By BRENDA SCHORY - firstname.lastname@example.org
They have names like Harley and Lucy, Nellie and Jake, Ferris or Trixie.
You can see them from the Web site of Homes for Endangered and Lost Pets, the dogs and cats that are available for adoption – or the stories that tell of successful adoptions.
The organization is an all-volunteer animal rescue operation, taking in lost, stray or abandoned animals at various foster homes. That way, the potential pet can have medical treatment and live in a regular house. The foster parents can see what the animal needs and can give an accurate account of what the pet is like – afraid of storms, housebroken, likes to play.
If you go to their Web site, www.helpinganimals.org, click on the winter newsletter and go to the very last page.
There is a photo of a black and tan dog named Snickers. She looks like she’s wearing a costume mask, as the black fur outlines her eyes like a Zorro mask.
And she’s ours.
Our last rescue, Ivy, a beagle-shepherd mix and legendary squirrel terrorist, died suddenly in January of what the vet said was likely an aneurysm. We cried, and then we looked around. Can’t go for too long without a dog. And though puppies are cute, they chew, piddle and nip. We’ve had great luck with the last two second-hand dogs, so we were game for another.
Looking for a pet these days is all online, a whole new world.
We adopted Ivy from the Anderson Animal Shelter in South Elgin. But they just did not have a dog that looked like a good fit for us.
I knew of HELP and had done stories about their work.
We checked their site and kept coming back to Snickers.
Snickers had been in foster care for more than a year. Her foster parents said she did not trust people to touch her. That changed gradually as they cared for her. As we visited, Snickers jumped on all of us and gave kisses. She climbed up on Clif the Wonder Husband’s lap and gave him a juicy slurp.
I can’t imagine what level of abuse was directed at this sweet little dog, but her foster parents did a great job bringing her around.
Now she is our champion squirrel chaser, kisser and snuggler – and stealer of unattended salami sandwiches.
An early riser, when she decides it’s time to get up, she’s on you with 23 pounds of force, tail thumping like a propeller.
Anderson and HELP both do a great job with their pets for adoption.
If you are not up for actually adopting a pet, consider helping out with their care. HELP can also be reached at 877-364-2286. Anderson’s Web site is www.andersonanimalshelter.org and phone number is 847-697-2880.
Write to Brenda Schory at email@example.com.