We here at P/O/N are default dog lovers. You have to be with a mascot like Benji, the company’s favorite rescue dog and popcorn aficionado. As a dog lover, I’ve always been keen on having a dog of my own, but I wanted to do it responsibly.
When my husband and I started looking for a dog, we went to all the usual places: pet stores, The Humane Society, Craigslist, and finally, SICSA. This gave us an idea of the types of dogs available in the area and a general sample of pricing.
There are a whole host of places where you can get a new addition (of the furry variety) for your family, but we wanted to find a shelter dog. Not only were we virtually assured that the pet would be up-to-date on shots, but it would also be spayed/neutered. These were out of pocket costs that are generally not included when you buy a puppy from a casual breeder or pet store. More than that, however, was the ability to find someone else’s “problem” dog and save it from a life of four-walled neglect. Places like The Humane Society and SICSA do their best to love and exercise dogs, but the environments are generally not kind on pets in the long term.
After many months of searching, we came into SICSA for the second or third time, and while I was suggesting taking out a couple of the larger dogs, my husband pointed to a little pink nose sticking out from beneath the door of one of the cages and said, “Why don’t we look at that one?”
The dog was a 30-odd pound American Eskimo, lean and energetic, with a tremendous amount of energy. Within a few minutes of socializing with her, we were able to pinpoint some of her behavior issues and work out solutions. We decided on the spot to adopt her, and named her “Snax,” for her intense dedication to finding all manner of possible ingestible goodies. We put a hold and deposit on her that day, and waited a week for our landlord to approve the choice.
Today, Snax is a frolicking, fun-loving addition to our household. Behaviors that may have made her incompatible with another household (boundless energy, intense sociability, and a natural hunter’s instinct that has resulted in the demise of at least one squirrel in our yard), have made her the perfect companion in ours, where we enjoying playing with her, cooking with her (she follows us everywhere), and encourage her to keep our garden rodent-free. The rest has just been about establishing a structured routine with her that gives her positive feedback for good behaviors.
When my husband and I recently went away for the weekend and had to kennel her, we feared that we’d return to a slavering beast broken of all her habits… but instead of rebelling, Snax swung right back into things with even more dedication than before. I’d like to think that the brief away time helped her to realize that she’s one of the family, and we’ll always come back for her.
If you’re looking for ways to support local Dayton shelters like The Humane Society or SICSA, there is no greater service you could do than adopt and love a pet from one of these passionate animal care centers…. and encourage your friends to do the same.