I wasn’t looking for anyone specific, but I had a few ideas. That is to say, I knew what I liked. I was looking to fill a void, and the moment I walked in the room, I knew this was the perfect place to make that happen. It was loud; too loud for meaningful conversation, but I wasn’t looking for conversation, and the air was not quite fresh, but I’d certainly smelled worse in places like this. And everyone in the room was clamoring for my attention.
I slowly made my way further into the room, surveying the options. Were any of these prospects worth bringing home with me? And then his gaze caught mine. He wasn’t what I had in mind. For starters, he was young, younger than I thought I’d like, but old enough to be on his own, so maybe I could overlook that. He was also blond, and I usually went for darker types. But he had a quietness about him, a stillness that set him apart from everyone else in that chaotic place. He looked at me with the saddest brown eyes, and without a word asked, “What did we do to find ourselves in a joint like this?” and I couldn’t shake the feeling that I might have found something different this time. I’d had tears and a broken heart before, and I knew he’d break my heart again, but he might stick around for a while first. I had to find out just a little more about him.
I found someone working the place. I asked her, “Can you help me with an introduction? I think I found someone I’d like to meet.”
“Sure,” she said, looking up from the counter. She wiped her hands on a rag and tossed it into a bin at her feet. “Which one?”
“In the puppy room,” my husband answered. “I think the kennel said ‘Grapefruit.'”
“Yeah, Grapefruit,” I confirmed.
The shelter worker opened the kennel and with Grapefruit tucked under her arm, led us to a meeting room. His nubbin tail wiggled the whole time.
After only a couple minutes, we were sold. We adopted Grapefruit and renamed him Pippin. Like his hobbit namesake, as he can move with surprising quiet, has very large hairy feet, and displays a keen interest in breakfast. He wasn’t the at-least-one-year-old heeler mix I thought I was looking for, but he has been the perfect addition to our little family, and exactly the dog we needed. I can’t imagine our lives without him.
I know I was just whining about bogus internet holidays and making up my own bogus holidays, but this one, May 20, is apparently National Rescue Dog Day. Again, I don’t know what nation; I doubt this has been given any oversight by any governing body. But we adopted Pippin from a shelter (shout out to the Humane Society of Southwest Missouri!) and he is a treasure, so if you think I’m going to pass up an opportunity to show him off, you’re outta your damn mind.
Look at that hairy little baby! We just adore him. He brings us so much joy and laughter every day, and I can’t believe how lucky we are to have him. Rescue animals are amazing, and if you’re looking for a hairy baby of your own, please visit your local shelter or animal rescue organization. They’re doing some unbelievable work, and the animals there will steal your heart in the very best way.