Ace and Boots’ Happy Tail!

Ace and Boots were kennelmates at HSPPR. They went on to become brothers in an amazing new home.

We are a military family, and that alone should tell you we move around quite a bit.  We adopted two dogs, a German Shepherd/Red Heeler mix (adopted in January 2014) and an older Black Lab from your shelter in December 2013.  The Black Lab was, I believe an owner surrender as he continued to get out of his yard, and his name was Ace.  The Shepherd was known as “Dexter” to your shelter and went through a name change of Spot before we settled on Boots for his red heeler spotted paws.  

Ace - we kept his name the same - was the best dog ever and fit perfectly with our family. Ace was older, approximately 10-12 years, a little stiff in his joints and came with terrible ear infections, with medication to be continued upon his adoption.  We continued proper veterinarian treatment, got him neutered, started buying tennis balls by the case from Costco and enclosed a half acre of yard with fencing.  My husband was the one to pick him out, immediately drawn to him. But also, Ace’s next door kennel neighbor in the shelter was Boots.  

We felt in our hearts that if Ace were not adopted, his chances of being adopted were slim as an older dog.  Ace was clearly sad in his situation, not understanding why his owners left him there, and according to the shelter’s records was refusing food and had lost weight.  Although we had to treat and clean his ears often, he started to regain weight and seemed very happy to sleep on a comfy, soft dog bed near an adoring family.  The old dog trained the new dog and never had one accident to speak of. Ace’s manners were impeccable and it was clear his former family spent some time training him. Boots, on the other hand, was immature, needed LOTS of attention and was very rambunctious. So we invested in some dog training and lessons. Ace and Boots shared very long walks, the comfy soft dog bed and finally, manners.  

Ace and my husband, who serves in the military, were very bonded. As he put it, “We understand each other.” It was really a special relationship, but sadly Ace passed away two years later with bone cancer. We decided on cremation so when we moved, he wouldn’t be left alone.  

We currently reside in Germany. You could say Boots has returned to his roots, so to speak. It is no easy feat to fly an 80 pound Shepherd halfway across the world. Dog crates, “dog passports,” health records completely in order and adjusting to new scents and people. Boots has calmed down with age, gets at least 2 long walks everyday in the forest and somehow has ended up having 3 dog beds. Although he has no interest in tennis balls, we keep a couple of Ace’s in sight as a reminder he is never far from our hearts. Our only child, our 12-year-old son, has known these two dogs certainly as his best companions. As we say often, “a boy and his dog."

So these two next door neighbors have become our family.  We love them with all our hearts.  

~ Tanya