In 1996 I had to euthanize my old dog, Sally, a german shepherd foundling. As often happens, she died right after I opened a 25# bag of dog food, so I took the bag to our local Humane Society. While I was there, I thought I would just look at the dogs available for adoption. There was a beautiful large dog named Ipo. He had been at the shelter for 3 months, and had been the TV dog on a couple of occasions, but no one adopted him. He had already been at the shelter beyond the usual time, but the staff just couldn’t put him down.

At the time I was a surgery resident working 100+ hour weeks and the loss of Sally was so new, I didn’t think I wanted a dog again. He was so beautiful, though. He was a Gordon Setter/Golden Retriever cross, and while all the other dogs were barking and jumping, he was very regally sitting up and watching everything silently. I left him in the shelter but could not get him out of mind. For the next 30 days or so, I thought about that dog every day. Finally, one day aftera 40 hour shift, I just couldn’t stand it anymore and I went back to the shelter. His cage was empty and the papers off the door. I assumed he had been adopted, so I just casually mentioned that to the shelter staff on my way out. The lady said ” Oh, no, he’s in the back to be put to sleep.” I yelled “STOP” and told her I would adopt him.

They brought him to a fenced area where we could see if we liked each other. To this day I am convinced he knew he was going to be killed and then was reprieved because he came into that yard and literally sailed around he yard as fast as he could go. I was thinking “oh, no, what have I done?” when, on his last pass around the yard, he cut toward me, leaped off the ground at full speed with his arms spread wide, and jumped into my arms (all 80 pounds of him). We were together the rest of his life. He rarely left my side, and was very loved. He died June 6,2006 in his sleep one afternoon at 14 years old. He was the best dog I ever had, and I look forward to finding him at the Rainbow Bridge with all my other pets when I die.

Tammy from TX