In rescue, it never ceases to amaze me how each dog is a unique story. And it never ceases to amaze me how those sweet, sweet dogs evoke the kindness of strangers in a most wonderful way.
During the hottest part of the summer 1999, I got a call from a good samaritan who lived next door to a very neglected and depressed samoyed. The owner was gone all day - dog tied out; no attention and hardly any food or water; terrible heat. She had called the hum societies and animal control and they told her nothing could be done. She called me and I told her short of stealing the dog (and the temptation was there), the only thing i could recommend was to see if the man would surrender the dog to rescue. When the jerk heard that he threatened to sue his neighbor if his dog ever disappeared. We dropped it.
Fast forward to November of 1999. Good samaritan (Monica) calls me up again and says there was a change in the man's circumstance; back operation, now living back at home with parents, dog alone again, but he really needed to sell the dog becaus he needed the money. Did i know anybody who would be interested in buying an intact 3 yo? i told Monica that rescue doesn't buy dogs and that the humane societies were full of samoyeds. But Monica loved Snowball and wanted more than anything for him to find a wonderful home. i told her i would pay up to $50 but that was it.
She talked to the owner - he wouldn't go lower than $250 (bec he paid $550). and no papers unless she paid $350. Monica never let on that rescue was getting involved or that he was going to be neutered immediately - only that she knew someone who was willing to buy the dog. Monica for her peace of mind, ended up paying the full amount and giving me the dog. she wouldn't even take the $50 i wanted to pay. She already had two dogs so she couldn't keep him. but the future life of this dog meant everything to her and the money was a small price to pay.
Unfortunately, because of Snowball's early lack of socialization, he didn't always know how to approach people and other dogs carefully which sometimes caused problems. So, because of no fault of his own he was placed 3 times, before Mary came along in January of 2000. Mary immediately renamed Snowball 1, Juneau and they became inseparable.
Ten months later, Mary again was a samoyed angel, when I asked her whether she might be willing to adopt Jack. Jack had come into rescue back in February - he, at 9 yo, was a "free to good home" dog. After a few months in foster care, a couple came from Boston to meet him who wanted a "hard to place dog." We felt SO good about this adoption; flew him out to Boston, but after a month, Snowball 2 came back because even though he was good with cats, the cats wouldn't accept him. He was placed again but he had a nipping incident with the young child when the little boy fell on top of Snowball. We despaired ever finding another home for a 10 year old "nipping" dog. I flat out asked Mary whether she would consider adopting Snowball 2 who had so much of a similar history to Snowball 1. Mary, with her heart of gold, said she was willing to take a chance. Both dogs are finally home to stay after their long, sad odysseys.
I want to give Mary a virtual hug every time I think of what would have happened with Jack and Juneau.