Many thanks to Lori Tipler Long, a volunteer of the Humane Society of Central Illinois for contributing this story about how she made it a LUCKY DAY for one very lucky dog.

Please visit The Pet Realty Network’s LUCKY DAY Campaign, to see how you can make it a LUCKY DAY for a homeless pet, or for more information about how your pet shelter can participate.

I am a frequent volunteer at our local Humane Society (Humane Soc. of Central IL) Pet Adoption Center, where I met “Buster” shortly before Halloween ’07. He was a malnourished, somewhat skittish, eager to please Sharpei/Golden Retriever mix. I made extra visits for a couple of weeks just to spend time with him, and became convinced that he was “the one”. Now, how to convince my husband to open his heart to another 4-legged family member after the pain of losing our last 2 beloved dogs to old age & associated health problems. It’d been 4 years without hearing the patter of paws in our home, and I’d been working on my husband in earnest for about a year. I knew that all I had to do was introduce the 2 of them and Buster would take it from there, and I was right.

Buster, now known as “Buck”, was surrendered by his owners to HSCI in early Oct. 07. At approx. 3 years old, he’d lived his whole life outside chained to a dog house. He was skinny, had a dull coat, and his teeth were very discolored and worn for his age. So what was it about this medium sized brown dog that caught my attention & won my heart? When I would take him out for leash walks, he would regularly look up into my eyes, as if to say, “I’m not used to this, am I doing it right?” and his general desire to please. He could also leap straight up in the air almost to my shoulder height, and did so with pure joy and abandon when you came up to his holding pen/sleeping area. He seemed to be spring-loaded!

My husband and I brought Buck to his forever home on 11-21-07. It’s like he’s been with us since he was a pup. He is well-mannered, a lap dog (when we invite him to be), very affectionate, and walks on a lead like a pro. He’s gained 7 lbs. in the last year, his coat is a beautiful, shiny red gold, and his teeth are quite white. The only scary time we had was when he tested positive for heartworm on his follow-up test, but he came through his medical treatment unscathed, thank God. We believe that we truly got him for a reason.

Thanks for letting me share Buck’s Lucky Day story, which has a happy ending for all of us!