Jessica was too excited to wait for her birthday to adopt a dog! Jessica’s boyfriend Jared finally gave in once they moved into their pet-friendly apartment. Jessica just had to wait a few more months, but it was very hard for her. She just had to look online to see the features of her future dog.
That’s when she saw him. A dog that needed her most. The saddest little face that touched her feeling deeply.
Benji, a stray that the sad little face belongs to, was picked up in Los Angeles and taken to a large, rowdy city shelter. He was a shy little guy and had a flea allergy so he lost most of his fur.
“He was at the shelter for 10 days and wasn’t handling it well,” Jessica told The Dodo. “He would snarl and snap at people as they walked by. I had never seen a sadder dog and knew we couldn’t leave him there.”
The couple knew that Benji needed help so they decided they would make the 6-hour drive, from their apartment in Sacremento to Los Angeles.
Once the couple arrived at the shelter and told the staff that they were very interested in adopting Benji, the staff was surprised. They knew the dog needed a lot of help and care. The staff even tried to talk them out of adopting Benji but Jessica and Jared were firm about their decision.
Jessica said, “The shelter also told us he wasn’t friendly and refused to take us into a calm waiting area to get to know him because ‘he wouldn’t be a dog that would come over to us to be cuddly. We knew that he had a high possibility of being euthanized and didn’t want him to die.”
Meeting Benji only made what the couple already suspected certain. They would adopt Benji and welcome him into their small family. They signed the papers then made the long journey back home.
In the car ride, Benji was very cautious but Jessica and Jared knew this was totally normal. But when they arrived home, Benji started behaving exactly as the shelter staff said he would. He was shy and seemed to have no interest in his new paw-rents.
But then, after a few days passed, something amazing happened.
Benji understood that he was finally safe. The dog who no one wanted– the dog with the sad little face– began to PLAY! He didn’t just play, he became happy!
“He loves to come up and lick our faces and play with his toys,” Jessica said. “He is such a goofball now! He has crazy zoomies after he gets bathed. He will also start barking the second we get in the car as if to say, ‘We have to start moving! Let’s go!’”
It’s only been 3 weeks but Benji has become a real member of the family. He loves to play with Jessica and Jared.
Benji’s story is a reminder that ALL shelter dogs, no matter how they appear, just need to be given a second chance. Once they are out of that frightening shelter environment, everything can change. Since given a real chance with a real family…
The saddest shelter dog is now the happiest dog!
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