Rescue Journal

Ode to the difficult dogs

Carol  ·  Feb. 2, 2020

Almost exactly 6 years ago, Luna arrived in our midst. She was barely a year old with a history of poor socialization, biting, destructiveness, fearfulness and an inability to be housetrained. She was also at risk of death because her 3rd and last family no longer could cope with her and in trying to surrender her to the local shelter were told given her issues, she would be euthanized upon admission.
One year old? already 3 homes? no wonder she was such a mess.
And so Luna came bringing chaos, frustration and regret in her wake.

For the first few weeks to months I alternated between hope and despair. Everything about her was so very disruptive here. She snuck up on people and bit them in the ass, she grabbed the dogs tails with her very sharp teeth and pissed them off. She tore the trim off of windows and doors. She threw herself at me until my arms and hands were a mass of deep bleeding scratches and she wouldn't stop. Everything she did, she did big and she did wrong.

So here we are 6 years later and Luna is still a bit of an odd duck dog. She won't let strangers anywhere near her, barking as she runs off. The staff still won't do some necessary things for her like apply monthly flea control, because she gets that not to be trusted look in her eye that they may regret doing what they just did. having said that, I can do anything to her for one simple reason, Luna loves me and trusts me with her entire body and soul/
She and I have a one in a million kind of relationship, we melt into puddles of emotional goo just looking at each other. It is true and endless love.

It takes Luna months to years to really trust others around here. Everyone wants to hold her and cuddle her and be her good friend. Luna moves slowly on this, while she no longer bites, she still keeps an emotional distance until she is ready to trust a new friend. But if folks are patient and give her the space to feel safe, eventually she will grace them with her affection.
Luna is without a doubt the most loving and loyal dog I have ever been blessed to know.

She was never an easy dog but she was so very much more. She was a dog who had been emotionally battered trying to fit into a world for which she was was ill prepared. She failed over and over and over again in finding acceptance.
And here she is 6 years later, happy, loved, safe and secure while shining her blinding light into the darkest recesses of my sometimes cynical soul. She brings me the gift of pure joy every day.
Luna got the chance to become what every lost and lonely dog dreams of....
to become a truly great, great dog and an incredible best, best friend.
Luna was a difficult dog, lucky, lucky me, because of her my life is blessed.



Carol, your heart has certainly changed Luna...both physically, and emotionally. Remember how skinny and skitterish she was when she initially arrived? She has become such a and out. Although she won’t sleep on the bed with me on overnights, she still watches me ...not with caution or fear, but with relaxed interest, and her eyes tell me she is comfortable with me there. That’s a gift in itself....


The reward is always worth the hard work with difficult dogs! It's just that more special when they let you in <3

Lenore Henry

So true Ali - she loves Carol so much, never letting her out of her sight for long. What a special bond you have with her Carol - thanks for showing her your loving patience and kindness ❤️


I love the way Lunas entire body changes when she sees you. It is the truest love I’ve ever seen ❤️