sarah sherman samuel // family Created with Petco

Pet adoption has always been near and dear to my heart. I wish I could personally house all the homeless pets out there but for now Rupe has limited me to our two (adorable) dogs. However, I am gearing up for the second annual ‘Clear the Shelters‘ pet adoption campaign, coming up on Saturday July 23rd, where Local NBC and Telemundo Television Stations team up with hundreds of animal shelters to match homeless pets with new homes. Last year they were able to place nearly 20,000 animals with new families!! So although I may just be going to support the efforts, I can’t promise I won’t take home just one more pup. Rupert might not notice just one more dog in the bed?

In honor of the upcoming event, Petco asked me to share my own pet adoption story, and since all moms can’t pass up an excuse to talk about their children (fur children included), I said sign me up! Also, it’s for a great cause. Petco is a main sponsor of the ‘Clear the Shelters’ event and have always been committed to a “Think Adoption First” philosophy. They host monthly in-store adoptions events (much like the ones where I found Pikku and Cracker) and have never sold cats or dogs in their stores. I am really happy to team up with them for this, to hopefully help find loads of pets their new homes, and to talk about how my two girls came to be part of the Samuel family.

samuel familysamuel familyWe found Pikku 7 years ago at an adoption center, or rather, I found Pikku at an adoption center, while Rupert was out of town. I grew up with a dog and cats my entire childhood but didn’t have a pet in my adult life and desperately wanted one. I used to ride my bike by this pop up adoption center every once in awhile and one day stopped in. There were so many adorable pups and I am such an emotional puddle when it comes to animals that I was a wreck. Pikku climbed right up on my lap and I filled out the application then and there. The agency does home checks, and all that, so I had plenty of time to tell Rupe about what I did later. 😉 But really, I left and called Rupe immediately… told him I found a dog and we need her. When he got back in town we were able to arrange a time for Rupert to meet her and, as I knew would happen, Rupe turned into a puddle as well and there was no way we were leaving Pikku behind. We welcomed her home a few days later after home checks and her last round of immunizations (she was about a year old at the time).

pikkuAnd thus we started life as three. At that time I was at a full time job where they let me bring her to work every day and it was great! After about a year the office moved and they no longer allowed pets in the new space, so I would drive home 15-20 mins every day for lunch, walk Pikku, grab some food, and then drive back to work. Pikku felt the change, she didn’t love being at home on her own for two 4 hour chunks of time so that was when mission ‘find Pikku a friend’ came into play and I started casually working the idea into conversations with Rupe. Like “oh hey did you pick up the milk? We should really get another dog.”

Finally, one day we were out with Pikku and drove past the same pop-up pet adoption center and I was like “hey let’s just go check it out, See if Pikku responds to any of the dogs” (meanwhile, I had been stalking their website and knew there was a beautiful three legged dog about Pikku’s size and build that would be at the center that day). So we walked on over and the volunteers let us take Sardinia (the three legged sweetheart) on a walk with Pikku and it was not ideal. Basically they didn’t want anything to do with each other. I really had my heart set on finding Pikku a comrade (and Sardinia a home) but it wasn’t meant to be. Just as we were about to leave this little spitfire terrier caught my attention.

crackersss_petco-97Her name was “Spicy”, and she was probably the most adorably wire haired terrier I ever did see, and I wasn’t the only one who connected with her. Pikku and Spicy were all over each other, egging each other on to play and tails wagging incessantly. Rupert wouldn’t have been able to resist even if he tried (he did not).

Since it was the same adoption agency we went through before, they didn’t have to do the home check or any of the wait time so suddenly we were going home with two dogs. Just like that, Spicy (which we then re-named to be Cracker) was one of us.

samuel familysss_petco-70I still have the video of when we first brought them home together. They chased each other and played like crazy until they fell asleep and have been inseparable ever since. Pikku changed back into her happy spunky self and Cracker is her forever hysterical side kick. She also makes a great Archie sidekick too!

sss_petco-77I mean, I just can’t even take this photo!

If you are looking to add a new furry friend (or two) to your family, join Petco and I, and get yourself to a participating shelter on July 23rd!

Photos by Nicki Sebastian
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