Photo by Paws on the Run Pet Photography

Friday, September 7, 2012


For those of you that haven't already... Meet Nilo.  Many of you close to Dan and I know that we fostered Nilo this past spring for Windy City Canine Rescue.  Nilo originally came from Cuba... you can read about his journey to Canada here.

From the moment I saw his sweet face and read his story on the blog I was in love.  Really, who wouldn't love a dog with that kind of spirit, and that goofy grinning face?  The hard part was convincing Dan that we would be the perfect foster home for Nilo.  Little did Dan know when he agreed to be a foster home that I was madly in love and wanted him for my own.

I can't really remember how long we had him for but we had a blast with him.  Nilo and Cookie loved each other and were perfect playmates.  Nilo was a fantastic lap dog, and would spend hours lounging on the couch with us.  He seemed to be the perfect fit into our home as our second dog.

There was only one problem... Nilo did not get along with my Cockatoo.  One night Nilo grabbed the parrot and would not let her go.  Honestly if Dan hadn't been home Ali would have been done.  For those of you that know how much Dan dislikes my parrot it was a miracle that he saved her life.  With a heavy heart I contacted Windy City and let them know that Nilo could not stay and we would not be able to become his forever home.

My heart was broken when I said goodbye to the cute Cuban Refugee.  Dan and I didn't talk much about giving him up but I know that Dan had become attached to him and was hurting as well.  I couldn't even write about him or post pictures of him without crying.  It was terrible!  A short time later Nilo was adopted into the perfect family where he would be with no children and a lady that was familiar with the breed and wanted to work with him.  It was the perfect fit and I was thrilled that at long last he had found the forever home that he so deserved.
Fast forward to a couple days ago.... I was contacted by Windy City to let me know that there had been some trouble with Nilo.  I found out that he had bitten someone.  I don't want to fuel any of the rumours that have been travelling around social media sites so I will ask you to read about Nilo's final days here.  Again I had to say goodbye to the dog that I was so in love with.

To me having a dog, or any pet for that matter is a privilege not a right.  A dog should provide unconditional love and devotion.  In return the dog's owners should love them, care for them, and protect them no matter what.  When Nilo broke his side of the deal by biting someone his new owners had a very difficult decision to make.  In the end they chose the path that would protect Nilo from being euthanized in a shelter, put in a crate (which he HATED) and shipped back to Cuba, or ending up in yet another home where who knows what would have happened to him.  Sometimes keeping the owners end of the bargain and protecting the dog means that a very difficult choice has to be made.  I can't imagine what Nilo's owners were going through during his last days.  I applaud them for making the choice they did even though it was not the easiest path to go down.  

If you read any of the postings on Facebook you will see that not everyone agrees with the outcome.  I have know many of the Windy City girls for a number of years.  I am proud to call them my friends and I know that they would have done anything they could have for a different outcome.  In the end not every rescue animal can be saved.  I spent 8 years in the pet industry and worked with numerous rescues.  Sometimes tough choices have to be made and someone has to make them.  In the end the best interest of the animal always has to come before the emotions of the humans involved.  

Goodbye sweet Nilo.  My heart aches saying goodbye to you twice.  I know that you were loved and taken care of right until the end and that means a lot to me.  Wherever you are now I hope you have found the peace and happiness you deserved.

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