Happiness with Claire

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APNYClaireAckerSusan Acker of Bliss, N.Y., was suffering from unbearable depression, she was out of work due to an injury and was in pain. When her beloved dog, Mitch, died, it was almost too much to bear. Even the family’s other dog, Dallie, was despondent.

Finally, Acker decided she had to do something – and that something was to find other dog to adopt. “Every day I scoured Petfinder, hoping to light a spark of hope but feeling dread inside.” Was it time for a new canine companion?

But then she saw Claire. “Something kept dragging me back to her photo over and over again.”

The family drove over two hours to meet her. When they met, Dallie growled at her, which seemed like a bad omen. But when they walked around outside, the aggressiveness disappeared.

“In a few breathless moment of engagement,” Acker says, “Claire bonded tightly to me. This unfettered desire to be with me, to please me, to be loved and cherished by me and I by her was overwhelming for both of us.”

The adoption didn’t go well at first. “Socializing her … was a daunting task as she was terrified of everything,” Acker recalls. “However, she grew in leaps and bounds. Once she realized she would never by hungry, cold or cruelly treated, she filled out, her heart swelled and her spirit broke free.”

Gradually, while working to socialize Claire, Acker’s depression lifted. “One day I realized that the sun was shining and the sky was blue. Not only that. I was smiling … no, laughing.”

To Claire, life is good. Every new sight and sound thrills her. “Every mud puddle is Perrier. She adores us all, no strings attached,” says Acker. The change in Claire touched the whole family. She was as true a rescuer as Acker was.

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