Shuz – South Carolina
“Paws Pack” Member #79
Shuz was the answer to our seven years old daughter Aspen’s prayers. We lost the only dog Aspen had ever known, our 15 year old Samoyed Kehla, after a short illness. Aspen was, as could be expected, devastated. Obsessed by all animals, but specifically dogs, Aspen insisted on visiting the John Ancrum SPCA (the animal shelter now known as the Charleston Animal Society) in order to spend time with dogs. Over time Aspen’s pain of her loss dissipated as her love of dogs grew. She became a volunteer at the shelter and spent hours exercising and playing with the dogs (as did her parents as minors had to be accompanied at all times) and we knew it wouldn’t be long before one of the shelter dogs would become a member of our family. We had parameters for the potential new dog. We preferred a non-shedding dog (the wife’s allergies) but that didn’t work out. We thought a breed that wasn’t too high energy would be nice (uh, that didn’t work out so well either). We also thought we should wait for our daughter to mature a bit (strike three!).
Aspen, on the other hand, had guidelines that somehow were met (could it be a coincidence?). She wanted a dog that could fit in her lap, that would be energetic and friendly, and lastly one that could swim so she could take him to the beach. Though many dogs passed through the shelter during Aspen’s visits, it wasn’t until her cousin Tobias (another volunteer) called to say that a perfect fit had just arrived. We hustled to the shelter to find the cutest puppy ever. We stood there and watched our daughter fall in love for the first time as this six-week old Border Collie – Springer mix bounded out of the kennel and into our lives As the puppy gnawed on my “shoelaces,” we welcomed Shuz into our hearts and into our family. (An addendum to this story: we continued to visit the Charleston Animal Shelter long after Shuz’ admittance into our family. We subsequently adopted a one year old cat – also black and white – with white paws. Alas, we now have a matching set: Shuz and SoxJ)