Lucy waited so long for her forever home – and it was well worth it because she found the best one possible!
On April 29, 2013, way back when the Sanctuary consisted of one split-level cottage that was shared between cats and dogs, a sweet, shy pit bull mix joined us from Glastonbury Animal Control. Lucy was a beautiful young lady who had clearly had some kind of troubled past. She struggled to welcome new people into her fold and was afraid of just about everything. From the start, it was pretty clear that finding Lucy a forever home might be a tricky feat, but the dedicated dog team worked tirelessly with the sweet pup to help her feel comfortable and even happy at the Sanctuary!
While the rest of our red cottage residents found perfect families and headed home, Lucy just seemed to stick around. She couldn't bring herself to meet new people, which made it very difficult to find a forever family. It took her many times meeting someone to get used to having them in her life and would often hide in the corner if she felt uncomfortable or upset. As time went by, the Sanctuary started to change and Lucy found herself moving from the red cottage to a brand new blue one, built just for the doggies! But still, she stuck around.
While it was sad that she couldn't find a home, the amazing staff and volunteers at the Sanctuary worked endlessly to make this pup happy. It was quickly learned that Lucy's favorite hobby was swimming, so a few kiddie pools were purchased and filled with fresh water on warm summer days for Lucy to lounge in before and after her walks. Lucy's pals also discovered that although she was quite wary of humans, she was a huge fan of male dogs. Over the several years that she was with us, Lucy went through a number of different boyfriends, including her all-time favorite, a handsome mutt named Brody who we attempted to send home with Lucy as a pair! Unfortunately, Lucy hurt her shoulder and it was determined that she would not be able to spend her life with another dog because she played too rough and would just re-injure herself.
So Brody went home alone and still, Lucy stayed. She was happy enough at the Sanctuary. She had her people - specifically her caretaker, Krystal, and her second-favorite human, our Canine Operations Director, Marie. She also made a ton of new friends and enjoyed taking walks (when in the mood) and hanging out in the play yard. She never wanted for anything - except for her very own family that is!
And then one magical, unexpected day, a wonderful couple named Dan and Natalie appeared out of thin air! Actually, that's not true - they were already volunteers, but they had fallen hard for our sweet Lucy and were determined to make themselves her people. They were perfect. They visited her every single day for lunch and would take her for long trips every weekend.
And finally, on October 13, 2017 - 4 1/2 years or 1,628 days after moving into our Sanctuary, Lucy moved in with her forever family. Natalie and Dan had two cats already and although they were initially wary of Lucy, the three of them have worked out living together and get along just fine! Natalie and Dan are wrapped around Lucy's paw and she is equally in love with them. She is in the process of finding the perfect house for her family to move into and is interviewing back yards to make sure they are suitable. And in the meantime, is enjoying this new warm weather in her kiddie pool in the back yard of her parents' condo!
Lucy is not one of a kind. We have come across so many of these shy and nervous dogs who just needed someone to take the time to get to know them! We know that Natalie and Dan will never regret their decision to bring Lucy home and we are so appreciative to them for taking the time to let her get used to them and let them into her inner circle. We hope that if this adoption shows anything, it's that adopting shy dogs is so rewarding and well worth the time and effort that is put into the relationship. We couldn't be happier for our lovely Lucy who found the absolute perfect home - it was well worth the wait for all of them!
A special photo mosaic of some of our adopted pets over the past 5 years
In March of this year, the Petco Foundation decided to put together an enormous mosaic of adopted pets, reaching out to shelters and rescues to encourage their adopters to share photos and stories of their furry family members to add to their huge photo mosaic. So, we sent out an email to our adopters from the past five years to see if they would be willing to submit their photos and also send us a photo so that we could share it with all of our adopters, volunteers, and staff members!
We were so thrilled with the amount of people who shared their beautiful photos with us. We have had so, so many special adoptions over the past five years (and even more in the years before that!) and were so happy to receive updates from some of our Sanctuary and rehoming pets.
From Lucy the dog who spent nearly four years at our Sanctuary to Filmore the cat who went home with one of our awesome volunteers just weeks after joining our living room kitties, each and every one of our adoptions holds a very special place in our hearts. Although this is just a small portion of our adopted pets, we want to share these photos with all of you to show you how happy our amazing adopters have made so many of these wonderful pets.
We so appreciate our adopters, volunteers, and donors who make all of this and more possible each and every day! Thank you for all that you do.
Albus put a spell on our very own Lindsey – and the pair have a created one magical little family!
My journey began back in April 2016. I was living in a home with some monstrous creatures, called "dogs" and "human teenagers." Whoever said Lassie was a hero never met a border collie who tried to herd me around the house! The hustle and bustle of their daily lives was exhausting. I couldn't get a moment's peace, and naturally I felt quite overwhelmed. I'll admit to being a sensitive lad, and my anxiety was through the roof. Unfortunately, I'm also afflicted with several urinary issues, many of which worsen due to stress. This was not the right home for me, and my former owners decided it was best if I found a new one. And that's when I came to the sanctuary.
Shy, scared, and leaking pee. I never knew if I'd ever find my forever home. I'm not a kitten anymore, and at age ten was considered a senior. An introverted senior with medical problems? I know at any other shelter, that might have been my death sentence. I was so lucky to end up at the sanctuary, where people understand that all animals deserve dignity and respect. Instead of a tight, cramped cage, I had a room all to my own. I had cat shelves to climb on, boxes to hide in, and toys to play with. It was just the place I needed to build up my confidence and address my medical concerns. Though I will admit, it took me a while to warm up to all the new humans in my life. People would come and sit next to me, and I'd shrink away. As much as I loved the peace and quiet here, it's not as nice as having a family all of my own.
Luckily, I made a lot of new friends - volunteers came to visit me! A little old senior cat with an incontience? I was quite flattered. I loved sitting next to people on the couch, hiding behind the couch to pounce at toys, and even enjoy the ourdoors on my catio. The lovely staff worked tirelessly to see if there was anything they could do for my medical conditions. I have FLUTD and cystitis, two conditions that affect my bladder. I knew how to use the litter box just fine, but my plumbing is a little screwed up. Sometimes...I'd wet the bed, or leave a little piddle on the floor if I was sitting down for a long time. After many different vet visits, medication trials, supplements, diet changes, and even holistic healing like chiropractors and acupuncture, it seemed that I'd always be a WHIZard. My conditions were managed well, but it's just a lifelong quirk I'll have to live with.
A year went by and I was still at the sanctuary. That's not an anniversary you want to celebrate. I know there were some people who saw my picture online, but once they found out about my health problem, they looked away. Nobody seemed to understand me...
But then came along my new mom. She actually worked at the sanctuary as volunteer manager, and she would come to feed me every day. After I ate my snack, she'd sit on the couch and I'd jump up to take a nap on her chest. I was trying to get as close as possible to her heart. She was always so patient with me, giving me space when I needed it and giving cuddles when I was lonely. Other volunteers would say that she and I had a special bond - it's true, I wouldn't often sleep right on top of people (it certainly didn't hurt that she brought me food every day too...) It would have been nice to go home with her, but I knew she was living with other kitties. And with my stressful nature, I needed to be a feline loner.
So imagine my surprise one cold December evening, when she came to feed me. Instead of putting my food right on the floor, she stuck it in the carrier. Naturally, being very hungry, I walked right in. But it was a trap! She slammed the door and whisked me away - oh no, not another dreaded vet visit. Sigh. I was used to it by now. After about a half hour drive, the car stopped. She picked me up and walked me up some stairs. I heard her fumble with the keys and open the door. It was dark - and there were not other humans around. This wasn't a vet office...could it be... She opened another door and set the carrier down. The lights went on and I reflexively blinked. Peering out of my carrier, I saw a bed, a nightstand, a dresser, piles of clothes, a bookcase... this looked like a human bedroom! Was this my new forever home?! I dashed out of the carrier and hid under the bed. This was too good to be true. She put a dish of food under the bed with me and sat on top to watch TV. She watched some weird show called "America's Next Top Model" - I certainly didn't understand the appeal. After about a half hour, I realized this wasn't a prank or a dream or a cruel trick. I had finally found my forever home, and it was with someone I had known for a long time. Turns out, she finally was able to get her own place - without any other cats living there! She would have taken me home sooner if she could have, which made me feel ultra special. I hopped out from under the bed and jumped on top with my new mom. I snuggled up in her armpit, I didn't care if the weird angle made her arm fall asleep. I was finally home.
Now, I'm doing great. I've got the whole apartment to myself. I have my own cat tower, window perch, scratching posts, boxes, toys, couch, counter, pantry, it's all mine! I'm the king of my castle. The one downside? Mom doesn't let me eat her human food - I try to steal french fries, crackers, even brussel sprouts. I love to reach my paw in to a bag of snacks when I think she isn't looking...but she always catches me. Other than that, life is great. I get to snuggle all night with a human who understands that senior cats like me deserve a loving home, and that I still need love even though I have medical conditions. Sure, she has to do extra laundry when I tinkle, but that's a small price to pay. I know there are thousands of cats like me out there in the world, getting euthanized because of their age or their untreatable, but not harmful, medical conditions. I count my lucky stars every day that I ended up in a place that could allow me to be myself, with no judgment or limits. The fact that I get to live out my golden years in a home is nothing short of a miracle.
I hope everyone who hears my story talks the time to consider someday, if they can, adopting a cat like me, and giving someone a second chance at a forever home. I also want to thank all the volunteers who spent time with me, showing me compassion and understanding. I know it's hard to compete with glamorous and rambunctious kittens for attention - but the fact that so many of you took the time out of your busy lives to come sit with little old me...I can't tell you how much I appreciate it.
Niko and Duncan hit the jackpot with their forever home – and their new mom feels the same way!
Niko and Duncan were a wonderful pair of pups who came to us when their owner passed away, leaving two very sad pups in his wake. When they first entered our program, we were absolutely certain that it would be nearly impossible to find them a forever family. Niko was 14 years old and a big shepherd mix with a little 8-year-old shadow named Duncan who simply couldn’t be without his pal! That means they were a bonded pair who needed to head home together and with their 6 year age gap and size/breed differences, we weren’t feeling too confident in our chances of finding them a home very quickly.
But despite the challenges they faced to find a home, it was darn near impossible not to fall madly in love with this pair of pups! They were clearly so loved by their owner and were healthy, happy, outgoing, social, and sweet. They loved everyone they met and quickly became fan favorites at the Sanctuary thanks to their easygoing personalities and sweet demeanors – not to mention their adorable little faces! We knew that although it may be tough to find them a home, we had to try because they so badly needed a family. So they went up on Petfinder and were advertised in local media in the hopes that someone might spot them and express some interest!
Luckily for us (and for Niko and Duncan), in October of 2017, a lovely woman applied to adopt these boys after seeing them in a newspaper. She knew they were the pups for her from the beginning and boy was she right! When she met them, they were, as usual, perfect angel pups and by the time she walked out the door, she was wrapped right around their furry little paws. The home visit went equally well and it was apparent that even though we didn’t think it was going to be this easy, Niko and Duncan had clearly found their human soul mate!
Their transition home was just as smooth as their transition to the Sanctuary, if not more so. In their first check-in, Ruth gushed about how in love she was and shared that both boys were doing so well! And in her most recent check-in, Ruth told us that she is buying a larger couch so that they can all three fit on it together! And she ended the conversation by sharing that every day with her boys is like a “Christmas miracle”. We just love how much they are loved and couldn’t be happier that these deserving pups are able to live out their days in a home where they get all the snuggles and love they could possible want!
Pete and Luna – still just as sweet and cute as they were when we had them two whole years ago!
Pete (used to be Pikachu) and Luna were the absolutely stunning, playful, and snuggly pair of kitties who came to our Sanctuary after an unfortunate adoption fail when it was learned that Luna is in fact petrified of dogs! Prior to that home, Luna and Pikachu were the first of many to come to us from a colony of feral/friendly stray kitties including the infamous Gonji and a fan favorite Frodo. Pete and Luna spent quite a while in our rehoming program before finally catching the eye of a young couple looking to add another pair of kitties to their already pet-filled household. We decided to give it a whirl, but Luna thought differently when she discovered that they owned dreaded DOGS. She was very unhappy there and we knew it just wasn’t going to work. So off to the Sanctuary they went! And we were happy to have them – they are absolute loves!
While at the Sanctuary, Pikachu and Luna were fawned over thanks to their adorable faces and even cuter personalities. Pikachu was a purr-machine with a motor loud enough to hear across a room! He was playful, active, and loads of fun to watch as he chased whatever was moving around the room. Luna was more of a lap-cat, which seems to be true today, but also enjoyed play time when in the mood! While with us, we noticed that Pikachu was “snorting”, which ended up being the result of some polyps and inflamed tissue. In any case, after spending some time with us, these gorgeous kitties were so heart-meltingly cute, we knew they wouldn’t last long with us, and we were right! Their forever parents, Ron and Mary Ann, came around and scooped them up and have provided us with a years’ worth of hilarious stories, adorable photos, and sweet updates – so we decided to share some of those with all of you!
From the beginning, it seemed that things were going to work out just fine. In Mary Ann’s first update, it was hard to tell it had only been a few weeks since they moved in!
“We are having so much fun around here. Luna and Pete (formally Pikachu) are doing GREAT!!!! You'd think they have been here forever- they seemed very comfortable with our home and us as soon as we brought them here. The first night Pete crawled into bed with us! They are both very affectionate (with us and with each other) and are also very inquisitive. We are so happy with our "kids" and are grateful that we found each other. I promise they will have the best life possible!”
Each update was full of Mary Ann gushing over her perfect kitties – even throwing in this funny story about her apparently gentle babies playing with a live animal!
“We had an exciting event a couple weeks ago. While I was at my computer I noticed Pete walking down the hall with a toy in his mouth- or so I thought. Turns out he had a mouse! He played with it and then lovingly pushed it to Luna so she could have a turn. She carried it around and then gave it back. Eventually I was able to rescue the poor mouse and scoot it outside.”
Within a few months, it was clear that Luna and Pete had their mom and dad wrapped around their paws:
“We feel so lucky to have such wonderful cats in our lives. They are so well behaved ( always use the scratching post and never touch our furniture), have great litter box habits, love each other and have such sweet dispositions. We are totally smitten!”
By the time their one-year anniversary rolled around, we knew our check-ins had to come to an end, but we know Pete and Luna are still having the best time with their extremely loving parents and we couldn’t have envisioned a more perfect home for these two – or any of our pets for that matter!
From Miami hunk to regular snow pup, Bruce’s life has done a 180 in the best way possible!
A few months back, we posted an adoption update on one of our long-term Sanctuary pups, the very handsome and lovable Brody! While Brody and Bruce didn’t come to the Sanctuary together and never even knew each other when they were there, their adoption stories are very much intertwined and are both shining examples of the importance of our adoption matching program! You see, Brody’s forever family came to us after their good friend, a wonderful woman named JoAnn, came to us specifically interested in meeting Brody! She came out to meet him and loved him, but knew that he wasn’t the dog for her due to his anxiety about ceiling fans (!) of all things. She kindly handed Brody right over to her friends who fell madly in love with the sweet boy and brought him home a few short weeks later.
While JoAnn was obviously thrilled for her friends and for Brody, she was dying for a pup of her own, so we held onto her information and kept her in the back of our minds, just in case the perfect dog came around. A few short months later, a large, somewhat funny-looking Mastiff mix came lumbering into our Sanctuary. Bruce had been brought up to Connecticut from Miami by another rescue and was just sitting in a kennel, waiting to find the perfect family. Just a few weeks after welcoming him into our Sanctuary, we knew Bruce was a special guy. He was so laid-back and lazy when he wanted to be, but tons of energy for long walks and play sessions in the yard. He would even get bursts of silliness that often lead to him galloping through the grass like a hilarious hippo with a huge grin on his face. He was just a special pup with an awesome personality and we knew just the right person to introduce him to.
JoAnn was of course thrilled to hear about Bruce and instantly fell in love with him. After his home visit, we were certain that he was the perfect pup for her and he headed home just a few short days later. Bruce and JoAnn are a match made in heaven and we are incredibly grateful that she stuck around to wait for him to come along! We receive regular updates that include adorable photos, videos, and stories and are even happy to report that Bruce and Brody have become fast friends! Bruce has experienced his first snow and though he lived in a warm climate for his entire life, he has learned that he is a huge fan of the snow and is an even bigger fan of his new mom and very best friend. He loves to go on adventures with JoAnn and is enjoying meeting all of her friends – including the four-legged ones!
We always encourage appropriate adopters to stick around if we don’t have a fit for them right away when they apply. While we understand that this can be difficult for people, JoAnn and Bruce are living proof that the wait is well worth it! We can’t wait to get some adorable updates about Bruce’s first holiday in his forever home and hope to continue making matches just like this as we continue to take in more and more pets.
Elizabeth and her dad are living proof that opposites
Elizabeth was a gorgeous, long-haired princess who was part of our rehoming program before coming to our Sanctuary for over a year. She was FIV positive and elderly, making her difficult to place as it was – pile on a bit of a ‘tude and you have a nearly impossible-to-adopt senior kitty. Though she was great with our staff and volunteers, she would let us know when she was done with getting attention and wasn’t always very polite about it! And when it came to meeting potential adopters, she was downright rude. We all thought she was just being a brat, but I guess she just wanted us all to know that she likes her humans to be young…and young men at that! As it turns out, Elizabeth is an actual cougar.
You see, Elizabeth was something like 15 years old when she was finally adopted. In cat years, that equals right around 77 years of age (or something). And her adopter? Just 22 years of age when he brought his “Bells” home. And this lucky lady has not one but THREE young men doting on her at all times (turns out her human has two eligible bachelors for roommates). Like any self-respecting cougar, Elizabeth has her human absolutely wrapped around her finger. This dedicated cat dad does everything under the sun to ensure that his “pretty Belly baby girl” is not only happy, but downright spoiled. And he loves to share Elizabeth’s every adventure on her very own Instagram (check it out - @bellspositive) which has us melting with every new post!
Elizabeth is absolutely the princess, or perhaps queen of her household. She enjoys weekly strolls through the pet store, even donning a ridiculously adorable harness, complete with pink frills, as she struts her stuff down each and every aisle. Her hilariously titled photos and videos reveal that this particularly particular little floof is on cloud nine in her forever home. And it is clear that her human is absolutely head-over-heels for his “puffy princess” who has allowed his “Madame Smooshy Face” to turn his home into a fur-covered cat Paradise – and has instituted a strict no-black-clothes policy for his wardrobe.
While every single one of our adoptions hold a special place in our hearts and all of our wonderful adopters are equally appreciated, it is incredibly touching to see any elderly pet find a forever home – especially when that home is with a young man who has absolutely no worries showing everyone who knows him just how much he loves his “Belly” (she has a LOT of nicknames!!). If you’re ever wondering what it’s like to adopt a senior pet, regardless of your age, just know it is at least as rewarding as adopting a puppy or kitten, if not more so! So don’t knock it til you try it!
The sweetest story about our resilient and amazing Rosalie!
In October of 2016, Our Companions received news from a local vet that there had been an emaciated, neglected young pit bull dropped off at their office, just minutes from death. Though she should have been around 50 pounds, this beautiful little lady who the vet named Rosalie (aka Rosie), weighed in at under 20 pounds and was wasting away. It was an absolute miracle that she was still breathing. This wonderful vet’s office worked long and hard to bring her back from the brink and knew that once she was healthy enough, she would need a special place to heal and grow into the amazing dog they knew she could be – a place just like our Sanctuary!!
Though we knew we would take her in when she was ready, she needed to put on some weight and stabilize before she could leave the vet. Her feet were flattened due to emaciation and she was missing patches of fur all over her body and on most of her tail. She had a long, difficult road to recovery and needed round-the-clock care just to survive. During the two and a half long months that she stayed at the vet, she got regular visits from one of our amazing volunteers, Daryl. She would take short walks outside, bundled up in comfy blankets and once she was stable enough, she would even take trips to Daryl’s house and to our office on occasion for morning trips with employees. We were absolutely amazed at the resilience that this gorgeous little lady showed. Despite the horrific abuse and neglect she had endured at the hands of her “owners”, Rosie adored people. She just wanted to be close to someone at all times and was happiest when sitting directly on top of a warm lap. She didn’t quite understand how to be a dog. Toys were a mystery and the concept of playing was foreign. She had to be bundled up in layers of jackets that hung off of her bony body and didn’t help with her constant shivers. But despite all of her health issues, she was happy and absolutely thrilled just to be close to someone any chance she could. Everyone who met her fell madly in love with this puppy-like girl.
When she finally made it to the Sanctuary in January of 2017, we knew very little about the dog that she would really be when she was finally back on her feet. Rosie weighed in at right around 30 pounds and had funny shaped feet and legs due to the impact of starvation. She still required layers of jackets to keep her warm and ate multiple meals a day. She could handle short spurts in the chilly weather, but was happiest when spending time in her room or the living room with anyone who would let her on their lap. As she gained weight, she became more and more active and playful. We quickly learned that she absolutely despises other dogs and made funny little squeals whenever she saw a dog while out on her walk. She was high energy, playful, and lacked manners and training, but had loads of potential and amazed us with her love for people – especially children. Anytime a child approached her during public hours, she melted into a calmer, more relaxed version of herself and seemed at peace just to be near a little human. She would lay on the couch across their laps or sit patiently at their feet getting pets and love. When a lovely family with two toddlers came to us looking for an adoptable pet, we knew just who to introduce them to.
Though we had yet to even put her up on Petfinder for adoption, we brought Rosie to a Meet & Greet event to meet her potential adopters. When they came into the room to for the first time, we were absolutely certain they were the perfect fit for our sweet Rosie. The kids were amazing with her and the calm, quiet demeanor of the entire family helped put Rosie’s anxious, excited little self at ease. Just a few short weeks later, she headed home.
Rosie has settled into her forever home wonderfully. She adores her kids and gets daily walks in the woods around her house, followed by cozy couch snuggles with the entire family. Though we miss her happy-go-lucky seal face at the Sanctuary, we couldn’t possibly be happier for how her life has turned out. She finally gets to know what being loved feels like and is so adored by her entire family. Rosie’s story is a wonderful reminder of the resilience and strength of man’s best friend, as she continues to amaze us all with her capacity to love and adore human beings despite the way they treated her in the past. We are beyond happy to be sharing this adoption update with you just about one year after we met our beautiful Rosalie for the first time and hope that it inspires you to give a rescue pet a chance, regardless of his or her past!
“If you pick up a starving dog and make him prosperous, he will not bite your hand. This is the principle difference between a dog and man” – Mark Twain
PS: we would like to send out a huge thank you to all of our volunteers, especially Daryl, for helping to socialize Rosie and spending so much time showing her how it feels to be loved! Our pets are so incredibly lucky to have such dedicated, reliable volunteers who provide them with love and care for however long they remain in our care.
Sometimes the perfect match is found when you least expect it!
Nearly seven years ago, Brody came to us a very tiny puppy looking for a home where he could live out his days. Unfortunately, Brody just couldn’t get used to the idea of sharing his home with a tiny human and needed to be rehomed at the age of 6. He came to our Sanctuary and after an initial weird period (where he refused to eat normal food and we had to cook him burgers and Steak-Ums) he settled right in. Over time, we came to learn that he was a very sweet and easy boy with a few funny quirks. For example, he hates ceiling fans and LOVES to hunt for small rodents and other tiny creatures. He gets along great with everyone he meets, but is kind of picky about spending time with big, male dogs. He is super sweet and snuggly and absolutely loves learning new tricks, but hates car rides and enjoys barking very loudly at passing trucks and people. Like most pups, he has his strange little quirks, but is overall just about the best boy you could ask for!
Which is why after a year at our Sanctuary, we were all surprised that he hadn’t found his forever home. Finally, a lovely woman came to us looking for a hiking partner and we were totally convinced that they could be a perfect fit! Unfortunately, her love for ceiling fans made that an impossible match – but don’t worry, she ended up taking home one of our other favorite boys, Bruce – check back for updates on that adorable adoption!!! Anyway, thanks to this woman, a wonderful family of 3 (her close friends) came to use interested in one of Brody’s “girlfriends”. They wanted a family member who could hang in their back yard, get along with their 13-year-old son, and welcome visitors who came to swim in the pool and celebrate holidays. And none of our shy ladies fit the bill. But we decided to introduce them to Brody to see how it went. And we couldn’t believe how quickly he took to them!
Right off the bat, he was practically sitting on top of their 13-year-old son and went from person to person for pets and attention. It was the absolute perfect match! We couldn’t believe that these people had come to us because their friend wanted Brody and they ended up being his match made in heaven. Of course, the home visit was just as wonderful as their introduction and they could not wait to bring him home.
Since he moved into his forever home, we have received nothing but amazing updates from Brody and his new family. They are all madly in love with him and he sleeps every single night with his best friend/brother. He adores playing with, snuggling up to, and just generally being around all of his family members and has loved meeting their friends and extended family members. Although we didn’t expect this to work out the way that it did, we have learned that everything happens for a reason and it has all worked out, both for Brody’s family and for the woman who brought them to us! We couldn’t be happier for all of them and are so thrilled with how all of this has worked out in the end.
What’s better than a forever home for one deserving kitty? A home for three!
A while back, Our Companions took a pretty big, handsome, and energetic kitty into our Sanctuary and we named him Higgins! Higgins spent his days playing with everything in sight, climbing furniture like it was meant to be climbed on, and zooming around the living room terrorizing his poor kitty roommates. He was desperate for a playmate that could keep up with him, but just couldn’t find the right fit – that is until he met his buddies Tetris (now Omar) and Jupiter (now Roosevelt). These three guys started tearing up the living room as a really cool – not to mention adorable – team.
To rewind a bit, the story behind Tetris and Jupiter is truly one-of-a-kind. Tetris and Jupiter came to our Sanctuary after being found as kittens with their two much more outgoing brothers, Chickpea and Colt, at the Colt Building in Hartford. When they first came to us, all four kittens were extremely nervous and shy. They would hide from any person that came near them and were so jumpy and scared it was sad to see. Thanks to our amazing volunteers who so patiently sat with and fed these four cuties, they really started to come around! Tetris, the most shy of the four, was even able to be coaxed onto a lap or two with delicious treats when he was in the mood! After Colt and Chickpea found their forever homes, we knew it would be tough for Jupiter and Tetris to transition into a family, but when they bonded with Higgins, it was clear that he would provide all the confidence that these two were missing! We felt so sad knowing that this fantastic threesome would probably have to be separated down the line because who would adopt THREE cats at one time?!
Fast forward a few months and out of the woodwork came the most magical of people – Judith and Jeffrey. Though these two amazing adopters initially only wanted two kitties, they couldn’t bear the thought of separating any of these guys from one another, so they ended up with a trio! We were all so thrilled and frankly very surprised to hear that three wild boys could find their forever home together.
Now, just about 10 months after they headed home, Higgins, Roosevelt, and Omar are loving life. Higgins, still a wild child, happily rules the roost, while Roosevelt and Omar continue to gain confidence. And of course they all three still love to play, snuggle, and hang out together! Omar and Roosevelt now love getting attention from their parents and are happily living their lives with their best bud and now big brother, Higgins.
We are so happy that thanks to Judith and Jeffrey, our three amigos are able to spend their days together and will be forever grateful to these amazing adopters for bringing them all home as a family!
A Very Happy Ending for One Happy-Go-Lucky Pup!
Gunnar was part of our rehoming program for several months, which simply means that he remained with his original owners while we worked on finding him a home. He was brought up to Connecticut to be adopted by a different family, but it didn’t work out, so the people who brought him up ended up taking him back until we could find the perfect situation for him.
Gunnar lived with other dogs and loved everyone he met, but had some quirks that made it difficult for him to live in certain home environments, such as apartments or condos. He really needed a home where he could get tons of exercise, attention, and couch time, preferably one with a canine companion. But after a few potential homes didn’t pan out, we started to wonder if Gunnar’s perfect match would ever come along!
And then we met Emily, Russ, and their adorable fur-child, Mickey! They initially came to us interested in meeting a Mickey look-alike who was also part of our rehoming program, but we had the feeling that Gunnar would be the perfect fit and boy were we right! Though Emily and Russ loved Gunnar right off the bat, it became clear that it was a match made in heaven when Mickey and Gunnar hit it off during their first meeting. These two well-behaved boys spent the whole visit chasing each other, rolling around, and playing tag. We had no doubt that they would be the best of friends!
Though there were a few bumps in the road getting Gunnar home, followed by a few unexpected twists and turns after he moved in, Gunnar has truly become part of the pack and all three of his family members just adore him. He and Mickey spend their days frolicking about in their enormous fenced-in yard or taking their parents for a walk. Gunnar loves to people-watch from the front window and loves nothing more than snuggle time with his entire family on the couch. Though he is over 50 pounds, he has no clue that he shouldn’t just always be sitting on someone’s lap!
We often tell adopters to give pets a few months to settle in and warn them that those first few weeks and months can be a bit challenging, but it will all be worth it in the end. Gunnar is no exception and is in fact the perfect example of how important it is to keep an open mind and stay dedicated to a pet during the transitional period, but it sure seems to have paid off for the whole family – especially Gunnar and Mickey who are two peas in a pod!
A Very Special Adoption Update
Many, many years ago, a very scared cat by the name of Dillon came into our rehoming program looking to find a forever home! For those of you who don’t know what that means – our rehoming program is simply a way to help find pets homes without having them go into a shelter. We work with the original owners of animals to promote them for adoption and place them in forever homes and they (hopefully) avoid the shelter environment all together! Anyway – back to Dillon!
Dillon was placed in a home with small children, which just couldn’t work for this scaredy-cat. He was petrified of these miniature humans and though the family loved him and kept him for an entire year while we looked for a better fit, it just couldn’t work out. After a year, a lovely foster home came forward to take Dillon in. Though we no longer have a foster program, this worked out great for Dillon and he stayed there for nearly two years! At that point, we had space for this sweet boy at our Sanctuary and he moved in where he became our resident office cat.
Initially, Dillon seemed like a real tough guy. He was grumpy and spent much of his time around people swatting and hissing, but we soon learned that this behavior was simply Dillon’s way of showing us that he was scared of everything around him! With a lot of patience, understanding, treats, and love, Dillon aka Dilly aka Dill Pickle aka Grumpy Cat slowly but surely made many friends! He became quite the lap cat and though he still swatted and hissed from time to time, he was hiding the sweetest, most lovable kitty behind that tough exterior!
In 2016, we finally decided it was time to focus on finding this sweet guy the perfect home. We ramped up the effort to find him an adoptive home by launching our very first pet campaign entirely dedicated to Dillon! We posted weekly Instagram photos, boosted Facebook postings, and, using quotes from volunteers and staff members, wrote a blog all about our favorite little Dilly! We hoped that this extra attention might catch the perfect person’s eye and help us to find the right fit for this deserving kitty.
As luck would have it, a lovely young couple – Brittany and Tom – attended an adoption event looking to find their new best friend. They were open to ages, sizes, and personalities and were more focused on finding the right fit than anything else. After chatting with them for a bit, it became clear that these patient people might just be the perfect fit for our Dillon! They were so excited to meet the star of our campaign and after visiting no less than five times, which is just what this shy guy needed, they brought him home. We were all so thrilled, though nervous that things may not go as planned.
Fortunately for Dillon, Brittany and Tom were just as perfect as we had hoped. They patiently waited for Dilly to come around, which hardly took any time at all, and now nearly one year later, he has turned into the most perfect lap cat, companion, and family member. He adores his mom and dad and they are just as smitten with their fur child! Though it took him a bit longer to find the right family, everything worked out as it should have and this trio have created an adorable family unit where Dillon happily thrives getting all the love and attention he so deserves! We couldn’t be happier and are hopeful that our newest campaign for our sweet pup Hera is just as successful!
A recent email from Dillon’s adopters shows just how much they love him!
So Dillion has been doing amazing over the past couple of months. He has really made himself at home here, we joke all the time that this is Dillion's apartment that he lets us stay in. As soon as we brought him home he started warming up to us more and now he is so much more affectionate than we ever thought he would be. He is constantly head butting and licking our legs when he wants some attention and taking naps in our laps. Even when he isn't feeling like being petted and acts like he is too cool for us he is still following behind us like a shadow and making sure that he is near us. Some of his hobbies lately have included playing tag with us (where he will run around like crazy, comes up to you, jumps up and hugs your leg, and then runs away just as fast), sitting outside in his crate watching the birds, helping us make the bed (we have different versions of helping there), and lining his toys up in a straight line (possibly to appease the vacuum that he has to terms with over the past few months, we are still trying to figure that one out.) He is a complete goof ball and that's why we love him so much.
In January of 2015, the Sanctuary welcomed the happiest, most lively pup by the name of Kaylee. This little live wire lived in the pound for many months before coming to us and was in desperate need of training, exercise, and tons of love. It was quickly learned that this bundle of energy was not a fan of other dogs, required more patience, running, and walking than some other dogs, and had far too much energy for cats and kids. She wasn’t the easiest pup to place, but OC was confident that the right home would come around! Kaylee’s upbeat personality, social nature with people, and her cheerful disposition, everyone thought it would be no time before she found her forever family.
Fast forward a year and a half and sweet Kaylee was still waiting patiently for her perfect match. Though she was happy at the Sanctuary, she was desperately in need of a home where she was the only pet with people who could give her lots of attention and love. Just when we were running low on hope for finding Kaylee’s soul people, our first ever try at participating with Clear the Shelters came around. Clear the Shelters is an annual adoption event sponsored by NBC and though we are not a traditional shelter, we thought it was worth a shot to take part in the event for the publicity it would bring. Though we didn’t send home any pets the day of the event due to our adoption policies, it certainly paid off because a very special couple attended the event and fell hard for our very own Kaylee!
Now nearing the one year anniversary of her adoption, sweet Kaylee and her amazing parents are still loving their life together and from the pictures we’ve seen and updates we’ve received, we’re certain that this is indeed a successful adoption! Be sure to check out Clear the Shelters this year, August 19th, and follow along with NBC CT as they share success stories just like Kaylee’s in the months prior!
Adoption Update: Blast from the Past
Seven years ago, an adorable pair of kittens found their forever home – this month, we received the greatest update and couldn’t wait to share it with all of you!
Theo (formerly Tubby) and Pixie (formerly Tallulah) are a gorgeous pair of kitties who originally came into Our Companions’ care 7 years ago – before the Sanctuary even existed! They were raised with their mom in an amazing foster home with one of our lovely volunteers, Andrea, who did an amazing job caring for these beautiful kitties. Andrea shared her story with us for this sweet update:
"It was September 28, 2009 and a friend of mine, Marlene, called me for help. She had found a newborn kitten unattended by its mother in the yard of the housing complex off Albany Avenue in Hartford. Never having dealt with
an orphaned kitten before, I immediately contacted Stephanie (from O.C.) and together we headed to Hartford.
Knowing that the chances of a day old kitten making it without its mother were slim to none, Stephanie encouraged Marlene to put the kitten back where she found it in hopes that the mother would return. As we were walking outside to put the kitten back, t he mother cat appeared and came running. She was so happy to see her baby and us that she rolled over the ground, rubbing her face on the concrete. She immediately took to nursing the kitten.
"We knew that we couldn’t just leave them where they were, boxed the stray mother and her kitten up and headed to the vet. It’s there that we were told that there was another kitten in her belly. I ended up bringing both of them back to my house and building her a quiet, warm space in the shower of one of the bathrooms. Momma cat, now named Libby, was as kind and loving as they come and was totally trusting with me around her new kitten, who we named Tubby. It was two more days until Tallulah arrived, born at 6:10 pm on 9/30/09. The next few weeks were the most amazing weeks of my life. Watching them grow and bonding with them made me proud; I wondered how I would ever give them up when the time came.
"Kitten applications came pouring in and I shared their information, along with 3 other kitten pairs to Brenda, a potential adopter. The rest is history and the kittens went to the most perfect home on Friday, 11/27/09 at 11 am.
"Tullulah, now Pixie, and Tubby, now Theo, have been living happily with their family for many years now! Their adopter, Brenda, stumbled into one of our employees at a meeting and struck up a conversation about her amazing and very loved kitties whom she adopted from O.C. years prior. Brenda showed off some photos and we knew we needed to share them to showcase how great these adorable kitties are doing in their forever home! We were so thrilled to get this amazing update and are happy to report a very, very happy ending for these deserving cats.
Read Brenda’s email to us below and check out their adorable photos! Theo (the white cat) is very dog-like. They both greet people at the door and are very social, but Theo is extraordinary. He wags his tail when he’s happy, and loves to get all “in your face”. They are both lap cats, but Theo loves to really stretch his arms out in a hug. Pixie, no disrespect intended, isn’t as bright as Theo. She is a little clumsy (no ear infections – just not your typical graceful cat!), and always makes us laugh with her antics. They get along for the most part, but also enjoy a little scuffle now and then. Theo enjoys creeping up on Pixie while she sleeps, and then laying right on top of her. Sometimes Pixie lets him, other times it’s a quick swipe and a hiss that gets him off her! Typical siblings."