I Saved a Human
By Carol Palmer

When our two dogs passed on whom we'd raised from tiny puppies—Poops in 2005 and Missy in 2010—my husband, Steve, and I were lonely and devastated. Both dogs had lived long lives; Poops, a Schnoodle, lived to be 15½ and Missy, a tiny little half-Peke dog, 14½. So when both were gone we moped around a while, and then began to realize that we were good pet caregivers … especially for older animals with medical conditions. Both Poops and Missy had lifelong medical issues that required daily medication and diet modifications, so we were used to dosing dogs and taking care of medical needs.

We agreed that our broken hearts shouldn't keep us from bringing into our lives other older dogs who needed a forever home, offering a place for them to live out their golden years in peace and comfort. Since Missy was half-Pekingese, I began to look for an older Peke to adopt. I went through all the shelter listings in New Mexico, and not only couldn't find a Peke, but couldn't find ANY small dogs. So, I began to search the Internet for Peke rescue groups and just happened to find Colorado Peke and Pom Rescue. Steve and I fell in love with a sweet male Peke named Smokey, now about 11 years old. We filled out the application, contacted Connie, and built a little dog family around Smokey, We chose two other dogs which Connie knew would be compatible with him: an adorable Peke named Phoenix, renamed Sweetie, who just turned "Sweetie 16" in June, and a Maltese-mix named Sabrina, who is now 12.

Carol holding Sabrina (Maltese), Smokey (Pekingese), Sweetie (Pekingese) in the stroller, and Steve with Itsy Bitsy (Pom), and Maggie (Maltese mix) .

We went to Denver and brought the three of them home to New Mexico in May 2011. They were an instant little group of very compatible dogs. Sweetie, considered “special needs,” is healthy and happy due a special diet and excellent medical care from a fantastic pair of husband/wife vets here who have been in charge of the dogs' health since we brought them home.

Our little threesome was working so well that we decided we could open our hearts and home to more. We checked the website again in summer 2011 and found a little special-needs Pom mix of about 12 years named Peggy Sue. We contacted Connie again and she met us halfway with Peggy Sue and another little black Pom of about 8 named Itsy Bitsy. We adopted both of them, knowing that Peggy Sue probably had only a short time with us because of health, vision, and neurological issues. But we treasured and loved her so much, and had almost nine months with her. As for Bitsy, she is the life of our little group and provides the “oomph” that only a little Pom with her energy can do.

We soon found ourselves checking the CPPR website again for another little senior and found Maggie, a poodle cross of about 12. Maggie had been dropped in the night drop at the Denver shelter and was taken in and fostered by CPPR for about nine months. Once again, Steve met Connie and her sister about halfway and picked up Maggie in the spring of 2012.

Our little family of five couldn't be more compatible! We are just amazed and blessed with how well they all get along—just like they've always known and lived with one another. None of them have ever torn anything up or had behavioral issues. They all just want a lot of love and an available lap, which Steve and I readily have since we're both retired schoolteachers and are home all day, everyday. As for Maggie, she's so kind and loving … just an incredibly beautiful attitude for one who probably has gone through so much in her little lifetime.

We are so thankful to our dogs Poops and Missy for showing us what unconditional love is, and it is because of their love that we are able to open our hearts and pass the love on to our adopted Precious Personalities. And we are so thankful for people like Connie and all the volunteers at rescue groups like CPPR who rescue these sweethearts and lovingly pass them on to good forever homes. Bless you all for all the hard work you do and for the love you put into it for the sake and future of these precious souls.

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