What is a Heart Dog?
Every now and then, a very special dog comes into your life and changes the way you think about things forever.
Sometimes these dogs don’t stay very long. Sometimes they’re not even your dog, but leave footprints on your heart, nevertheless.
The first time I ever heard the term ‘Heart Dog’ was the day Ally died. Ally was the much-loved companion of a Rescue Angel. As a Rescue person’s dog, she would meet and greet all the new pound refugees, and help them settle in. Yet, this sweet little dog was soon to die tragically, and her sudden departure caused her human family heartfelt grief.
Ally is now the Heart Dog logo, and will be with us in spirit for as long as Pound Dogs need welcoming into new safe houses.
A few years ago, I noticed a photo of a particular dog on a pound website. A tiny, pop-eyed Mini Foxie-JRT-Chihuahua cross looked out at me beseechingly. I sensed he was distressed and bewildered. It would have been easy to say, as others do, ‘Isn’t it terrible?’ and forget about him. But I didn’t. Next day, he was in my house being bathed, fed and loved after his earlier trip to the vet to be C5 vaccinated, heart-worm tested and wormed.
There were many demons for Toby to exorcise from both his head and heart, but after a year or so of happy family life, these demons started to fade. Sadly, there are literally hundreds and thousands of dogs just like Toby in pounds across Australia. Some of the dogs are there as a result of their owner’s death or transfer to a nursing home. See Make a Dog Will. But in most cases, they’ve been neglected and abandoned and, like rubbish, left to local government to ‘process’ and add to the landfill.
Toby, my Heart Dog, will never make that terrible trip. Instead, he will be around in spirit, if not in body, for a very long time. Toby is the raison d’être for Dogs Across Australia.
Your Heart Dog
Your Heart Dog may mean the world to you, but there are many Pound Dogs who belonged to heartless people. What can you and your Heart Dog do to help them? See Fundraising, Volunteering, Trust Funds and Lobbying.
Tags: adopt a dog., dogs, Heart dogs