|In June 2013, Bert and Ernie were found wandering on a road together and were brought to a shelter in Sacramento. The shelter staff and volunteers recognized how closely bonded they were and very much wanted to adopt them out as a pair. Given that they were not young dogs, they were finding it very difficult to do so, and as their time at the shelter kept ticking by, they became open to adopting them out separately but still no family came for either one. When their time was up and both boys were set for euthanasia, the shelter reached out to the Milo Sanctuary as a final attempt to save them. Luckily we had just adopted out another dog and had space available to accept them.
When the boys first came to us they had a difficult time settling in. Ernie was fearful of male staff members and would not let them come into his space. Bert was acting out aggressively towards the other dogs we tried to introduce him to. We also discovered that they were able to scale very tall fences when no one was looking, and they were thougSt to have a prey drive for small animals. One morning we discovered them missing and the entire staff was searching for them. The next morning a staff member was winding her way through the woods to the Sanctuary on her way to work, and discovered a very tired, dirty and pleased with themselves Bert and Ernie standing in the road. She threw her door open and both boys jumped in and sat down on the back seat like they had just hailed a cab.
Over time Ernie's confidence grew, and Bert's rambunctious ways quieted. They became staff favorites, but still had no adoption interests that panned out. They had meetings with adopters, and brief fosterings and trips to our Adoption Center in the Bay Area, but never were adopted. Some felt Ernie wasn't confident enough for them, others felt Bert was too confident.
When fires swept through the area in 2017 and the Milo Sanctuary was forced to evacuate, many Sanctuary dogs were taken in by loving foster families, Bert and Ernie landed in Oakland with a previous foster/adopter, and eventually they escaped and were gone all night - found safe the next day.... many dogs landed permanent homes through their fire foster homes - but again, not Bert and Ernie. They spent more time at Milo Point Richmond after the fires - and then back to their yard at the Sanctuary.
NOW, we come to the BAY AREA PET FAIR 2019, and Sanctuary staff did some last minute changes on the list of attendees and brought down 8 dogs, including 13 year old Ernie without Bert. I was dumbfounded, they said Bert wasn't feeling great and looked thin.... long and short is that a wonderful couple fell for Ernie and adopted him...and we did take the opportunity to tell them about Bert, there was a glint of interest....just maybe if Ernie settled in well.... and he did! Here are Ernie's happy ending photos: https://milofoundation.org//happyending.cfm?animalid=19257
On October 8th the happy couple drove up to our sanctuary from Tracy and adopted Bert! We look forward to more photos of the two boys happy in their home for their remaining years!