Tyson and tilly

Published 12:01 am Friday, May 15, 2009

Anyone who works with animals or has family pets, knows that dogs form strong and lasting bonds with other animals and their human family.

They love; they grieve.

It is for that reason that when we have dogs that have come to the shelter with a sibling or companion with whom they have lived, we make every effort to adopt them together. Such was the case of Tyson and Tilly, who were brother and sister.

Email newsletter signup

They came to us on Jan. 15, 2008, when they were just a few weeks old.

Healthy and playful, they were great pals and we were very hopeful that we would find a family who would adopt both of them. Many people expressed an interest in one or the other, but no one seemed interested in taking on both of them.

Time passed and these adorable young pups began to grow into adolescence. We still hadn’t found them a forever home, but they were such adorable, loving dogs that we couldn’t bear to give up on them.

Then, late in June, a family came to look for a new friend. The family consisted of Mom and Dad and their teenaged twin sons. The family fell in love with the dogs, but only wanted one. They selected Tyson and wanted to adopt him.

The shelter workers tried to convince them to take both of them, especially since they had twin sons, but they felt it would be just too much, so, with great reluctance, it was agreed to separate them and give Tyson a chance and let him go. Off he went with this lovely family to a great new home.

Meanwhile, Tilly was left at the shelter, by herself for the first time in her life. She was almost inconsolable. She grieved for her brother and had no interest in playing any more. But we weren’t going to give up on finding her a forever family, too.

Time passed, and with lots of attention from the shelter staff, she started to perk up a little. In September, she was featured in one of our “Pets of the Week” ads.

Tyson’s new mother saw that ad, and since he was working out so well with their family, she called.

“Did we still have her?” she asked. Oh yes!

Later that day the family came back to the shelter, bringing Tyson with them. What a special reunion that was!

Tyson and Tilly were beside themselves, kissing each other and playing. Well, that day, Tilly left the shelter for her new forever home, reunited with her twin brother and welcomed into the same family. There were not many dry eyes that afternoon on Cox Avenue as they drove off together.

That was seven months ago.

As I was preparing to write this article, I called the family to ask their permission to run the photos and the story.

They told me that Tyson and Tilly are doing wonderfully and agreed to send me a current photo, which is also included here.

To quote from the accompanying e-mail, “I can’t begin to tell you how much joy, happiness and love these two have brought into our home. … They are full of energy and love to run around our yard non-stop. Since we live on the river with Corps property behind us, they have plenty of room to play. It’s very entertaining to watch them play. They are definitely best friends and would be lost without each other.”

Our thanks to this wonderful family; they are our heroes, giving a second chance to these wonderful animals.

I always have loved happy endings!