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Louis

Life has a habit of not always going to plan.

When Sophia gained a newfound independence and started volunteering at the BC SPCA West Kootenay Community Animal Centre, she wasn’t expecting to invite a four-legged companion into her life so quickly—perhaps a cat, but certainly not a dog just yet.

In late 2018, Louis, a handsome Labrador Retriever German Shepherd mix came into the shelter. At this time, was in need of medical attention for some neglected skin issues.

Sophia couldn’t deny the connection she instantly felt with Lou when she came in to volunteer that day, and the next week when she came in again, Lou tagged along home with her.

Come January 2019, just a couple months into fostering Lou, Sophia made it official and adopted him. The pair have been inseparable ever since.

Sophia has now shared an update on her life with Lou:

I began volunteering at my local BC SPCA in September after moving to Castlegar when my marriage ended.

I stuck close to the cats every time. The dogs were too close to my heart. I still feel the pain of the loss of my 14-year-old fur baby earlier in 2018. Spending time with these little fur balls made me feel less lonely—I was there often.

One day in early November, as I was leaving the facility, I noticed a dog being led into an examination room off the main hallway. He was in bad shape.

When I peeked through the glass door, I witnessed the attendant trying to look at the dog’s injuries. He didn’t respond aggressively at all. Instead, he let out a little yelp and started to lick the attendant’s face. Be still, my heart!

I inquired into his condition. I was told Lou had been suffering from a chronic skin condition for a very long time. Previously, he had been living on the streets with a homeless person. I left that day with Lou in my thoughts.

A week later, I was back and asked about Lou again. I was invited to visit him. He was healing beautifully, but he had a long way to go yet. Still, he wanted to play fetch—his favourite pastime—so we played. I’m not sure how long I was with him. I lost track of time.

I was already preauthorized to foster (I thought I’d bring a cat home at some point) and was surprised to suddenly hear myself offer to foster Lou. He came home with me that night.

I wasn’t aware of the phrase “foster fail” until January 21, 2019, when I signed his adoption papers. Ha! Epic fail.

Louis—he really suits his name—is simply amazing, and now fully recovered. I don’t know much about Lou’s history, but there is no doubt his previous owner spent a lot of time and effort training him. The term “move-in ready” comes to mind. He also has the most gentle and affectionate disposition. I can’t say enough.

I’m so grateful for Lou’s company. I love him dearly and I dare say the feeling is mutual.

I want to give a huge kudos to the team at the BC SPCA West Kootenay Community Animal Centre in Castlegar. They went above and beyond to make this love affair happen. Louis and I want to thank them for what they do each and every day.

And we want to thank you, Sophia, for choosing to adopt Louis and for making him such a big part of your life. Some may call it foster failing but we count every foster “fail” a definite win. Yours is certainly a win, not only for Louis, but for all of us at the BC SPCA.

Have you adopted an animal from the BC SPCA and want to share your joy with others? Submit your adoption story!