I just recently learned that the ASPCA has declared October to be Adopt a Shelter Dog Month. While every month should be Adopt a Shelter Dog Month, it is nice that there is a special period of time to call attention to it.

Coincidentally, I adopted Luna during October! In fact, this Monday, October 13 is Luna’s Second Gotcha Day! I have a special post planned for Monday, but for now I thought I could share Luna’s adoption story.

Luna’s story isn’t anything special, but it doesn’t have to be.

After graduating college and moving out on my own, I decided that it was finally time to adopt a dog. I just knew I had to adopt from a local shelter or rescue, so I started looking on websites like PetFinder.

Luna on the day she came home.

Luna on the day she came home.

I sent out a few inquiry emails to various rescues to learn about available dogs and the adoption process. Admittedly, I didn’t have an exact breed in mind, but I did have certain qualities picked out. I needed the dog to be under 30 pounds for my apartment’s restrictions. I was looking for a young dog, but not a puppy and I preferred an intelligent and short-haired breed.

In my email blasting, I had sent an email to Homeless Animals Rescue Team (HART) about an available dog and was told to come by a local adoption event at a Petco to get the chance to meet her and other dogs.

I dragged my boyfriend along because I was nervous. Maybe I knew something life changing was about to happen.

I mingled with the dogs that were looking for home. I learned about them and I tried to find a connection. Then I came across this high energy dog who was super cute. I asked the volunteer with her many questions to get more information, but I didn’t get very far. I learned that this dog was just recently rescued from a kill shelter in Southern Virginia. They didn’t even have a name for her yet.

So that also meant she wasn’t on their website yet either.

Luna and I playing before heading home for the first time.

Luna and I playing before heading home for the first time.

I just couldn’t get that little dog off my mind. There was just something about her love of people and ability to just do her own thing that stayed with me. I started picking out names for her and frantically sent emails to HART to try to get more information. That was the longest week of my life. I knew she was the one.

The next Saturday I headed back to the adoption event, but this time with an application in hand.

I went to find the little dog who they named Cadbury, but couldn’t find her!

Then I spotted her with another family who was also applying to adopt her. My heart dropped. She was my soul mate.

Luna on her first day home.

Luna on her first day home.

But dogs aren’t first come, first served. Finding the best match is what is important. After hours of waiting and interviews, I learned that HART thought I was this little dog’s best chance.

I was getting a dog and a dog was getting me!

One week later this little dog came home for the first time and became the dog also known as Luna.

If this month or any month is the time for you to add a new family member, please consider adopting a rescue dog. Just remember every time you adopt, you save two lives: your new best friends and the dog that takes his or her place at the shelter.

What is your pet adoption story?

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Jessica Shipman
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