For as long as I possibly could, I had held steady on the fact our home did not need a dog. Two little boys that lit up if they saw a dog walking down the street and a husband that would buy an entire zoo to make them smile disagreed with me regularly about this fact.

Loki with his stuffed zebra, given to him by his youngest human

Chronic health issues and an extreme dislike for the thought of poop on my floor made this a more straightforward conclusion to come by. The good days I could have concurred the world, the bad days I struggled to get out of bed. We conversed about the idea of adopting a dog or a puppy, but training was not on my list of things I looked forward to, and two little boys made me wary of adopting a full-grown dog.
I had created a page that educated and connected people to adopting exotic animals that needed a home. Every once in a while, a message would come through of someone who needed help rehoming a dog or cat. I connected them with resources, and usually, that was the extent of my involvement. We had fostered animals long before our little kids were born. Yet, with my oldest son seemingly being the direct descendant of Doctor Doolittle himself, we realized very early that fosters could not only be temporary without tears, and we had a weakness for the little boy with a heart of gold.
All had worked out seemingly well, with the only animal adopted by mini Doolittle being a turtle that was once the size of a quarter but now was housed in a 92-gallon pond in our dining room. That is until I got a message about a puppy who was adopted from a puppy mill but no longer fit into the home that adopted him. I gave my standard list of resources and wished them luck in finding him a home.

Days later, while scrolling through our group, I see the same puppy with a pretty hefty price tag. It was not as uncommon as I would like it to be for people to decide money was more important than husbandry, and love, so I dismissed it until I saw the same pup listed again. Home after home, this puppy was on and off the adoption pages for weeks, a different person with a different story each time. Eventually, the original owner messaged me again. The poor pup was passed around to several different homes but only for a short time. She decided she would repurchase him and try to find him a forever home rather than allow it to continue.
She requested permission to post asking for a foster until she could find him a home, her older dog was aggressive toward him, and she didn’t want him to get hurt in the process. Something about his story stuck with me, I tried to rationalize that it should have thrown up red flags, but it didn’t matter. After a few questions, I stood in front of a small fluffy little puppy of only about 12 weeks old, but a story longer than most. So frightened he was shaking, and every time you went to pet him, he would dribble a little bit on the floor.

Loki at 5 months with my son

I told her to continue looking for a home, but he would be safe with us until she did. He played with our little boys, was so gentle he would lick food out of their hands but not touch them with teeth, and he stayed under my feet, no matter where I was. Within days he started to shine; still timid, yet he would go outside and gently walk on a leash with a smiling little boy stumbling behind him. It wasn’t long until we decided he would stay. A few little piddles on the floor were no match for the heart of a lion inside this little puppy. If I fell or needed to sit down on the floor, he would crawl under my legs and lay down, like he knew the position I needed to rest. He was a part of our family from the moment he walked through the door. He belonged with us. Lovingly we named him Loki, after the God of Mischief.

Loki with a kitten rescue

Now almost two years old, our tiny little puppy has grown to be a sizeable 100lb dog. A gentle giant, he seems to know when to be calm and know when to play. He is smart yet goofy enough to make us laugh whenever he wants.

Loki at 1 year

Kittens have joined our family, kids have gotten sick or injured, during good times and bad, Loki spreads his joy, smiles, hair tufts, and most of all, his love wherever it is needed.

-The Un-Traditional Mother

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