With our first rescue (as a couple) it was an impulse decision.
Our daughter had to do a paper/project for school and the topic she and her friend had chosen was on a rescue shelter. She had her project partner staying overnight at our house and we had set up a trip to a particular shelter so they could interview a few volunteers and workers there.
I kept on saying over and over and over that we would not be leaving with a dog..........the father had spoken and there would be no dog! (I was between K9 partners and wasn't ready for another dog yet) Of course, you all know how that ended up.
We went and we got a tour of the facility and when the girls went back into the dog kennel area (about 50 kennels) Audrey and I stayed in the office/animal visit area. (I just didn't want to go back there)
While the girls were doing their interviews, Audrey and I decided to walk back into the kennel area. Of course, everyone started barking/crying/whining as soon as we got back there. Audrey went one way and I went the other and when I came around the corner in the last row, the very first kennel had the only dog (or so it seemed) that wasn't barking and going nuts. This large, black, long haired dog was just sitting there, looking up at me, tongue hanging out. No tail wags or other movement, he just sat there looking at me. There was no kennel card on his door, so I knew nothing about him, but I couldn't make myself leave. When I finally said hi, I got a couple of wags, but that was it. I don't know how long I stood there talking to this dog, but when Audrey finally caught up to me, I told her that I wanted to save this dog.
We went and got a volunteer and they let us take Rocky out in the rear yard for a walk and some off leash play time. He barely left my side the whole time we were out there. He ran around a bit with the girls, but mostly he stayed close to me.
He knew some basic commands, but not much at all. We were told he was housebroken.
This was on a Saturday afternoon over Veterans Day weekend. We did all our paperwork and arranged to come back on Monday to pick him up.
We also found out that he had been in one shelter after another since the 4th of July, where he had been found in a large regional park, tied to a tree and nearly beaten to death.
He was the best dog I've ever had, hands down. We had him for just over 7 years. For about the last 3 years of his life, he suffered from seizures and that's what finally took him to The Bridge.