Rescue Family Friday episode 2.06

Happy Rescue Family Friday!

As a reminder for this season of rescue family Friday, we will have a special drawing on race day for everyone that shared their story with us for a Running For Rescues 5K hoodie! If you’d like to share your story, message us on Facebook (link in the top right corner of this page).

Today’s story comes to us from Logan. Thank you Logan!

A little over two years ago I was working at the Paw Pet Resort and absolutely loved working with the dogs in particular. As my time there went on and I felt like I was getting more experienced with the dogs I have this growing feeling that I could provide a great life for my own dog. So I started searching the internet trying to find a dog I thought I could not just provide a home for, but I could help by giving it the best life possible.

I stumbled onto the Steele County Humane Society website and saw a foster dog whose name was Buster Bear and had been brought up from Cleveland, Texas. I remember he looked so scared in this photo and the fosters who took it mentioned that it is hard to get him to look as cute as he truly is because he was so anxious about nearly everything. In the moment reading his bio and seeing his picture, I had the realization, " That's not Buster... That's my dog. That's Booey. (like buoy but spelled different) and he floated up here to be with me. "

So I reached out to the foster and told her that I work at this boarding facility and believe I have the opportunity and know how to socialize this traumatized dog. So we set up a time to meet. the meet and greets with him went how I expected. he was very scared because he's not used to new people being in the house he hid behind the table and behind his foster parents and wouldn't come up to take a treat or get pet. I want to take this moment to mention how loving the Foster family was they were amazing people and they did everything they could for him, however they had two kids with physical and mental disabilities and having a dog that was so scared of everything was just too much for a family to handle.

The second visit I had it went just about the same although he did take a treat that I dropped on the floor for him. The third time we all knew there was going to be no miracle moment where all of a sudden he broke out of his shell, started wagging his tail and licking me so we decided this was the time we're going to take him home.

The first thing he did when I was carrying him out to his Cumberland was pooped all over me out of fear. Then during the ride home I kept saying his new name "Booey, Booey, I love you Booey." Then I noticed he was actually looking into my eyes from the rear-view mirror from inside of his kennel. that's really when I knew I had a very smart very special dog.

The first week he mainly spent in his kennel and we kind of left the door open but it was a safe place. After that time I actually took the top off of the kennel so he would feel more part of the room not so isolated. After I took the top off the kennel he surprised me by actually coming out and sniffing me and letting me pet him, and then put his harness and leash on and actually got him outside for his first walk ever.

Slowly the bond and trust started to build. After about a month-and-a-half I decided to finally bring him for his first day of daycare at the Paw. That was the change. He loved it so much he ran around with such happiness and vigor that I've never seen in him before. I knew that was my ticket to help him gain his confidence. It seemed every week he got better and better.

My life took a change and I ended up having to leave the Paw, but I still take him to the dog park every single day. Eventually we trusted each other so much that nothing could separate us. We are now going for more walks into the dog park and I never would have thought when I first got him but he walks extremely well off leash stays right by my side and listens to commands like the most intelligent companion I could have asked for.

It taught me so much patience, taught me so much about myself and what it really means to love unconditionally. He helped me grow up in so many ways, Booey changed my life for the better. Ironically I thought I'd be doing that for him, but I guess I'm really the one who needed something to love me and be there right by my side through thick and thin. And it's that realization that'd made me understand this is what I want to do for the rest of my life, and that helping people find that connection with a dog who needs rescue is doing so much more than just giving a family a pet. It's changing the family's life for the better, it's changing the dogs life for the better, but in my mind most importantly, it's the most fulfilling and personalized experience I've ever had and truly believe deciding to rescue an animal opens your soul to the world and allows you to become a more compassionate human being.

I wouldn't change what me and Booey have gone through with each other for anything in the world. We have brought out the best in each other and continue to do so each and every day we get to share with each other.

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Erik Jensen