One hot day in August 2011, a coworker here at the Richmond SPCA told me: “You have to go see the Chihuahuas from Pasadena – some of them are fluffy!” This immediately sounded dangerous. Though I had never particularly been a small dog person before, after adopting a long-haired Chihuahua mix from a shelter in college, I had a soft spot for her lookalikes.made my way to the kennel where the dogs were and scanned the cards on the door for more information, landing on Wayne’s. It said he was a brindle long-haired miniature Dachshund Chihuahua mix. I knew it in my gut before I even saw him: he was going to be the best kind of trouble. I had been warned against adopting an animal so soon after beginning work at the Richmond SPCA; coworkers told me a lot of awesome animals were certain to come along. Meanwhile, I’m sure my friends and family already had their “I told you so” prepared.
I knelt down on the floor and called the dogs over. Wayne came bounding up. He was skinny, his fur was scraggly, but he was one of the sweetest creatures I had ever encountered. A few days later, I brought my first dog, Stella, in for a meet and greet. Wayne was the first dog Stella allowed to share my lap without complaint – it was meant to be. I already knew there wouldn’t be another dog like him. We took him home and he quickly became part of the family.He immediately loved Stella and she loved him. He got along with cats and other dogs, too. In fact, Oliver gets along well with everyone. Though he is no longer skinny and his coat is now soft and silky, he only gets sweeter and is the gentlest animal I know. Over a year later, although there have indeed been many other awesome animals (including two cats who joined our family during Christmas 2011), there still hasn’t been another dog anything like him. We couldn’t be happier that we brought him home.
In the words of Charles Dickens, “Oliver has long since grown stout and healthy; but health or sickness made no difference in his warm feelings to those about him, though they do in the feelings of a great many people. He was still the same gentle, attached, affectionate creature that he had been when pain and suffering had wasted his strength; and when he was dependent for every slight attention and comfort on those who tended him.”
Linley Beckner is the coordinator of community relations for the Richmond SPCA. To read the biographies of our regular bloggers, please click here. Before posting a comment, please review our comment guidelines. Please note that our comment policy requires a first and last name to be used as your screen name.