In September 2020 we offered help to our friends at Mullingar Pound after a small female terrier had been brought in after being involved in a road traffic accident. She was an extremely nervous girl whose front leg was badly damaged. Once in our care she saw our vet and it was decided to wait and see if any feeling would return to her damaged front leg.

As the weeks passed, Amicas leg showed no sign of improving in fact, if anything, it deteriorated and started to blister due to her dragging it around on the ground. For timid dogs like Amica, who suffer from anxiety and fear, a busy rescue may mean they are now safe and loved but it’s often just not enough for them to improve mentally. So we called on our friends and fosterers, Gabrielle and Henry to see if they could help and of course they said yes.

It wasn’t easy at first as Amica kept her distance, untrusting and fearful but with their patience and love she soon started to come around. Once Amica was fully settled in her foster home the decision to amputate her damaged front leg was made. Her operation went well and under the care of her foster parents it wasn’t long before Amica was up and running around on 3 legs.

We all agreed that Amica needed time to learn about the outside world, a world that frightened her. She was scared of people and new surrounding. But Gabrielle and Henry kept working with her and whilst they loved this quirky little girl dearly they knew that theirs was not the right home for her. She needed a home with other dogs but they had to be the right dogs. She needed to “belong” so she could find safety and comfort in numbers. Whilst we had some genuine re-homing enquiries, we just felt they were not exactly what Amica needed. Until Patrycja and Lukasz submitted their application and following a phone call and a long chat, our kennel manager left a voicemail for Gabrielle and Henry saying “I think we may have found Amica the most perfect home”.

We keep our doggy foster circle small. They are an extension of our Heathlawn Family and we like them to be involved as much as possible when it comes to the rehoming of their foster dog. After Gabrielle had chatted to Patrycja a meeting was arranged at Heathlawn for everyone to meet. More importantly, Amica would be meeting Patrycja and Lukasz’ 3 other dogs to see how they would all get on. We prepared in advance for this meeting, always hopeful that it would go as well as we wished. So a homecheck was done prior and we asked that Patrycja and Lukasz came in 2 cars in the event that if all went well, Amica could travel home in one with the quietest of Patrycjas dogs, leaving Lukasz to bring home their 2 more “opinionated” dogs.? Amicas fear and untrust of strangers had all been explained beforehand and we just prayed that our gut feeling had been right and that being part of a pack was the right choice for Amica to feel safe.

Amicas viewing was done out of hours at our sanctuary. We wanted no distractions, no noises and no comings and goings that go on during our working day which works well for anxious dogs like Amica. We actually could not have chosen more wisely, and although Amica remained scared and wary of Patrycja and Lukasz throughout the viewing, we just knew they were both the most perfect couple for Amica going forward. Their love for their own dogs was so evident, their understanding of what Amica needed and the fact that Amica seemed cautious but so happy to “belong” to their existing pack.

That was over 2 weeks ago and we think the photos below say more than any words we could write. Amica is home ? It was a long and difficult journey for this little girl and there were times when we grew a little disheartened, wondering if we would ever find her a home that not only ticked all her current boxes but one that would continue to help Amica on her journey through life. But we held firm and waited it out and we are so very thankful that her foster parents continued to watch over her and love her. They prepared Amica for the day she would have to say goodbye to them. We are truly grateful to both Gabrielle and Henry for their commitment.

Patrycja and Lukasz are those special kind of people where nothing is ever too much, too hard or too complicated to work through. In nearly 3 weeks, they have transformed (with the help of their 3 dogs and 3 cats?) the scared, nervous little girl they first met into the fun, playful, confident girl they have now. They didn’t look or want “perfect”, they just wanted to give their all to help transform the life of a dog who needed them the most. We respect and thank you both for that .?

Amica, from rags to riches!!