I was sitting in the doctors office when I finally came to terms with the fact that I am, in fact, extremely allergic to my dog. I had suspected it for some time, maybe even knew it. This wasn’t the first time it came up. In fact, we’d been discussing my allergies and my dog for years when I finally *knew* what I’d known all along.

Years of trying one med after another and in different combinations, air cleaners, humidifiers, de-humidifiers, and every other suggestion from doctors and alternatives we could find – and yet my sinuses raged, one infection after another.

We talked about it for a few months and finally decided that we needed to find him another home.

We put adds in the paper, talked to friends, talked to friends of friends, and their cousins too. We talked to the Humane Society, but that didn’t go anywhere – he’s much too anxious in a cage do ever be adopted in that environment. We met people at dog parks, tried a few trial runs, but could not find the right people.

‘He’s too big’ was a common response, and at 85 pounds, that’s understandable. ‘He drools too much’ … I got a kick out of that one. And don’t get me started on the people that wanted him, but we rejected. One guy said he had several big dogs, he wanted to come over and pick him up but had no interest whatsoever in letting the dogs meet each other in a neutral place or even telling us where he lived. Thank you very much, but we’ll keep looking.

Well over a year later we met, through a friend of a friend, a couple in portland. They have an older dog, a fenced in yard, and they’re totally dog people. When we talked on the phone we instantly connected. They’re in their 50s, no kids, just dogs. Love to have parties. A little over a month ago they invited us down to Portland for the dogs to meet. We met up at a dog park and the pups seemed to get along fine and I was totally impressed with them. “Oh look, he’s a drooler too.” That comment made points with me. So we took him over to their house.

They have the cutest cottage, very homey and dog friendly, awesome back yard, great references (I totally trust my friend that referred them)

we left him there

That was the hardest thing I have ever done. But I feel really good that I did the right thing. He has a back yard and a playmate – he had neither of those here with us. I know he’s getting lots of love and I know he’s well cared for. They just sent us pictures… (Rufus is the younger one with the tongue hanging out)

As for me… it took a couple weeks for me to notice a difference in my health, but now I can tell I’m doing a lot better. It’s still so strange to come home and not be greeted at the door.

Judy Schwartz Haley


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