365 glorious, fresh air breathing, grass between the paw pads tickling, running, playing, exploring, full belly and snore-filled napping, treat-tasting days that Finn has spent being loved, cared for, freshly groomed and thoroughly doted on.
Finn was a victim of the heartless and cold world of commercial breeding where his little 10-lb body endured 4 1/2 years of fear and discomfort. The puppy mill was located in Arkansas but his heroes hailed from Colorado. Enter, National Mill Dog Rescue (NMDR). In June of 2014, the NMDR rescue van full of loving and devoted lifesavers pulled Finn and countless other dogs from several locations around the South and Midwest. This would be the first step in his journey of life. Real life. Not caged, dirty, sick, starved, neglected life.
My trip to Lily's Haven...
After a rewarding and eye-opening volunteer trip in April 2014, I returned in July with my approved adoption application on file. You know, just in case :) I read the profiles of so many of the NMDR-rescued dogs and had a short list which included my beloved Finn. I spent the first day loving on all the pups at Lily's Haven (the NMDR adoption kennel), scooping poop, mopping pee, cleaning laundry and feeding my furry friends. I was quiety evaluating the dogs on my short list -
What Finn has learned...
How to play
How to cuddle
How to pee and poop
How to walk on a leash
How to respond to cues
How to brush his teeth (okay, I help)
That he can trust me
That people are not always bad
That the people in my life will always have open hearts and a gentle touch
That his big brother is crazy
That Cooper is always in charge ;)
That he is loved, SO LOVED
That he will always be safe
What I have learned about Finn..
He's blind in one eye
He has luxating patellas (floating knee caps)
He's allergic to grains
He sometimes eats poop
He has smelly breath (see above)
He is so deserving of the best life
He is perfectly content 95% of the time
He has the softest, velvetiest fur
He LOVES to play
He makes new canine friends very easily (humans, now that's a work in progress)
He prefers stuffed, shakable toys to tennis balls or chewing bones
He could sleep all day.. except for 5:30am. He must be awake at 5:30am
He needs help getting on/off taller couches and beds
He is not a huge fan of nighttime walks (being partly blind and all)
He does not like extreme temperatures (cue the accidents in the house)
Aside from his fear of most men and some new people, he is a pretty courageous little dude
Finn has taught me so much about having patience, understanding and giving back. I want to be an example for others who don't think that adoption is for them. It is for you, I promise. It is for everyone! There are so many dogs, with their own stories and unique personalities. We just have to give them a chance. I'm so lucky that Finn was my chance ♥