After receiving the very disturbing email regarding Charlie’s list of ‘sins’, I headed out the next day to rescue him for the second time in his short life. As I was not sure what to expect I took our housekeeper with me – just in case Charlie proved to be totally uncontrollable in the car on the way home. On arrival my heart shattered into what felt like a thousand pieces. What I found was a confused and very frightened puppy who lacked confidence, had been physically abused in the two months he had been with his adoptive family and whose wish list of just 2 items was to understand what was expected of him and to be loved. On the drive home, I felt a wave of relief wash over me knowing that Charlie was not going to be subjected to that man nor his appalling family any longer and my maternal instincts kicked in to heal his emotional scars.
As you probably guessed, the drive home was uneventful although I had a million questions running through my head. How could this happen? How could this be avoided with future adoptions. The rescue organisation has a strict screening process which includes a home check when homing the rescues. I was the one who did Charlie’s home check, which weighed heavily on my mind. In rescue work, our biggest fear is having to rescue an animal twice. What did I miss? I missed meeting the husband and the children during the home check. Needless to say the policy has now changed to include meeting the ENTIRE family that will be living with the adopted dog or cat, which will hopefully shed more light and narrow the margin for error.