Just before lightning strikes, there’s said to be a sizzle. People who have lived through strikes say they always felt it coming, just an instant before the bolt arrived, and sometimes love happens in much the same way.
Alice Egoyan of California was on the hunt for a companion for her 13-year-old American Eskimo Lily. She didn’t know exactly what she was looking for, but there was a certain electricity in the air as she loaded Lily into the car and they went for a ride to the animal shelter.
“Initially, we had actually been searching for puppies,” Alice explains. “I had always wished I knew Lily when she was a puppy, and we had enough time to care for and train one. But things had changed in the 11 years since Lily joined my family. I found few puppies online from reputable breeders and talked with several workers at rescue shelters. They informed me of the sad statistics. I had been clueless until that moment about how many dogs were left without homes.
So after many, many conversations and searching online through Petfinder.com, I finally found a dog that seemed a good match for us. In his video, Pachi, a 7-year-old Pomeranian/Sheltie mix, dodged a ball thrown at him and desperately avoided a kiddie pool filled with water. When his head was scratched, he had the biggest sweetest smile and his ears — they were big and more expressive than any dog’s ears I’d ever seen! He was constantly moving them as though trying to hear everything going on in a 5 mile radius all at once.”
I’d Found My Baby Boy…
As she began filling out the adoption paperwork, Alice got a small glimpse of the dog’s history. Originally he had ended up at the SPCA as a stray. Later he was adopted from the shelter and the people kept him for four years.
“They returned him because supposedly they were ‘unable’ to care for him any longer,” Alice said. “Even though they said he’d been an indoor dog, his physical state said something different: numerous flea bites, rashes, matted fur…all the signs of being neglected. What happened to him made me angry.”
Alice and her boyfriend named the dog Kenpachi, Pachi[pah-chee) for short, and set about the business of cleaning him up. The next day, Alice took Pachi to the groomer to clean up his coat and to the vet for a full exam. And in that process, there was a dark surprise about Pachi's past few years.
"Examinations by our vets revealed a dog who was horrified if you touched his paws or back legs," Alice said. "There was a large burn mark on his backside."
Though one can only speculate as to the degree of cruelty to cause such a burn and just how frequently Pachi had been under attack by his 'family', there were a dozen other red flags.
“His dental problems were severe,” Alice said. “Pachi had to have 8 teeth pulled that were already loose or decayed beyond saving. He probably never had chew toys or bones to chew. His breath was bad and if we let it go any longer then the decay would’ve posed a danger to his overall health. So he might have less teeth now, but we can enjoy all his sweet little kisses.”
“Pachi loves laps, laying with his back legs stretched out behind him and his front paws crossed,” Alice gushes about her new love. “He’s a cuddler and he’ll walk on his hind legs for treats. My boyfriend calls his begging stance the ‘meerkat’ pose since he brings his paws close to his body and stands upright. He also taught him to “stand and spin,” which came to him naturally being a spunky little dog.
So far, he’s graduated from a ‘Shy Dog’ course aimed at helping him with his fearful aggression issues. In a mere 10 months, he’s come a long way. Like so many dogs that got a rough start in life, Pachi deserved a loving family, a name, and a good home. So little dude, you got it….forever.”