Dax + Molly

Mom's Instant Connection with Dog Turns out to be a Gift for the Entire Family

every gift saves lives

every gift saves lives

Heather + Molly

I was scrolling through Facebook late one night. At the time, my little six-year-old was undergoing extensive medical testing. There was no end in sight. My poor child felt terrible every day.

While searching desperately for answers to his medical dilemma and trying to ease my mind of worry, a picture popped up of a dog with a sweet tan face, cocked head to one side, big floppy ears and a face of pure innocence.

"She changed our days with her unconditional love"

For the next few days, as I consoled my son who could not get relief from his daily fatigue and malaise, I kept seeing the same sweet picture of this dog. Her eyes and demeanor caught me. She looked unbelievably sweet. The local Denison Animal Welfare Group volunteers kept going on about how much she deserved a great home, even more than the typical social media posts. I knew they saw something special in her.

As days went by, I couldn’t get her out of my head. I told my husband I had to see her. It was April around my birthday. I already had a full house and a sick child, so I really didn’t need anything else on my plate. You never know how much time and effort a dog will require.

Despite my reservations, I went with our son Dax to meet her. She was a big dog. I was afraid adopting a big dog would be too much at this sensitive time. She was in a kennel with her sister. I tried to leave. We got into the car, but I couldn’t leave her. I called my husband at work, crying over her. He agreed if I felt she was special that I should take her home. She was scared. She shivered the whole way home. We bathed her and promised we would find her sister a good home, which we did. She was a good fit for our family.

As time went on, it was apparent that this dog would help my son in many ways. He changed her name to Molly and sang “Good Golly Miss Molly” to her. She curled up with him when he couldn’t get up to walk. When he could get up, she was there to walk with him. She was gentle and consoled him after surgeries. She jumped into his bed with him and later would run and play with my older son. She sat in my lap – all 65 pounds of her. She galloped and chased her tail, falling over her own feet. She gave us joy and laughter when it was hard to find.

She was the best birthday gift. She changed our days with her unconditional love. My son is still sick, and Molly isn’t going anywhere. She is giving us all exactly what we all need.

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 Heather Keener won Denison Animal Welfare Group in Denison, Texas a 2016 Holiday Wishes award.