"I don't need to meet another dog. We want her." How these words had never been spoken by another family before us, is a mystery to me, but it was also a stroke of luck. For this piece, I had all of my words perfectly arranged to explain how Gladys had captured not only my heart but the affections of my son as well, but as I sat down to type my story, Gladys intervened and changed the course of my tale. By this I mean, she placed her head upon my wrists as I attempted to type and reminded me that life with a dog is utterly unpredictable and equally filled with affection. For instance, I may set out to do a specific task, such as wash the dishes or put away laundry and then in an instant, those eyes look at me, that tail starts to wag, and all plans are chucked to the side as I drop to my knees and give my girl the belly rub she deserves. This is my life with Gladys and I have the Sula Foundation to thank for bringing her into my world.
|Gladys lends a shoulder to her two-legged brother.|
Why The Sula Foundation?
I learned about the Sula Foundation from a friend, Jill, who volunteers her time to several local pit bull rescue and advocacy groups in the New Orleans area. She described the work that the Foundation does for the homeless pit bulls of our city. This particular group piqued my interest because the adoptable dogs are first fostered and socialized, which was a non-negotiable necessity for me. For several weeks, I had considered adopting a dog and since I had nothing but positive experiences with the pit bulls I had encountered, I figured that was the breed I wanted to explore. After cyber-stalking the Sula website, I knew the dog I wanted, Rosa! I filled out my application and sent it off. As it turned out, I had another friend, Christine, that was involved with the Sula Foundation as a foster parent. She put in a good word for me with Kelly and helped to get the ball rolling.
Kelly called me to do a phone interview. Yes, a phone interview to adopt a dog! I knew I was adopting from the right organization since they put this much effort into finding a forever home for their pups. After speaking with Kelly, it was agreed upon that the dog I should meet first was Gladys and not Rosa. It was not that there was a problem with Rosa, it was simply that Gladys might be a better fit for me and my son. We had talked about my expectations in adopting a dog. From the sound of it, Gladys met all of them. (In fact, she has continued to meet all of them)!
|Gladys helps out with chores around the house.|
Meet and Greet
The next step in the process was to meet the pup and determine if she was the right match for my son and me. I had seen pictures of her. She was a medium-size tiger striped girl with a goofy grin and intense stare. Her pictures did not do her justice. After entering into out home, Gladys plopped on the floor, rolled on her back and waited for her belly rub, a practice she has repeated many times during these past few months. She was perfect. My son, who was 15, at the time, was smitten. Our short search was over. We knew Gladys was the one.
I could hardly wait to pick her up from her foster dad, Aron, and bring her home. On September 14, a Friday, I left work early, ran to a local pet store and bought some goodies for my girl. I picked her up from Aron's and drove her home. She has been by my side ever since. Over the past few months, Gladys has grown into my shadow. Whether I am cooking or washing dishes in my tiny kitchen, or hanging clothes in my even tinier closet, Gladys is next to me. Much to my son's disappointment, Gladys sleeps in bed with me too. What fun is having a dog if you don't get to cuddle her; and cuddle her I do! Sometimes I wonder if it is possible for her to get any closer to me; and then she somehow manages to contort her body into a position that just about smothers me. I couldn't be happier!
Gladys does not know it yet but I already have plans for our spring. She is going to be my running partner when the weather becomes milder. And in March, I have signed us up for the Sula training. I understand the importance of training and socialization. We have already had a few puppy play dates with Lucy, Villere and Chico, just a few of Gladys' new friends. She has gone on walks with them and has proven to be quite the social lady. I intend to continue to socialize her with other dogs as well as with people. My future and my present are definitely brighter with Gladys. I like to think that Gladys wasn't adopted prior to our meeting because she was waiting for the right family; and now she has it and will never be alone again. ~ Eileen A.
|Gladys (left) enjoys a walk with her buddy Lucy.|
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