We were driving into Corpus from the small Texas town we were living in and stopped to grab a water and some gas at a local gas station. From behind a pump ran a stray dog, hot and searching for food and water. So we grabbed an extra water from inside and came out to offer him some. We knew we wanted to help but we didn't know how. Once outside he was no where to found, we sat and hoped he had trotted off in the opposite direction of the intersection.
I got back in the car and found myself absolutely enraged. I was mad that there was a part of this country where people didn't love and respect animals, mad that we lived here, and mad that in that moment we couldn't help. There may or may not have been a moment I turned and said "we need to save ALL THE ANIMALS" overemotionally.
It was our plan to adopt a dog once we hit our next location but sometimes (most times) things don't go as planned. We saw Scout at a local rescue and we just couldn't resist. While all the other dogs were barking, she was sitting still roping us in with her sad puppy eyes. She looked relatively healthy but her coat was dull and she looked tired. So we decided to adopt her, or I guess she decided to adopt us.
She was too tired to walk around Petsmart so we sat her in the cart as we wheeled around trying to figure out what the heck we needed to raise and care for a dog. It turns out, not that much, but that didn't stop us from purchasing half the store. She spent most of the trip staring up at us with those little puppy eyes and the rest passed out surrounded by dog food and toys.
Our car ride home was harrowing, we quickly discovered her motion sickness. I vividly remember standing on the side of the road almost in tears as she sat listlessly in the grass thinking we were the worst pet parents in the world and had managed to fail her before we even got home. We finally made it to the house and started to get settled, even with our constant monitoring she managed to pee in her crate within the first five minutes.
The next few weeks were filled with potty training, DROP THATs, snuggles, and endless Google searches starting with "What do I do when my puppy...." We made our fair share of mistakes, trying to sleep train her one night when we didn't know she had a tummy ache and had gotten sick in her crate, and accidentally teaching her running away with inappropriate items in her mouth was a game. But we learned, and she learned. We taught each other through love and patience. Today Scout is almost one year old and rescuing her was one of the greatest decisions we've ever made.
So why the story of Scout? Because everyday there are thousands of animals sitting in shelters looking for someone like you to love. Because you can save a life by adopting one of these amazing animals, making a donation to your local rescue organization, or volunteering some of your time. So #AdoptDontShop and save a life today.