• Deborah A Allen

The new man in my life

Gorgeous George...

I admit it… there is a new man in my life, he is just 18 months old and his name is George. We adopted him from a very loving family two weeks ago .

But it wasn’t supposed to happen like this.

When my husband suggested a second dog, I said no then he got my daughter involved and far from supporting me she outlined all the reasons why we should get another dog.

It would give Murphy a playmate, it might help him with his nervous reaction to everything and everyone and besides, she reasoned , you’ve managed before all alone with three dogs so now you’re both at home two would be easy.

I laid down a few rules, the new dog would not be a tiny pup, it would not be a dog that would outgrow Murphy and it would be a rescue.

Thinking about a calm loving type of dog we decided on a beagle and there is a charity based in our area who re-home ex laboratory beagles, so I looked online, saw one of their dogs up for adoption and applied via my local shelter. I got an email back saying I had to apply to them directly, via their own email. So together my daughter and I wrote an email explaining what we could offer to a dog and explaining that we had a lot of experience with rescue dogs.

We sent it off full of hope but after 5 days there was no reply even though the website is plastered with photos of dogs who need homes urgently, so I decided to telephone them. That was easier said than done, the phone rang out and rang out. I tried at several times of the day but still there was no answer, going back to the website I saw a mobile number and tried that…

Finally, I got an answer and the lady on the phone sounded quite positive although when I mentioned our email, she asked our name and then spelled it out to her colleague before telling me sorry but there was no trace of any email from us.

She then asked for me to confirm my details again and explained we would have to attend an information afternoon before being considered for adoption. I agreed and she said they would send me the details, all I had to do was confirm by return of mail. I did exactly that, within minutes of her email arriving I confirmed and included my details for the fourth time.

The day of the information afternoon came and my daughter decided she would come with me.

We arrived in good time for the start and were greeted at the door by a speaker who asked our name so that she could check us off her list. Of course we weren’t on it even though I knew I had confirmed and my email hadn’t bounced.

It wasn’t so much information as a sermon and at times it felt uncomfortable, there was a house check involved and the speaker explained that if things went wrong it was your fault or if they rejected you it was your fault. At the end of the afternoon (nearly 4 hours) we were told that if we still wished to apply to adopt, we should state our intention in an email and a home check would be arranged. I approached the speaker and asked what email address I could best use to confirm my wish to adopt a dog, explaining that my previous emails had gone unanswered. She curtly told me , it’s the one on the website I don’t know anything about your emails maybe it’s your server.

My daughter tired a different approach she asked sweetly. ‘how long does it normally take for the home check and adoption? Only my parents are very eager, and they have everything ready to welcome a dog into their home’ She was told ‘the last person who thought they were ready was the person I rejected ‘

But we didn’t let that put us off and no sooner had we got home than we sent another email. In the spirit of catching more flies with honey than vinegar we said thank you for a very informative afternoon and then stated our wish to adopt again….

A week went by, and the silence was deafening.

At this point I had the idea that my foreign name was to blame and decided there was never going to be a dog from these people.

So, I started to look around and lo and behold there was George. His owners loved him but through no fault of their own could no longer keep him and wanted to find him a good loving family. I’m very grateful they chose us.

He is sweet and happy he plays with Murphy all the time he loves to walk and to cuddle, he is a monster for chewing things if left unattended and he pulls like a train on the lead but he is now part of the family and I wouldn’t miss him for the world.

He’s been here two weeks and he is lovely.

Two days ago, my email pinged. It was the lab-beagle people. Did we want a home check they could come the following day? I replied and said no thanks we have adopted elsewhere, because you never reply to mails.

I love George already and it’s clear that he and Murphy get on like a house on fire but I feel a little sorry for that beagle who will never be ours, not because we couldn’t offer a safe loving home, not because we couldn’t afford the upkeep of a second dog, not because we don’t have time or can’t be bothered to take a dog for long walks (we love the walking) but because that beagle has been let down by the very people who were supposed to be his/her rescuers.

That dog has been let down by people with their own agenda whatever it might be, people who for reasons known only to themselves decided they couldn’t be bothered to answer one of my emails, not a single one.

Yet again that dog has been let down by people.

Yet again I realise why I love dogs more than people, because dogs don’t judge or turn their nose up at your foreign sounding name. Dogs judge by character and if you love them, they love you regardless of your colour, creed, name, or wealth.

It’s a lesson those people at the rescue would do well to learn.

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