time can be very thankless and I want you to know that by me and I believe others this does not go unnoticed. We often just don’t take the time to say it.
P.S. He is the big guy on the left.
– Sonya Jordan
We just wanted to share a little about our adoption success! We adopted Treka, now known as Gypsy, who is the best fit for our family possible! We first went to visit some golden doodles at the vet by our house that also has ARF dogs and they were a little to hyper for our little year and a half old little girl. We decided to look at Gypsy and the minute we got her in a room my daughter picked up the leash and said “go” and Gypsy walked around the room with her… it was love at first sight with those two! Ever since we brought her home you can’t get those two apart! If one is into something, the other one is right there along side. She is loved by her grandparents too… they have been known to come steal both the dog and the child to spend some time with her! She has been such a blessing and joy to our family! Thank you so much for all you do and for getting our sweet little girl to us!
– Candice Moore
We are so grateful that ARF saved Wimbley from the shelter. When ARF picked him up from the shelter, Wimbley had been neglected, his hair was severely matted, and he had tear stains. He wasn’t much of a looker when we met him at PetSmart but there was an immediate connection and we knew he was the one.
Now Wimbley is so beautiful that people often mistake him for a girl. It also worked out well for us that he was older and already house trained. We encourage people who are planning to adopt their first dog and not comfortable with puppy training to consider adopting an older dog. Wimbley is appreciative, intelligent, and a quick learner.
Adopting Wimbley has also taught us about the fascinating history of the Lhasa Apso, a breed originated in Tibet, considered lucky, and generally low-shedding and long-lived. Thank you, ARF, especially ARF foster parents Jeri & Ed, for helping us make Wimbley a member of our family!
– Mr. William Cho & Dr. Jenny Lin
We are so blessed to have adopted Tuffy. He is the perfect dog for us in many ways. You didn’t tell us that Tuffy really doesn’t care about a walk. But a car ride, he goes crazy. Just hearing car keys can wake him from a deep sleep. Tuffy is very good transferring guilt if you don’t take him!!! He also loves early mornings at Skiatook Lake. Lots of birds to watch. Thanks again and we will send pics from time to time.
– Art and Bonnie McIlroy
I pulled up Animal Rescue Foundation and saw Gumby’s picture. It was love at first sight!!! Upon visiting, he held a place in my heart and 3 hours in my arms. It seemed like a lifetime through the adoption process and we finally got to take our little boy home. He found it quite nice after his visit to the pound and days from his demise.
Gumby is a 6 year old male who has been with us for 9 months. He is a member of the family and is the alpha male. He is a momma’s boy and follows me around like my shadow. He is quite active. He loves walks with his other doggie friends from the neighborhood and feels like he needs to stay out til he see’s one of his friends. He sits, shakes and speaks on command. He picks which hand has a treat. He is a smart little boy and is never too old to learn. He loves toys, playtime and treats. He has even won a schnauzer photo contest and made schnauzer of the month on SchnauzersRule.com.
God gave us a special little treat when he gave us our little boy and I know Gumby feels the same way about us! I just love my little boy!!! Thank you, Claire (Animal Rescue/Tulsa), for rescuing our special little guy!
– Catherine Doak
Just thought you might like an update on Kizzy. She is doing so well. She and Bentley play, play, and play some more. We start every morning with a 2 mile hike. We live by a lake, so there are lots of birds, and rabbits to watch and sniff. After our walk, we go to the lake for a swim. The water is still pretty cold, but it makes for a refreshing drink and wading. Anything Bentley does is fine with her, she just trots along. We have to laugh at the two of them. She is about half his size in weight, but when they play fight, she grabs him and throws him down with with his legs flailing in the air! Then they race for hours on end.
I tried to take Kizzy for grooming and leave Bentley home. You would have thought I was killing him, he howled, so had to load both up in the car and drop her off. She doesn’t even look like the same dog since grooming. She has the cutest face and such beautiful eyes. She has a little mischievous side and likes to taunt the cat, but other than that, she is the perfect pet. We all adore her.
– Sandra and Jim Gessert
I remember a story in the Tulsa World featuring a momma dog who was abandoned with her puppies and a wonderful family who was fostering them. The article also spoke of the sponsoring organization, ARF. I went to see if I could adopt one of the puppies to be a buddy to a dog I had adopted a year earlier. The group asked me a few questions and directed me to a little bundle of fur. 11 weeks later, I had my Dane. She is a lab/rott mix and has been an incredible companion. This past October she turned 13. Besides arthritis and some bad teeth, she is in good health. She’s watching me as I type this and all I can do is thank God for ARF and for Dane.
– Demita Kinard
Hello: I am Mike Bryant and I foster kittens for ARF. It is a great job. You take in little 4-8 week old kittens, you socialize them play with them, enjoy them, and then adopt them out to forever homes. I have done this more than 200 times in the last 6 years.
However, a little less than three years ago I rescued three little kittens I named Jack, Chrissy, and Janet (ala the TV show Three’s Company). They had been abused by a Rottweiler dog and a 10-year-old boy. They were very timid and scared. My family worked hard to socialize them. Jack and Chrissy were soon adopted. Janet was the most timid of the group. She was just terrified of everything and had no trust of people. Then things got worse for her. She broke one of her rear legs. Not a simple break, but a complex break at the joint. Dr. Bob at Catoosa Small Animal Clinic said he could fix her so that she would not be in any pain, but would have a limp. The surgery required two pins inserted vertically in her joint. The rehab was slow and took more than six weeks of confinement. Janet healed with no sign of a limp. Dr. Bob was amazed. But she was now more scared than ever. She became almost un-adoptable. A few months later she got an eye infection, and in trying to doctor her eye, she cut me up to the point I still have two scars on my face. The recommendation was made to put her down. My wife and I could not do this. The look on her face told us she wanted to be sweet, but just did not know how. The decision was made that she could stay with us forever, if necessary. She bonded with my male Siamese cat, and appeared to be as happy as Janet could be.
A little more than four months ago, a young medical student from Colorado living in Tulsa to go to school came to ARF wanting to adopt a cat that was unadoptable. Janet certainly fit that description. Bethany was her name. I talked to her and told her Janet’s history and I thought the chance for a successful adoption was very slim. Bethany still wanted to try, and said she would give it at least 90 days. She said she had worked with feral cats at home and thought she could bring Janet around. I adopted Janet to her and charged the full $90, even though I had been authorized to waive the fee. I didn’t want her to be a disposable cat with nothing invested in her. As I adopted her to Bethany, I was happy, but fully expecting to have her returned. I gave Bethany my phone numbers and e-mail address and told her I wanted her back if it did not work out.
Last Friday I got a message on my machine from Bethany. I listened to the message, fully expecting it to be a request to return Janet. The message Bethany left me was that, after three months of not hardly even seeing Janet, all of sudden Janet came out from under the bed and started sleeping with Bethany. Now she loves to be petted and have her tummy rubbed. She plays with Bethany and watches TV with her. Bethany said that Janet is still timid, but less so every day. She told me that Janet is definitely a keeper. She is Bethany’s cat now.
It doesn’t get any better than this, I cried. Janet has a wonderful FOREVER home.
– Mike Bryant
Pippin is our new, 3 month old tri-colored Pomeranian. We first saw her at an adoption drive at the 41st/Yale PetSmart store after a work colleague told us about her (she knew that we were looking around to see if we could have a Pom). We both instantly fell in love with her. We applied to adopt her right there on the spot and were anxiously awaiting a phone call to let us know the outcome. We found out that we had been approved on the following Monday. We picked up a very groggy Pippin on Friday (the 20th) from the Vet (after she had been fixed and had all her shots). She has settled into her new home extremely well and has become used to her big brother (Jackson – Sheltie) and even bigger sister (Meka – husky/shepherd cross) as they have to her. We are so happy that ARF let us adopt her. She is going to be spoilt rotten! (As any puppy should be, and as our other dogs are constantly.) Adoption we feel is the best posible way to get any animal. You have the extra joy of knowing that you have saved a little baby and given him/her a new home. We cannot thank ARF enough – she is sound asleep at my feet as I write this – it’s been a hard day romping in the yard and generally having a great time.
– Paul & Rusty
It is coming up on the 1 year aniversary that I adopted my Dottie. She has brought so much joy into my life, I just can’t imagine life without her now! Everyday she does something or looks at me a certain way that makes me so thankful for ARF and how you rescued her for me. I am truly the lucky one. I had to go back to work and believe that it is harder on me than it is on Dottie. My desk is covered in Dottie pictures! I have had her to obedience training and now we are in the advanced class. She seems to know when class night is because after she eats she will sit by the door ready to go and she pouts if class was canceled. I try to take her everywhere with me!
She sleeps with me at night and waits for me to lift the covers so she can go under them to the bottom down by my feet. I leave here down there for a while to warm my feet and then bring her up next to me so I can keep my hand on her.
I wanted her to watch Animal Planet with me but she barks at all the animals so we don’t get to watch that much.
She is my spoiled little baby and as i said she is the light of my life! Thank you so much to all of you at ARF. She has touched my life in a way that words can never express. And Dottie sends you love and kisses (I mean licks!).
– Lois Rucker
It all started as a joke. My favorite breed is the Aussie while my husband is a confirmed dachshund lover. We had recently lost both our dogs, so when I saw a dog on Petfinder billed as “half-Aussie, half-dachshund and put together with spare parts in the back room” I sent him the picture. I thought she was adorable; he thought she was the ugliest dog he’d ever seen in his life. In fact, he insisted he wouldn’t have a dog like that in his house.
Weeks went on and I kept going back to that same little dog-something about her stance and her attitude (DEFINITELY a dachshund attitude!) just grabbed me. Apparently I was the only one because as those same weeks went on I could tell no one else thought much of her either. Finally some different pictures were posted of her with a vivid pink flower in the background; looking somewhat like she was wearing a hibiscus behind her ear. So I sent her picture home again, asking HOW he could think that dog was UGLY??? She was ADORABLE!!! Well, he conceded, she did look a lot cuter in this picture; maybe we should go meet her.
Her story was heartbreaking really — a sinus infection from aspirating a splinter from a steak bone, so bad that it required surgery, “rescued” only to be turned over to a pound the next day, left to run with an unneutered male, the list goes on. So it was no surprise to read that she had been heartworm positive also. This dog needed us!
While we are not overly strict we have always had a couple of rules for our dogs. Being on the couch required being either in a lap or on a blanket and no dogs were allowed around the dinner table while we ate. And dogs did not sleep in bed with us (his rule, not mine) either. Hallie walked into her new house, promptly jumped on the couch and settled in on the backrest. She did not beg, but she did lie down within the proximity of the dining room table. And when we went to bed, there she was snuggling in at my feet. So we explained to her that there were just a few things we needed her to understand. And she said, “Rules? Me? Surely you jest?” And my husband, the strict disciplinarian, said, “Well, she wants to sleep there, it won’t do any good to tell her no.”
Because of her odd looks people are always asking us what she is and we tell them, our best guess is that she is a dog. With a nod to her alleged German heritage and the obvious Brittany features, my husband tells people she is a Kaiser Wilhelm spaniel. We have done basic obedience and beginning agility with her, becoming more obedient to her whims and agile running after her. The joke, however, is on us as she rules the household with her unique vocals (is that a howl? a rooster crowing? a cat?) and her unique combination of character and charm.
– Terri Settle
– I am forwarding on this message from the family that adopted Tucker. If you guys remember, Tucker is the brownish with black mask and tips shih tzu that hitched a ride to Tulsa from Marshall, MO last summer. Norita met a “transport” at Garden Ridge late one night and I came up and took this little guy. He was one of the many from Marshall, MO that luckily landed in ARF’s hands. He is the one that would look up at the ceiling and not make any eye contact with anyone when he would show, he was an extreme flight risk, he was “freaky”! He lives in Inola now and is doing very well it sounds like. Thanks to those in Marshall who initially rescued him and to ARF who stepped in, this little puppy mill survivor now leads the kind of life he should have had all along! He was a joy to foster too 🙂
Tucker is doing really well. He is so cute! He and Amanda haven’t bonded the way I had hoped, but then she is never home between work, school, and her social life. I shouldn’t complain, she is coming along very well also.
Tucker not only makes eye contact now, he begs for food when we are eating, and he’s so cute about it that he’s hard to resist. He sits on his back legs and puts his front paws up on the chair. He looks like a Star Wars Ewok, his hair has gotten so long. He gets so excited when we get home from work that he starts barking when the garage door goes up. He runs on the kitchen floor which is slick and it’s really hilarious. He gets equally excited when we get up in the mornings, especially on the weekends because he knows we will be there all day. Funny how they figure all that stuff out, isn’t it? He follows my husband around on the weekends when he is down in the barn. He will sit with me in my chair when I am studying (Especially if I scratch him behind the ears). He sleeps at the foot of our bed. He loves to be outside with our big dogs and he spends lots of time “herding” the cow dogs, even though they are 4 times his size!
Thanks again for choosing us to adopt him!
– Carolyn Parks
I haven’t updated you lately but wanted to let you know that Misty is doing great! Our year came and went on 3/29/08 since we adopted her. She’s just the cutest thing.
She has especially been wonderful as my Dad was just diagnosed with brain cancer 2/25/09 (very sudden onset)… he has so enjoyed having Misty over to their home and laying in bed with him. Misty just snuggles right up next to him and lays down. Occasionally he would get a hold of her little top knot on her head and shake it a little… and she’d just lay there. A couple of weeks ago he said, “She’s just the cutest darn dog on the block.” She seems to sense that he’s ill and just loves on him. It’s so amazing how wonderful having pets around can make someone feel better.
She still lays under my desk all day at work but plays like crazy once we get home. She still likes getting in her crate at night which is next to our bed. She pretty much knows that after we turn the news off while we’re in bed at night, that it’s time for her to get into her bed. My husband continues to say, “I never knew how cute this dog would be… I would have left her at PetsMart but you must have seen something in her that I didn’t see.” We all love her so much… even Buddy, our other dog, is quite fond of her at times.
Thanks again for choosing us to adopt her!
– Jill Mancuso
She has such a cute personality, we are really enjoying her. She has learned from our other dog to potty outside, and is just a real good natured dog. People should really consider an adult dog to adopt, because they are out of a lot of the “puppy stages” to deal with, so you can just enjoy them. She has given us a lot of love back.
– Carol Ward
We fell in love with Carly (formerly Fern) at PetSmart in early February. After 3 visits, we decided to adopt her. She was extremely timid and fearful and several times we were afraid this wasn’t going to work. She had potty issues and trust issues. Her beautiful big brown eyes is what melted me. After many emails of encouraging hints and tips from ARF volunteers and friends and family, Carly is relaxing. She is a wonderful, fun and silly dog and means a lot to us. It took 5 weeks for her to be able to trust us. She still has issues, but they are getting better each day. Having much prayer and love and patience is very rewarding. We are blessed to have her in our home.
– Le Spencer
My family had to put our little dog “Pam” down in July 2006. My children chose her from the SPCA. She was a little “Toto” mix 3 months old and was in our family until we sadly we lost her at age 15 1/2 years.
With the children leaving the nest and without Pam we were without any responsibility for 2 years. We enjoyed it but we knew when the ‘time was right’ we would get another dog. Unexpectedly in July 2008 our vet told us about a little ARF pekingnese dog and wanted us to come see her. We have known our vet for over 25 years so he knows us and what kind of animals we like. To say the least, this little dog has transformed our lives and I’m not kidding. She has completely stolen our hearts. She is hilarious, well behaved, very playful, totally non-aggressive and looks at us with total LOVE and of course we return it to her!. I take her to the local school yard for walks and the kids all know Snowy and line up 5 deep to pet her and play with her. She is in heaven with all that attention.
My grown children have grown a little tired of “Snowy” stories and pictures. I can only imagine how gaga we are going to be with grandchildren.
When we got Snowy, she was about a year, they weren’t completely certain. We don’t know of her background but she had not been spayed and her fur was matted and in general not well cared for. Of course ARF immediately had her spayed and spruced up so we got to see the end result. I can’t imagine what she looked like before nor do I want to know.
The ARF organization is the best. I couldn’t really believe the application process for adopting a dog but apparently it works because they were very careful to make sure Snowy got into a loving home that would care for her and love her–and boy, we do! Thank you ARF for your wonderful program. You never know who or what paths will be crossed in a lifetime and I never imagined Snowy in ours but I can only say she has given us more happiness and joy than I ever could have imagined.
– Carolyn & Ted Beaumont
I have been searching for a companion for myself and my Dashhound Elvis since 2004 when I lost my beloved Ruby. She was a red Dashound and a great little girl. I visited many rescue sites daily on the internet and also I visited many shelters. I was always the one that got the dreaded phone call — “You’re not the one, we chose another family.” I had given up.
In 2008 Elvis was getting older (12) and we were both needing a new friend. After more rejections I came across Milliencent on the ARF website. Her story was so sad but I knew the moment I saw her she was my new girl and Elvis’s new little sister. I took a chance she would be at the PetSmart on 41st I drove in front of the store several time afraid of yet another rejection. But I did evently stop and go in. The she was in a big kennel with all her babies (she had been dumped pregnant). When I first held her she was so sweet and she was not stingy with her kisses. I held her the whole time I was filling out the application. I did not want to let her go. I was in a state of panic for the next few days waiting for the dreaded call. Millie’s foster mom Joy called me and said, “We have chosen you to be Millie’s new mom.”
I was so excited. I picked her up October 24, 2008 and she has been a joy to our lives. For the first week she was quiet and shy and she never once barked. Elvis is very vocal and she would just look at him when he was barking like a maniac. One day she just let go and now Millie and Elvis lets me know everytime they hear something. They have became best buddies. Elvis has showed Millie all the tricks, such as how to get extra treats for them both. Millie loves walk and rides in the car to go and visit her grandma. I want to thank ARF for choosing me I cannot imagine my life without her. I also want to thank her foster mom Joy for doing such a good job. Millie was all ready for her new home. I send Joy updates and pictures all the time. Every time I hear someone say they are looking for a new pet I always tell them about ARF.
– Debbie Glenn
It’s hard to believe that Petey has been with us almost an entire year. How quickly time passes when you’re having as much fun learning and exploring as we are!
Petey came to us afraid of EVERYTHING. He has spent the last year breaking out of his shell. He now climbs our stairs three steps at a time. He loves his walks, chasing the cat, socializing with the neighborhood canines and, best of all, he loves ALL of our family members.
He is madly in love with our lake cabin and pontoon boat. He has his very own life vest and takes a dip with his “daddy” on those hot summer days.
We participated in obedience training at TDTC in the spring, followed by some private lessons this summer. In January, we’ll head back to TDTC for the Advanced Beginner class.
Petey has brought such joy to our lives. You simply cannot have a bad day with this little guy around. We want to thank you and ARF for giving us the opportunity to make Petey a part of our lives.
– Bobbye Britsch
We became parents to Jackson in 2001 and Charlie in 2003. After the passing of Biscuit and Shotzy (16 and 15 years old) I wanted another dog. I know Jackson coming into our life was a meant to be. While at a hockey game, I was talking to our friends next to us that I wanted a Golden Retriever. The husband a bit apprehensive, not wanting to go through losing another pet. The couple that sat in the seats in front of us spoke up that they had a Golden. The couple was Jaynie and Scott Ozment — Jaynie who volunteers with ARF. We never knew this!
We went to their home to meet Jackson. He was a bit on the skinny side (12 weeks old) and very attached to Scott. It was love at first sight. We filled out the application and I thought I would go nuts waiting on a response. I KNEW I was a good doggy parent, but do they? What if they said no, how in the world was I going to dognap this puppy? Well, all was good and Jackson came home with us. We took him to school and he graduated with flying colors. (Except for “LEAVE IT” when it came to remote controls and eye glasses, which he has since outgrown.)
I went to go visit my brother who has three Goldens. It just filled my heart watching them all together. They really loved each other. I called my husband and told him we needed to get Jackson a brother. He was not relunctant at all this time. Of course, we would not have trusted anyone other than Jaynie to find us another Golden. After one miss, we became the proud parents of Charlie (12 weeks old). Jackson loved him from the start. He had a brother!!! Charlie was the complete opposite of Jackson.
Charlie would have nothing to do with remotes and eyeglasses, for goodness sake. Not when there is a perfectly good couch to eat. Yes, he ate the couch the chaise and every pillow that entered this home for 6-8 months. We did everything the experts told us. Did not work.
Although they still require from us walks and lots of kisses on their noses, the boys really take care of each other now. Charlie has changed his diet, big ticket items makes him a little gassy. He has downsized to potholders. (With the economy and all.) He also has a psyhcological fear of thunderstorms. You have to love 75 lbs of panting dog under the covers at 3 AM. (Did you know they make medicine for this?)
They offer unconditional love and to that they deserve the same from us. And they get it. I want to thank Jaynie, Scott and ARF. Because of what you do, I know when the day comes that we no longer have our Jackson and Charlie, we will be able to open our hearts again to another in need. Which in fact, we did offer our home to another we just happened to run into at our vet. Someone was dropping their pet off for adoption. Another Golden of 3 years old. Sallie never had to be orphaned for one minute.
Thanks again for all you do…
– Jackson and Charlie’s parents
Pam and Tony Anderson
My husband and I lost our beloved beagle, Manhattan, 6 months ago and I struggled so much with his passing I didn’t think I could ever get another dog. After his birthday passed, Sept. 11, I decided to start looking and I went to ARF and in all the adoptable pets I saw her picture and I knew she was the one for me. We will never ever be able to replace Manhattan, but I know he would be friends with her, he loved everyone. She has become so precious to me in such a short time and I don’t know what I would do with out her now. Thank you for everything you do for these most deserving animals!
– Gina Foster
Hello! I wanted to share with ARF how very excited about the newest addition to my family! Jackson is a Goldendoodle rescued from a puppy mill in Missouri who has found his forever home on October 17. I have spent the last year researching different breeds, trying to find “the one!” I currently have a rescue Golden Retriever that suffered a difficult past that has left her shy, timid and at times very anxious. When I met Jackson, I just knew he was the one I’d been waiting on. It only took a few minutes of watching Jack play, seeing his fun, happy, playful nature to help me make my decision. The rest is history, Abbey and Jack have become the best of buds, and will honestly retrieve squeaker balls as long as my pitching arm holds out! I never could have or would have guessed that this sweet little man could have made such a difference in not only my life but in my sweet Abbey’s as well. Thank you again for helping bust up yet another dreadful puppy mill and giving me my Jack!
– Thanks from Steph and Abbey!
We wanted our dog Monty to have a friend to play with so we took him to the PetSmart on 71st several weekends and had him meet several dogs. We found Diesel and he and Monty hit it off. Diesel was only 4 months old at the time. Today he is going on six years old and still as active as he was when we adopted him. He can be a handful but I love him more than ever. He was a wonderful addition to our family and I don’t know what I would do with out his happy little face.
– Terry Stout
We are approaching the 1 year anniversary of our adoption. Ely has brought pure joy to our family. There is no doubt in my mind that he was waiting for us. He is everything we hoped for and more!
While teething, he did attempt to eat the couch. He also did his own version of wood carving on a leg of the dining room table. We were already planning on replacing the computer table he decided to chew on. All puppy stuff we expected. He has grown into a well mannered young man.
Ely is currently 120 lbs. and stands 36″ to the top of his head. He is truly a gentle giant. Ely is welcomed in many business establishments in the Tulsa area. One of his qualities is that he automatically sits when small children approach him. I spoke with his Foster Mom and she said she did not train him to do this, neither did I. Children are drawn to him and fascinated by how big and gentle he is.
We are forever grateful to ARF for taking such good care of our boy in his early months. Each day brings a new joy with our “puppy”.
– Shirley Johnson
In October 2006, I lost my friend, Baby Dog, of 13 � years. I had him from the time he was 5 weeks old, so it left a big hole inside me. I still had 2 year old Kassie, and Midnight my 6 year old cat. We all went through a grieving time. When I decided to get another dog, I went on the internet and found ARF. It really touched me that this rescue group was a true dog/cat rescue, that does not believe in euthanizing. ARF finds good homes for all of the animals they commit to take.
I looked at the pictures of the adoptable dogs and came across one named Champagne. She really caught my eye. I read her biography and it said she needed another dog and liked cats, so I applied to adopt her.
When I first got Champagne, she was extremely fearful. I took her to the park with Kassie and after a few times she was right at home. I then took her to my groomer and to other places with me. After Champagne realized that she was always coming back home with me and I would always take care of this sweet girl, she lost her fear.
I enjoy her and she loves to sleep in my bed. She and Kassie love to play together now and Midnight will lay by her and play along too.
I am so glad that Champagne, now known as Minnie, came into my life and filled some of the hole that Baby Dog left. Minnie (Champagne) is such a sweet dog. I’m so glad ARF is there for dogs like her!
– Mary House
In March we decided we wanted to expand our family to include a playmate for our rowdy little girl, so we began looking and found ARF on the Internet. We both agreed we wanted to rescue because we knew so many puppies need good homes and Luckie was our first rescue dog and we loved him to death.
We searched through several different organizations and took many trips to look at different events. We found Buddy on the ARF site and Jason just loved him. He had always wanted a chocolate lab. We just so happened to take a trip to Petsmart that day and there he was just hanging out and looking adorable.
Jason immediately began filling out the application and was truly excited. One week later buddy got to join our family. He is a twinkle in his daddy’s eye and we are very lucky to have found him. Now our family is complete. The four of us are so happy. Thank you for completing our home and making my boyfriend’s dream come true.
– Glenda and Jason
We lost a Pekingese due to cancer, last June, 2006, after a failed attempt to removed the cancer tumors. They just came back and the last surgery was too much. It spread even faster and we had to put Macy to sleep. That was the hardest thing we ever had to do. That night before we put her to sleep, I did not even sleep–I just rocked her and told her it was ok to go to Heaven. Ever since then, there was a void that needed to be filled. We had Macy for 16 yrs. My mother and my brother took it really hard. Macy was survived by one puppy–her only one, Honey. That is my dog. Just recently my brother and my mother were talking about getting another puppy, but could never bring themselves to do it.
I started looking for another Pekingese and came across Slevin. Something about his picture drew me in. I went to the Vet where he was being kept, and he ran to my brother and jumped in his lap and the kisses started. Then he leaped in my mother’s lap and gave her a kiss and put his head on her shoulders and gave her a hug, as if to say, “it is all right, I will make it better”. Then he went back to my brother’s lap and gave him a hug and continued to kiss him. I called ARF and applied. I told him that I would be back on Monday to take him home. That was the longest weekend ever! We went to pick him up and he was ready to leave! We had a birthday party that night. We named him Snuggles cause he loves to cuddle and give kisses, lots and lots of kisses. He tries to drown you in kisses. He loves the yard and plays with the other dogs that live around us through the fence. He runs with them. Honey and Snuggles gets along great! They play tug-a-war with each other. He loves to play with balls and loves his treats. We can’t imagine our lives with out him.
My niece, Jennifer, adopted a terrier from ARF recently. Her name was Alva and Jennifer has renamed her Gracie because “she is my saving grace.”
Jennifer recently had to put her elderly pug to sleep and was heartbroken and lonely. She had intended to wait a few months before looking for another dog, but her mother (my sister) convinced her that she should go ahead and find a dog — not a little puppy since Jennifer is attending college to be a registered nurse and also has a part time job.
Nov. 11 was my sister’s birthday and we all gathered at my mother’s to celebrate. Jennifer brought the new member of the family and we had the best time admiring little Gracie, spoiling her, petting her, and laughing at her antics. Jennifer is thrilled to have this bundle of love in her life and grateful that Gracie is already house-trained, spayed, and vet checked.
Thanks to everyone who works hard to help people like Jennifer find new furry friends to love. Gracie sleeps with Jennifer and I could tell that Jennifer is over the moon for this scruffy puff of mischief. She is so thrilled! She has had a doggie door installed and is now “fortifying” her fence to be sure that there is absolutely no way Gracie can slip out. She takes Gracie out for long walks twice a day and loves to show her off to her neighbors. My sister is also a proud “dog grandma.” And, of course, I’m proud to be part of ARF, an organization that saves wonderful dogs like Gracie and pairs them up with people who adore them.
You guys are grrrrreat!
– Debby Camp
In September of 2003, we became a foster home for ARF, and Buster was our first foster dog we adopted. Well, I would like to say “we” adopted him, but the truth be told, HE is the one who adopted us from the first moment he set foot in our house. The house, the yard and even the Koi pond became his domain. Anyone could tell from the look in his eye’s he considered himself home. Not to say we did not try and find him a family since he was up for adoption. But, every time we would show him at PetsMart, he would simply turn his back on people when they would try to meet him. Considering he is a very outgoing dog and loves people, this was nothing more than a stall tactic on his part. He had already picked out his new forever home. This smart dog had a plan, and he knew how to work the system!
After one month, we realized Buster was not going anywhere. So at the end of October, 2003, we gave Buster what he wanted most in life: a permanent family who loved him. When he received his first collar and I.D. tag with his name on it, his tail began to wag and he took off running through the yard (right into the pond) to show all of the fish he at last had a family. Buster was no longer an unwanted ARF dog. He was home.
Even though we had no intention of adopting another dog after we lost our Shar Pei, Trevor, to cancer in August of 2003, we now can not imagine our family without Buster. He is our protector, our lap puppy and our best buddy. He instinctively took over Trevor’s role of house guardian and keeps our family safe from all of the killer squirrels that dare to set foot in his back yard.! Buster taught us that even when you lose something close to you, God has a way of sending you an Angel to let your heart be filled with love once again. And, there are plenty of other Angels like Buster in ARF who are waiting for the chance to make a difference in other families lives.
– Bob Bauer & Craig Davison
Mia & Elliott: A story with many successes…This is the story of not one, but a chain of successful events that led to happy homes for the ARF adoptees! The story begins with Animal Rescue Foundation and the rescue of one very small Jack Russell Terrier Dog…named Veronica. Veronica was about to deliver puppies. She had been residing in a shelter, and was passed over by many rescue groups due to her condition. Her shelter time was up… she was scheduled to be euthanized.
Realizing the urgency of the little momma dog’s situation, ARF rescued Veronica and placed her in a loving foster home, where she gave birth to 8 tiny puppies, 7 of which survived. It was unlikely that Veronica had received proper prenatal nourishment and care living on the streets as a stray. When the pups were delivered, Veronica became very sick and close to death. An urgent call went out between ARF volunteers, and the new family was quickly divided and placed in foster homes that were willing to foster, bottle-feed around the clock and “play mom” to the otherwise orphaned babies.
Three of these babies were placed in my care. My family helped me love and care for these puppies around the clock. Over the weeks, they grew and grew. They loved to be snuggled and held close when taking their bottles. I named my babies Rascal, Mia and Elliott. Meanwhile, Mom Veronica was spending time at South Memorial Animal Clinic where she was slowly gaining strength. Just when it looked like Veronica was pulling through her ordeal, my 3 puppies came down with serious upper respiratory infections…little Elliott progressed into full-blown pneumonia, and at one point, it looked doubtful that he would survive. I prepared myself for the worst. Orphaned pups do not have a high survival rate.
The Animal Rescue Foundation did not give up on the momma dog or her 7 puppies. They provided the best of medical care through Dr. James Dominy. And, miraculously, the 7 puppies surived!! Even Elliott grew stronger and stronger. Veronica and 5 of the puppies found wonderful, “forever homes” through the ARF Adoption Program. The other 2, Mia & Elliott, found their “forever home” with me…I applied and adopted them into my own home! What wonderful additions to my family!
So many families, (including my own), were touched by the rescue of 1 small dog named Veronica. This story is a testament to the true purpose and commitment of ARF; saving the lives of the ones that cannot speak for themselves; committed and dedicated to following through to find the perfect home. For every life saved, so many hearts are touched.
– Lisa Wooten, Animal Rescue Foundation
When I picked Chauncey up from one of the ARF vets to foster, I knew from the first moment I saw him that this adorable little fox was special. Usually, dogs that meet a foster parent for the first time are a little timid and shy. Not Chauncey! This little guy did not WALK up to meet me; instead, he PRANCED with his head held high! There was no lack of self confidence in his petite body, and his actions appeared to say, “Well, let’s go. What took you so long to pick me up?”
“Chauncey, who we affectionately call our “Little Prince”, is the second foster dog to put his paw prints on our hearts and become a full-fledged member of our family in December of 2003. In a way, he was my Christmas present that year, and he is the best gift I never had to return. Life would never be the same again. Our Christmas ornaments that year, too, would never be the same. Several years ago, we were in Edinburgh, Scotland, and bought some felt ornaments of Henry VIII and his wives. Just as a couple of the real wives lost their heads, so did two of the ornaments. Ironically, they were the exact same wives who lost their heads in real life. We had no idea Chauncey knew anything about English history. Coincidence? We think not! He is probably Henry VIII reincarnated (along with the attitude), and he knew precisely which of the wife ornaments to decapitate.
True to his Chuhuahua nature, he is the Prima Donna of the house, and is the most sensitive dog we have ever seen. It does not take much for him to get offended by something and go pout. His favorite pastime, besides playing with his best friend, Buster, would be to give hundreds, no, thousands of kisses each and every day. When we have people over to the house, we always have to warn them that Chauncey has the fastest tongue in the West. But, inevitably, somebody will squat down to pet him, and…SLURP…they have been French kissed before they realize what just happened. Luckily, we keep an abundant supply of mouthwash on hand.
Describing how Chauncey has changed and enriched our lives in a few short paragraphs is nearly impossible. He makes bad days better. He makes good days perfect. He makes lonely days disappear. He is the essence of God’s love encompassed in a 12lb bundle of joy with four legs and fur. He teaches us everyday to experience, and to give, pure love which is unconditional. Having Chauncey in our lives is a blessing we never take for granted!
– Bob Bauer & Craig Davison
Hello Everybody. My name is Kenzy, and this is my success story. The fact that I am alive and able to have a success story is in itself a miracle, for after I was rescued by ARF I was diagnosed with Heartworms. There were about 30 dogs crated in the barn where I used to be kept, and the conditions were not very sanitary. If Norita had not picked me to come into the organization, I probably would not have been treated for my infection and I would be either very sick or dead by now. Little did I know that this small act of kindness by her would change my life in a big way.
One day, while I was at South Memorial Animal Hospital, a man I had never seen before put his arm into my cage to say “Hello.” Instinctively, I gently touched the back of his hand with my paw to say “Hello” back, completely unaware this person was going to be one of my Foster Dad’s. He had come to meet me and another homeless dog to see which one of us to take into their home. I later found out that by touching his hand, I had also touched his heart! For the second time in 2 weeks, I was the one who was picked out as “special” and not overlooked. Later that day, he came back and I went to their home…a real home…to be cared for and loved by a real family.
The following day, I had to start my treatment for Heartworms, and the next days were pretty rough. The shots were painful and I felt really bad. But, whenever I would shake from the medicine, my Foster Dad’s would hold me close, give me soft kisses on the head and tell me everything would be alright. They also told me things like: “I was beautiful” and “I was such a good girl.” All of the love I received during those days would help to heal me as much as the medicine.
After a few weeks, my Dads started to let me play with my Foster Brothers, Buster & Chauncey. What fun!! I was finally able to run and play with other dogs in the yard. Around this time, too, I was starting to go to PetsMart on Saturday’s to be shown and see if some family would fall in love with me and adopt me into their home. I did this for almost 2 months. And, even though I was housetrained and my Dad’s constantly called me “the perfect foster,” I guess I was not special enough to warrant an application. Perhaps my luck had run out. Perhaps I would never find a forever home. Perhaps I would never be loved for being myself.
As things turned out, I WAS already loved more than I realized, and my Dad’s had already discussed making me a permanent part of the family. They had recently lost their Shar Pei, Sassy, to old age, and wanted more than anything for me to stay with them and never leave. Besides, they said they needed a girl in the house to be the Queen and to keep Buster & Chauncey in line. Well, the application to adopt me was sent in and ever since that day I have never been unwanted or unloved. So, as you can see, not having anyone apply to adopt me was actually the best thing that ever could have happened to me (although, my Dad’s tell me I am one of the best things to happen to them!) And, to think, my happy life all started with just the gently touch of my paw on someone’s hand. Thank you ARF for giving me a second chance to live and the thing I wanted most in life…a family to love, and a family to love me back!
– Kenzy Bauer-Davison
What’s better than 1 precious Chihuahua puppy to liven up the house? Could it be 2? Well, in our case it certainly has been. PJ & Sissy came to live with us when they were about 9 weeks old in April of 2004. Since that time we have had more love & laughs than we bargained for.
My husband has been retired for almost 6 years and I am a part-time worker. The empty nest syndrome was beginning to feel a little emptier since our boys were grown, and even the grandkids were growing up. Since I had a Chihuahua when I was young, I decided to start a search for us a new pet. A co-worker asked if we had considered ARF. We were not familiar with them, but she took me to their web site and we were soon hooked
As I watched the site and tried not to get in a hurry, because I wanted to get just the right one for us, these 2 little sisters kept popping up on the screen. The detailed information stated that the foster family really wanted them to be adopted together. Two? Well, we made the trip to see them and it was love at first sight. We were very impressed with the foster parents and their concern that each of their animals be placed in just the right home. They especially wanted their young puppies to be in a home with families who had plenty of time to care for them. I can tell you, the decision to adopt both was easy. Because, if we had had to pick one over the other it would have been impossible. Needless to say, we were thrilled when our application was approved and we brought our little girls home.
They are so different and yet so alike. Each has her own personality. PJ “the comic” started out being the shy one. Her antics kept us in stiches all the time. She spends all her outside days finding and digging up all the nuts the neighborhood squirrels have buried in our back yard. Sissy is our “protector” and hugs us by going around and around our necks. They are very smart and have learned a few tricks. They like to get their halters on and go for a walk around the neighborhood. They are very good travelers and go with us whenever we go. They had a great time their “first Christmas” with all the kids at home. They were the center of attention and they love that! This week, they have seen their first snow! That was quite entertaining. They really didn’t know what to think. Their favorite games are “lets get mama out of bed” & “let’s check out dad’s chair for crumbs”.
I have since told many of my friends about ARF. Our foster parents were able to introduce us to our babie’s mother, give us pictures of mom and dad, as well as some past history and current families. They were careful to explain all the terms of the adoption & have stayed concerned & in-touch with us. Our little girls will be 1 year old on Feb 11, 2005. They have a very special place in our hearts and in our family.
Thank you ARF for the wonderful work that you, your foster parents and the Veterinarians do. We have been extremely encouraged in all areas of our contacts with them. We will continue to recommend ARF to anyone desiring a family pet, and we are certain that our empty nest will be full of life for many years to come.
– Ken and Carolyn Hall
Andy became part of our lives in the summer of 2004 after Erin & I were married and moved into a new home. Erin originally saw Andy on the ARF website and fell in love with him. Complicating the situation was the fact that I was out of town and unable to accompany Erin to the interview with Andy’s “foster” parents. Even though I was uncomfortable with not being able to meet and greet Andy at the same time as Erin, I could tell that this was an important and life changing decision for the both of us. We adopted Andy during the last week of July, and I was able to meet him about a week later after I returned from being out of town.
Andy now is part of our daily lives and is as much a part of the family as my wife or I. His personality, playfulness and comical attitude keep us laughing and playing for most of the day. We both agree that we’re not quite sure what we did before we had him! Owning a pet was something I thought I was ready for-I was wrong. I never expected that having Andy would change our lives as much as it did. The Animal Rescue Foundation made it easy for us to give a home to Andy. As a puppy, Andy was ill, mistreated and didn’t have much of a chance to make it. Thanks to their dedicated staff & nursing capabilities, he was a healthy but underweight dog when he was adopted (about 1 pound). Andy is now an active and intelligent 11 pound dog!
As a disclaimer, anyone wanting to adopt an animal should realize that they are going to make mistakes. As a puppy, Andy had plenty of “accidents” on the floor and even chewed up a pillow once. However, the love, devotion and laughter Andy brought to our family far outweights any accidents or mistakes he made while adjusting to our home and lifestyle.
– Tom, Erin & Andy Jenkins
Last summer my family and I adopted 2 loving Springer Spaniels. They were only about 4 or 5 months old. They came with the names Whipper & Snapper, but we changed them to Tucker & Tyler. Their birthday is February 15th! The day after Valentines Day. Oh well, I’m only 12 years old and I have a younger brother who’s 9. They live with one other dog, Dezzy, who’s 9 and a Siamese cat, Silly, who’s 6. They are the best dogs in the world and they’re so beautiful! They are liver and white. Tucker is absolutely adorable and so is Tyler. We’re currently teaching them new tricks. Tucker is very little compared to Tyler, and we treat Tucker like a baby! Tyler is very funny because he’s really goofy! They are both wonderful dogs and Tucker’s a great cuddler.
– Zoe Frazier
It was just after Christmas of ’04 when a rescue friend of mine from a breed rescue was at the Tulsa Shelter and came across 2 tiny terrier mix pups: 1 black and white and 1 tri-color. She thought she could help one of them out and give him a chance at life and pulled him from the shelter. She then sent me an e-mail with a picture of this little guy and said that his brother was left at the shelter. And, of course, I could not leave him there. So, after work, I was down at the shelter picking him up.
Now, we both fostered for this breed rescue and these pups were not our breed. And, since she happened to be a past foster for ARF, she asked if they could help us out with placing them. They graciously agreed. I agreed that I would foster the boys so that we did not take up any of their foster’s since they were just helping us out. Needless to say, they never left my house and I am now an ARF foster.
Lucky is the tri-color one and Gordo the black and white, and there never is a day that goes by that I don’t thank them for having such big hearts to let 2 little terrier pups recieve the help they needed. They are so special and we love them so! They were so tiny when we got them, and needless to say, they did not stay that way. They are now 45 & 49 pounds of energetic, fun big guys that love to be loved. I thank you, ARF, for helping me to save these boys. It was well worth it. They are 2 of the best things that have ever happened to us. They make our family complete. People are always asking, “what kind of breed they are”, and I just say “Pound Puppies”, and then tell them to go find them a great dog at the pound or rescue!
– Susan James & Family
In May of 2003, “Baby” was 18 months old and was clearly a puppy farm breeder. She’d been handed off to ARF by her “owner” right after giving birth. I had one pug already (Banjo, who was a year old), and I was hopeful that the two of them would get along well, and doubly hopeful that I’d be allowed to adopt Baby.
Baby had only been with ARF for two days when I, along with several other people, applied to adopt her. I remember that a few short days after I applied for her, I got the wonderful phone call that I’d been chosen, and Banjo & I would get to add her to our little pug family. I was so excited that I went out and bought bubble gum “It’s a Girl” cigars and passed them. The day I picked her up, she was a beautiful-but very, very timid-little girl. I changed her name to Mandolin (a new name for a new life).
At first, I was so sad to see that little Mandi had no idea what it was like to receive affection, and she didn’t seem to even know what grass was because she’d clearly spent her life in a cage. It became quickly obvious that this little girl had lived a very sad little life without any real love or affection. She and Banjo became fast friends the day they met, though, and she was very loving with me right away as well.
In the two years since Mandolin joined our little pug family, she’s blossomed into a happy, healthy, playful and friendly little (if slightly pudgy) pug. She’s affectionate and friendly, very jolly, loves people and all other animals-cats, dogs, chinchillas, field mice, whatever! She’s just a lover girl and every bit of that timid little neglected girl is all gone. I’m hopeful Mandi has forgotten about her first 18 months of life, because she’s my little princess now, and she just couldn’t be doing better.
Last year, we added another pug to our family (Jewell), who is our “senior” pug (about 8 years old), and she definitely plays the grandmama to the other two. The three girls are all the best of friends. now! I’m just delighted to be able to report that Mandolin (foremerly known as Baby) is still happy, healthy and is doing wonderfully these days, thanks to all of you at ARF. Thanks so much to all of you for your hard work.
– All our best,
Melody Bowen and the pug girls Banjo, Mandolin & Jewel
In November of 2002, my husband and I went to the PetsMart on 41st Street. In one of the cages there was a small brown dog with the name of Valentine (Rosie). She was part Dachshund and I suspect also part Bassett Hound. I looked at her and the tip of her tail started moving. I asked the assistants there if I could see her. They brought her out for me and I sat on a chair. I asked why she had two names, and they said someone called her Rosie because she had a skin condition where her hair came out and all you could see was her pink, rosey skin. My pointer, Andy, came and sniffed at her. She licked his nose. He gave a little growl and she scrambled back on my lap. He seemed satisfied with that and gave her a quick sniff and a lick. I looked at my husband, Tim, and he said: “Go ahead and fill out the paperwork”. So I did!
A few days later, I recieved a call that Rosie was now mine. We picked her up and she became a part of our family. However, I found out that she had hidden her true nature when I saw her at PetsMart. Instead of the meek little dog I thought I had, I found out I had a dominant, hard-headed, bossy little girl. The first time Andy, our pointer, tried to sniff her food, she charged him, growling! He looked at us with a very confused look on his face. I just know he was wondering what little demon we had brought into the house. She became fast friends with the cat, and they would terrorize one another and Andy.
Now, we have moved out of state and into a bigger house. She believes the spare bedroom is her own room. One night, my husband and I had to use the spare room. My husband went to bed early. When I came to bed, she was on my side. I asked her to move. She ignored my as usual. I pushed her over. She growled at me. I told her quite firmly to move, and she just looked at me and growled again. Finally, I just got into the bed and pushed her with my body. She wasn’t happy about that either. She finally moved to the end of the bed, but she was growling the whole way.
So, even though she lied to us, my husband and I agree that she is one of the best things to happen to us. We would not change her for the world. Andy might, but we wouldn’t!
– Jamie Brennan
Scooter has been in his home for 10 months. Scooter walked on his elbows, but with walking more, and massaging his front legs and paws, Scooter now is walking like a rabbit. He is able to jump in and out of the car. Scooter really enjoys car rides. Scooter will put his front paws on the passenger side indicating he wants to go for a car ride. He now runs up and down the stairs, is very sociable and loving and brings joy and happiness to all that know him.
Scooter is also a Therapy Dog and provides this service 3 days a week in the Tulsa area. Scooter is currently visiting 9 individuals in the community and 10 individuals at the Gatesway Foundation. Scooter passed the Canine Good Citizen Test on April 30, 2005. He has brought me great joy and happiness in my retirement!
– Joel Lebowitz
Charmer was adopted from ARF 8 years ago and from the moment Craig saw him, he knew this little one-eyed man had to be a part of his life. Craig had visited several of the ARF vets who were boarding animals up for adoption, and he had just about given up that he would find the perfect companion when, as a last thought, one of the vet techs pulled Charmer from the back room; there was no more looking around. Charmer was the one!!
Never one to exhert energy playing with dog toys or chasing squirrels like “common dogs”, Charmer had one goal and desire in his life: to be by his special person’s side. Napping next to him while Craig watched T.V. was the BEST activity in the whole wide world. Oh, occasionally Charmer would get up and let you know he wanted to be fed. This would entail him standing under the kitchen table and letting out a short bark as if to say, “I am awake. Take care of me, NOW”! And, more times than not, this would take place right during a crucial point of the television show or movie we were watching. The world was on “Charmer Time” and he expected it to stop when he was wanting your attention. And, of course, the world did stop revolving for a few minutes while his needs were attended to.
For the last year and half, Charmer battled kidney failure and, sadly, after a long and couragious battle, his little body finally gave out and we lost our little man on June 13, 2005. Three to four times each month, Charmer would visit his vet, Dr. Katy Graves at Forest Trails Animal Hospital, for his weekly kidney flush. Dr. Graves and the staff treated Charmer like a member of their family and their expert and compassionate care was a major factor in him setting the record at their clinic for living the longest with renal failure. Well, that and he was just too stubborn and grumpy to let this disease deprive him of being with Craig!! Whenever we walked into the office, we were always greeted with a big “Charmer is here”. Everyone knew his name. Everyone loved him as their own.
Although Charmer is now with our Shar Pei’s, Trevor and Sassy, who preceeded him to the Rainbow Bridge, and our lives have a little hole in them, he is still present in the house and in our hearts. In addition, he was a perfect example of what ARF dogs are all about: even though some of them may be “flawed” by having only one eye, by not being able to hear, or by having personality quirks, they still will give you their loyalty and unconditional love if you let them. The love you receive from an ARF dog is not dictated by them being a pedigree, a certain color or a certain sex. The paw prints these rescued angels leave on your heart comes from them having the ability to change your life for the better and make you realize there are more important things in this crazy world than having the right job, making a lot of money or driving the perfect car. The IMPORTANT things in life are given away free by all ARF animals. And, for eight wonderful years, we had the privelage and joy to accept all of the important things Charmer brought to our lives. Goodbye, little man, we will miss you!!!
– Forever grateful,
Craig Davison and Bob Bauer
My new home came with regular bowls of dog crunchies, a big water bowl for drinking and wading, chewies and lots of stuff for me to kill (remember, I AM a terrier)! Mom had to buy tennis balls for me: no one else played tennis. My family includes a sister, Talk, a greyhound, 2 legged brother Lance and Mom. Dad is away in the Army but has gotten to come home for a few weekends.
The back door is where we go out with no leash on and run to see if the rabbits can get to the fence before we can. We look for squirrels in the trees and rats under the building. My yard has a doggie wading pool for swimming and a big soccer ball. I can run the ball from one fence to the other-just TRY to kick it to your goal!
Lance, my brother, shares his crate with me at night. He takes me for rides with him and chases me when I run off-yes, I like to dart out the door and see who will come get me while I sniff in the neighborhood. I play fetch with everyone, but would rather not let you get the ball from me without a tug-of-war. Lance has a great arm for throwing and does not get too upset when I pinch his fingers trying to keep the ball.
Mom gets me up in the morning to get the rabbits out of the yard before breakfast, which includes “something” about potty outside? I have a bit of a problem with attention deficit. She has ALMOST figured out when I like to potty!!
Mom is a Greyhounds Foster Mother, so we have foster friends that come and stay. Galveston was the one that was here when I came, and wow, could he play. He found his family and moved. Now, Miss True is with us. She is calm like Talk. I like having 2 girlfriends. Grandpa hands out treats and takes us out for a walk when we visit. Grandma cooks and makes sure we get a taste and she lets me sit in her lap.
Thanks ARF for picking me to join your group and for posting my picture with the Fox Terrier rescue group so mom could find me. She says I am the comedian of the family and I make sure everyone laughs. We still visit PetsMart, Petco and Southern Ag so I can remain an advocate for ARF rescue!!
– As dictated to mom, Carol O’Daniel
Sincerely your friend, Buddy (aka Jesse)
Last September when we lost our 14 year old Brittany, we decided to return to normalacy(for us) by having only 3 dogs. Then, shortly before Christmas, my husband, Butch, came home on Saturday from running errands and told me about this adorable little puppy he had seen at PetsMart. I reminded him of our decision to stay with just 3 dogs, only to find out he had already filled out the adoption papers on her. I agreed to go back to PetsMart with him to see her, but I spent the entire trip there building my arguments of why this would not work! Nowhere in the planning did I consider that I would fall in love with Bailey at first sight. She was about 4 months old and had the most beautiful furry face. A couple of days later we received a call from one of her foster dads wanting to set up a time for us to come to their home and meet them and see Bailey again. We had a wonderful visit and Bailey just continued to convince me she was supposed to come with us. I felt good about the visit when I left, but was anxious to hear if she was truly ours. I only knew that our family had a hole that she was suppose to fill. But, what if we weren’t the right forever home for her? The fear melted when I got the call that she would become a member of our family and they told me that when I had left her foster home, Bailey sat by the door-waiting for me to return!!
It didn’t take long for her to fit in with our other 3 dogs (all males) and to quickly earn the nickname of “Princess”. It has been an adventure every day with her. She has learned things very quickly and has been a joy to train. She loves tennis balls (especially tearing off the yellow fuzz), games of tug and playing Frisbee. She puts her whole heart into everything she does.
August has been a big month for Bailey. She successfully completed Advanced Beginners Obedience Class at Companion Dog School of Tulsa; as well, she earned the AKC Canine Good Citizen award. We also celebrated her first birthday. She is already training to play Flyball with our Dogs Gone Wild Flyball Club and should be ready for tournaments by next spring or summer. My dream is that she will be the first ARF dog in the Tulsa area (if not Oklahoma) to earn a NAFA (North American Flyball Association) title.
I truly can’t imagine being without her! I am often told she is a Momma’s girl-which makes me happy. Us girls gotta stick together! Sometimes when I walk through the house, I feel something at my leg and she is walking right beside me every step I take. I am thankful to ARF and especially Craig and Bob for bringing her into our lives. And, to Craig and Bob, thank you for staying in touch with us and your continued interest in her life and adventures.
– Marsha Ensminger
About one year ago, my husband & I decided to adopt a dog from ARF, and we have been grateful for that decision every since. As soon as I saw “Marley” on the ARF website, I knew he was made for us. I was so excited when we found out we were accepted. My husband had a few reservations (he had never had a dog in the family), but now neither of us can imagine life without Thatcher (we tried calling him Marley to no avail, so we christened him Thatcher).
– Erin Dailey
We were so lucky the day our new baby joined our family. As near as we can tell, she is mostly wire-haired dachshund, but she is definitely all sweet-heart. Without a doubt, she is the sweetest dog we’ve ever had the pleasure to meet! Her foster parents, Bob & Craig, obviously did a fantastic job getting her ready for adoption. While her ARF name was Topsey, Craig & Bob called her Sandy, and the name has stuck. A little shy at first, her sparkling personality (as evidenced by her picture) has come through. Bubbly, friendly and loving don’t even come close to describing what a great dog she is! Thank you ARF for giving us the chance to adopt such a wonderful pet!
– Gary, Lynn & Peter Elliott
We originally had adopted Kasey (Kesha), whom we absolutely adored, from you a few years ago. She was a black labradoodle and she was the perfect family dog. However, this summer she was diagnosed with Addisons (too late) and we had to put her to sleep. Jaynie called us that day with a friend for Kasey, and when we told her our sad story, she had a new baby for us-Pasha (Trix)-we came out to see her and fell in love with her. Our son desperately wanted a new friend and convinced us that a new dog was the remedy for our sadness. Pasha has fit in with our family beautifully and we just love her to pieces. She is also a doodle-totally different personality than Kasey-and she is just a doll!
– Lauren Zeligson
This is the story of Sahara… I am an apartment manager and was looking through the ARF pictures for a dog for one of my residents (a recovering cancer survivor). I saw a picture of Sahara, fell totally in love, and moved on. I thought about his jaunty posture and his beautiful face all night and all the next day. I just could not seem to get him out of my mind. Little did I know that he was already in my heart.
I am owned by a black and white Shih Tzu named Boo: he was born on Halloween. Boo and I had been thru a lot in the last year. He had to nurse me thru the loss of my mother, my beloved dog Mikey and then tragically, my beautiful 34 year old daughter died after an unsuccessful kidney/pancreas transplant. Just to make things really challenging…I also lost my job! Boo really had his work cut out for him, but with lots of snuggles and kisses he pulled me thru and helped me find another job.
After we sold our condo and moved to the apartments where I work, I noticed that Boo seemed lonely. He came to work with me everyday, but I just did not seem to be able to give him the romping and “free-for-all” fun he wanted. His first birthday was coming up and I had considered getting him a puppy for his birthday. I had a possible mate for him and hoped to have a puppy of his linage for him; unfortunately, the ladydog was unable to come to Tulsa and our hopes for a puppy faded.
What perfect timing!! Sahara was in my mind and in my heart already. I printed and filled out the papers the next day! I thought he would be a perfect brother for Boo. Boo and I were turned down for Sahara’s adoption because Boo had not been neutered. We made the vet appointment for the end of the week and reapplied. The people at ARF required that all animals in the adopting family be neutered, and since I had made the appointment, they reconsidered me. I know they checked my references thoroughly. They called my Vet and friends I had listed. I received the call that I was approved!! As soon as Boo and Sahara had recovered from their respective neutering surgies they could become brothers.
I will never forget seeing his face for the first time. He looked just like the picture and had lots of attitude. His foster parents were wonderful in guiding Boo and me thru our interview and in giving me guidance on how to introduce Sahara into our home and lives. Sahara is the smartest dog in the world and it has been a challenge for him to train Boo and me. He has lots of chewing energy and I need to keep lots of rawhides and toys for him: he also eats leashes.
Boo hasn’t minded sharing his toys because he adores his puppy! It is so much fun to watch them romp and play. Boo is happy and my heart if full once again. I feel that in some way I have known Sahara forever: we just seemed to make that connection. He has completed our little family and we are so thankful to ARF for saving his life so he could do the same for us!
– Vicky Vandever
Brando is simply a sweetheart. He is a large, handsome and a very stoic standard poodle with a sweet and endearing personality. Don’t get me wrong… he does have a little devilish and destructive side, but we are overcoming those traits as he learns how good life is with love.
Brando was a boy that I couldn’t resist on petfinder.com. The more I spoke to his foster mom, the more I realized he belonged with me and my other two standard poodles, Bogart and Bacall. The trip to pick him up was an adventure-from Denver to Tulsa-and back again in 25 hours. No rest for the weary and no extra room was left in the PT Cruiser.
Brando was one of the rescues from a puppymill situation, who came to ARF in sad shape, underweight, scared and unsocialized. Since coming home to Denver in late November 2005, Brando has gained considerable weight of 16 pounds, has grown his hair out and overcome some other minor issues while learning to love, trust and calm down. He truly is his own success!
The most amazing aspects of his recovery are the mental ones: he didn’t know how to hold a bone or play with toys when he came home. And now, he can’t leave them alones! He also has discovered how fun it is to shred blankets and toys or knock the cookie jars off the counter onto the tile floor….ouch. He loves being groomed, having his teeth brushed and being treated like a royal poodle. He is beginning to trust others and realizes that it is OK to not always be right at my side.
The summer of 2006 holds lots of opportunities for Brando as he will discover the Colorado mountains, play on the Plains, begin basic agility training and get in shape to better maintain his his new weight….Yes, I love this boy and so do his poodle pals. He is my lap dog who will always be faithful. I can tell by his eyes that he is happy, grateful and knows he is loved. What more can a dog or his owner ask for?
– Gretchen Dirks
My old schnauzer, Max, had passed away and our rescue dog, Allie, was looking very sad and lonely. I wanted another “love puppy” and kept going back to the ARF website. I found a precious little retired Mama dog named Shine and after several very tense days of trying to be first on the list to ask for her, we got the word that she was ours. I picked her up and brought her home on my lap: she was so frightened and insecure. When we arrived home she immediately bonded with my husband and has been doing that little Shih Tzu prancing dance for him every day. She is a joy and so sweet and quiet. Thank you ARF for your diligence and care in placing these unwanted and “used up” mama dogs. She is a sweetie and we love her!
– Sherry Burgell
In January 2001, I decided it was time to get a new dog; it had been one year since losing my shih tzu. I decided I wanted a bigger dog this time, something in the 25-30 lbs range. I was surfing the ARF website and saw Mr. Snuggums, looking scruffy and adorable and scared and all of about 9 lbs. I immediately contacted ARF, who put me in touch with his foster mom. We arranged a visit, and he spent the entire time sprawled in my lap. I filled out the paperwork and in a few days was able to bring him home.
I couldn’t handle the name “Mr. Snuggums,” so I changed his name to Mystery, and he learned his new name the first day. Mystery was skittish and scared and had to be hand fed for the first few weeks. After that, I had to stand “guard” so it was safe to eat for several months. He also spent the first three months hiding his treats so he had secret stashes of food. Security and regular meals were still something new.
Mystery quickly became known as the “velcro dog” as he almost never left my side and he’d snarl and snap at anyone who came near. Clearly, he had staked a claim. It took a year or so, but he soon became at ease with friends and family who visit. He is still a velcro dog, but now he always makes the rounds at parties to allow everyone a chance to fuss over him.
It’s been wonderful to watch him transform from a shy, skittery dog to a confident, pedal to the metal, terror to all the bunny, bird and squirrel kind that frequent our yard. We both lucked out.
– Melissa Tatum
I just adopted a puppy from ARF 2 days ago and I just had to submit my story. I had never adopted a pet before so I was a little hesitant. I am glad that I did. Jersey is the most loving puppy that I have ever had. He is also the smartest. I am encouraging everyone that asks, to ADOPT a pet that needs a forever home….
Back in the early 1990’s, Elaine from Animal Rescue Foundation in Tulsa, Oklahoma, introduced me to two of my very best friends. Thank you, Elaine, I’ll never forget them or you.
This note is about Cody, the oldest. We met in 1991. Early in 1991 I had been trying to find a Yorkie puppy for the daughter of a neighbor, who lived across the street. Elaine introduced me to Cody, a Maltese Terrier, six months old. At the time he was in need of a good bath and grooming. But under that mess of hair on his head, covering his eyes, I saw bright eyes and a ready, toothy smile. Elaine explained that his previous owner had taken him to the Humane Society requesting they put him to sleep. It seems he did not get along with his owner’s cats. Elaine picked him up that day in hopes I would adopt him. I helped him out of her travel kennel and took a good look at him, sitting down in the entry way to my home. It was hard to believe anyone would ask for such a cute little guy to be put to sleep. I thanked Elaine and decided to adopt him for the little girl across the street. That day, Cody and I visited the groomer and I had the opportunity to see who was under all that matted hair. Since his hair was such a mess, the groomer had to cut it short. Not at all like a typical, long, Maltese cut, Cody got a Yorkie cut, instead. As it turned out, I preferred that look because it made him look like a scruffy little guy and much more comfortable.
Over the next few months, it became obvious to me that the little girl’s mother was not fond of Cody. Although he was a great playmate for the little girl, Cody was sometimes jealous of time she spent with her friends, and displayed it. When the little girl and her mother moved to an apartment, I knew his life would take a turn for the worse so I took Cody back. I’d never had a little dog before and this was a new experience for me. As it turned out, little 6-pound Cody packed more personality than any larger dog I’d ever owned previously. Our lives together were quickly filled with new understanding of each other.
Cody was fond of riding in the Jeep. He would stand on my leg and could just barely get his head out of the window, his front paws on the sill. His big grin, with the wind wildly blowing his hair around, was a joy to see. If not looking out the window, and yapping at things that caught his eye, Cody was snugged up beside me in the driver’s seat.
At home, Cody liked to play fetch with a little bell ball. He was also fond of running like a little maniac in wide circles in the house… living room to dining room to kitchen back to living room. He would make a big loop at full speed, tail and hair flying behind him, and stop abruptly in front of me. Then he would grin the biggest grin I ever saw, sometimes yap once, and run the loop again. This would go on for 5-10 minutes. Everytime he stopped, I would laugh and laugh, and he would go again. What a joy that big grin brought everyone who saw it!
That was in 1991. Cody and I spent 10 years together, alone, and when I married in 2001, Cody spent 5 years with our new family. He had nicknames, too. I think everyone this fond of their canine friend will come up with endearing nicknames. His size earned the name “Pip” and “Code”. Sometimes I would sing “Code-Code-Codaroo!” to him and be rewarded with his big, big grin. Our youngest daughter loved that nickname. He was particularly fond of the ladies and preferred their company to mine. My early distress at his abandonment, in favor of my wife’s lap, earned him the nickname of “Benedict Pip”.
Unfortunately, Cody’s size interferred with his desire to tag along with us as we walked around the house. He was often underfoot and suffered a few knocks along the way. But he learned quickly and skittered to and fro, avoiding feet and shoes, most of the time. He preferred to curl up in a chair, on the couch or in a cubby hole beside the end table. That way he was still with us, but comfortable and safe. His kennel, his food and water were beside the bed in the master bedroom. He had his favorite blanket in the kennel and sometimes, during the day or night, he would drag it out and wrestle with it. Until a few years ago, he would jump up on his kennel, then jump up to on bed to sleep. We would find him curled up on my wife’s pillow very often during the day. He loved to go on walks in the park and, like most dogs, would stop and investigate everything along the way. He was good on a leash, but never really had any serious leash training. Even a little yank on the leash, to get his attention or to direct him as I walked, would send the little guy flying. I quickly learned, rather, to keep the leash shorter if I didn’t want him wandering to the limit.
When our 4-year-old was very young, Cody looked like a live stuffed toy to her. Toddlers do not treat their stuffed toys the way Cody wanted to be treated. Cody learned to steer clear of her early on. Although he would frequently curl up with her on the couch, when she became active, he would jump down and scurry to his cubby hole by the end table. Our daughter couldn’t get to him and he could still be a part of the family environment. He was almost always a constant companion for my wife. In the basement, living room or den, Cody looked for, found and fastened himself to her. He seemed to be the most comfortable and happy with her. My wife adored Cody, spoke to him in love and gave him the comfortable, lady-like, attention he craved. She managed most of his baths, brushings and trimmings. But she would leave the nail trimming to me; Cody wouldn’t tolerate anyone else; he barely tolerated me trimming his nails. Cody was as much a recognized and loved member of our family and lives as any other.
As the years moved along, Cody became a little more reclusive. Over the last two years he lost his sight and hearing. After he tumbled down the stairs to the living room a couple of times, we put a gate across the bedroom door to keep him safer. His world became smaller but he didn’t seem to mind. He could find his way around the room easily, but the rest of the house confused and frightened him. He was frightened when we took him outside. By now he slept most of the time. Last night he yelped a couple of times and my wife and I woke and attended him. He was in his last hours of life and we spent them with him, taking turns holding, chatting with him and petting him. We knew the end was coming and we wanted him comfortably knowing we were there with him. He left us without any obvious pain, curled up in his kennel, among familiar smells and people.
It’s hard to say just how an animal can draw itself into a person’s heart like a dog can. Cody’s big, big grin could pull a smile to the most unhappy moments in our lives. His presence, his unfailing desire to be with us and to bring us joy endeared him to us in ways most people fail to do in our lives. Now that he’s gone, his little piece of our hearts went with him… but just until we see him again.
Cody’s in Heaven now, with my other good friend, Fritz. Although they had their disagreements in life, I’m sure they are the best of best friends now. Both eagerly awaiting us at our Mansion over the hilltop. Cody, you’ve been such a good little Pip. Thanks. I can’t wait to see you again.
Friends, since you know me well, I’m sure you know my good friend, Fritz.
Fritz died of old age this morning. He was 12 years, 10 months old. That equates to about 90 dog years. For a 110 lb German Shepherd-Labrador Retriever mix, that’s a ripe old age. The German Shepherd in him gave him beautiful black-and-tan markings and made him a very good watch dog for our home and family. No single, audible noise in the vicinity of the house went unnoticed. And he routinely brought our attention to each and every, single, audible noise in the vicinity of the house. The Labrador Retriever in him gave him a large frame, straight back and folded his tall ears over about halfway. The quizzical look he would give, with his ears flopped over halfway and his head cocked sideways, in addition to the silly or clumsy things he would do, earned Fritz the nickname of “Bumble”. Together, the two dog breeds gave my family a fine and good friend; faithful, fun and eager to please.
Fritz was a family dog and a house dog. He only spent a couple of nights under the stars his whole life. His height and bulk gave him a presence in the house which could not be ignored. Frequently underfoot in the kitchen during meal preparation, he was an avid fan of anything the kitchen had to offer. He occasionally earned scraps of this or that but ate a balanced diet of lamb and rice for 11 of his 12 years. He had been wonderfully healthy and never spent a night at a veterinary hospital.
He was a good dog. For 6 years in Tulsa and 6 years in Colorado Springs, Fritz never failed to acknowledge, trust, appreciate and desire me in his company. When I was lonely or sad or just plain miserable, Fritz would put his head on my knee and look up at me with his big brown eyes, as if to say, I’m here for you. If I were angry or displeased with some aspect of my life, Fritz would keep his distance, although remaining nearby and attentive. When I was happy or in a silly mood, Fritz would dance and hop around me in circles, barking and smiling, each of us a part of the other’s good time. We occasionally sang together, too, howling in harmony to the annoyance of my wife and children. When I was at home, Fritz always knew exactly where I was and made his place there, too. If he lost track of me, he diligently searched the house and yard until he found me. To his frustration, once in a while I took pleasure in wickedly playing hide-and-seek with him, praising him enormously when he eventually discovered my hiding place. When the family and I were out of town, evidence of abundant dog fur on the loveseat by the front window proved he waited patiently, watching through the window for our return.
Fritz had been having a hard time getting up and around this Summer. His hips were causing some discomfort and he was losing weight, little by little. He was not as agile or strong as he had been. The last week or two we noticed he had a very hard time getting to his four feet or climbing stairs. When he stood, his hind legs almost always shook unsteadily. But, regardless of his strength and ability, Fritz was very frequently “smiling”. Did you know that dogs smile? As surely as they display aggression or shame, dogs also show their pleasure and smile. A few moments of acknowledgement or attention is all it took for Fritz to put on that “Bumble” smile I loved the first time I saw it. I longed to see it on his face almost daily and did, every time I gave him my time. But like most people, I was often too pre-occupied with work or chores or family life to give Fritz all the attention he craved. Fritz never complained. He simply waited until the time was right and we both enjoyed each other properly.
Fritz layed down in the den all day yesterday and moaned a couple of times when he changed position of his hind legs. He did not want to pull himself up on all fours; he may not have been able. He had not eaten a full, normal-sized meal in 4-5 days. I had an appointment to take him to the veterinary at 09:00 this morning. I knew things were not right with him and even had a feeling he might not come home from that appointment. Last night, when I got home from work, I spent the evening with Fritz. My wife and I made it a point for my 3-year-old daughter to spend time with him, too. The older children gave him attention, talked to him or patted his head, as was their habit. He was all smiles for everyone. But he did not budge from his sitting or laying position. We went to bed about 11:00 and I slept in the den with Fritz. He on his blanket rug, me in my sleeping bag. His breathing was so labored, as if it required real effort for him to take each and every breath. He was exhausted. He could not move himself to his rug so I picked him up and layed him down, positioning his legs as comfortably as I could. As we lay next to each other on the floor, looking each other in the eyes, I stroked and scratched him, telling him it was all okay, to take it easy, he had been a good boy and a good dog. I told him it was okay to let go. I think the soothing words and nearness may have been a comfort to him last night. It was the right thing to do. I woke up at about 04:00 in the morning; I had fallen asleep. While I dozed, Fritz had pulled himself about 6 feet away and turned and layed down facing me. I called to him and he did not respond. His breathing had stopped but he was still warm. I had just missed his passing by a few minutes. He died peacefully, without a sound, in his own home, with all the familiar smells, with the family at peace and with his best friend in sight. I am thankful his last hours were spent this way.
An unknown author must have known a dog like Fritz when he wrote… “He is your friend, your partner, your defender, your dog. You are his life, his love, his leader. He will be yours, faithful and true, to the last beat of his heart. You owe it to him to be worthy of such devotion.”
It’s true. Fritz was all that. I hope I was worthy of this friend. Our 3-year-old wanted to know where Fritz was this morning. I sat her on my knee and told her, between my own sobs and tears. I explained that his legs hurt very badly and he had gotten too old to get better. I told her that Jesus came last night told Fritz it was time to go to Heaven. Fritz said, okay, Jesus. So Jesus took Fritz to live in our mansion over the hilltop and to wait for us. She cried that she didn’t want Fritz to go to Heaven yet. Then, rather suddenly, she looked me in the eye and asked if his legs would stop hurting now. I said, yes, he was all better now and would never hurt again. That settled things for her; her tears stopped and her whole face shined in a smile. I don’t want his legs to hurt anymore, she said as she jumped down from my knee. That’s a really good way to look at it, I think….I believe everything I told my daughter.
When it’s my turn to go to Heaven, I believe God will bless me once more with my good friend, Fritz. Unfettered by earthly cares and pre-occupations, I think Fritz and I will have a really nice time. Thanks for everything, Fritz. I mean it. I’ll be seeing you!
– Rodney Schulze
This is a very happy adoption story. We adopted a miniature pinscher, Max, in February of this year from PAWS. Our two old dogs passed away last year, and we were ready for a pet. Max, like most mini pins, was fun-loving, active and brought alot of happiness to us. We noticed that he seemed lonely, so we decided to adopt a companion for him. We thought maybe a female would not be as rowdy. We looked at a couple but both were male, and Max did not take to them very well. Then Asia showed up on the ARF website. I immediately submitted my application, before I ever visited her. She was at one of the vets, so I went to see her after our application was approved and her spay surgery was complete. She was so scared and small, but snuggled right up and I knew she belonged to us.
When we took her home, we knew she had not had a very good life. She did not know what toys or treats were, and would not venture away from your lap. Loud voices scared her and sent her scrambling to her kennel. Max was misified that this creature did not want to play. It turned out she had an intestinal infection, and as soon as she was treated, she became a new dog!
She now plays tug of war with Max, guards our fence from intruders, and loves us very much. When I come home from work she wildly jumps on my lap and gives me hugs. I am so happy to see this little dog have a happy life with us, and see how she is changing from a scared little girl to the “big, brave, minipin” that she thinks she is now!
Thank you ARF for rescuing these animals so those of us who appreciate them can give them a home. The love they give to us is priceless.
– Kathy Stotts