Share this story

Inspiring Stories for Adopt-a-Dog Month

Inspiring stories of dog adoption from Guideposts staffers!


Video 1

[MUSIC PLAYING] Hi, I am Sharon Azar. I work for Guidepost magazine. I’m the assistant to the editorial staff, and I also write the blog “Woof.” I’m going to talk about rescuing Pooh Bear. And this is Pooh Bear. 

I also have a page on Pet Finder, and people contact me when they need to give up their dogs. So I got a call from a couple who had– his name was then JJ– and asked me to help re-home him. 

So this is Pooh Bear. This is when he first came. He looks very sad. And this is him now. He looks very happy. And I tried to help them place him, but I wasn’t having any success, so I kept him myself. 

He’s an amazing dog. When he came to me, he was very deeply sad and emotional, but we worked, and we got a trainer, and we became very bonded. And here he is. 

And I think it’s very important to adopt a shelter dog because they often get put down because nobody wants them. So please go to your local shelter and look over what they have. 


Video 2

[MUSIC PLAYING] I’m Meg Belviso. I’m a staff editor at “Angels on Earth.” 

My dog is actually my roommate’s dog. But I pretty much consider her, you know, part of my family too. We’re not sure how old she is. But we have had her for almost a year. October 8th is her anniversary. We will be celebrating that a lot. 

So she came from– My roommate was looking on the– on the internet for– for pets. And there’s a Connecticut rescue group that had found her in a shelter. They thought she’d been, you know, abandoned. 

And, um, she had a very bad, uh, medical situation. She had a giant hernia that was– it was huge to the point where it was sort of dragging on the floor. It was really awful. 

And the surgery looked like it was going to be very expensive. And it was very difficult and life threatening. But she didn’t have much of a chance without it. 

So they were taking donations for– for, you know, for the surgery. And she just sent them some money. And then she– I remember, she was checking, you know, like every few days she would check in for updates. 

And a few weeks later, we heard that she had gone through the surgery. And it turned out to be even more complicated than they expected. But she came through. And then there was still– You know, she was recovering for, you know, a couple of months after that. 

So she just kept checking in. And then finally, she was able to be adopted. And she just sent in an application. And, you know, she knew that she really wanted her. But she was completely surprised that she won the lottery and actually got to adopt Sunflowers. 

She is– well, you know, when you have a dog and you’re at work, and sometimes you’ll just be sitting at work. And then you’ll think that she’s at home. And when you get home, you can see her. She’s incredibly kissy. She jumps on everything, you know. So she’s just– I mean, she’s just completely hilarious. She’s totally exciting and excited about everything. 

And I mean, opening the door and having her– she spins. And we have like a long corridor when you come into the apartment. So when you come in, she spins all the way down the– all the hall– all the way down the hallway, because she’s very excited to see you. My roommate’s mother had recently said, you know, oh, every once in a while, any time I just think of her, I start laughing, because she’s just completely– 

And recently, she even– she was chosen to be in a calendar. She’s going to be Miss September. And she’d never done any modeling. But we– we’ve been told that she’s a natural. Yeah, so she’s just, you know– You can’t look at her and be sad. That’s pretty much her job. 


Video 3

[MUSIC PLAYING] Hi. My name is Doug Snyder. And I’m the assistant art director here at “Guideposts.” 

I’m not sure how old my dog is. Her name is Lucy. And I think she’s around six years old. I adopted her about five years ago. And when I adopted her, she was kind of an emotional mess. 

Uh, she was abandoned by her former owner or tied to a chain link fence and left there only a few blocks away from a pound. So the people at the pound untied her, brought her to the pound through 1-800-save-a-pet. Uh, I found her and saved her, rescued her, and, uh, brought her home. She felt abandoned and confused and sad. Her– her tail was always down between her legs. And she was always moping and worrying. 

So after two weeks of lots of love and attention, she was a totally different dog. Uh, she was happy and energetic. And, uh, even years later today, she’s still as energetic as a puppy. 

And her tail has– you know, it went up after two weeks. And it hasn’t gone down since. She’s always wagging her tail, always happy. And she’s always got a smile on her face, which is the most amazing thing to see the change. 

One of my favorite moments with Lucy is, uh, teaching her to swim, teaching her to go into the ocean. I was convinced that I could get her to swim. She was terrified of the water. And the smallest of waves would send her running away, running back up onto the sand. 

Eventually I decided I– I would give her a little bit of tough love. And, um, I would go far enough out into the water that she would start worrying. She would start pacing up and down the beach and want to come in to join me. She eventually, uh, walked in a little bit and a little bit more. 

And then I kind of met her halfway. And the moment I met her halfway, her little body went up as the wave came in. And she started doing the doggy paddle. You know, I felt so proud of her. And uh– and yet, you know, she was doing something that comes natural to dogs, which is why they call it the doggy paddle. 

I would say if you are going to get a dog, you should adopt. There are so many dogs that are like Lucy, abandoned or, um, put up for adoption, or given to a pound. And they need a home. 

The other reason why you should adopt is to have an experience like I’ve had, to see, uh, a dog who is so emotionally distraught. It’s amazing to– to see them become such well-adjusted, loving, happy dogs. And it– it brings so much to your own life. And obviously, it makes a world of difference to the dog as well. 


Video 4

[MUSIC PLAYING] Hi, my name’s Christopher, and this is Olive. And Olive was adopted from the Southold Animal Shelter the summer of 1999. So she’s about 11 and 1/2. 

Olive enjoys playing in Central Park. And she actually, in a way, brought me to Guidepost in that she has a lot of friends that we see on our daily walks in the park. And she hit up one man we saw walking in the park with this dog Shep several times from behind for treats. And that person turned out to be Van Varner, the editor in chief of Guide Post for many years. 

So that’s how I got to know Van. And we would see one another in the park with our dogs. 

When I got a call about working at Guidepost and they asked me if I knew anyone who worked here I said, yes Van Varner through Olive. 

We wanted to adopt a shelter dog because there are so many dogs in the world that need homes. And we actually went to a few shelters out there looking for a dog. And she happened to be a puppy. So she was really– she’s cute now, but she was really cute as a tiny puppy. And we just felt like it would be best to provide a home for a dog that needed one. 

We didn’t know quite like what we wanted I guess, in a dog. But she’s turned out to be a wonderful companion to us. She’s fun. She’s peaceful when we hope she will be peaceful. She’s friendly. And she’s introduced us to a lot of people through her outgoing nature in the city. She’s a good friend and companion.

Video 5

[MUSIC PLAYING] Hi, I’m Amy Wong, executive editor of Guidepost. And I’m going to tell you a little bit about how my dog, Winky, came into my life. 

Well, probably like a lot of prospective pet owners, I was constantly on the internet looking at dogs on Pet Finder. And every week I’d find another dog that I fell in love with. 

It took me a while to really decide, all right, I am ready to adopt a dog. But I finally did. And I checked around at shelters in New York. 

Well, I found a shelter named Bideawee that was close to my apartment. The people at the desk asked me, well, is there any particular dog you’re looking for? And I said, well, I’m not sure. All right, there’s a couple that I’d like to look at. And this is the first one, and I pointed to her picture in their binder. And they literally started jumping up and down. They were so excited. They said, we love this dog. She’s the sweetest, sweetest dog. And we’re so hoping someone will adopt her. 

And I thought, wow, all right, that’s a great endorsement. And they said, you know, the only sad thing is no one asks to see her. And I said, why? You know, because it sounds like she’s a wonderful dog. And they thought– they couldn’t understand either. They said she was so well-mannered and well-trained. 

The people at the shelter thought it might have been because she was older. She was ready 5. And she’s big, as you can see, she’s around 65 pounds. 

They told me the way it worked. It sounded a little bit like speed dating because they said they would bring the candidates one by one. And I could spend a little time with them and see if we clicked. 

The first one they brought out was Winky, whose name at the time was Princess. As soon as I saw her, I knew she was the dog for me. I’m not sure if she knew I was going to be her new mom right away. But I spent, actually, a couple of hours with her. I was in the play area with her. Then I went with one of the volunteers for a walk, a long walk with her. 

So I want to make sure I can handle a big dog because I never had a dog my whole life. I used to walk people’s dogs for fun and take care of my friends dogs but never really took a dog this size. 

And they let me take her home that day. I wasn’t even expecting to be able to do that. And I didn’t even have bowls or anything ready or food even. But the volunteers were really nice and they gave me a nice weekend supply of food. 

And that’s how Winky came into my life. And I cannot imagine it without her. 

Can you sit? 


Can you howl on cue? Give me five. Good girl. Good girl. 


She wants a recording contract. So she wants to show off her entire vocal repertoire. 



Share this story

Community Newsletter

Get More Inspiration Delivered to Your Inbox

Check out our collection of Guideposts videos and find exclusive celebrity interviews, inspirational stories of hope, and practical life advice.

Randall Liberty, who experienced PTSD following his military service in Iraq, offers tips for recognizing the disorder in friends and loved ones and advice on how to help them find healing.

Donate to change a life together
Scroll to Top