Looking at the vast array of animals needing a home, you always will encounter heartbreak. Losing two animals recently surely brought its own kind of trauma to our home, but it evolves into newer territory also — some of which is not unfamiliar – to find another creature, maybe more, needing a home and a safeguarding so few places offer.
The process of finding new canine companions invokes all kinds of sadness and joy. You read the stories of many lost creatures needing homes, their stories profound, often inciting so much emotion inside. You feel the call to make a difference, to reach out and make possible a place not before known to the creature’s existence.
Finding Rusty was just like that. He called to us in a sea of so many like him. How do you choose? Not easily. You go by your gut however hard following it becomes. You pick Rusty and know that it may mean you decline another. It is the heartbreak of choice. It is also a choice that brings great joy.
We don’t know Rusty’s beginnings. We learn he is possibly nine-years old, and found his latest journey in a southern California shelter not by his choosing. His nature is mellow. He loves food – what dog doesn’t? He does not hear very well. Given his kindly nature, you wouldn’t think he was abandoned to a less than stellar fate, but somehow he was. Thanks to the generous spirit of folks who love basset hounds and dogs in general, he found a new beginning.
Ultimately Rusty found us. Thank God. He lies peacefully beside me now, sleeping the kind of slumber we all wish for ourselves. We drove miles to claim him, but he is worth the journey. His gift is the love he brings out in us. His gift is the awareness that there are pursuits worthwhile, one of them adopting dogs and the thousand teachings about love they offer.