Please forgive me this deviation from typically found topics, but today, I write with a heavy heart. Unfortunately, we have lost one of the family, and as sad as I am to lose him, I can’t stand the thought of dwelling on the loss we feel at home. Instead, I want to share a story, so that not only will his memory live, but the joy he brought to others can be shared and remembered. I will always treasure him as the great dog he has always been from the first day he stole my heart.
We spent a great deal of time looking at local shelters, thinking we were wanting a Labrador or something along those lines. I remember going to a rescue site in Boulder to visit with a Lab, but she just wasn’t the right fit for us at that moment in time. On my way home from my visit with that dog, I decided to stop by the Longmont Humane Society. We had just visited the shelter a couple of days prior, and I honestly didn’t expect to find the right member for our family that day, but something made me stop. As I walked around the corner, two beautiful brown eyes stared into my soul. I literally gasped as I started talking to this gorgeous Golden Retriever, and I told him I was going to the front to ask to visit with him.
Sam started tossing a ball around, but Levi seemed to have no interest. We chalked it up to him being nervous in the shelter setting, and were absolutely certain this was going to be our fetching dog.
Sam had to return to work, but I spent a little more time with Levi before heading to the front desk at the shelter once more. I told them I was ready to take Levi home, but they informed me that there was already a hold on him. I was heartbroken. I was absolutely convinced this was supposed to be our new family member. “I don’t need to think about it,” I informed the woman at the front. “ I will take him right now.” She smiled, but firmly informed me that the individual who had Levi on hold had two days to decide if she wanted him, so I would have to wait until Sunday morning. It was Friday afternoon and I wasn’t ready to leave him in the shelter – even if only for another day and a half. She took my name and told me I was next in line. I went back to talk to Levi and told him that I would be back for him and that he would be in his forever home very soon.
On Sunday morning, Sam called LHS. I didn’t have it in me to hear the words that he had been adopted. I listened anxiously to Sam’s side of the conversation as he spoke to a clerk. “Really?” eventually came out of his mouth. Followed by, “We will be there as soon as you open.” Levi was still there and waiting for us to adopt him. We rushed to the shelter with leash and collar in hand, ready to take Levi home. We had new toys for him and were ready to start life with our new addition. He never did take to fetching (he would get the ball, but then ran away to hold on to it), but we loved him for the beautiful soul he was, not for his interest, or lack thereof, in fetching a ball.
Even my brother, who’s not necessarily an animal person, adored Levi. As I said, it was hard not to love him. Over the course of the nearly eight years Levi has been part of our lives, we’ve received multiple offers from others to take him any time we were ready to let him go. Give him up? There was no way that would happen. He was meant to be with us. He was the gentle part of our dysfunctional, motley crew!