1 Year With Bella

One year ago today, we (my family and I) excitedly adopted our beautiful, cuddly, fun-loving Boxer-Lab-Beagle-Pitbull-whatever-else-she-is-mix, Bella. 

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When we adopted her, the rescue shelter said she was 3 years old. We don’t know her exact birth date so we decided to celebrate her birthday every year on the anniversary of her adoption! So Happy 4th Birthday Miss Bella!

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Let me tell you the story of how we got our silly, loving girl.

Last summer, after trying and failing to convince my parents to get a puppy I got an idea. What if we got an adult dog? A dog who you don’t have to worry about “potty-training”, crate training or teaching the basic commands? Trust me my family loves puppies (seriously who doesn’t?) but we just didn’t have the time for one – as much as we wish we did. And even better, instead of spending big money on a 8-week old puppy who has a line-up of people wanting to buy it, we would possibly be giving a dog with a frightening past a forever home with shelter, good nutrition, and most importantly unconditional LOVE. 

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I started looking at all these dogs on Kijiji who needed homes. Big dogs, little dogs, old dogs, young dogs.. all looking for a new home with lots of lovin’. I spent almost all of my time browsing the internet looking at dogs up for adoption and calling shelters inquiring about their dogs. We then came across one shelter close to us called Cool Dog Rescue. They regularly update their Facebook page with newly rescued dogs from Quebec who need loving, providing homes. We contacted them, and they provided us with a list of dogs currently being fostered who needed to find their forever homes.

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As my sister and I were clicking through the dog photos and reading the little “About Me” blurbs that came along with each one, we stopped at the picture of a golden-brown mixed dog named Cinna (now Bella!). In the picture she was laying down, eyes bright, tongue out, almost smiling. We fell in love with her picture instantly.

this is the photo they used
this is the photo they used

Bella was rescued from Northern Quebec where she was chained outside to a shed for a very long period of time and was abused and treated very badly. When Cool Dog Rescue brought her to Nova Scotia she was pregnant. After she had her puppies, she became very sick and almost didn’t make it. When she got better, she went to a foster home, then was adopted for about six months but developed an issue with cats in her home and was given back by her adopted owner, so she went back in to a foster home. It deeply saddens me to think that such amazing animals experience these terrible times in their lives. 😦

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The way it works with Cool Dog Rescue, you apply to adopt a dog from them and once it is approved you inquire about the dog you’d like to adopt. Once you’ve found out some more about the dog, they bring it over for a little visit. If all goes well, and you’re still interested in adoption they bring the dog back over for a “sleepover” and basically the dog just stays with you until you decide whether or not you’d like to officially adopt.

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Well, when Bella was brought over for her first visit I knew she was the perfect dog. She was just such a charmer, and so playful. The way she looks at you when you’re petting her makes your heart melt. Dad wasn’t sure whether or not Bella was the one for us, but I encouraged him that she was perfect. She is perfect.

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So she then came over for her “sleepover” and she’s been with us ever since.

just kickin' back
just kickin’ back

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Bella is such a loving, happy dog. And it makes me so happy to know that my family and I are part of the reason why she is so happy now. Bella loves to give hugs, cuddle, snooze and play.

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She is such a smart girl. She knows when you’re sad or stressed out, in fact she will climb up on you or give you a hug to make you feel better. She hates when people get in arguments. One day, Pat(my boyfriend), Bella and I were sitting on the couch and Pat and I started bickering, Bella climbed on top of us and whined and barked. When we didn’t stop, she ran away and hid behind my sister’s bed in her bedroom. It’s amazing how sensitive to our emotions dogs can be. 

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This past year, I went through a lot of personal stuff and had a pretty rough time. I can’t imagine how much worse it would have been for me if I didn’t have Bella to cuddle, go on runs/walks with or just be around because her presence is such a joy.

my running buddy
my running buddy

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I know it’s super cheesy but after having Bella in our family for one year, I can’t imagine not having her in our lives! She is the perfect fit for our family. She is the source of so much laughter, joy and happiness. She’s an amazing dog. She is so special to me and she is living proof that dogs really are a man’s (and woman’s) best friend.

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I highly recommend dog adoption. Saving a dog’s life and giving them lots of love doesn’t benefit the dog only. The love that you receive from the dog in return and the satisfaction of giving an animal a better life is so, so great.

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Love you, Bella girl! Happy Birthday!

Hannah

 

 

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2 thoughts on “1 Year With Bella

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