How Ollie Became Mine
Written by adopter Abby G.
Ollie was around seven years old when I found him at BARCS. Most of what I know about his past comes from his extensive medical files and on his body: broken teeth, old scars along his legs and belly, and new scars on his chest and legs. He had a stack of paperwork a mile long. This was a dog that had been given up on too many times before.
But BARCS was there for Ollie when he needed them: after he was hit by a car, when he needed several tumors removed all across his body, and again when his heart was broken over the loss of his home. BARCS' open admission policy and determination to help older dogs of any breed, as well as medically complex dogs, saved Ollie's life—and greatly enriched my own.
Ollie didn't make a great impression when I went to visit him at BARCS. He had the dubious honor of having the loudest bark among his neighbors, and he was still wearing a cone from his recent surgeries. He didn't quite seem to know how the cone worked, or else he didn't care, and he rapidly scooped up cone-fulls of dirt in his desperate attempt to crawl away from me and go for another walk. He wasn't exactly affectionate, but I saw a goodness in him. He was at least half trained on a couple of tricks. And he needed a home without other dogs, without other pets and without other kids—a home like mine.
Ollie is my first dog; he is the dog that I waited 20 some years to be ready for. It's been seven months since I walked out of BARCS with a confused but excited Ollie, and we haven't looked back since. Not that either of us are a perfect fit. I had no idea how much pizza a determined dog could find lying on the street. Ollie is a bed hog and a blanket shredder. We are still adjusting somewhat to our new shared life. We share a coordinated schedule of walks, work, training and naps. We map out which neighborhood trees the squirrels play in, which intersections are loud and still somewhat scary for him, and which bushes local kids sometimes lose their baseballs in on our lengthy walks.
Ollie will soon have a collection of hand knit sweaters to protect his balding belly on our early morning walks. And I have the best friend I could ever ask for.