Pets' names: Finnan Butterscotch (formerly "Butter") and Keira Rowan (formerly "Rowan")
Adopted by: Janette Noelle Dean
From: Mansfield Animal Care and Control, Mansfield, Texas, and Lookin' for Love Animal Rescue, Rockport, Texas
Janette, who wrote In Defense of Cats! A 17-Verse Poem for Cat Lovers of All Ages, sent a tale of a different species—the story of her two dogs:
Finnan and Keira's Adoption Story (aka "No Woman is an Island")
Finn and Keira came into my life because I lost my first adopted dog, Katie, when my ex-boyfriend and I separated. I was supposed to be the one keeping Katie, but that promise was not kept, and she was taken to Colorado to my great pain and woe. (Katie came from Friends of Castaway Companions Animal Shelter (FOCCAS) in Winnemucca, Nev.)
After a lonely, tear-filled Thanksgiving missing Katie, who was like a child to me, I decided that the only recourse I had (besides a bounty hunter that could kidnap her back!) was to adopt a new dog that needed a home. Throughout my life, whether I was a child, single, or with a partner, cats and dogs have always been family members that have made my life feel rich and whole. I've always known that for my own health and well-being, we all need somebody to love and receive love from, and "somebody" can certainly be a beloved pet.
My goal was to have a family I could call my own again by Christmas. I went online to see what local shelters had pet postings, and before I knew it, I was at a site I'd never been to before called Petfinder.com. Wow, what a site! With all the search options, it wasn't long before I was scouring the whole country for a dog who could somehow replace Katie in the hole of my heart. I searched for shepherd mixes and looked at picture after picture. They were all appealing, but I hoped to find one with Katie's coloring, her folded "Flying Nun" ears, as I called them, and most of all, her eyes.
|Katie (and her sister Moxie) in 2006|
Suddenly, listings for Texas appeared, and two young dogs peered out at me that shared different features of my special Katie. "Of course!" I thought. "Why not get two that could be a brother and sister to each other!" Dallas and Rockport were in the same state, even if it was one VERY BIG state. Soon, my mind was set. I was going to Texas, and the idea of a long road trip to clear my mind and start my new life sounded great to me.
"Texas!" many replied, including my dad in the La Crosse, Wisc., region. "Why do you have to go that far when there are so many shelters closer to you?" I knew it sounded crazy, but those dogs were the ones. Their pictures and expressions were emblazoned on my mind, and the promise of our new family of three filled my heart. Several telephone calls, many emails, and a thousand miles later, I was in Texas adopting Butter and Rowan with brand new collars, leashes, and other dog supplies.
It was thought that Finn and Keira might be shepherd mixes, but they've grown into what I'm pretty sure is a whippet mix and a "chug" (chihuahua-pug) or perhaps russell terrier-pug. Either way, they are a loverboy and an adorable whippersnapper who love to play in the snow, the meadows, and their new grassy yard in the hills of Carson City (that their new dad Peter bought for them on a one-acre ranch).
Finnan and Keira often remind me of Katie, but more often they remind me of themselves, because no two (or three) beings are alike on Earth, and that's the way it should be.
I encourage anyone to adopt a homeless dog or cat in need and to enjoy life as a 21st-century "family" in all its amazing forms.
If you adopted a pet from a shelter or rescue group and you'd like to share his or her story, please email me. I'd love to hear from you! (And by the way, From Alone to Home is now on Twitter and Facebook!)