Unconditional Love

Editor’s Note: Thank you, Susan for sharing this lovely story. As animal lovers and pet families all of us understand and feel your loss. 

I’m writing to let you know that we had to put our 17 plus year old dog down this past Monday. She was a shelter dog we adopted from Chicago anti cruelty over 16yrs ago. She was our Girl! Almost 4 and 1/2 years ago we were told she was in stage three kidney failure. With subcutaneous fluids twice a day she was given 1-9 months to live depending on which vet we spoke to. Well the fluids were not pleasant so we put her on azodyl ( for kidney ) and low protein diet. She lived another 4 years. Which brings me to our DJ!
We adopted DJ from ARF for two reasons. Guinness loved cats and we thought having Dj might lessen our pain when we lost Guinness. Dj became known as Guinness’s cat. They had fun chasing each other and cuddling together. They were best friends.
On Monday we asked the vet to come to the house to put Guinness out of her arthritic pain! We were immensely worried about DJ when Guinness was gone and wanted him to understand. DJ laid with Guinness all that day and when the vet gave her a sedative first in a shot form. Guinness let out a yelp and Dj laid his body across the thigh that the shot was given in. Protecting her friend from pain. The vet even said she had never seen two animals with a bond so close. DJ stayed with Guinness until the clippers were used to shave a bit of paw. After Guinness was gone we showed her to DJ and he sniffed her and walked away. DJ seems to be doing okay. Better then the rest of us! Our little DJ put a breath of life into our dog for 4 unexpected years and we thank him for that!
DJ other wise known as Don Juan is a very special cat ! When he was at PetSmart and I was cleaning cages I couldn’t understand why he was always looked over and now I understand. Thank you ARF for what you do! Shelter animals are the BEST!

Sincerely ,

Dog Happy Tails

Jackson’s Story
We adopted Jackson in July of 2009 and all three of our lives are the better for it.  Jackson wasn’t in the greatest shape when we brought him home.  The story was that his original owners left him tied up outside in southern Illinois all year for most the first two years of his life.  He was missing many of his teeth and his jaw had been broken by his abusive owners and never treated by a Vet. This got them arrested and got Jackson into ARF’s care.  He was just barely 8 lbs and his coat was very thin from the middle of his back to his tail. We described him as the “Charlie Brown Christmas Tree” of dogs, and after meeting him there was no doubt in our minds that we wanted to adopt him. 
Since Jackson came into our lives, our worlds have changed for the better to say the least.  With a good home, good food and lots of love, Jackson’s coat is now soft, thick and beautiful. He now weighs 10 lbs, and he’s gone from understandably being wary of some people, to this little charmer that wants to meet everybody.  Jackson still has that crooked jaw and is missing all those teeth, but he’s perfectly imperfect which makes him perfect for us.  He loves to snuggle, go for walks and especially loves to play in his private yard and gardens.  He’s always on yard patrol and take his job of protecting us from bunnies, squirrels, chipmunks and other critters very seriously.  Jackson is an amazing little guy that has brought more fun, love and pleasure into lives than we could’ve ever imagined.  God bless all of the “guardian angels” at ARF for all that you do.
– Ralph L. Gross & Andrea Lewis  

Dog Happy Tails

Eloise’s Story

Poor Eloise. She’s a great little dog who did everything right. She was loving, outgoing, and asked for nothing more than a little love. For reasons she couldn’t understand she ended up in a kill-shelter in Southern Illinois. Someone just dropped her off because they didn’t want to take care of her anymore. Just when it looked like her time was up, ARF stepped in and gave her a second chance! Now Eloise and her new family couldn’t be happier!

From Eloise’s new dad: “Thanks so much for checking in. She is amazing. She settled right into the flow of family life; it feels like we’ve had her for years.  Her appetite betrayed a bit of otherwise unobservable anxiety — she ate little yesterday or this morning — but it returned this evening.  She’s curious and has been busy exploring all the nooks and crannies of the house.  She also managed to convince me that she needed to sleep with us last night — the first of our dogs ever to manage that feat!  I think she is happy here and we are certainly happy to have her.  You and ARF did a fabulous job with her.  It’s hard to imagine that she has not been a treasured pet all her life. Thanks again!” – Steve.

Cat Happy Tails

Collin’s Story

Collin was the last cat that hadn’t been rescued before Christmas 2011. “My little orange boy is still here,” the shelter director told us. “Is there any way you can find room for him? He’s so sweet.” The cage opened and out came one little orange paw, then another. So scared. So tentative. Collin had been through this before. He looked up and something in those sad little eyes said, “Please. If you leave me here I won’t see tomorrow.” You see poor Collin had a cold at the wrong time of year. No one would be there to treat him over the holiday so Collin would have been euthanized that day.  But luckily ARF found room for the little orange cat, and he got the medicine and TLC he needed to make a complete recovery! Collin is now a happy member of a loving new family!

From his new mom: “Collin is a little love-bug and is doing well! He doesn’t seem bothered at all to be in a new place, which is pretty amazing! My other kitty is not sure what to make of these new cat smells, yet, but I think once she adjusts they are going to be great buds. So glad you rescued this dear little guy. All your hard work for the vulnerable animals is truly special. I am so happy to know there is someone out there doing all the good work you are doing. I’ll be sure to provide you with more updates and pictures! Thank you again!” – Katherine

Our little orange boy :-)

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