How Rescuing a Dog Changed My Life

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The following article was written by a fellow animal lover named Sher Wartenkin, and it's one of the best summaries of how the simple act of rescuing a dog from an animal shelter can make a profound difference in not only the pet's life, but yours as well.  Hope you enjoy it as much as I did!   Blue

Within the first hour I had my dog at home from the shelter, I knew that adopting a pet was one of the best decisions I had ever made. Adopting my dog has enriched my life in so many ways, and here are some of the best reasons why I would do it all over again in a heartbeat.

Saving a Life
One of the best things about adopting a dog is the rewarding feeling you get for having saved a life. I wish I lived in a bigger home so that I could rescue a lot of dogs, but knowing that I spared even just one amazing animal is one of the greatest feelings in the world. Taking an animal out of a bad situation and giving them a loving home not only makes you feel great, but your pet too, some maybe for the first time in their lives. My dog is as loyal and loving as they come, and I firmly believe it is because we rescued him and gave him a happy home.

Couch Cuddles
All animals, whether rescued or not, certainly bring joy and companionship to your life, but I think there is a special bond created when adopting a pet. Many rescue animals have not been exposed to a loving environment and when they are, it has a big impact. I have had many other pets throughout my life, but the connection I have with my rescue dog is one of the strongest I have ever experienced. He is fiercely loyal and one of the cuddliest companions I know. There is nothing more relaxing and comforting at the end of the day than snuggling on the couch with my dog.

Uniqueness
Many shelter dogs are mixed breed, like my own, so if you adopt a puppy, like I did, it can be difficult to know just what you might end up with in a grown dog. When I first adopted my dog, he was a mere six pounds and labeled as a rat terrier. By the time he was fully grown a year later he was nearly 40 pounds and resembled more of a tall corgi. However, throughout all of his growth stages one thing has remained constant: He is super cute. Nearly every time I walk him on the street I get compliments about how adorable and unique looking he is, and I am proud to call him my dog.

A Reason to Explore
For an apartment dweller, adopting a dog means suddenly spending a lot more time outdoors, giving him walks and exercise. Before I adopted my dog, I spent way too much time being a couch potato, but that all changed from the moment I brought him home. I started going on long walks in my neighborhood, giving my dog and myself exercise and gaining the opportunity to explore together. Not only did we get fresh air, but we also met a lot of people and made a lot of new friends, both human and four-legged.

Teaching My Child
Adopting a pet is a great way to teach your child about compassion for all animals. Having any pet is a good way to learn about responsibility, but more importantly, it can help your child understand the importance of being gentle and caring for others. I am so grateful for the bond that my child has grown with our rescue dog and the lessons having him has taught her.

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