Sweet Onion Animal Protection Society

Finding Homes, Saving Lives

Success Stories


January 26, 2015 | Posted by Stephanie Reese

Bernie was found outside the Lyons shelter with his two siblings and another 2 puppies. Those 5 and another 4 were taken to my house to live with the one puppy I already had. Slowly all of those puppies and several other litters came and went, but Bernie was never picked. Bernie didn’t seem to notice. He was always happy and lived in the moment. He enjoyed playing with whoever was around. He was a great foster big brother. He was the leader of the pack, not because he was a dominant dog, but because he had been there the longest and knew where the cool toys were. He was very helpful with fearful dogs and one time convinced a very scared boxer to come out from under the storage building and let me pet her. Bernie was a dream, but I so desperately wanted him to have a fur-ever home. He certainly deserved his own family. One day at an adopt-a-thon, a guy, Alex, came by and loved him. He said he had to convince his brother/roommate to let him have a dog. I started thinking the brother said no, but two months later I received an email. The email stated that he had thought about Bernie every day and just had to have him. Bernie had his fur-ever home. I dropped Bernie off at his new home and surprisingly did not cry. Bernie was in a good home; I was happy. That was 2 ½ years ago.


While that part of the story is great, it gets better. Bernie’s adopter and I have kept in touch and he calls Bernie an angel every time. Today I found out why. Bernie was adopted for the brother. The brother didn’t know that at the time. The brother was going through a rough patch and needed a buddy. As so many of us do, we don’t think we want what we need the most. The brother was not home when I dropped off Bernie, but when he came home, it was love at first site. Bernie and Elliott have been inseparable. Bernie as he did here with other fosters, helped a heart heal. The rough patch is over for the brother and Bernie now has a family complete with Dad, Mom, and a human sister with another doggie sibling.

Bernie had to wait for his family but it was worth it. Bernie’s story is the reason I foster. It is heart braking sometimes what these animals have to live through at the hands of people. I have 3 great dogs that have waited longer than Bernie. I have learned to be patient. They have a purpose here and while I am intended to be a stop over, they are still with me for a reason. Time will reveal what that reason is…