Buddy, a 14-year-old Labrador mix, came to A ReJoyceful Animal Rescue in the Metro Detroit area after his owner suddenly passed away. Depressed and with no place to go, Loren Cazan, a volunteer at the rescue, adopted him after seeing his picture.
“I got Buddy on Sunday, March 6,” Cazan told Petcha.com. “His photo was shared on many rescue pages in hopes of finding him a foster. Nobody had stepped up. That’s when I saw his photo, and he reminded me of my dear childhood dog, Clancy, a yellow Lab, who I loved very much. I took one look at his face and knew I was meant to take him in.”
When Buddy arrived in Cazan’s care he was visibly grieving his owner, who had cared for him all 14 years, Cazan said.
“He was very mopey and confused, of course,” she said. “I did everything I could from every toy I could find to food to playing to snuggling to try and make him come out of his shell.”
Undeterred, Cazan started taking him to work. A colleague brought Buddy a ball and he started to wag his tail and pounced on the ball. He had come out of his shell and became what Cazan said is a silly and affectionate boy.
But then a trip to the veterinarian brought some challenging news: Buddy has terminal cancer.
“I knew nothing about his health prior to bringing him home,” she told Petcha. “All I knew is that he was sad. But the bumps I saw once I finally picked him up made it evident there was more going on than just heartbreak.”
So the folks at A ReJoyceful Animal Rescue created a bucket list for the senior dog.
“His bucket list started out with a few items and has grown as we keep checking things off. We have lots of suggestions from people following his story on things to add,” Cazan said. “If they seem like something he would be comfortable with and enjoy, we add it on. We love doing bucket list items in memory of his follower’s beloved pets who have passed.”
His biggest bucket list item? To get on “The Ellen Degeneres Show” to advocate for senior pet adoption.
“It is such a dream that Buddy’s story has reached so far to get the word out about senior rescue! His story is teaching others the importance of considering seniors when looking for a [pet],” Cazan said. “Many of them have years left in them of happiness and love. Not all of them are terminal like Buddy. These animals are so often overlooked at the shelters and as a result, are euthanized because of it.”
So Ellen, if you are reading this, please invite Buddy and Loren onto your show.