ASPCA Happy Tail: Old Dog, New Tricks

Wednesday, September 26, 2012 - 10:45am

When Britney came to the ASPCA through the Humane Law Enforcement department, she was in pain and suffering from multiple untreated conditions.

Fortunately, the veterinary staff at the ASPCA’s Bergh Memorial Animal Hospital was able to nurse Britney back to health, and eventually she became available for adoption; we could finally find a home for this sweet dog who had suffered so much.

We knew it would be a challenge.

Statistically speaking, animals who are black, large or senior, as well as those who take medication or can’t live with other animals, usually spend more time waiting for homes. Britney was all of these things, and to make matters worse, she didn’t engage much with adopters who passed her habitat, preferring to rest quietly.

Still, we knew that the right person would come for Britney, and to speed things along, we spread the word about this special canine. After seeing Britney’s picture and reading about her, Kevin Bechard tells us, “I wanted to snatch her right up.”

A few days later Bechard was going above and beyond to help Britney settle in to her new home in suburban Connecticut.

“The first couple nights I actually slept on the floor with her because she can’t do stairs, and she would just reach out with her paw and make sure it was against me,” he recalls. “Only then she would allow herself to go to sleep. If I moved away a little bit, her eyes would open.”

The love and comfort of a forever home has revived Britney, who has blossomed into a trusting and happy pup: Bechard reports that at his house Britney loves romping outdoors and goes on multiple nature walks a day. 

In return, Bechard has gained a new best friend who, he says, never required house-training or manners instruction, thanks to her age. “I wish more people would consider older dogs,” Bechard says. “I was open to anything, but I was so pleasantly surprised.”

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Mrs Robert Jenk

Kevin, Your article brings tears to my eyes!! Britney reminds me of the six year old black lab, Sam, that we rescued last year. Sam exhibits similiar traits as Britney. Rescue older dogs are so appreciative and loving. Thanks to you Britney can enjoy her life in a loving home!!


Kevin, thanks for giving Britney a second chance at happiness. Sounds like she has settled into a wonderful life with you!

amy walsh

Yeah, Kevin. Your story made me cry! I am so happy to hear you both found each other. Best wishes for a wonderful and happy life.


Beautiful story. My son adopted a Rottwieler/German Shepard he name Gunther. I was horrified because of the breeds reputation. It tuned out the dog had obviously been trained for lifesaving. When my toddler granddaughter who had swimming lessons since a small infant, went into the pool and began swimming, Gunther jumped in, grabbed her by her bikini bootom and brought her out of the pool. He did it repeatedly until they had to leave Gunther in the family room where he barked furiously as long as my granddaughter was in the pool. He slept outside the children's room and insisted you step over him to get in. He lived to about 18 years and developed such severe arthritis he couldn't walk. He was put to sleep in the arms of my 6'4 son who told him, thru his tesrs. how much he loved him.


Congratulations! I only adopt older dogs as I know how loving and faithful they are. I only wish others would do the same!

Polly G.

You must be a very special person with a heart of gold. I am a dog lover myself, and have a couple of rescues that became part of my family, without a doubt- a curly white schnauzer that I adopted at age 5, who is now 12 and going strong, albeit with diabetes... and a 1 1/2 year old Jack Russell that literally ran into my arms at the town railroad track! Couldn't find her owner, so she became ours. May you and Britney share may happy years together!


What a BEAUTIFUL DOG she is!! That face!!--she looks NOBLE, ELEGANT, WISE.... It'd be very difficult to say who was MORE BLESSED: Kind-hearted Kevin or Beautiful Britney. I'm so happy that they were brought together!! And also glad to have seen their story!


Awesome!!!!!! I have tears in my nice to hear about caring people like kevin and saved animals like britney.. I have three shelter animals myself a dog and 2 cats it i had the room and could afford them i would surely have more :)


I always knew you were a great guy! You and Britney are so lucky to have found each other!

Lori Biebel

The world is a much better place because you are here, Kevin.
We are all grateful that you offered a safe and happy home that Britney can enjoy for the rest of her life. I have a dog that needs shots twice a day too, but it is such a small price to pay when you get back so much in return. Give that sweet dog a kiss for me and my family.