Adopted Dog Helps Mom Take a Bite Out of Life

Judy was looking for a companion. Now she and Ivy make the perfect team.

Judy + Ivy

Judy was feeling lonely and in need of companionship. Thanks to Ivy, she’s making new friends — at the dog park and beyond.

"She is such a joy to have around. Her little face always looks like she's smiling these days and her tail wags her whole body."

Adopted Dog Ivy

I am an elderly (70+) lady who moved from Florida to be near my daughter’s family in Tennessee, and there I began the difficult quest of making new connections. I spend good time with my family, I have a few friends and three cats, but I needed to be more active. I love animals and have had dogs in the past so I thought a dog would be good, but I had reservations. I was worried about being tied down, or becoming ill and not being able to honor that commitment. I had a conversation with my daughter and her hubby, and we agreed that when those things occur, we would each step in and commit to caring for the others’ animals in any situation.

Adopted Dog Ivy

With that, the search began. In June of this year, I was approved for adoption by Proverbs 12:10 and went to see their adoptable dogs. My daughter came too with her family’s least friendly dog. We spotted a kennel where someone had just returned a dog they had adopted almost a year earlier as a tiny pup, saying they didn’t want to care for her anymore. She was utterly confused and terrified, trembling in her kennel. Horrified, we thought we’d just pet her for a few minutes. My daughter’s dog approached her, and she went right up to him and licked his face! We were very surprised when he licked her also and they started playing.

Adopted Dog Ivy

She quickly warmed up to me and my daughter and granddaughter — but we didn’t know how she’d be with cats! The Proverbs volunteer said she’d place her with a foster who’d “vet” her with cats. After a successful time in foster care, I got Ivy the following Saturday and she is great with my cats! Since I’m in a townhouse, I worried about noise, but Ivy is usually very quiet. I can hike now and am unafraid of being a female walking alone since she is protective — she even scared a prowler away from the house with a big bark at 3 a.m.!

Adopted Dog Ivy

What a change in my life! My granddaughter visits more often — she loves to come over to play with Ivy. We both have new friends at the doggie park where Ivy plays joyfully with the other dogs. My doctor is also very pleased since I am walking more which helps with my cholesterol and diabetes. I’m also going to try to get Ivy in my kayak — I have started to take her to creeks to see acclimate her to water — she’s still somewhat hesitant, but getting used to it. She is such a joy to have around. Her little face always looks like she’s smiling these days and her tail wags her whole body. I am also spending a lot more time outdoors throwing a ball for her and trying to get her interested in a Frisbee — I’m not so good with the Frisbee yet, but we’ll learn together. My formerly somewhat lonely and inactive self and her formerly sad, confused self have come together as a joyful team.

Each year, the Petco Foundation invites adopters to share the story of how their adopted pet changed their lives during the annual Holiday Wishes campaign, giving the organization that they adopted from a chance to receive a grant award. This story by Judy won Proverbs 12:10 Animal Rescue & Adoption, Inc. in Burns, Tennessee a 2019 Holiday Wishes award.