Oh, Henry!

Staff writer

About a year ago, Kenny and I were walking into a Walmart store in Winfield. Outside the front door stood a man with two tiny little puppies bundled up in a blanket.

I picked one up and it immediately snuggled it’s little head up against me. I looked at Kenny with my big sad eyes, and he returned the look with a “put- the-dog-back” look.

The man said the puppies were about seven weeks old and they were free. FREE!

Kenny said, “They poop. No dogs!”

Well, I’d forgot about those little puppies until one day a commercial came on the television.

It was the one about abandoned and abused animals where Sarah McLachlan sings, “In the Arms of an Angel” and all the animals look so sad.

Every single time I watch that commercial I get all teary eyed.

I wanted to help rescue a dog. So, for several months, I looked to see what the shelters in our area had for adoption.

This one particular evening as I was scanning through the different shelter websites on my computer, I came upon one that had animals available from rescue and adoption centers.

I read through the description of the different dogs, and just like the commercial, found that so many of these animals had been abandoned by their owners, given to shelters because they were no longer wanted, or had been abused in one way or another.

For those of you who don’t know me, I am a very cuddly, snuggly, kinda gal. Some people might call that needy, I call it loveable.

Anyway, it just so happened that I had the perfect opportunity to bring the subject up again with Kenny. He was taking his bath and he had no where to run, I had him cornered. I said, “Honey, you know what I was thinking?”

His response was, as it always is when I ask him that question, “Oh no, now what?”

I replied, “We need a dog.”

Before the night was over I actually had him sitting on the couch looking at all the hundreds of dogs available through different rescue shelters in Kansas.

We found a cute little guy at a shelter in Hutchinson and decided to e-mail the adoption papers.

We endured four long agonizing weeks of ridiculously long adoption forms, reference checks, veterinarian checks, and requirements.

Not once during that long process was I able to talk to anyone about the dog we wanted to adopt. It was so much red tape.

Finally I received a phone call and after asking my questions, decided that this dog was not the right fit. He didn’t get along with other dogs, or with small children, and even though the ad said house-broke, he still piddled in the house. The woman I talked to said he couldn’t be kenneled, and he chased squirrels and cats. Whew, glad we didn’t just jump right into that one.

That night Kenny and I sat down on the couch together and once again began our search. As soon as we opened up the web-site, there HE was! A three year old, purebred, Bichon Frise who had been surrendered to Olive’s Hope Pet Rescue in Louisburg by a puppy mill. He was house-broke, loved children, dogs, and husbands according to his foster family.

We sent in the simple adoption paper that this rescue center required and received a phone call the next day.

We took Henry home the following weekend and now, couldn’t be happier.

Henry is the most wonderful little dog. He’s getting used to his new home and loves cuddling, and snuggling. Which, come to find out, was Kenny’s motive for letting me get him in the first place.

“If you have Henry to cuddle with, instead of me, I’ll have more time to bow-flex, he said.

I guess that’s what you call a win, win, win situation.

I needed Henry, Henry needed a good home and Kenny needed some personal time. At least that’s what Kenny thought. Now, Henry has become quite attached to Kenny, so he gets cuddle time too. So much for Kenny’s personal time.

According to the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, ‘approximately 5 million to 7 million companion animals enter animal shelters nationwide every year, and approximately 3 to 4 million are euthanized.’

I’m glad we were able to give Henry a forever home.

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