She Went To Adopt A Senior Dog. Nothing Prepared Her For What Came Next. I’m In Tears.


A woman named Kim wrote to us, wanting to share her incredibly moving story. After reading her words, we knew we had to oblige her. You see, Kim is an animal lover and dog rescuer who went to pick up an old, ailing dog at a kill-shelter. After bringing Holly home, Kim’s life was forever changed.

Here is the letter she wrote to Holly’s previous owners.

To Holly’s Previous Owners,

When did you decide you could no longer care for Holly? When you knew she had Lyme disease that had gone untreated? Did you decide you’d just keep her until the Lyme disease wore her out and then drop her at the kill-shelter? Did you know that would destroy her kidneys? Did you know last year when you had all of her shots updated but didn’t bother to check her for heartworms? Did you know then that you didn’t need to know if she had heartworms because you wouldn’t keep her that long anyway?

I’ve tried to find you. I have the vet’s information in New Hampshire. I’ve picked up my phone to dial that number many times. What to say to find out your information? I’ve wanted to call you and just tell you “We have your dog, we are taking care of her. She’s doing great.” Then of course, I know the anger would bubble over and I wouldn’t be able to stop screaming. So, I’ve never called.

We have a dog, another beautiful creature rescued from the kill-shelter as an 8 week old puppy. She was 6 months old and we were looking for a playmate for her and came across Holly’s picture on the kill-shelter’s website. Did you know that senior dogs don’t often get adopted? Kill-shelters euthanize within 5 days most times. I called to check on Holly’s status, she’d been there 11 days. I loved her sweet face, her short Corgi legs on a Lab body. It said she was an adult, I figured 2-3 years old. I talked my husband into meeting me there after work. They brought Holly in, I wasn’t sure, she wasn’t 2-3, she was 7 ½ years old. She had a cough, she was overweight. She rubbed up against my legs, looked into my eyes, so deep, with her beautiful brown ones. The shelter said she’d been there so long, she would only be $8 if I could take her that night. $8. Your dog was at a kill-shelter and she was $8. Sleeping on a cement floor, in deplorable conditions and she was EIGHT DOLLARS. We took her home that night, our other dog barked at her for 5 hours straight. What did Holly do? She wagged her tail. She checked out her new digs, she laid on the sofa with her head in my lap, snuggled in a pink blanket. She didn’t care about being barked at for 5 hours, she had a home. That’s what she was so happy about.

About 4 days after we brought her home, I noticed what sounded like kennel cough. I took her to the vet that day. I was shocked to find out that along with kennel cough, she was at end-stage renal failure, with less than 25% of her kidneys functioning. I cried for 2 days straight. My son didn’t know any better and asked if we could take her back. After all, that’s what people do with pets they don’t want to care for any more, right? We didn’t take her back. We bought her $3 a can Renal LP Prescription dog food, she ate a can a day. I also bought the $55 bag of Renal LP Prescription kibble. I bought the Aluminum Hydroxide and mixed it in her food 3x a day. I researched healthy treats because she was also 15 lbs overweight. I walked her 2 miles a day and you know what, she looked great. She was feeling good, she was happy, her tail never stopped wagging in the 6 months we had her.

That old girl wagged her tail when she saw our faces in the morning, when she snuggled up with us at night. She loved car rides, dog parks, ice cream, kids in the neighborhood, having her belly scratched, rolling in the grass, long walks. You name it, Holly loved it. As long as she was with us, she wagged her tail. She had nice manners so, I know she meant something to your family at some point. She knew to sit, she waited to be invited onto furniture, she knew how to give me her paw and never ran out the door in front of me. You taught her these things, didn’t you? You cared, right? How could you abandon her when she needed you the most? How do you lay your head down at night and go to sleep? Do you wear a hat with a big brow? I think you do. I walk my dogs every morning at the same park and Holly always made a beeline when she saw someone with a big sun hat, almost always a man. She wagged her tail and would take off running like she recognized someone. I would run after her, calling her name and when she saw it wasn’t who she thought it was, she turned back to me. She’s been looking for you in every park we’ve gone to for 6 months.


Holly has passed now… almost 6 months to the day since we brought her home. The vet gave her 2-3 weeks with her kidneys, back in February and it is now August. He told me I would see signs and know when it was time to say goodbye. I kept looking for them, waiting for them but they never came. Never a solid sign that it was time to go. When she passed peacefully in her sleep I was so happy she didn’t suffer. I’ve cried for a week straight over the loss of Holly, my brown eyed girl who was just happy to be. She was much too good for you, you didn’t deserve her love, companionship or loyalty. Despite the way you mistreated her and the fact that you dumped her in a kill-shelter when she needed you the most, she still loved people. She loved her family, she loved us. We gave Holly everything we had to give and I am so happy we got the chance to meet and love her. She has forever changed our lives.

Kim Gray
Proud Dog Mom to Holly & Scarlett

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