In July 2009, a special little dog with big brown eyes was found abandoned in a box outside Angels for Animals Animal Center in Canfield, Ohio, a participant in the 2011 ASPCA $100K Challenge. She was alone and in desperate need of a loving home. Luckily, Elizabeth Stark’s family decided to adopt the homeless pup and give her a fresh start.
They chose to call her Chooey, a name they picked to commemorate this sweet dog’s endearing snaggletooth. Elizabeth’s family also thought Chooey’s shiny blonde coat gave her a stylish look, so they adapted the spelling of her name to match the famed shoe designer, Jimmy Choo. One of Chooey’s favorite past times is to chew on her pet parents’ shoes, so the name is very fitting.
It didn’t take long before the Starks were head over heels for their furry new addition.
“How could anyone not enjoy the company of such a sweet little companion?” Elizabeth says. “Chooey is unlike any other dog I have ever encountered. Sometimes I’m not even sure if she is really a dog. She stretches like a cat, howls like a wolf, dances like a monkey, and smiles like a toddler.”
But whatever animal personality Chooey chooses, she is an energetic and steadfast companion.
“Sometimes the best things really do come in small packages—and they're covered with fur and filled with love,” Elizabeth says.
Did you adopt a homeless pet? Tell us about your furry friend in the comments.
Tara Munoz had never shared her home with a cat before, but when she and her husband visited the ASPCA Adoption Center in Manhattan, she quickly met her first feline match. The couple adopted a friendly cat named Caesar, and it was love at first paw. She shared the following story with us:
In December 2012, my family and I adopted Caesar from the ASPCA in New York City. He adapted very well to our home, and we think he is the "purrfect" addition.
The adoption process was very thorough, informative and the volunteers were great.When we were looking at the cats inside the cat room, Caesar came down from his post and up to my husband. He rubbed against him and offered his paw—it was the cutest thing I have ever seen. Caesar stole my heart from that moment on. He chose us!
Caesar loves to play with his toys, and he always makes us laugh the way he plays with his scratching post. I've never had a cat before, but my husband had cats throughout most of his childhood life. Adopting Caesar has definitely been a wonderful learning and loving experience. Caesar has brought me joy and happiness that I could never imagine.
Thanks to the ASPCA for their service. Caesar is the best!
Did you adopt from the ASPCA? Send us photos at [email protected] for a chance to be featured on the blog!
As 2012 draws to a close, we’re thinking back on some of our favorite rescue stories of the year. One of them has to be Dora’s.
On a chilly day last holiday season, the ASPCA rescued Dora, a starving, matted little Shih Tzu with a severely injured tail. Back then, she was weak, terrified and emaciated.
But slowly, Dora began to gain weight and strength. She started to gain confidence, too, and as 2012 began, Dora’s spirited personality started to shine through.
That’s when world-renowned designer and architect Robert Couturier learned about Dora. A steadfast ASPCA supporter with three Shih Tzus of his own, he was deeply moved by her story. Within a week, he became her new foster parent.
“She slept in my arms the whole time on the way home,” Robert remembers. “It was as if she could finally sleep, and that she knew nothing bad was ever going to happen to her anymore.”
At his Connecticut country house, Robert introduced Dora to his boyfriend, Jeffrey, who fell in love with her immediately. Then he gave Dora a toy. She took it to her crate and looked at him with wide, cautious eyes, as if to ask: Is it OK for me to keep something of my very own?
“Of course it’s OK,” Robert told her, his heart breaking a little. He scooped her up and carried her with him all evening, just as he does now whenever they are together.
These days, Dora sleeps between her guardians’ pillows and enjoys playing with her favorite canine sibling: five-year-old Hercule, who fell head over heels for her the first day they met. “He’s her knight,” Robert jokes.
In October, Robert and Jeffrey adopted Dora. That makes it official: For the first time in her young life, Dora was home for the holidays.
If Robert’s acts of kindness don’t melt your heart, we don’t know what will. We’re so glad these two found each other!
Cesar Perez is the ASPCA’s Office Services manager. Last month he adopted Trolley, an amazing office foster kitty who now has his own hilarious blog. Here’s his adoption story:
I met Trolley on one of my morning walks around the office.
I would see Trolley inside his office, at the highest point inside of his favorite box. He rarely came down from his box, so I had no idea what great personality and marvelous tail he had.
This was until I decided to open the door. He sprang out of the box and came toward me and let out a chirp as to kind of say “Hello, glad to see you finally decided to walk in and say hi.”
I sat in a chair with a brush in hand and he walked onto my lap and let me pet and comb him. I let out a laugh when he started to play fight with the brush.
It was a good friendship for a few weeks; I’d visit for a while in the morning or evenings and tell him, “Trolley, you will have a bigger home soon. You are too awesome to not go home.”
On November 17, my girlfriend Jelissa and I had moved into our new home. By November 21 Trolley was coming home. He is a perfect addition and is our baby. He truly enjoys our home and the space, darting around fast and playing hide-and-seek and catch.
I’d love to thank the ASPCA for giving me the opportunity to meet and adopt Trolley. There are some great cats here at with amazing personalities just waiting to find a home.
Sometimes we can’t help ourselves. It’s not uncommon for an ASPCA employee to fall in love with one of the animals at our Adoption Center—in fact, it happens all the time. For Dea Taylor, it happened to her when she met a spunky little dog in our care who had been struggling to find a forever home.
“Halo is sweet, energetic, and the friendliest dog I’ve ever met,” Taylor says. “I knew she would be a challenge when I learned she was returned to the ASPCA three times. But I knew I was up to the challenge.”
Taylor was right. The first night she took Halo home, the little dog was a bundle of energy. In fact, Halo had “energy bursts”—short periods of time when she ran around the apartment until she tired herself out. “When I put her in her crate, she calmed down,” Taylor says. “Then I looked at those cute little eyes, and thought about how many people didn’t give her a chance.”
Lucky for Halo, Taylor gave her all the time she needed to settle in. In the end, Halo just wanted a patient adopter who would let her play and learn the joy of relaxation.
Did you adopt a cat or dog from the ASPCA? Send us photos at [email protected] for a chance to be featured on the blog.