The last several months have been brutal on the dogs of the Stofft Family. Although we knew several years ago that someday we would be faced with 4 dogs of the same age and breed type growing old simultaneously, we didn’t expect to lose all 4 within about a year and a half. Our last boy, Bodhi passed away this week.
He was perhaps my favorite dog of all time and I wish that we could have brought in a new dog for him to mentor before his time came. Susan and I had been trying to find a new companion for our family over the last several months, but Bodhi’s condition had progressed to the point that we thought a rowdy new dog would be more of a challenge than he could handle.
Working in a veterinary clinic, we both expected that the right dog looking for a good home would simply walk into our lives. It is very typical for those of us in this field to see many (and turn down most) potential pets in need of a better life. We also decided that adopting a dog from a shelter or rescue group would be better that purchasing a dog from a breeder. That has led us to the amazing world of online pet adoption sites. One more example of how technology can make information gathering so much more efficient. It is also a lot of fun to look at pictures and descriptions of hundreds of possible candidates. These sites allow you to search under very specific parameters, like breed, age, size etc. The Petfinders website shows animals from the Humane Society, Pima Animal Control, and dozens of local animal adoption groups. It is also nationwide so friends and family can look for pets in their local area. The website is full of great videos and tips about pet adoption and ownership.
We also looked at some dogs from some of the breed specific rescue groups. This is a great alternative for people that have a specific dog breed in mind. Many of these dogs are great companions but were not suited for their initial home for many possible reasons. Some of them were too energetic and needed more exercise, training or attention. Some were not compatible with other dogs in their new “pack”. Sometimes people move away or into housing that forces them to give up the pet. If you have a specific breed in mind and can’t find what you are looking for in a shelter, try googling “(the breed) rescue group.”
Our search had a happy ending as we ended up with a great dog. He is currently named Cody – subject to Family Council on Renaming ( we are taking suggestions). He is justifiably nervous around our big cat Ernie – who needs to work on his hospitality skills.