Our Week with Wally

April 8th, 2013

Last week was an adventure in the Sibley household.  It started out to be a challenging week as I was just feeling better after two full weeks of being down with a nasty virus and nowhere near 100% yet,  and the Rocket Scientist woke up Monday morning with a seeminlgy different, but equally wicked nasty virus.  It was Release Week at TE which is always particularly busy for me in combination with my job in the church office.

Then Tuesday morning, as I headed out the door to work while hubby was sick in bed, as I got to my car in the driveway I thought I saw a dog’s tail under our 5th wheel trailer.  I walked around and around the trailer until I finally saw this dirty white dog hiding under there.  Oh my!  If you know me at all, you know I try to resscue every stray dog I ever see.  You know this is how we ended up with both Tessa and then Roger.

This is not the first stray dog I’ve found in my front yard as we live on a fairly major street.  I went in the house to get some food and water, knowing that there would be a good chance he would be gone by the time I got back which is what usually happens.  Only he wasn’t.  He was right there under the trailer looking so pitiful. I put the bowls down, spoke softly and stepped back.  He did come out tentativley and the wolf down the food and gulp down some water.  Now what?

I picked up the dishes and told him to follow me, that I would get him some more.  I spoke sweetly and coaxingly and he did…he followed me into the backyard.  I got him some more food and a towel to lay on.  I went in and told the Rocket Scientist that we had a stray dog in our backyard, so not to let our dogs out and that I would figure something out when I came home for lunch.  I’d have a plan.  And I left for work.

I came home for lunch…still no plan.  The pup was a sweetie pie, but very lethargic and oh so filthy dirty.  I changed my clothes – into some old jeans and t-shirt – and ran him down to the vet on the corner to check for a chip (he had no collar)…but no chip.  Brought him home and decided he really had to have a bath immediately.  Curt helped me.  He’s much bigger than our dogs at 20 pounds and stands so tall!  Here he is after the bath – still quite dirty.

We were guessing he was a cockapoo or something similar.  His curly coat had been very badly/unevenly cut off with scissors/shears and his skin had been nicked in a couple of places.  His ears and tail were matted.  And…well…let’s just say, he was a mess!

We brought him in to stay in our laundry room with a blanket and plenty of food and water.  We introduced him to Tessa and Roger.  Suffice it to say, they were less than thrilled.  We put signs up at Petco and some groomers and some vet offices.  I was planning to do a lot more when I got off work at 1:00 on Thursday.  We also registered him on some on-line lost dog websites. We spent as much time with him as we could.  He was a love sponge!  He wanted to cuddle like crazy!  And by the second day, he started to be very playful as well.  Yep, Tessa and Roger were NOT thrilled.

At some point, we began calling him Wally.  We had to call him something.  Wally is a name that goes back many years among Curt’s buddies and I think that Curt just called him that and it immediately stuck.  He learned his name in a couple of days.

On Wednesday I called around to find a groomer I could take him to and I got him a Thursday afternoon appointment at Your Elegant Pet in Lakewood.  I had not been there before, but they had excellent Yelp reviews and had an open appointment time.  Oh my goodness! Christy, the groomer, did such a wonderful job on him.  He was like a comepletely different dog!





Is he a cutie or what?  By this time we decided that he had NOT been well-cared-for and there wasn’t much point in putting a huge effort forth to find his owners.  Rather, we felt that we should find him a new forever family ASAP.

At this point, I want to say that I felt very strongly that the Lord brought Wally to us for a reason.  I didn’t find him somewhere on the street and coax him into my car.  He was in our front yard, under our RV.  {And in fact, Curt had seen him on Monday afternoon when he came home from work sick in the middle of the day.  He though he saw a dog when he pulled into the driveway, but couldn’t find him when he got out of his truck and looked.  We now realize Wally was hiding behind our old motorhome at that point.}  I knew with all my heart that the Lord had a family waiting for Wally. I prayed that the Lord would guide us to them and that He would please do it quickly.  While Curt and I never once considered keeping Wally, I knew that the longer we had him the harder it would be to let him go.  Also, did I mention that Tessa and Roger were NOT thrilled with this situation?  There was tension in the house.  So, as blessed and privileged as I felt to be caring for Wally, I knew finding his family sooner rather than later would be for the best.

I’m really not sure why the Lord brings stray dogs to us, but it is a blessing. {One of our friends at church yesterday was joking that we must have a secret mark on our house like the old underground railroad houses had, but in this case only the dogs know about it!} It was so wonderful to see this guy transform.  It breaks my heart to think of what he might have gone through, but just look at him now!  He’s going to bring so much joy to someone!

On Friday morning, I sent an e-mail blast to practically everyone I know and I posted on Facebook as well.  I included photos and gave all the details I could.  I asked people to forward Wally’s info to everyone they could think of.  I knew, without doubt, that there was a family waiting for him.  I said a prayer as I hit the send key.  Less than 10 minutes later, I got a response from my Mom that said “you have a taker”.  She followed that up by forwarding me the response she had gotten from a co-worker that said “YES! When can we go get him?”  Happy Dance!  Praise God for answered prayer!  Amazing answered prayer!

I called Debi, Wally’s new Mom. immediately and set up a time for her to come on Saturday to get Wally.  Just a few minutes after we hung up, my Mom e-mailed again to say that they had already set up a vet appointment for shots on Sunday.  Yep – this was Wally’s family for sure!

I asked my Mom – is this the same lady that wanted Roger?  Yes, it is.  Oh my!  You may recall that we found Roger on a Saturday.  I think on Monday or Tuesday we began trying to find a home for him.  Debi wanted him, but couldn’t come until the following Saturday.  We had a time set up.  On Friday night, we decided we couldn’t part with Roger, that he must stay with us, and I called Debi and canceled the appointment.  We felt so bad, but she was very understanding.  And now, a year and a half later, she was coming to get her pup from us.  WOW!

I made a grooming appointment for Roger and Tessa, so they wouldn’t be here when Wally met his new family.  Debi came and brought her daughter Arianna.  As soon as they came in the front door, Wally went right to them.  They stayed for a little while and Wally was happy as could be.

They are dog-people.  They thought Wally was the perfect size!  They were so happy!  My heart swelled with joy!

I got a text from Debi yesterday that the vet agreed that Wally is probably a cockapoo and that she estimated his age to be between 1 and 1-1/2 which is kind of what I had been guessing.  They are enjoying him so much!

So, yes our week was an adventure.  It was a challenge in many ways.  It was a joy.  It was stressful, but  I had the constant sense that the Lord had a purpose in it (as He always does) even if I wasn’t sure what the purpose was.  Saturday afternoon our little family was exhausted and all crashed out…but oh so content and happy.

I know this was a long post.  If you got through the whole thing, thanks for sticking with it and going on the adventure with me.  And now it’s Monday and a there’s a whole new week ahead!

9 Responses to “Our Week with Wally”

  1. Lisa Hjulberg Says:

    What a touching story! I’m so glad Wally has a good forever home. 🙂

  2. Susan Liles Says:

    Jami, this is such a sweet story! I’m like you and have been a magnet for strays and rescues! Thank the Lord that Wally found such a loving home so quickly…you’re a dog angel!

  3. Traci Davis Says:

    There is a special place in Heaven for you for taking such good care of these little creatures of God. Thank you for finding him a forever family to love him.

  4. Bonnie aka raduse Says:

    Wally looks so sweet. Jami, I’m so glad the Lord brought him to you & Curt for a chance to get a forever home. There definitely is a special place for the two of you for all of the love and care you give strays.

  5. Sharon Madsen Says:

    What a wonderful story, and BLESS you for what you did!!!

  6. Karen Motz Says:

    I think Wally was so lucky to be found and perfectly cared for by you andthe Rocket Scientist! He’s such a handsome fella! Lucky Debi and lucky Wally! Makes me think of your house as match.com for dogs…furever.com…matching stray fur babies with loving homes. Heartwarming!

  7. Gail S. Says:

    Wonderful story! I’m so glad you matched Wally & Debi up. I found a home for a stray we kept for several months. She was pregnant and such a wonderful girl. She had 10 puppies and we found homes for all of them & then her. The family who took her kept in touch with us as long as Princess lived, which was about 10 years. They were childless when they took her and ended up having three kids for gentle Princess to have for companions.

  8. Diane McVey Says:

    Wow, what a lucky little doggie! You are an angel to take such good care of him, and find him a forever home. I’m hoping they will love and care for him, and that he will be super happy at his new place. Thank you for caring enough to get him groomed and cared for. Blessings to you! I love people that treat animals with compassion! 😀

  9. kathy barrett Says:

    What a heartwarming story. I love the change in his demeanor after he had been groomed. Wally knew he looked good! We are the wayward home for schnauzers (just call us “foster failures”, as we adopt everyone that comes our way). Every time the rescue I volunteer with gets one, the call and say they are on the way. We have 4 right now, ranging from 6 to 15. Our latest is about 12 and still adjusting to the good life. It’s like he can’t believe someone will always feed him, pet him, talk to him nicely, take him places and bring him back home and NOT beat him. They all bring such joy to our life. I need the t-shirt that reads “Who rescued whom?” because they always give to us more than we could ever give to them. Your story is inspiring and you have a large audience that you can influence. Keep sharing your “dog tails”!!!!

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