This month marks the fifth year of companionship with my best friend “Dave”. It was in October of 2017 when I happened to spot a Facebook posting from a lady in Portage, Michigan, that told the story of her finding a small lost Jack Russell terrier who needed a home. It touched my heart because I had just lost “Lilly”, my grand-dog who regularly spent weekends at my home. My daughter knew that my little bungalow, which I shared with my cat “Kitty”, was always brightened when Lilly came to visit, so she graciously gave up Lilly each weekend so that we could share the good times of car rides in the countryside, and watching the Lawrence Welk Show together on Saturday night. It broke my heart when Lilly crossed over the Rainbow Bridge that year. 

Dave was a flea-infested little street urchin that was skin and bones when found wandering along a busy street in Kalamazoo. He willingly allowed the kind-hearted woman to pick him up and place him in her car. His days of scrounging for scraps on the hard streets of the “Zoo” had finally come to an end. Someone cared and rescued him. 

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The Facebook posting was a plea for someone to give this little furry waif a home. His rescuer had fed, watered, and bathed him in a flea bath, but didn’t have room for another dog in her home. It just took a minute of thought before I responded to the post and made arraignments to meet her at a public spot to transfer him into my care. The fleas had been taken care of, but Dave’s back was bald and he had a staff infection. He also had a bald ring around his neck from a collar, that had never been adjusted and became too small for his neck. Dave had Lost so much weight that the collar had fallen off, leaving the ring as a bad memory of former times. A trip to the vet estimated Dave’s age to be between 5-6 years old at that time, and since then we have been close companions. And thanks to the kindness of Townsquare Media, he awakes at 2:15 AM, six days a week, to join me in the studio of 95.3 WBCK. 

Lost dogs and cats have been the passion of the Bissell Pet Foundation, a pet rescue organization based in Grand Rapids, Michigan. The month of October marked the sixth year of “Empty the Shelters”, an event where Bissell helps pay the adoption fees at adoption shelters across the nation. During the first week of October, 4,935 cats and 4,515 dogs found loving homes during the nation’s largest funded adoption event. The foundation’s founder, Cathy Bissell says, 

As shelters remain at and beyond capacity, our ‘Empty the Shelters’ events continue to create life-saving space in shelters throughout the country. On average, 1,000 pets are adopted each day during our national events. We are grateful to every participating shelter and adopter who helped pets find loving homes through this event.

Recently, the Bissell Foundation helped airlift hundreds of homeless pets that were displaced by hurricanes that struck Puerto Rico and Florida. Some of those animals ended up at the Battle Creek and Kalamazoo area shelters. If your home has a need for a furry companion to give and receive love, animal rescue shelters offer a wide range of critters that will fill that empty spot. As for Dave, it’s always a comfort during the night, to feel him snuggled up under the blankets, curled next to my back. 

MeDave at 95.3 WBCK
Brad Carpenter/Townsquare Media

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