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Basset hound Homer was a big old lap dog: Send us your pet rescue stories

November 22, 2018

Basset hound Homer was a big old lap dog: Send us your pet rescue stories

When I was a child, I first saw a basset hound in those old Buster Brown shoe commercials. It was love at first sight.

When my wife and I were ready to open our house to a dog, we looked into a rescue that specialized in basset hounds. We discovered a rescue called BAGS -- Beautiful Aging Gracefully Seniors. We thought, how wonderful. We can provide a home to a basset who truly needs us.

Shortly after filling out the appropriate paperwork and undergoing the requisite interview, Homer came into our lives. When we brought him home, I immediately had a new shadow. He would not leave my side. He became my buddy boy.

Once he settled in, he made our house his house, and we couldn’t have been happier. As with all rescues, there were behavioral and health issues to deal with, but we worked around them all.

Homer became a member of the family. At every family get-together we hosted at our house, he placed himself front and center as the official greeter. Even though he was a svelte 60 pounds, he considered himself a lap dog. My wife has pictures of every lap Homer made himself comfortable in.

On walks, neighbors and strangers alike would stop to pet and visit with Homer. He loved them all.

When we went on vacations, we made sure they were trips he would be able to accompany us on. Pet-friendly hotels, bed-and-breakfasts and cabins -- he traveled everywhere with us. It was a childhood dream come true.

But like all things, our time together was far too short. After four years together, we recently had to let him go. Homer had come to us with a heart murmur. We gave him the best veterinary care and medicine, but it could not prevent the inevitable. Just last month, Homer’s heart went into failure and we had to make that awful decision.

I will be forever grateful to him for the love he gave that I could never repay. RIP Homer.

Ralph and Smita Gallagher,

North Royalton

Do you share your life with an animal that is near and dear to you? Tell us something about your pet - all species are welcome - and send along a photo of the two of you. Be sure to tell us which Greater Cleveland community you live in. Send everything to Ann Norman at anorman@cleveland.com.

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