A black and white dog and a brown dog laying in the grass

Sunny and Poet

October 25, 2022

Cold, wet, and wearing a buffalo-check sweater, Plaid arrived at HSSW as a stray. Anxious and scared, Plaid refused to allow our team to handle her for over a week, snapping at any attempt by our team to make contact. She spent her days hiding in a nest of blankets, emerging only when she was alone for mealtimes and potty breaks. Her fear was understandable: she had been someone’s dog but either intentionally or by accident, she had become separated from her family.

When lost dogs arrive at HSSW our first priority is to reconnect them with their family. While we work to get them home, we do our best to help them feel safe, secure, and comfortable. If they are not reunited with a family, we put them on a path for adoption. This was the case for Plaid.

For weeks, our team visited her daily, sitting quietly on the floor of her kennel, offering gentle encouragement and tasty treats. Gradually, Plaid grew bold enough to peek out from her crate, accept treats, and even began spending her days as a foster in our administrative offices. She would need a very special and patient family.

Within a few days of being made available for adoption, Makayla and Diana arrived to meet her.

“I’ve worked in dog training and gravitate toward dogs like Plaid (we call her Sunny now) who are more difficult to place,” Makayla said. “When we met Sunny, we gave her lots of space and time to get comfortable with us. After two appointments, she let us hold her and we knew she was the one for us.”

As she settled into her new home and grew more confident, Makayla and Diana decided to find a playmate for Sunny. Again, they turned to HSSW.

Today they are best friends.

Greyson was another shy dog that came to HSSW in the fall of 2021 as part of a group of 30 small dogs living in unsafe and unsanitary conditions. None had life-threatening medical concerns, but all were fearful, shy, and had never experienced things we take for granted—walking on a leash, climbing stairs, or being part of a human family. Greyson was the last remaining dog from the hoarding case to be adopted.

“I remember Poet—that’s what we call Greyson now—being very timid but when he saw Sunny, he let his guard down,” said Makayla. They met Greyson more than five times, and each time they met, Greyson grew more comfortable with them, but it wasn’t until he met Sunny that he really came out of his shell. “Today, they are best friends, and are basically attached at the hip. We are so happy to have them, and so grateful to the Humane Society for their help. We feel like we are part of the HSSW family.”

Sunny and Poet arrived at HSSW in need of more than shelter. They needed time and TLC to overcome their past and restore their trust in people. And on their journey to a new home, they found each other.

For all animals—dogs or cats, shy or well-adjusted—arriving at a new home, just like arriving at a shelter, can be a challenging experience. Every animal has their own unique needs. Whether they need rambunctious play time, or just someone to quietly sit beside them, our team is here for them. 

When you support our work with a donation, you make a difference for the animals in our care. Thanks to you, we can be here for the people and pets of our community. 

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