Was the teacup poodle meant to be a part of our family?
I already had four dogs. But I couldn’t resist the adorable furry face in my Facebook feed. A chocolate teacup poodle who’d been liberated from a puppy mill down South. I contacted the Maine-based rescue agency that had posted her photo, said I was interested in giving her a loving home. I was honest about my concerns, though. Would she and my other dogs get along? What if the puppy mill had left her so traumatized that she needed an owner’s undivided attention?
The rescue coordinator told me not to worry. The poodle would be among a group of dogs they were taking to Maine the week before Thanksgiving. After she spent the state-required three days with a foster family, I could go meet her and introduce her to my dogs. If things didn’t work out, the agency would find her another home. I was reassured, especially when I heard the poodle’s name: Faith. That had to be a sign, right?
The Saturday before Thanksgiving, my dachshund, Katie, started acting restless. She barely touched her breakfast. I rushed her to the emergency vet clinic in Manchester, New Hampshire. What if she needed extended treatment? My worries came rushing back. Maybe I was wrong about the teacup poodle. Maybe this was the sign, God telling me that four dogs were enough.
The vet finished the exam and patted Katie. “Holidays can be stressful,” she said. “Your dog’s fine. Maybe just a little anxious.” Katie and me both.
Whew. Katie and I left the clinic and headed for our car. There was a large van parked at the curb. Its logo read P.E.T.S.—the company that handled transportation for the rescue agency. Barks and yelps echoed from inside. The driver hopped out and opened the back. It was lined with travel kennels.
“You’re not on your way to Maine, are you?” I asked.
“Sure am,” he said. “Came from down South.”
Maine. Down South. “Do you have a chocolate teacup poodle, by any chance?” I asked. “Named Faith?”
“Sure do,” he said. “She’s right here.”
The cutest little bundle of brown fur came to the front of her kennel to say hello to Katie and me. Even with all the other dogs yapping and rattling their kennels, Faith was calm and friendly. Katie wagged her tail in welcome, sweeping aside my doubts. I should have had faith all along.
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