Volunteering at a shelter people always ask do I have any dogs of my own. Well as a matter of fact, yes I do. So I thought I would take the time to introduce you to my posse. It will take the whole week as there are 6 members to it, actually 7 Hermie the cat but she is a very elusive little girl that found us and only comes in when she wants, but I don’t give up easy if you don’t see her this week you will see her one of these days.
Let’s start with the little old lady of the group. Meet Sydney, she is now 13 years old and is a Belgian Sheep Dog. I first spotted and fell in love with this girl 11 years ago, I was looking for a dog for my mom and went to the shelter to look at another dog who wound up being adopted. So a friend that had come with me was wandering around the shelter and spotted Sydney and ran over and said come see there is a bigger version of Andy here (Andy was my sweet boy at the time). So she looked really sweet and we pulled her paperwork and asked to see her. As soon as she met me, she gave me her paw and she and I just sat and held hands through the whole interview, I later read in her write up that all the shelter volunteers noticed this about her; she would always give you her paw and just hold hands with you for as long as you like. I thought then and there this is the dog for my mom, you see my mom had lost my brother, dad and grandfather all within a 5 year period, I had moved out and she did not know how to be alone and was falling into a depression, so I figured this dog with the happy face and lovely demeanor would help her get through this tuff time. I was right, they have been best buddies for 11 years now and I do believe my mom would do anything for her.
Being a sheepdog Sydney does love to roam, even now with her back legs starting to give way on her as soon as I walk in the door she runs for her leash so I can take her for a walk. We did have one big adventure with Sydney, about 4 years ago she got out of the house and just ran. I was at work and my mom called me in a panic so I drove over there and we drove around for the whole afternoon and could not find her, John even drove down and he looked and looked and nothing. We even drove to the local shelter to see if she had been picked up, nothing. The next day I left work again in the afternoon (I had this really great boss at the time who understood BTW), and my Mom and I walked the streets looking for her and still nothing and I just kept praying someone tell me what to do. As we were walking we met two ladies and I showed them a photo of Sydney and one of the ladies said make posters this is how I found my dog, so the next day I came back with posters, well as we were hanging the posters this Latin man came up to me to say, you should make your posters in different languages as remember you live in a multi-lingual neighborhood, so that night I Googled up a translator and made posters in Spanish, Chinese and Tagalo. I had my friends who spoke each language tweek the posters for me the next day for grammer and we went and hung them around the neighborhood. Well it had been a whole week now and no sign of Sydney, my mom was broken hearted, the next day John and I had tickets to see the Lion King so we were not going to go looking but my friend called and said her brother told her we should place posters at the local Farmers Market, so I told John and we decided we would go for an hour and place our posters and then come home, so we took my little beagles (Skippy and Lily) and started hanging posters. So as we started to leave I just saw a spot and said to John let me hang this one last poster, it happen to be in Chinese and as I was hanging it I noticed a woman looking over my shoulder and then going up to read it and as I turned to leave she grabbed my hand and started pointing over toward the freeway and pretty much pushing John and I in that direction (she could not speak English and I could not speak Chinese so it was pretty much hand signals). Anyway John got in the car with Skip and Lil and I went on foot, as I was turning a corner I get a call from John, I figured he had been waiting for me and was wondering where the heck I was, but on the other end he was crying saying I have her, and I could not believe my ears and I started crying like a baby too. He said just as he was crossing pulling up to this intersection she just stepped out like she was waiting for him, at first she did not want to get in the car but then Skippy and Lilly peaked out to see what was going on and she saw them and hopped right in. Had we not found her that day, she would have crossed over to the other side of the Freeway toward the Farmers Market and gotten into a whole other section of the city and we would never have found her, or worse yet could have gotten hit by a car crossing the freeway. I truly believe God was watching us that week and sending people to give us these messages, as I had never lost an animal before and honestly had no clue what to do, miracles happen all the time, it’s just we never stop long enough to realize what we have just experienced.
Well Sydney and my mom are both little old ladies now. Sydney’s back legs are going, she can’t see well anymore but she still has that smiling face and will hold your hand all day if you ask her :)