The following post was written by Ashley Dickerson, the Judges' Choice Grand Prize Winner from our Adopt-a-Dog Month Photo Contest.
I have always been an animal lover, and I mean always. There was never a time when we didn’t have pets. So it just seemed incomplete when I moved into my first apartment my sophomore year of college alone, with no pets. Right away I decided to go to the local animal shelter to adopt a dog. I wasn’t really looking for anything in particular, so I started walking though the section with the adult dogs. I took several outside to play and see if we hit it off, but I didn’t really feel a connection with any dogs that day. So I decided to go home and come back the following week to look again. As I was leaving, however, I walked by a kennel and heard a faint “sigh”.
I looked over and there was this little white dog sitting at the front of her cage. Her tail starting wagging, but she still looked so sad. As soon as I took her outside she couldn’t stop licking my face and pulling me towards the parking lot, as if she was saying “Ok, let’s go home now!” Immediately I knew she was the one. So a week later I got to take Bunny home. At the time I wasn’t sure what kind of dog she was, or how old, but I was told she was found chained up, used for breeding, and abandoned by her owner. All of that was in the past now, and it was clear we were meant to be together. She was so sweet and happy all the time, and quickly adjusted to her new home (and my couch).
Once I learned that she was an American Pit Bull Terrier, I quickly became a fan of the breed. She is a great ambassador for the breed, and anyone who meets her quickly changes any negative perceptions about pit bulls. Throughout the past 8 years, she’s been my running partner, my roommate, my traveling companion, and my best friend. I have always been inspired by how she is so able to forgive, to trust, and to love so naturally. She has helped me become the person I am today, and has even helped me start my own business.
When she started having health issues that were related to food allergies, I began to research what I could do to help. I learned so much about pet food on the market today, that I decided to help others do the same. I now own a pet boutique called The Spotted Dog, and of course it is named after Bunny! Through my business I am able to help other pet owners, local shelters and rescues, and promote adoption. I bring Bunny to work with me every day and she does a great job greeting customers as our store’s mascot. People even stop by just to see Bunny! Adopting her has been one of the best decisions I have ever made, and she will always be my best friend, my baby, and my inspiration.