We received a heartbreaking call recently about a young boy who had been abandoned by his mother and was entering the foster care system. Adding to this sad situation, the boy had a beloved dog that he had raised from a puppy. He was going to have to give up his dog because he was not allowed to take it with him to the foster home.

A family member from out of town did some research before finding AAWL, as they would only take the dog to a no-kill shelter. After all, it was hard enough for the boy to suffer the loss of his home and, now, his beloved pet, without having to wonder what would become of his best friend. They made an appointment to surrender the pet and came in with the dog to meet with our intake team.


The dog, a 60 lb. black lab mix, was very friendly and loved everyone he came into contact with, including other dogs. Although we were very full at the time, there was no question that we were going to take his dog into our care. We were impressed by the young man's composure as we assured him that we would take extra good care of his dog until we were able to find him a loving home. It was, by far, the most emotional and heart wrenching owner surrender we have ever experienced. 

The story has a happy ending though! Dino was just adopted by an active guy, Eric, who is going to take him hiking, running and spend their days having fun!