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Adoption Stories

Do you have a happy adoption story about an animal you adopted from the Dumb Friends League? Email it, with an attached photo, to

Pepe, the winery dog

Pepe, the winery dogPepe, a Belgian sheepdog, was turned in to the Dumb Friends League in 2003 with limited information, only that he liked car rides and had lots of energy. I saw him posted on the League website on a Friday, and I drove from the Western Slope on Saturday morning to be at the shelter first thing Saturday morning when it opened. The League screened him and said that he was intelligent and not well trained, but wanted to learn.

The adoption fee was the best money I’ve ever spent! Pepe has spent the last 12 years as a constant companion, traveling to 37 states and going to work with me. In the past few years, he became a winery dog, as we started a new Denver urban winery. As such, we decided to feature him on one of our wine labels for Ryker’s Cellars called Doggles (the animal riding on the back is Monkey, the stuffed animal I bought Pepe the day I picked him up from the League).

Now, people request to meet Pepe when they come to the winery for tastings. He loves every bit of the attention—and we love sharing him, and his story, with others!

— Jawn R.

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Microchip helps reunite owner with cat missing for over a year

PudgeErrienne was certain she would never see her cat, Pudge, again. After he got loose from the house and failed to come home one day, Errienne searched everywhere for her family’s beloved gray tabby. Days turned into weeks, and still no sign of Pudge. Errienne continued to search for him daily—posting flyers and talking to neighbors.

Then, in the fall of 2013, Errienne and her family had to move to Kansas. As they packed up their home and their life, it seemed as though Pudge’s fate to be lost forever was sealed. Until one day—a year and a half and 620 miles later—they got an email saying that Pudge was at the Dumb Friends League.

Thanks to his microchip identification implant, the Dumb Friends League was able to link Pudge to Errienne, who quickly made arrangements to return to Denver to pick up her long-lost cat. “There he was, still the same big, doe-eyed, adorable kitty looking up at me with his pathetic little meow. I picked him up and just hugged him and hugged him,” she said.

Now back home in Kansas, Errienne says Pudge is doing great and credits his microchip for their reunion. “I thought for sure I would never see him again, and if he hadn't been microchipped, I never would have.”

One in three pets will go missing during its lifetime, and without proper identification, 90 percent never return home. The Dumb Friends League encourages all pet owners to ensure their cats and dogs are wearing proper identification—a collar and tag, and microchip identification implant—at all times, so that should they ever go missing, you will increase your chances of being reunited.

Consult with your veterinarian about having your pet microchipped. It is a simple procedure that only takes a few seconds—and could save your pet’s life. For more information about microchipping, visit our partner, HomeAgain, or contact your veterinarian.


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Scarlett + Oliver = LOVE

Scarlett & OliverWe have three Cavalier King Charles spaniels, and we had always assumed we could never adopt a cat because they always barked at animals on TV and had never been socialized with cats, only dogs.

After much thought, we decided to go for it. I had seen a trainer on TV introduce a dog and a cat, and when we went to pick up the cat—who we named Scarlett O’Hara—we took our oldest male, Gatsby, with us so the alpha male would be the first introduction. The staff and volunteers at the League gave us great advice, and after about two weeks, all the animals could roam a room with supervision. Amazingly, they fell in love as a family quicker than we imagined.

My lesson for others is that your babies have more room in their hearts for another than you may think. Patience, education on the situation, and love are all you need.
— Stacey S.

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Good thing his name wasn’t Sydney!

Juneau in the wild!Juneau entered our lives seven years ago to the day. Upon his adoption, we had no idea of the tremendous impact he would have on our lives.

We went to the Dumb Friends League one day to look at dogs. My (now) husband had always wanted a husky, and so our search began. We saw Juneau and read that he was a “special-needs dog.” Well, I’m a sucker for the dogs that need an extra spoonful of lovin’, and so we had to meet Juneau. His special need was that he had a fresh wound (now scar) on his face from another dog. He really just didn’t want you to touch his face, but was game for a belly rub.

We left that day empty-handed. We wanted to discuss if this was the right move, as we had only been dating for three months and didn’t know whether we could support a new family member. A week later, we went back to the League. There was Juneau, still waiting for his forever home. We brought him back with us that day.

To say that Juneau is just another dog would be a great injustice to his character. He has grown with us as a member of the family. Most of our decisions revolve around him. One in particular has been moving to Alaska, where it would be colder year-round and where he could protect and explore five acres of homeland and be closer to open water sources for wading and swimming. It also felt like an omen to us that he was named Juneau by the League and that we had chosen to keep it because it’s a rockin’ name and your staff worked with him during his time in need.

Seven years has gone quickly. We have cherished the last 2,555 days with him, and we look forward to another 2,555+ days with him as we continue our Last Frontier adventure.

-Lauren M.

Delta Junction, Alaska

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