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At an animal refuge where I once volunteered, a decision was in the works to euthanize Cooper, a victim of chronic UTI's. He was in constant pain and being catheterized at the vet was traumatizing for all.

Having lost all 3 of my elderly cats that year, I took him as a foster, determined to do online research of his problem. Turns out a better diet, less stress, and distilled water were his ticket to health. Of course I adopted him, and he delights me daily with his antics!

Debra Peters
Williamsburg, NM

18 Years of Love

Sadie was brought to us by friends who had found her wandering in downtown St. Louis, MO. They had hoped to keep her but quickly discovered an unknown allergy to cats. They brought her to us knowing we already had a cat and hoped we were in for another. She immediately took my heart and became a fast friend to our older cat. Since that day we have lost all our other cats to age and she is the only one left. She is 18 years old and full of attitude. She has moved with us many times and been my constant companion. She loves to catterwall at 3:00 in the morning and loves when we have guests, she is sure they have come to see her. Our lives have been blessed by having this little stray.

St. Louis, MO

Who rescued who??

These 3 adorable rescues came from different places...JJ the cocker from a family ready to give her away, Brandon the Papillion mix from Janet's Rescues in VA, and George the cat from a parking lot about to get hit by a car. I can't convey the amount of joy they've given me over the years!! I give them kisses and treats when ever possible to thank them for letting me into their lives. And the 2 other kitties they live with (1 rescue and 1 "planned") thank them too!

Sandy Saunders
Stafford, VA

Maisy aka Black eyed beast

We adopted Maisy shortly after our dog Shamas passed on, my daughter took me to Animal Welfare to find a dog.I looked all around at all the dogs and just felt like I was not ready yet. I was getting ready to leave ...crying because I missed my dog so much.

Then a worker was bringing a small black and white puppy in she was mostly white with a black face and a round black spot on her back, I asked is she ready for adoption. She said she was , but this was the second time she was brought back as she was so hard to handle. Her name was Paige. I fell in love with her and adopted her, my daughter was thrilled when I walked out with this little puppy.

We brought her home and she ran right into my husbands arms, and seemed to know her way around right away, the treat and food cabinet was her first big find. She was without a doubt the worse puppy I have ever had, she jumped on you, bit all the time, ran around like the devil was chasing her, pulled us down in the street when we walked her, and never listened but we never considered bringing her back, and even tho Animal Welfare said she would be around 30 -40 pounds, she is over a hundred pounds still stubborn but so funny, we love her so much, she is seven now and is for the most part very calm. We are happy we changed her name to Maisy, as we call her Crazy Maisy!

Joliet, IL

George & Magoo

George was a shelter cat from Pitsburgh PA. He is the large orange cat in the picture. I was volunteering at the York PA. SPCA shelter and was walking by the cages when a large cat got my attention by MEOWING loudly. I stopped and read the note someone had put on his cage. I will never forget it (Large Cat Extra Toes ) I stopped and found him to be very affectionate. He had 7 toes on his left front paw it looked like a catchers mit and 6 toes on the other 3. Also he was a male tri color. What a beauty, I hade to take him home. I took him home two days before he would have been put down so I named him Lucky. He was a wonderful addition for George and they got along wonderfully. But he had a way of sitting and looking around the room squinting ( I think he needed glasses) So his name changed to Magoo. We had him for 12 wonderful years. But cancer took him. And George Lived to the ripe old age of 18. I loved them both and always will....They left a special mark on my life.

Thomas Walski
York, PA

my Brown dog

I rescued a German Shorthair Pointer almost 9yrs ago. He was found as a stray, along the road. I told the people at the pound I would take him. The reason I rushed to get him is, they were going to uthinize him to figure out why he did not bark. He had one day left, when I seen him for the first time I fell in love with him. He has been part of the family for a long time, and he is so cute, and loves attention. I do not care if he can't bark, he is still special to the family. Was the best thing I could of ever don, never regret it(even if he pee's on my

Lisa Mcnally
Three Rivers, MI

The last minute

While searching Pet Finder for a JRT for my husband, I came across a JRT mix named Dixie whose time was almost up. It was a Tuesday night and she was scheduled for euthenasia that Friday. Her photos showed a small, timid heartbroken dog just begging for a second chance. Her story was one of abuse and neglect by her former owners and her sadness was evident. I fell in love and begged my husband to get her for me, even though she was over an hour away. He went the next day to the shelter and paid for her. She was spayed on Thursday and came home on Friday, the day she was supposed to have been put to sleep. Because of the mistreatment she suffered, she was skittish and is still fearful of loud, sudden noises. Despite that, she is a smart, loving, affectionate dog who is adored by the whole family. I don't know the details of the abuse she endured but she is now a spoiled couch potato with no shortage of hugs and kisses. I feel like she knows how close she was to the end and is grateful to us for saving her life. She deserved a good home filled with love and that is what she got. I couldn't ask for a better dog and I can't imagine life without her.

Catherine Summerow
Granite Falls, NC

My Shadow

I adopted Shadow from a local shelter two years ago. He earned his name from following me around like my shadow. I often think I should have named him Socks, because he takes my socks as soon as I take them off, and snuggles with them. Luckily, he never chews them up! He is the sweetest little guy. He slept on my pillow the first night, and has claimed that spot every night since. He loves to play with my husband and me, and all his toys. He is starting to enjoy our two year old grandson, too. He's a very content, loving little dog, and I'm very glad to have him.

Havensville, KS

A Tale of Two Kitties!

Well, I didn't change the name of my latest cat but the reason why will become clear! In the fall of 2008 my 10 1/2 year old DLH, Hobbes, was diagnosed with an oral tumor. I was devastated! I put him to sleep about 5 weeks later, as he could no longer eat or drink. My twin daughters were 5 years old then and Hobbes regularly slept on their pillows and combed their hair. We talked about what was happening and I told them he was going to God's house to be with my other cats and family members. For the next 2 weeks, every time Corinne cried about anything, it became about Hobbes! Kiera was more stoic about it. It got to the point where my friend who looked after the twins, said it was heartbreaking to see her so sad and that perhaps we should get another cat. I agreed, even though my hubby didn't want another cat. Off we went to the animal shelter anyway! After looking in the big room where the cats run around to play and socialize, we went out to the main reception area where there were other cats in cages. Corinne asked to see one pretty cat and she decided she liked her. I looked at her cage card and told Corinne the cat's name: Michelle! "That's my middle name!" she said and that was it! Michelle is brown tabby DLH but a petite 7 1/2 lbs (Hobbes was 15lb and orange), huge whiskers, white paws, bib and belly like Hobbes and she loves to rub everything and does roly-polys just like he did! She is very sweet and gets along with our sheltie and other cat! So Mish, Misha, Mishmi, Pretty Girl did not change her name!

Katherine Gauthier
Markham, ON, Canada

Our New Lives: The Story of a Little Dog Who Changed my Life

I had lived in different apartments for several years and had finally bought a home of my own. I knew that I wanted a pet to share love with and was being very careful in the selection process. I wanted a dog that did not shed much, was not overly talkative and was hopefully potty trained already. I had perused different rescue websites, but had not found the little one that I thought would be perfect. One sunny Saturday a friend of mine, who was at a pet supply store, called to let me know that one of the local rescue groups had brought pets in for adoption. I had a feeling that if I walked into the store, I would find a new addition. I was right. My friend had "Eadie" as she had been named in a cart waiting for my arrival. "Eadie" was a one year old rat terrier/red heeler mix and was all legs and ears at that point. I picked her up out of the cart and held her with my hand on her back. She turned her head, licked my face and it was all over from there. She shed...a lot, but it did not matter. I decided to change her name to Scout in honor of the main character in To Kill a Mockingbird, one of my favorite books. The name fit perfectly. When we arrived home, she showed no fear but instead scouted through the entire house, making it her own. We had our share of chewed up socks and pillows as she adjusted and grew up, but the stage passed fairly quickly and was entirely worth it. Scout is my perfect baby and I can't imagine life without her.

Angie R.
Paducah, KY
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