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Photo by The Winning Image 2006

It is tough to reconcile the beautiful, proud Doberman you see here, with the sad, emaciated, frightened dog I first met in the summer of 2003 on the lawn of the Susquehanna Stray Animal Shelter in Redlion, PA.  My heart just broke for her, and I still get teary when I think of her back then.

What amazes me most about Muzzy is her incredible spirit.  Clearly she suffered things I will never fully understand.  When she first came to live with us, she would cower if a stranger reached for her.  In our first obedience class together, she was so afraid of doing something wrong, that she would often just lie down on the floor and refuse to get up.  I can only imagine what horrors brought her to that point.

Yet she was able to overcome all this to become an amazing dog by any standards.  Her loving, gentle nature touches everyone she meets, and her ability to forgive and to trust despite her past betrayals, just leaves me in awe.  Her appreciation for any kindness shown her is clear in everything she does.  She defies the myth that rescue/shelter dogs are somehow flawed, as well as all the negative stereotypes about her breed.

Photo by www.snootydog.com

There are no words sufficient to describe what I feel for this dog, who so embodies all the best attributes of her species and her breed.  She has captured my heart completely - I am so very proud of all she has accomplished and so touched by her courage, her heart and her utter devotion to me.  By sharing her accomplishments and her story, I hope that others might be inspired to adopt one of the many wonderful dogs like Muzzy that is sitting in a shelter somewhere just waiting for someone to love.

As I walked along the seashore
This young boy greeted me.
He was tossing stranded starfish
Back to the deep blue sea.
I said "Tell me why you bother,
Why you waste your time this way.
There's a million stranded starfish
Does it matter, anyway?"
And he said, "It matters to this one."


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