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Adopting a Senior Lab
by
Glenda Campbell

Lily and her best friend
Lily with her best friend Charles
I'll be the first to admit that adopting a senior dog of any breed isn't for everybody but I will tell you that there's nothing like a senior dog, especially a Lab, to make you realize just how wonderful life is. I went to a shelter close to my home here in TN a few months ago to save 2 black lab puppies in desperate need of rescue since they were due to be put to sleep that very day. When I arrived I discovered that not only were these 2 pups going to die but another beautiful black male lab that was about 1 or so was scheduled to be put to sleep and a frightened and very timid 11-year-old female black lab named Lily was also on that doomed list for the day. How could I say no to any of them??? I signed all the paperwork and loaded everybody into my vehicle no matter how bad them smelled and we headed to my house, hoping that my husband wouldn't notice an extra 4 dogs running around. (Fat chance that's going to happen!)

I got the puppies and the young lab we named Chipper settled in for the evening but what in the world was I going to do with this sweet and loving labbie who was scared to death that something bad was going to happen to her? I brought her into the house and loved on her to reassure her that nothing bad would ever happen to her again. She has cataracts and can't see very well but she responds to my voice and is calming down and not shaking like she was just a few short hours earlier. Later that evening my husband comes home to discover yet again more dogs from the pound and just shakes his head without saying a word. Then he sees Lily. I can tell in an instant that he has bonded with this dog like no other I've had grace our doorstep and trust me, there have been MANY. He sat on the floor with this smelly, skinny dog and told her that we would take care of her and find her a great home. She can't control her bladder very well and has a hard time getting up off of the hardwood floor but she is excited when she's up and about.

We made the decision to adopt Lily ourselves and not try to find a forever home anywhere else and I'll have to tell you this has been one of the best things we've ever done in our lives. Her coat is beginning to get shiny from actually eating good food and she now knows the life that she's always deserved, full of love, a full tummy, and a safe place for her to live the remainder of her days on earth. I wouldn't trade the time we've spent with Lily for anything as it has taught our family to be much better people and to appreciate all that life has to offer us. Lily is a true angel from heaven and she will always be a part of our lives. Puppies are always cute and cuddly but there is something special about a senior that you will never ever forget.

Lily with Charles and Sam, the English Mastiff
Lily with Charles and Sam,
the English Mastiff

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