It was a Thursday, July 17th 2003. I remember the day because it was the day I had gotten married (yes on a Thursday). My new husband, our son and I went to the humane society just because I was new to Hawaii and wanted to see it (I heard it had a fantastic dog park). As I walked down the kennels, I saw these two eyes peeking out of the darkness and stopped to get a closer look. Huddled in the corner was the saddest dog I'd ever seen. He was a boxer, but the only way you could tell was his head. He was literally skin on bones, and his jaw was injured. He looked like he was covered in red mud (Hawaii has a lot of clay, hence the red dirt). I asked one of the kennel attendants if I could see him, and she tried to convince me otherwise. Finally, she let me into his kennel (he was isolated) and I got to see the truth about him. He looked up at me with these eyes that screamed with pain, but there was a twinkle of hope in there too. He licked my hand and I sat there and cried. He wasn't covered in mud, it was scabs. Matted in his hair like no scabs I'd ever seen. He winced when he moved. I was outraged, and was going to inquire as to why he was put up for adoption when I looked into his eyes and he said to me "You need me". I found out he was in fair health, disease free, and healthy enough to be neutered. I filled out the paperwork and a few days later he came home. That was where the truth was revealed. I took him my vet who did a blood panel and started out by saying he needed to be overnighted. When I came back the next day, I wretched when I saw my dog. He had little hair left, his skin was damaged and I saw huge gashes in his neck. My vet had treated this dog previously, when the humane society had seized him. He was owned by a fighting dog trainer, who had chained him to he floor and taught other dogs how to attack him. My vet didn't know if he should be saved then, but for some reason, the vet couldn't see putting him down. His jaw was fractured and had healed crooked, and the vet didn't know how his skin/hair would heal. Or if it ever would. During his stay at the vets office (which was in and out over 10 weeks) we discovered his food allergies (and all his other allergies) and his food intolerances. Finally, months and a HUGE vet bill later, my dog got to come home. It took about a year for all his hair to grow back. That was 4 years ago. I'd never rescued a dog before. I'd adopted dogs, but they were just happy go lucky strays who ended up at the pound. I'd never faced a challenge head on like I had with Dubby, but I wouldn't have changed it for the world. And when I filed for divorce, I told him "you can have the house, but I'm keeping my dog". Alyss has a short story. She was left at the shelter by her owners who couldn't take care of her because she's deaf. They had had her for 2 days. They had gotten hear from an ad in the newspaper for a "free rare white boxer". Those people had only had her a month. Somewhere in her short puppyhood she has been beaten, and she's afraid of people. She is afraid of getting on furniture and has major abandonment issues. She was starved, and eats very little at a time. Thursday, the 8th (my son's birthday) she came into the shelter as a stray (I did her intake) I put my name on her, if her owners didn't come for her, rescue wouldn't take her and she faced being put down. The next day, her owners came in and released her to the shelter. I was home sick that day. Over the weekend, we had 3 rescues come through, and none took her because she's deaf. Monday (Veterans Day) I worked and saw her there, with a PTS date on her and adopted her on the spot. She was spayed Thursday and came home Friday. Since she's been here, I've started another round of fun. She's got kennel couch (possibly, could be something else too. She's been exposed to canine flu and upper res. infection too, and has horrible allergies - the discharge is clear, then cloudy, then a tingle of maybe gray/green). She reverse sneezes very often (but it's gotten better with Benadryl). Her eyes are teary, her nose is runny. And she's a drooler. But I wouldn't have it any other way.