This week’s reader rescue story is about a mixed-breed dog that became a hero to her new pet parent. We hope you enjoy reading her story as much as we did.
If you are the pet parent of a rescued dog, we want to share your story, too! For information about submitting your story, click here.
Life Lessons from My Rescue Dog
By Nicole Ellis
Maggie poses for the camera, tells jokes, does cartwheels and updates her Facebook page. Okay, that’s not true, but she really does have a fantastic personality and a Facebook page with more friends than me.
I have always loved animals. I’m certified to train all sorts of furry friends but previously only worked with the bigger ones, from bears to tigers to horses. I had dogs growing up, and while I loved them all, none of them have had the same effect on me as my Maggie.
Maggie is my superhero. She is a therapy dog, working movie dog, my best friend and an inspiration for many, which is pretty amazing for a pup that was shaking and scared in the shelter.
She now knows more than 100 commands, and can ride a skateboard, do handstands and ride horses. My best days are spent with her.
Because of some of the amazing friends Maggie has made, my friend, Brandise, and I started a new project called “Working Like a Dog” – an in-progress coffee-table book to educate people about the various types and breeds of working and service dogs.
We are trying to teach people that not all working dogs are for the blind, and that not all of the dogs are Goldens and Labs. There are amazing things dogs can do, from detecting seizures to finding explosives for the military. Through our “Working Like a Dog” project we have sold calendars and donated that money to Los Angeles city shelters.
There is so much about Maggie that I am thankful for. She constantly makes my life so much brighter. My shelter dog has taught me about kindness, not judging people, giving everyone another chance and being happy. Together we have made some amazing friends and visited some great places.
Without her, I would not know some of my best friends in the world. I wouldn’t want to make this world a better place if she had never entered my life.
Maggie also reminds me that when life gets too stressful, throw a ball or take a stroll. I don’t know what I did to be so lucky to have Maggie in my life. I marvel at the things she teaches me and the ways this furry best friend lifts me up when I am down and alone.
I love her from the tufts of fur between her toes to her ever-changing pink button nose. I can’t bear to think that she won’t always be here, but in the meantime, this kiddo and I have a lot more places to go, smiles to bring and people to educate about dogs and pets.
My dog may not be the world’s greatest, but she has forever changed my world in many great ways.
PHOTO: Nicole Ellis