Dogs are certainly unique creatures. They are lovable, protect us, give us comfort, and so much more. This is why so many millions of Americans have one or more dogs as a pet. At the same time, many dogs remain in shelters because there simply are not enough people around to take care of them. This is sad because these animals are so special. They deserve a chance at a loving family. This is another of many reasons why life simply is not fair at times. Oh well, we digress. Back to shelter dogs.
If you have ever been in a shelter, you are immediately aware of the reality that some of these dogs take to humans right away. They are fun and love to be around people. Others are extremely shy and might even seem reticent to be around humans. This is due to a variety of factors. Some shelter dogs come from homes that took care of them. For one reason or another, they end up in a shelter. Perhaps they got lost and could not find their way home, or perhaps the owner could no longer care for him or her. Those dogs are the ones who already know how to act around humans. They tend to be adopted quite quickly from the shelter because people feel that they will make great pets.
What about the shy dogs that never seem to get any attention at the shelter? You just never know what their life was prior to coming to the shelter. They could have been neglected for months or even years. With minimal human interaction, they simply do not have much experience with humans. Some of us are quite big and intimidating you know. They could possibly be afraid of us. Others come from a cycle of abuse, often at the hands of the very humans who are supposed to take care of them. This is just not right, but it happens. Because of this, many shelter dogs simply are not trusting of humans. You must work hard to earn that trust back. This is why they are shy. It is up to the shelter to be patient with shelter dogs and to show them that humans really do care and that they can have a future. One such dog experienced such care for a wonderful shelter who housed him for three long years. Continue reading for that heartwarming story.
The Back Story
As we alluded to, first impressions really are important. This is especially true when it comes to an animal shelter. People look for a dog that is adorable and adventurous. The shy dogs seem to get overlooked. If you have ever adopted a dog out of the shelter, you already know what we are talking about here. You just seem to know it when you meet the right dog that will become a perfect fit for you and your family. It is just sad to note that many dogs never get that chance, however, simply because they are too shy. What if we were just to overlook all of the shy humans in the world? We would miss out on a quite bit. Not all dogs are exciting as you would like them to be when you go to look for one to adopt. I mean, how happy would you be living in a shelter. Some are understandably a bit sad at their situation. Dogs have feelings too. Banjo is one such shelter dog that became extremely lucky. He is a beagle mix that was discovered by himself out in the woods one day. He was just a few months old, so you can imagine how afraid he must have been. This is when he was found and brought to a shelter in Virginia.
The Good News
The shelter staff would once and a while be able to take Banjo outside. This is when he really came to life and could be himself. That was, after all, where he spent the first three months of life. It was where he felt most comfortable. Unfortunately, he cannot stay out there all the time. When he would come back into the shelter, he would revert back into his reclusive self. When visitors would come into the shelter, he would actually curl up in a ball in the back of his cage. He was afraid and did not want to see anybody. Sadly, that also meant that he did not get any serious nods for adoption for years. In fact, over time he became the longest resident of the shelter. The staff there really took to Banjo and one day decided to focus on getting him adopted.
You see, Banjo is what is considered a feral dog. He had to fend for himself out in the wild during the first few months of his life. This means that he was likely beaten up by other dogs, had to forage for whatever food he could find, and much more. This caused him to become fearful and not very trusting. This behavior had to be unlearned, but it was not going to happen in a shelter. Over time, the staff began to work on getting him more and more used to people. They had a program that was designed to help dogs who were afraid of people to begin to accept them. The goal was to get him to warm up as people came into the shelter.
The staff at the shelter devoted a great deal of time to Banjo. He finally began to warm up to people. The staff would talk about him and his needs. A loud house was not going to work for him. Banjo would need a family who was a bit on the quieter side and you could be patient with him as he learned to trust them. Eventually, the story of Banjo would make the media. It was not long after that the shelter began to get many applications to adopt him. It was just recently that he found a home and is safely there now. Way to go Banjo!