Skinny Chicks Don't Eat Salad; She Gets a Rescue Dog

My first full day with Gizzy!

My first full day with Gizzy!

Skinny chicks don’t eat salad.  They adopt a rescue dog and walk him/her (or another active animal!).

This is what I will be doing a lot of in the near future.

Last week, I adopted a 3-year-old doggie.  His name is Gizmo, and he is a 12lb—well more like 13.3lb— Pomeranian/Pekingese mix.  He is a rescue dog and his foster family fed him a lot of people food. :)

I mean how can you resist his little face?

Adopting Gizmo is like a huge heart from God. I’m used to seeing bite size hearts all over the place, but Gizmo is a gigantic, walking and talking heart, who literally melts mine every time I look at him.

He’s my little baby.

I’m sure you animal lovers, especially dog lovers, can relate to my joy.

The interesting thing is that I have been waiting for Gizmo for over 15 years.  I just didn't know that it would be Gizmo just yet.

When I was younger my family had a dog named Benji. He was a white Terrier/Poodle mix, and looked exactly like Benji from the movie. Except he was all white.

Benji was a cutie.  But, as a child, I was the equivalent to Elmira  from Tiny Toons.  I wanted to "hug him and squeeze him and never let him go." :) Unfortunately, however Benji was not cut out for that kind of attention.

In fact, he didn't like my Elmira ways at all.  I would even lock him in my room until he looked desperate or my sister would come to his rescue, shouting, “run Benji, run.” And boy did he bolt outta there!

But as a pre-adolescent girl, you can imagine I wanted something to love and care for. And he sure beat a doll!  I may have been too old for dolls anyways.  But, I have always been the affectionate type.

Needless to say after moving back to Chicago from DC last year, I decided to yet again move in with my parents in order to get on my feet.

Since Benji died, my mother has refused to even entertain the idea of a dog.  She says she gets too attached and my sister’s dogs have kept her very busy when my sister and her husband go on vacation.

But, Easter was when it happened.

Easter Sunday my aunt began laying it on thick about why we should get a rescue dog — specifically a Westie. She adopted her little cutie — Willie — from Great Lakes Westie Rescue.

And that was the moment my mother caved: “Fine, if we get a dog, you and your father will be doing all of the work.”

That statement was all I needed.  My ears immediately perked up, and I was determined to find the perfect fit for our family.

I wasn't focused on a dog free of problems or the cutest of the bunch either.  I wanted to look at a dog and know that he/she was meant to be mine.

My dad and I went to a few humane societies to look at dogs, but although there were many beautiful dogs, I didn't feel the connection I wanted to feel.  As some people say, "you don't choose the dog, the dog chooses you."

Sweet Gizzy Before/After photos :)

Sweet Gizzy :)

Then Cathy contacted me.  Cathy is one of the coordinators from The First Step Rescue who manages all of the dogs.  She responded specifically to a request I made about Leo, a beautiful male Maltese, who still needs to be adopted.

View photos of Leo and other dogs looking for a home on The First Step Rescue's Facebook page or website.

During our first email conversation, Cathy suggested my precious Gizmo.  Gizmo was found in a forest preserve under a car about a year ago and Cathy and his foster parents have been looking for his "forever home" ever since.  Well, he sure did find it.

I quickly looked on Facebook and found his pictures at the very bottom of the page.  Immediately, I knew I wanted to meet the little guy.

My parents, however had a different initial reaction.  They took one look at the fur ball online, but were skeptical because of the grooming maintenance they thought he would require. Plus because he's a small dog, so he must be a yapper.

Not even close to the truth.

When we arrived at Gizzy's foster family’s home, four of their dogs ran to the door to greet us.  Sweet Gizmo did too, but he did not make a peep.  Instead, he licked my hand and followed me over to the couch.  We all petted him and he licked our hands.

That’s when I knew: "This is it."

Even after going to see Leo the following day because my parents were interested in him, I couldn’t get Gizzy off of my mind.

That night, I had trouble sleeping because I was hoping Cathy and the foster parents would see our family as a viable fit. (Hint: With rescue dogs, those working with the rescue may turn someone down if they don't think the person/family is a good fit for the dog even if that particular person or family thinks the dog is perfect for them).

My parents were leaning towards Leo and I even found myself contemplating how much Leo would want to snuggle versus Gizmo. But my gut told me he was my little guy.

The night Gizzy came for a home visit, all lights were green.  I signed the adoption papers and there was no going back after that.

That evening I took him for a walk and set up a bed for him — two very bonding activities for a dog.  I wanted him to know that I was his mommy even if there are others in the house who will love and spoil the mess out of him.

And every night around 10pm Gizzy's eyes give up on him and he can be found belly-up on the couch next to me or on the blanket on the living room floor.  I pick him up like a baby and carry him up with me.

He is a dog definitely a dog after my own heart.  Unlike Benji, he is follows me around the house.  According to my mom, "he's a one woman type of guy."

I'm glad I can be that woman.

I knew Gizzy was the answer to my prayers, and I have not looked back.  It was the right decision to adopt our sweet little Gizmo.

I feel so grateful to God.  Sometimes we don't get things we want when we want them, but I can't imagine having any other dog in place of Gizzy.  He was definitely worth the wait — even if that wait turned out to be 15 years.

For those of you who are wrestling in prayer for something you dearly want or need.  Remember Hannah's prayer and wait for God's perfect

timing.  Even though you can't see it, God knows you wouldn't want it any other way  (1 Samuel 1:1-19).

Proverbs 13:12 (NIV):
"Hope deferred makes the heart sick,

Photo Credit: The First Step Rescue Consider fostering if you aren't ready to adopt!

Photo Credit: The First Step Rescue
Consider fostering if you aren't ready to adopt!

but a longing fulfilled is a tree of life."

So, I guess I’ll be taking my sweetie on many walks. I’m up to about 2-3 per day.
Maybe I'll shed some of those winter pounds. :) Considering winter is having trouble let Spring take over, there is still time for those of you wanting to get a little more toned before summer!

If you are looking for an animal to love, consider adopting.  There are many animals that need you.Here is a list of rescue places including places you can go to adopt or online sites you can search for the dog/cat of your dreams. I found mine:

First Step Rescue

Great Lakes Westie Rescue

Hinsdale Human Society

West Suburban Humane Society ( we got Benji from here)

Animal Welfare League

Adopt Pet Shelter

Paws Chicago

Animal House Shelter

Cisar Shelter

Most of  these animals can also be found on PetFinder.com.   You can also seek to rescue a cat, bird, horse, pig, or other furry animals on this site.

You can also search many more rescue/humane societies via the No Kill Network.

Happy adopting! I'd love to hear your stories!

And if you are not yet ready to adopt, consider fostering until the animal can find its "forever home."

Note: My headline was inspired by the book: Skinny Chicks Don't Eat Salads: Stop Starving, Start Eating... And Losing.

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