Rio: How one Dog Won a Forever Home!

Rio: How one Dog Won a Forever Home!



On June 11, 2012 Texas Animal Guardians pulled six puppies from a small shelter outside Lockhart, Texas. Among them, a sweet terrier mix named Lakota. There were approximately 12 puppies in that kennel. Lack of foster space prevented us from removing all of them. Sadly, that left many innocents behind, including Lakota’s twin brother, Rio.

Lakota visited Pucci Grooming Salon in Wimberley where owner Jessica saw him and fell in love with him. She wanted to adopt him for her son’s 8th birthday. But Lakota was already spoken for. Jessica was assured that Rio, his twin, was still at the shelter waiting. And, now that Lakota was leaving there was space for Rio. By this time, it was July 30, 2012—Rio had been waiting a long time.

On August 2, 2012 TAG set out to pull the rest of the pups left behind. Sadly, Parvo reared its ugly head and tore through the exact kennel Rio was housed in. All the pups were slated for immediate euthanasia. Now that TAG was finally able to get him and the others out, it appeared hopeless. Thankfully TAG works with a fantastic group of Rio_August_3_2012veterinarians at the Canyon City Animal Hospital. They agreed to place Rio in isolation for 14 days. With that assurance, the shelter allowed TAG to pull Rio.

The days ticked by slowly, dragging on and on. Rio was shut up, with no more than necessary contact. He howled, he cried, he was totally miserable. Fourteen days were up. No Parvo! At last, his release day arrived. BUT this experience had taken its toll on the now 4 ½ month old pup. He was already shy, now he was fearful. He couldn’t stand to be left alone. It took a lot of behavior modification work to help him through this. Thankfully Rio rallied and eventually became a helper with other fosters who had issues—a self-appointed therapy dog to other dogs.

By now, it’s September and Jessica’s circumstances had changed. She adored Rio but adopting a puppy was no longer an option. Rio was adopted out twice, each time it failed. He just appeared miserable without his foster family and the dog pack he’d grown accustomed to. After two failed adoptions, Rio was removed from the available adoption list. He became a permanent foster. Rio had a  home with his foster family, as long as he needed it.

Throughout the years Rio was a regular at Jessica’s grooming salon. All of them loved him there. Then, almost three years to the date, Rio entered the salon with his foster pack for their regular “spiff up and groom.” On that day, Jessica approached Rio’s foster with a question, “Would you consider giving him up?” And with that question everything changed for Rio. He was going to enter the family he’d always been intended for. This time, it was going to stick!

RioAdoptDayRio with the family he was always intended for.

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