Lilo was taken in by BTRC in September 2010. She was a stray found on the streets of Montreal, who was about to be euthanized. Luckily someone at the shelter contacted BTRC who brought her into rescue. She was a sorry sight: she was so skinny you could count her ribs, in terrible physical condition, with painful-red inflamed skin, which turned out to be a terrible case of mange. She was also heavily pregnant. Two days after coming into rescue she had seven Boston-mix puppies. The stress on her body of all of these factors caused all of her hair to fall out. Lilo was a fantastic mom, and lovingly took care of her babies. Once the puppies were weaned she went to a foster home in Timmins to continue her recovery.
When we submitted our application to adopt we were matched with Lilo, who was estimated to be 2.5 years old. By this time she had recovered from mange and her fur had grown back. She had put on weight and was ready for a home of her own. As she was being fostered in Timmins we did not meet Lilo until our “gotcha (adoption) day”. We met her foster mom Pam in Barrie, and fell in love with Lilo at first sight. She hopped in our car and fell asleep on the ride to Toronto. Once we got home she sniffed around the house, found her bed and cuddled in for the night. Lilo is so loving and friendly it’s hard to believe someone tossed her away like garbage. Lilo easily slid into our routine, enjoying walks in the city and playtime at the lake at grandma & grandpa’s house. She is happiest when her people are near, and every day when we come home she rushes to the door and greets us with love and a full body wiggle!
Frank (black coat)
Although Lilo enjoyed being with her humans we noticed an additional spark within her when we visited with our friends and their 2 labs for the weekend. My husband agreed that Lilo seemed to need another dog to bond with, so in the summer of 2014 we started to look for another rescue dog to add to our pack. We submitted applications to two rescues for adoption. We met a dog through one rescue that was looking for a new home, but Lilo had no interest in the dog – didn’t even bother to sniff him. Then I received an email from BTRC with two dogs that would be available for adoption shortly. One of those dogs was Frank, who was approximately 5 years old. I fell in love with his puppy face and my husband agreed to meet him. Frank’s story was the opposite of Lilo’s but equally heartbreaking. Frank, who is only 20 lbs, was chained to an outside dog house, which sat on a cement pad, 24 hours a day year round, in the Kitchener area. He may have also been used for breeding. Before being rescued Frank had never played with another dog, never had a toy or chewed a bone. He was very frightened of loud noises and quick movement, and there are indications he was abused. He didn’t even have a name.
Frank’s foster mom Mishelle had been doing a lot of work with Frank to help him get comfortable with the “real” world – taking him to work, on walks and around the town. Mishelle brought Frank over to meet Lilo and it was as if they had known each other forever. After a quick walk up and down the block they were set free in our backyard and playtime commenced. Frank rolled around the grass and played with Lilo, alternating being chased and chasing Lilo. We took them inside and Lilo let Frank drink from her water bowl, and lie down in her bed. We had found our new pack member.
Frank has scarring on his eyes, which may have been caused by being outside in the elements 24 hours a day. To ensure we had a full picture of Frank’s eye condition BTRC ensured that he was seen by an eye specialist to get an accurate diagnosis and prognoses prior to the adoption. Luckily the eye condition can be managed with drops which will prevent further scarring and the scarring does not affect his vision. Once the condition was shown to be stable we were clear to adopt Frank.
To see Frank & Lilo together you would never guess that they have only been together for a few months. Frank wakes Lilo up in the morning by licking her face. They cuddle together like the yin yang symbol, head to bum. When going for walks if one gets further ahead they automatically stop and wait for the other.
Adopting two dogs through a rescue has demonstrated that you don’t need to buy a puppy to find the dog you are looking for, as there are already lots of dogs full of love waiting to find a forever home.