Live like a free spirit


Welcome home Mack


After losing my 2 precious senior dogs Murphy and Niko within 11 months of each other I thought I could never feel love for a new dog ever again. I still had Barnaby who is almost 9 but after a few months both Barnaby and I felt the loss of his brothers and I reluctantly started searching for a dog who was in need of a home. I had doubts along the way — maybe it was better to just let things be, work on my blog and enjoy a simple life without multiple dogs. But despite my concerns that this might not be the right thing to do at this time I kept coming back to the search.

If I was going to do this it had to be a small male dog in the 1-3 year age range. I found lots of larger, older dogs and some smaller, younger dogs who weren’t locally-based. I knew I had to bring Barnaby with me to meet our new family member and make sure they bonded. Some of the local adoption organizations still have covid protocols in place making it hard to navigate the process of finding a brother for Barnaby.

Eventually my search brought me to Craigslist. Barnaby had been a Craigslist surrender 6 years earlier. I’m his 5th and final home. In some ways I think the dogs that are being rehomed on Craigslist are more at risk and are in more urgent need of finding a loving home than shelter dogs. Shelter dogs are safe for the moment and potential adopters are screened. That’s not the case with dogs on Craigslist. Most of the time these dogs are sold to the highest bidder, or used for fighting. There’s no due diligence, and the dogs are just handed over to whoever will pay for them.

Mack is one of those Craigslist dogs. His face captivated me and I knew he was the one. His ad stated that he needed to be gone asap because his current owner liked her cats better. He had a different name then and had already been with 3 previous owners. He’s 17 months old and about 8 lbs. I knew I had to bring him to safety. I responded to the ad but Mack’s owner was busy and despite wanting him gone as soon as possible her responses to me were sporadic and incomplete. I agreed to the rehoming fee and was anxious to welcome Mack into my home and heart, but except for one brief phone call his owner communicated with me exclusively by text and often let a day go by without responding to my questions of where and when.

For days I thought this wasn’t going to happen so I continued my search, although Mack’s little face was already in my heart. And then around noon on July 17 I received a text saying I can have Mack and to bring the money and meet his owner at the train station close to my house at 8:00 p.m.

And so, with the rehoming fee in my pocket, Barnaby and I headed to the train station. I was convinced it was a scam, that there wouldn’t be a dog and I’d be robbed or worse. Since I wasn’t even sure this was going to happen I decided not to take one of my friends. It was still light outside at 8p.m. and there were lots of people in the street. If the worst happened at least there would be witnesses…

We got to the train station at 8p.m. and I texted Mack’s owner to tell her we’re here. Several minutes later I received a text saying her boyfriend is across the street from where I was standing and the dog was with him.

And there he was — there really was a dog. Mack was real!

I paid the rehoming fee and by then the woman I had been communicating with showed up. I learned that Mack was fed whatever kibble was on sale along with table scraps. I was given his medical records and was happy to learn he had all his shots. They handed me his leash and walked away.

Mack walked with me and Barnaby all the way back to my house without realizing that his old life had just ended. I called my friends along the way and they were waiting for us outside my building with treats and hugs. Mack was very cautious and I could see confusion setting in.

For the first 2 nights Mack cried all night long and clung to me like a little lost soul. He ate well and thoroughly enjoyed his much improved human grade dog food, no more kibble for this boy, but he was clearly lost and confused.

It’s been over 2 weeks now and Mack is doing great. He’s everything I hoped for in a new puppy and he gets along well with every dog we meet. Barnaby is very protective of his little brother and Mack stays close by his side.

Mack is fearful of people and acts as if he may have been hurt in the past. I’m so glad I saw this through. Mack is finally home where he’ll be loved and cared for and he’ll never be hurt again.

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  1. Jean Callaway

    August 3, 2022 at 7:22 pm

    Love your story about Mack and how he came to be with you. All your pics of him are fabulous, and I can tell he’s right at home now in his new surroundings getting plenty of love from you, Barnaby and the rest of your dog visitors. Thanks for sharing this in your blog!

    1. My Boho Secret

      August 4, 2022 at 3:37 am

      Thank you so much Jean! He’s a little character and I’m so glad he made his way to me. Of all the dogs needing homes we’re a great match.

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