As every dog owner knows, adopting a new furever friend is a special and unforgettable experience. Though accidents, rough introductions with other pets, and confusion may sometimes ensue once you bring your new dog home, it's all worth it in the end.
If you're considering adopting or rescuing a dog, prepare to be inspired (and maybe to cry a little bit) by how a handful of lucky dogs found their fur-ever home.
Do you have your own heartwarming dog adoption story you'd like to share with The Spruce Pets? Email your story and a photo of your dog to firstname.lastname@example.org and write "Dog Adoption Story" in the subject line.
01 of 05
I Love Chew!
Age: 4 years old
Breed: Treeing Walker Coonhound
Taylor M. knew it was love at first sight when she laid eyes on Chewy.
"It's often said, 'If you want a friend in Washington, get a dog.' When I was scrolling through the adoption site, I fell in love with Chewy immediately. The floppy ears, the big brown eyes, the spots on his nose—I knew he was the one immediately. Waiting to hear if I was accepted by the adoption agency was more nerve-wrecking than waiting to hear if I was accepted to graduate school."
Taking Chewy Home
"The day we brought Chewy home was chaos. He's a hound dog, which means he has a super strong nose and a howl the entire city can hear. While my boyfriend was finishing up the paperwork for the adoption, I tried to take Chewy for a walk to keep him moving and let him sniff out the neighborhood. Chewy is way stronger than me, so he basically took me for a walk. He shook the whole car ride home. Eventually, he tired himself and fell asleep in a tiny ball on the couch. We watched him sleep for over an hour. I couldn't believe he was finally ours. Anyone making the decision to make a rescue a part of their family should know how stressful the process is for a pup. Be patient and love unconditionally, but also give your fur baby space to explore their new home and learn the ropes. Know that they will get into the trash, will have the occasional accident, and will feast on at least one pair of expensive Italian shoes, but also know that there is no love like the love of a rescue dog."
— Taylor M., Washington, D.C.Continue to 2 of 5 below.
02 of 05
Pip, Pip, Horray!
Age: 2.5 years old
All it took was a photo for Ashley S. to know Pippa was hers.
"After visiting a couple shelters, my boyfriend and I searched for a dog online. We were living in New York at the time and Critter Cavalry came up because they drive dogs out to the east coast. We saw a photo of Pippa with her twin brother, Asher, and fell in love. We weren't allowed to get our pups until they were three months old (which is the age they need to be to get spayed/neutered and microchipped). Miranda posted photos and videos daily so we could get to know Pip before the big day. I'm still in contact with all the other owners—we share pictures and updates via email and even planned a puppy reunion last year."
Taking Pippa Home
"The car ride home I held her in my lap and just tried to make soothing noises and sneak her treats. My boyfriend claims this is why Pippa likes me better, because I imprinted on her in the car (no regrets. When we got home, after a short game of tug with her new toys, Pip spent most of the day sleeping. She slept half out of her bed, like she didn't understand how to sleep in a bed that belonged just to her. She slept on the couch, curled in my lap, back on the floor—she slept so much I called my vet friend to make sure it was normal (it was). She pooped in the house twice. I remember running her outside once mid-pee."
— Ashley S., Columbus, OHContinue to 3 of 5 below.
03 of 05
Age: 4 years old
Breed: Staffordshire Terrier-Hound Mix
Eddie M. handpicked Maya to be his furever friend.
"I found her on a pet adoption site and fell in love with her photo. When I went to meet her she hid under a couch while her brother came right over and sat in my lap. He was so sweet, but there was still something I loved about Maya. I finally got her to come out from under the couch so I could hold her. About 10 minutes later, I was running to the nearest pet store to buy a carrier and a few toys so I could take her home."
Taking Maya Home
"All I wanted to do was cuddle and play with Maya the second I brought her home. I remember sitting on the floor surrounded by toys and trying to get her to play with me so I could take cute pictures. I watched while she explored my apartment and kept an eye on me from a distance. After a few hours (and lots of treats), she warmed up to me. Later that night, I made her a little bed out of an old blanket, placed it next to my bed, and just watched her sleep for an hour. I was so happy to have her."
— Eddie M., New York, NYContinue to 4 of 5 below.
04 of 05
Keen on Beans
Age: Almost 5 years old
Breed: Boston Terrier Chihuahua Mix
Jill P. found her perfect can o' "Beans."
"We adopted Beans via the Dixie Pet Underground website and he was transported to a local animal hospital to be picked up. Before that, he was boarding in a real home, with real owners temporarily. We'd only seen a few pictures of him prior to picking him up and really didn't know what we were getting into."
Taking Beans Home
"The minute the veterinarian placed Beans on the ground, he lunged towards my husband and I, burrowing his face into our laps. He was so quick! He ran around in circles over and over again, only to come back to the cuddles. We didn't even get a good look at his face until the car ride home because of how excited he was. He's been our best friend since and a pure joy to our lives."
— Jill P., Boston, MAContinue to 5 of 5 below.
05 of 05
Age: 1.5 Years old
Breed: Miniature Poodle Mix
Emily T. and Kirby are two peas in a pod.
"When I saw Kirby's profile and picture, I got very excited and my heart went out to him. At the time, his name was Donner. I was initially going to purchase a purebred due to my allergies, but decided against it even before my test results came back. I wanted to help a dog that needed a home, and it just didn't feel right to pay a breeder when there were so many dogs that needed rescuing."
Taking Kirby Home
"Kirby was dropped off by his foster parents on a Friday. I wasn't working at the time, so I thought I could help him get used to the house on his first day. After a few hours, I texted my husband to come home and help me. Kirby had peed inside three times, and was constantly either barking or whining. He missed his foster parents and was looking for them at the front door the whole time. I felt so bad; we tried to comfort him as much as possible, but his loyalty was true. It took a couple of weeks for him to feel more comfortable, and I was glad that he was able to make the adjustment."
— Emily T., San Francisco, CA