I adopted Layla as a companion for Archie—and then three days later, he died. Here’s the story of who Layla is and how she helped me open my heart to yet another old, abandoned Boxer in need of love.
Layla is the sweetest, easiest dog I’ve ever had—and I really did not want to fall in love with her.
I adopted Layla as a companion for Archie.
He missed his sisters, Lily and Georgia, who had died within two months of each other. After so much loss, I wasn’t really looking for another dog, but I thought it would be good for Archie and help him heal.
Archie and Layla hit it off immediately. They acted like old friends from the moment they met. They cuddled, went on walks and did everything together…
…and then Archie died three days later.
I’d just lost three dogs in exactly six months, and now I had this dog I’d only known for three days. A dog I didn’t really adopt for myself. A dog who was already 11 and who would just add to my grief if I fell in love and kept her until the end.
I didn’t think I could do it. I just wanted to grieve my other dogs. I didn’t want to care for Layla all on my own, with no other dogs to play with or keep her company.
The boxer rescue said they wouldn’t blame me at all if I brought her back. They gave me a couple of weeks to decide.
Layla had no such hesitation. As far as she was concerned, she was home.
She attached herself to me like a little shadow, and she patiently waited for me to come around.
Obviously, I did come around. I knew deep down that I wasn’t going to give her up—it’s just not in me. And when you see how she looked when she came to me, you’ll understand why.
This is Layla on the day I met her.
This is Layla now, three months later!
She has put on 11 pounds of fat and muscle, and no longer feels like you’re petting a skeleton. Her coat has gone from coarse and dry to shiny and so soft. She’s gone from not being able to stand long enough to eat her meals to walking a half mile or more at a time. And she’s met a doodle friend down the street who gives her some time each day to be a dog.
When Layla wakes up in the morning, she comes prancing over to me, butt wiggling and tail wagging. This girl does zoomies as soon we get up, she’s so happy to be alive and getting another meal.
Unlike all the other dogs I’ve had, Layla has no major illnesses, she’s not bossy and she doesn’t bite, and she has all her parts. She’s so easy! She’s just pure love.
After all the grief, the Universe sent me pure, easy love.
I’m so glad I didn’t turn my back on that.
I know we still have a ways to go to get to know each other. Rescued dogs are like that, they sometimes take a while to show their true personalities. Maybe she’ll get bossy or weird like the others, but when I needed it the most, she was simply a sweet comfort to have around.
Welcome home, Layla.
Thank you to Lapeer County Animal Control and Great Lakes Boxer Rescue for giving Layla and me a chance.