When Kash came into our care, he was terrified. He would huddle in the back of his kennel, refusing to make eye contact with anyone who would pass. He would hide behind the other dogs, hoping no one would notice him. We didn't know exactly what happened in his past, be we did know it wasn't good.
After a few weeks in our care, one of our staff members, Oz, noticed a distinct personality trait about Kash: he loved other dogs. They provided a shield of protection for him, where he could begin to feel safe and open up around people. So, Oz decided to kennel him with another dog named Hector and he began working with Kash and Hector daily. With Oz's hard work and Hector's lovable nature, Kash was making incredible progress!
But there was still one big hurdle left: how were we ever going to find Kash a family who will understand his limitations and love him anyway? We knew it was possible, especially since Oz and Hector loved him unconditionally, so we refused to stop looking.
One day, a man named Ed walked through our shelter doors. He said, "I saw a dog named Kash on your Facebook page. He looks like he needs my help."
Ed had dealt with cases like Kash's before and he knew just what to do. We brought Kash out into the play yard. Ed got out his book and started reading. Kash sat in the corner and watched.
The next week Ed came back. And the next week. And the week after that. One time he brought his other dogs. One time he brought his friends. He took Kash on walks. He gave Kash his space. He showed Kash love and dedication and grace. Throughout the months they spent together, Ed and Kash became best friends.
When we told Ed that Kash would have to go through heartworm treatment, Ed came to the shelter right away and sat with him after he recovered from his first round of shots.
As many of you know, heartworm treatment is rough on any dog, but especially a dog like Kash. He had many complications during his second round of shots. We tried everything we could to keep Kash from suffering, but in the end, his heart just couldn't take it anymore. Kash passed away on April 26th of this year. Hector, Oz, our staff and especially Ed were devastated.
But in times of sadness, there's always a silver lining. Kash went from being someone's unwanted pet, to someone's beloved best friend. He was happy and he was loved. And that's more than a lot of homeless animals ever get to experience.
If Kash could talk, we think his final wish would be for you to find a way to be an "Ed" today. Find someone who needs you and show them love, grace and friendship. Because in the end, that's all that really matters.