We have four dogs, three beagles and a mutt. They all came from the local SPCA. Shorty, Hemi, Abby and Bentley are all senior dogs now.
David and I used to volunteer at the SPCA. On Easter 2006, our oldest dog, Merlin, died from old age/heart failure. The following day, I couldn’t stand to be in the house, because I kept expecting to see him everywhere. So, David and I went to the SPCA to let the dogs out, and walk them.
David usually let the big dogs out to run, and I would let the smaller dogs out. But I guess he got done sooner, so he was with me when I let this beagle with a short tail out. The beagle was having a blast running around, and sniffing things. I told David that he would love our yard. We put the beagle back, and we were on our way out.
We were talking to the volunteer coordinator, Lynn, and we told her about Merlin dying. She knew him, because we used to take him with us to events at schools and libraries when we went with her. She knew we were hurting. David mentioned something about taking the beagle home. The next thing I knew, we had a beagle in the van, and we were going home. They let us take him without doing any paperwork to see if he got along with our other two (Daisy & Rosie, both since passed)
We brought him back the next day, along with the other two (they needed microchips) and to do his formal adoption. They didn’t charge us the adoption fee because we were such good volunteers. We named him Shorty, because he was missing the white tip of his tail. (I was told hunters sometimes cut them off)
We lost our beagle, Rosie, to cancer in Oct of 2006. We adopted another beagle, but that didn’t work out. She was going to be put down, but at least we saved her life by taking her when we did. She ended up going to a rescue. I always felt bad about that, but she could climb the fence, and we couldn’t keep her confined.
Then in March of 2007, there was a rather quiet beagle there. His card said his name was Big Ben, but he didn’t answer to it. Over the next few weeks, I walked him several times. I like him, but there was nothing note worthy about him. Until the day I decided to let him out in the pen instead of walking him. He was like a different dog. He was zooming all over the place. All I could think was that he would love our yard. Once again….we went home with a beagle. We named him Hemi, because that was the only name we could agree on. Big Ben did not fit him at all.
In 2011, we had Shorty, Hemi, and our old girl, Daisy. We had adopted her in 2000. In March of 2011, the SPCA asked us if we would foster an old beagle. She needed time to recover from being spayed, and oral surgery before going into a rescue. She didn’t have a name because she was found as a stray. On our way to the SPCA, I suggested that if she was mostly black, that we name her Abby after the NCIS character. She was mostly black, and oh, so quirky. She made me laugh right away.
On April first, Daisy died in her sleep. And that morning, I got an email saying that the rescue was ready for Abby. I couldn’t let her go. We took Daisy’s body to the SPCA for cremation, and we formally adopted Abby. Once again, they didn’t charge us the adoption fee.
In September of 2006, we got another email from the SPCA asking us to foster a senior beagle. We said yes. But when we got there, we were given a scrawny mutt who looked nothing at all like a beagle. He had a crooked tail, so we named him Bentley. They suckered us. I fell for him right away. He’s such a cool little dog. He tries so hard to be a beagle. It’s funny hearing him howling along with them when they catch a scent.
I honestly never tried to find Bentley a home. If he even looked like a beagle, I probably would have. About 8 months later, we ended up formally adopting him too.
Abby and Bentley were seniors when we brought them home. That doesn’t matter. They are so full of life, and are so funny. I think Abby was used as a breeder, and then dumped when she got too old. Bentley was found as a stray, but he is a very well mannered dog. He had to have been a pet.
I think Shorty was a failed hunting dog, and got dumped because of that. Hemi was an owner turn in. It doesn’t matter how they found their way here, they’re here to stay. They drive me insane at times, but I love them.