One of my great joys is when people come up to me during a book signing or fundraiser to tell me about their rescue dogs (and other animals). So when Lois Buchanan emailed me about her dog Dante during a Rescue Me fundraiser for Meade Canine Rescue I just had to ask a few more questions and get her beautiful rescue dog story in print. I hope Dante’s tale of redemption, healing and love touches your heart and inspires you as much as it did me.

Meet Dante

This is the little guy I adopted from Charlotte of Meade Canine Rescue when she was in Connecticut. He was found in the streets in the cold snowy winter after he had been hit by a car. His eyes were bugged out and had apparently been badly abused. The vet thinks he was either choked or shaken. He was very wary of people and vicious.

Dante's adoption day
Dante’s adoption day-January 2011

Dante was in rescue for a few months before I got him. I wasn’t planning on getting another dog and I’m not sure why I even looked. Before Christmas, I was checking on petfinder.com  for a Yorkie my granddaughter wanted. We ended up getting one rescued from a woman in NYC with over 20 in her apartment. She took care of them but the landlord was threatening to evict her because she had so many dogs.

Anyway, in January for some reason I went on the petfinder site again. When I saw the picture of Dante (Charlotte called him Mouse), he reminded me of another dog (Rocky) that I had years ago. I fell in love!  Charlotte told me that Dante didn’t get along with big dogs so when I picked him up, I explained that I had an older Lab and, if Dante gave him a hard time, I’d have to bring him back. Well, Dante must have understood because he was very respectful of my David. When it was time to go out, Dante would stand back and let Dave go first. Same when they came in.They got along just fine and there was no sending him back! He just needed to feel safe and be loved.

I also have a female Pomeranian, Davida. She is the alpha dog. She ruled David and now she rules Dante. If he’s in one of the dog beds, she goes in next to him and he gets out. If he’s laying on the back of the couch, she moves right in and he moves down to the seat. She has even taken to lifting her leg when she pees. So I’m not sure that she’s done anything to help Dante other than making him feel like he has a bossy big sister! I think the dogs helped him feel secure.

Dante - Christmas 2014
Dante – Christmas 2014

It took about a year for Dante to turn around. Because I’m self-employed I was able to bring him to work with me, to the bank, post office, stores (other than grocery stores) and just took him in the car whenever I could. He was really scared and used to shake but I kept talking to him, petting him and giving him love. No one just walked in my house with Dante here – he would attack!

Now Dante greets everyone with tail wagging! My family and friends can’t believe the difference in him. He loves everyone and everyone loves him. People who didn’t see Dante when I first got him can’t believe how vicious he was. The ones that knew him then can’t believe what a love he is now!

Most nights he sleeps on the bed with me and Davida, but there are some nights he’d rather be alone in his dog bed. The little monkey in the picture with him is his favorite toy. This was the first toy I gave him when he came to live with me. He carries it around and will gnaw on it.
Dante relaxing - June 2015
Dante relaxing – June 2015

I can’t put into words what Dante does to my heart when he cuddles with me. He is such a love. I’ll never understand why people feel the need to abuse an innocent animal.

Well, that’s my Dante!

Lois Buchanan

Do you have a rescue dog story to share? Stories about other animals welcome too!

Dante’s Rescue Dog Story

21 thoughts on “Dante’s Rescue Dog Story

  • June 19, 2015 at 8:34 am
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    Dante is so lucky to have been given a forever home and family – thank you for giving your heart to this little one! Blessings to all – thank you for sharing Dante’s story! It’s so important that we spread the word of adoption and how past abuse affects an animal’s personality; however, with ‘lub’ all things can and do, change for the better (and best!)!!

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    • June 19, 2015 at 4:32 pm
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      Thank you for your positive comments. Love conquers all!!!

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  • June 19, 2015 at 9:32 am
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    Wow, what a great turn-around story! It does take patience, but the rewards are awesome. So glad you found each other.

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    • June 19, 2015 at 4:33 pm
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      Thank you, Amy! He’s brought a lot of joy to my life!

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  • June 19, 2015 at 9:45 am
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    Love to hear great rescue stories!! Thank you for sharing

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  • June 19, 2015 at 12:25 pm
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    This is such an uplifting story of the power of your love for this little guy. Incredible!

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    • June 19, 2015 at 4:34 pm
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      Thank you, Robbi!

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  • June 19, 2015 at 4:41 pm
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    What a sweet story! I’m so glad that Dante was able to learn to trust people again. I can’t blame dogs that have been in the position he was in for not liking people. This is just more proof that a little love can go a long way.

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    • June 19, 2015 at 4:56 pm
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      I can’t blame him either. I’m so glad he found someone with the patience and kindness to gently help him through his issues so he could let his true nature of love shine through. I pray this for all dogs (and other animals) waiting for the same chance.

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  • June 19, 2015 at 10:30 pm
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    I am so glad to hear this little man found his people – his protectors – his family.

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  • June 19, 2015 at 10:48 pm
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    What a lovely story. #RescuesRock! I am working through a few issues with my little guy. XS

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    • June 19, 2015 at 10:49 pm
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      Thanks! What is your little one going through?

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      • June 26, 2015 at 11:52 am
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        Well Kilo had been through 4 homes in his first 2 years and was not socialized so he will attack strangers that walk into the house or on the street (dogs and humans). He is terrified of places like the park. He is adorable with me and people he knows now so we are working through the rest slowly. X Susie

    • June 22, 2015 at 3:05 pm
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      Be patient. Dante still has his moments when he wants to do what he wants to do and will growl at me when I go to pick him up. But he then realizes it’s me and calms down.

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      • June 26, 2015 at 11:53 am
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        Yes it’s a long process. Lots of patience and consistency.

  • June 20, 2015 at 11:15 am
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    Such a beautiful story; adoption tales (especially heartfelt ones like this) always make me so grateful and appreciative of everyone that’s helped an animal in need. I come home to my dog Laika every night and it’s hard to imagine my life without her – I’m so glad I was able to adopt her.

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    • June 20, 2015 at 11:20 am
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      Right? We hear so much horror that stories like this just fill my heart with joy and appreciation. I feel the same about Ted. When I look at him and know just a little of what he went through I am so grateful for him and happy to be giving him the good life he deserves. Thanks Jen for your words. Who is your adopted friend?

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  • June 22, 2015 at 3:07 pm
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    Thank you everyone for your kind words. I can’t imagine my life without Dante and, of course, Davida.

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  • June 22, 2015 at 9:08 pm
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    It amazes me what some of these dogs, like Dante and my dog Valentino, have gone through in their past life and then how different they become with a whole lot of love and kindness.

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    • June 23, 2015 at 7:33 am
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      Thanks for sharing, Ruth. Love is a great healer. Not to say that remnants from their past horrors don’t remain, but they get a lot better. My Ted made great strides quickly, but even now, three years later I see him blossoming even more.

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  • July 5, 2015 at 9:54 pm
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    Dante is proof that any size or breed dog can be vicious and with love, kindness and patience, any dog can become a love. I hope in time the memory of his past life will disappear!

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