The Little Redhaired Girl Who Came to Stay

Months after losing our beloved lab, my husband and I went to the shelter in hopes of finding another perfect companion. It had to be a male dog so that he could get along with our female lab. We found “Ziggy”, a severely matted, dirty, smelly little brown mop of a dog. He was the one.

As we filled out the paperwork a staff member came out to inform us “Ziggy” was a female. Because of the matting, the shelter staff mislabeled “him” and asked if I still wanted him. There was no question – this little girl was coming home with us. We named her “Lola” after the 1960s song by the Kinks. After being groomed and bathed, Lola emerged as a cute redhead.


Living on the streets had taken its toll on little Lola. Within a day or two she became ill, and we took her to the vet. She refused to eat and became listless. The very real possibility of losing her was devastating. She’d rally, then fade.

At night, I’d wrap her inside my robe, falling asleep while holding her. I’d leave for work hoping she’d be alive when I came home. At one point my husband dropped everything he was doing to hold her all day because he didn’t want her to die without knowing she was loved.


One evening, she laid down on the couch and slept like a rock. When she woke up the next morning, her eyes were bright and her ears perked up. She had turned a corner and thrived from that day on.

That was 4 years ago. Lola is our constant companion and canine commander of our other dogs. She travels with us, hikes with us, and sleeps with us. Our little redhead girl has stolen our hearts.