Asociación por los Derechos de Animales Abandonados
Association for the Rights of Abandoned Animals
CIF: G29463635

Success Stories

Happy Endings: Shola and Cookie

"Where do you start when considering getting a dog for a pet? Do you think about the breed – size, temperament, appearance? Do you only want the latest 'In' fad designer dog? Or do you just happen to see a cute little puppy and think 'Oh, it's SO cute! I’ve just GOT to have it!!' and six months later, decide your carpet and furniture are more important and the puppy isn’t 'SO cute!' any more, so it is taken to the local shelter, or worse?

"Unfortunately, there are thousands of dogs who end up in shelters or abandoned every day, all over the world. That 'cute puppy' grows into a mature dog, very likely not knowing house manners, how to trust a human, or even how it will get its next meal. This is the unpleasant reality. This is where rescues like ADANA come into the picture, and where you can make Magic happen.

"My husband and I talked about getting a dog for quite a while, but we were concerned about the classic excuse of 'being tied down'. I continued to look at dogs available at numerous rescues, just in case, especially since I am retired and at home alone when my husband is working. Then, one evening, I happened upon Shola’s photo on ADANA’s Facebook page. I showed it to my husband and asked again, 'are you SURE we can’t have a small dog?' After some discussion, we decided she needed to come live with us. A wonderful volunteer at ADANA transported her all the way from Spain to Peterborough, England so we could drive down from Scotland and get her. While she turned out to be slightly larger than we anticipated, it was love at first sight and away we went.

"Shola was about eight months old when we got her. When we got home, the first few weeks were pretty much taken up with learning to communicate with each other. We had to learn her signals for when she needed to go out, and she had to learn our American and Scottish versions of English, rather than the Spanish she’d already learned. We call her 'The White Tornado' as she is so light and fast on her feet – if she doesn't want to be caught, there's NO way to catch her! She attempted to play with our eight year old Bengal cat, Shere Khan, but he wasn't very tolerant of her quick movements, long legs, and desire to sit on his head. Fortunately for Shola, he's a very tolerant cat who never even raised a claw to her, just hissing and meowing his displeasure at her persistent attentions. Shere Khan endured this torture for almost six months, when I came upon another ADANA dog whose photo very strongly resembled Shola – enter Cookie, stage left.

"My husband and I exclaimed over the resemblance of Shola and Cookie and wondered if they could possibly be sisters, as they are the same age, were both found just outside ADANA, just at different times and both have very long legs. Over the next couple of weeks, being happy with Shola and not seeing more posts, we assumed Cookie had also been adopted. Then I made the mistake(?!) of showing my husband the ADANA post that said no one wanted Cookie because she has such long legs! We couldn’t imagine such a thing! IF she was related and had half of Shola's wonderful personality, we couldn't see why people weren't lined up to adopt her! A little while later my husband decided Cookie needed to come live with us too, especially if she was Shola’s sister. I was quite astonished, as I had been the one who’d initially wanted a dog, but I said OK!

"We decided to use a transport company to bring Cookie to us in Scotland, so we had to wait a few weeks for the appointment. Cookie arrived on March 21, 2016. You can imagine our surprise when we expected a dog only slightly larger, but similar to Shola, and there was Cookie – twice as big, rougher coat, stubby tail, looking more like a trimmed English sheep dog’s body with a terrier’s head than a terrier mix! Her face looks like Shola, but that is where the resemblance ends. Cookie is heavier, more solid, and more deliberate in her movements. Where Shola is rarely still, Cookie will sit at your feet or lay with her head in your lap. We now doubt that they are related, but it doesn’t matter. They were ecstatic to meet each other, just the same. Shola has her playmate that welcomes her wild antics and Cookie has an adopted sister and a home with plenty of love and pats whenever she wants them. We are still learning to communicate since she has just arrived, but she is very smart and is picking things up quickly. She also has reminded us of just how far Shola has come in the seven months we’ve had her. We can’t wait to see Cookie’s progress as well.

"What is the Magic I mentioned? It is watching a dog learn that they are 'Home' and not going anywhere and will no longer have to worry about having a comfy bed and nutritious food every day. It is watching them lie down in the middle of the lounge floor, heave a big sigh, and relax into a deep sleep. It is having them come up to your chair, lay their head in your hand and look up at you with complete trust, with their stubby little tail wagging as hard as it can. It is being welcomed upon rising in the morning with a thundering stampede and mass of wiggling bodies, wagging tails, and sloppy doggie kisses. It is sleeping well at night, knowing that while you can’t change the world for the thousands of rescue dogs out there, you have changed the world for two of them.

"If you aren’t as lucky as we are, and can’t possibly adopt even one small dog, please consider making a financial contribution to ADANA to help rehome and care for the rescues. Any amount, especially on a regular monthly basis, makes a tremendous difference and allows dogs like Shola and Cookie find their special homes. Shola and Cookie both say 'thank you very much!!'"

Laurel Roberts
Newburgh, Scotland
March 24, 2016