The Story Starts Below
Nobody understood why Benji kept getting returned to the shelter after being adopted. It had been 11 times by now and all his owners just kept giving obviously fake and weak excuses. Only when the new trainee decided to take Benji home with her did they find out what was actually wrong with Benji.
And nobody at the shelter could have predicted this…
Returning Benji AGAIN
Stacy was still shaken from the experience as she was driving back to the shelter. Benji was in the backseat sleeping. Stacy felt horrible as she had been so sure she could help this poor dog but now he had to be returned to the shelter for a 12th time. But at least they now knew why…
Disappointment at the shelter
Stacy had called ahead and there were 3 other employees waiting for her and Benji to arrive. They were obviously disappointed that the adoption had not worked out, but they were also extremely curious as to the reason for it as now they would finally get an honest answer.
The real reason
11 times Benji had been returned to the shelter always with an excuse, buty they knew that Stacy would tell them the truth. But they would find out that they were not ready for the truth…
So why was Benjij returned to the Shelter 11 times? What was wrong with this poor dog and could they fix it?
1,5 years at the shelter
By this point Benji had been at the animal shelter for 1,5 years. He was barely a puppy anymore but he still very much looked like one and everybody who came to the shetler to pick immediately fell in love with him and wanted to take him home. So why was poor Benji still here?
Being adopted a lot
The truth is that from those 1,5 years, Benji actually didn’t actually spend that much time in shelter. If he was present there it would be at most 2 weeks before he was adopted by somebody. But the thing is that he just kept getting returned by the people who adopted him.
Being brougt in as a puppy
This already started when he was brought into the shelter the first time as only a 3 week old puppy. His first owners had a dog who gave birth to 5 healthy puppies. But they inexplicably decided to keep four of them and only Benji was handed over to the shelter without a word of explanation…
No good reason
Some eyebrows were raised at the shelter at the time so they had Benji extensively checked by their on-call veterinarian. When all the test results showed that there was seemingly nothing wrong with the puppy, the shelter just concluded that he probably just got unlucky ending up here.
Adopted the next day
They put him up for adoption that same day and the very next day somebody had already come in to adopt him. It wasn’t everyday that a shelter would have puppies up for adoption as mostly older dogs were brought in, so people who saw Benji knew this was a golden chance.
A seemingly perfect family
The family he was going to seemed to be absolutely perfect. A young married couple with a 5 year old daughter dying to get a puppy. The mother also worked from home so there would always be people around to give Benji attention. Nobody at the shelter expected to ever see Benjio again…
Returned 3 weeks later
But this would not turn out to be the case whatsoever. It only took 3 weeks before Benji was returned to the shelter by his new owners. The father had come alone with a happy and excited Benji following behind him. He had obviously bonded with the men and had no idea it would be the last time he would see him…
The men only gave a vague reason for returning Benji that was obviously an excuse. Something about that was just not working out as it was just constant too much time. It didn’t make any sense based on what the shelter knew about the family…
Just an incident?
But the shetler decided not to ask too many questions at that time. If the family was not willing to care for Benji, then the dog was better off with them. And they were sure he would find a new owner who would absolutely love him in no time. This had to only be an incident right?
It kept happening
But this would turn out to not be an incident whatsoever. For some reason it just kept happening. Every time Benij was adopted he was eventually brought back to the shelter and within 2 weeks he was adopted again within 2 weeks.
Some owners had to be lying
The shelter had never seen anything like this before and they just could not figure out why it was happening. The reasons given for returning the poor puppy always just seemed too shallow and weak. And they were also so different, at least some of them would have to be lies.
It didn't make sense
Some said that Benji had way too much energy while others claimed he wouldn't even get out of his bed. Some said that he was aggressive to other dogs while others said he was too scared of them to go to the park. It just didn’t make any sense…
No hope left
The shelter was at a loss because what else could they do than to put Benji up for adoption again. They could not just keep him at the shelter forever. This poor dog needed to find a forever home but when he got returned for the 11th time, nobody had any hope left for that.
Benji was obviously hurt
It was also obvious that this constant horrible cycle started to take its toll on the puppy that everybody at the shelter loved so much. They could just see the sparkle in his eyes shine a little less bright every time he was put back into that case. It was heartbreaking…
A sad dog
At this point Benji was just sitting in the corner of his case looking sad. His 11th owner had finally given the shelter a return reason that theory actually believed. That Benji just seemed not to trust him and just seemed unhappy overall. They would believe that all too well…
New trainee Stacy
Everybody at the shelter just felt like they needed to find a solution to this problem. They all cared so much about this dog and luckily for them, the solution actually came from a trainee named Stacy, who had been with them only for about 2 weeks.
Galling in love with Benji
She was studying to become a veterinarian and to train. She was volunteering at the shelter for 2 month. When Benji was returned by his most recent owner, it was the first time she laid eyes on the dog and she instantly fell head over heels in love with him.
Wanting to adopt him
Even though she had only seen a very sad version of Benji, the personnel who had been at the shelter longer told her all about how fun Benji had been before. They also told her the truth about Benji being returned 11 times for various reasons.
Convinced she could help Benji
But this didn’t deter Stacy at all. Their lose she remembers thinking about all the stupid previous owners returned Benji to ther shelter. She was determined to give this dog the life it so obviously deserved. But she had no idea yet about what she was getting herself into…
Convincing het parents
She did still need to convince her parents about getting a dog as she was still living with them. She was afraid they wouldn’t like the idea but to her surprise, they were actually completely up for it. Apparently, with the prospect of Stacy moving out soon they had actually already been thinking about getting a dog.
The 12th adoption
The paperwork was made in order and Stacy could take Benji home with her that very same day. For Benji it was now the 12th time he was going through the same routine. He always seemed to be emotionless when he was led out of the cage.
Benji needed a lot of work
On the ride home, Benji would not even look at Stacy. She knew that there was a lot of work to do to get this poor dog to trust people again and get him to turn back into the joyful and happy dog he had once been. Stacy was sure she could do it, but this confidence would quickly fade out…
Buy new stuff
When Stacy came home with Benji, her parents were ready to welcome their new addition to the family. Stacy’s father had already gone to the pet store to buy a new bed and bowl. They all were very excited to take care of their new family member.
The other dogs
Luckily the family already had a lot of the other dog equipment at home as Benji was not their first dog. They had 3 more already walking around the house. But his size did make Benji the runt of the pack. There was still something off, they couldn't quite explain what they felt. But Benji acted weird...
He just looked around
The family immediately noticed that Benji seemed to have trouble believing or interacting with the other dogs. He just kind of stayed in place and looked around a bit. It was if Benji did not like being there, even though the family took really good care of Benji. They really tried their absolute best.
The other dogs just want to play
The other dogs with the family were however not so reserved and they were let out of the other room, they quickly started to check out their new friend. Sniffing him like no tomorrow and one of them even brought Benji a toy. Benji's attitde then changed a little bit. Did he like te attention?
Give him attention
All the attention and interaction seemed to cool Benji’s cool demeanor a bit and he started to engage with the other dogs now. The family made sure to have the rest of the day dedicated to giving Benji the best time. Thats all they could do in their eyes to give Benji the attention he deserved. Right?
Play in the park
They went to the park, to the store to pick out a new toy, and even baked a nice steak for Benji. A day in doggy heaven and it had a big effect on Benji. He was wagging his tail all-day. Stacy seemed to enjoy her time with Benji, just like the rest of the family. Benji seemed to like them as well. Would that feeling stay?
What was the reason?
Within 24 hours the family had already transformed him back into the enthusiastic puppy that he once was and the family thought they would have a great addition to the family. But then why was Benji returned so much? Was there something they were yet to find out?
The next couple of days things went fairly normal. Benji seemed to fit seamlessly into the family's daily routine. Stacy related all the info back to the shelter and they were really happy with the progress. But then things started to change. Out of the blue, Benji's was no where to be found.
His bed is empty
When the family woke up one morning, Benji was suddenly not in bed anymore. They searched the whole house but there was no sign of him. Stacy started to panic. The shelter had trusted her with Benji and she let them down. What was going on? Did Benji run away or did something else happen?
Search for Benji
She decided to not tell them but instead took a week off so that she could search for Benji. Starting by asking all of her neighbors if they had seen the puppy, but she had no luck. It really looked like Benji disappeared into thin air, he was nowhere to be found. Stacy was extremely hurt by this.
After a morning of asking and searching, Benji was still nowhere to be found. Nobody had seen him apparently so the next logical step was to put up posters. Stacy just hoped that nobody from the shelter would see them. She did not want to let them down after everything.
Put up posters
2 more days passed. Benji was still gone. The family had put up posters all over the place but had gotten zero response to it. They were coming to a point where Stacy felt like she had no choice but to be honest to the shelter. She finally decided she was ready to call. Then something else happened.
The phone rang
But then the phone finally rang. Somebody had found Benji. The caller didn'’t seem to want to tell exactly where and how yet, but he sure did sound upset. Stacy was instantly on the edge of her seat, adrenaline was rushing through her veins. What was going on with Benji?
A very confused and anxious Stacy drove up to the man’s house. It was almost an hour's drive away. How did Benji even manage to get this far from home? She was clueless about how Benji pulled this off, at the same time she was curious as well what she would encounter.
What the hell had Benji done?
The man that found him was waiting for Stacy at the front door when he arrived. He was looking very agitated and standing there with his arms crossed. What the hell had Benji done? The man did not seem to move a muscle, Stacy felt a bit scared.
Benji in a cage
Without saying much, the man took Stacy inside where he had a very sad-looking Benji locked in a cage. Stacy wanted to get angry at the man now for locking up this poor puppy but then he started explaining what happened. Everything soon would become clear.
Apparently, Benji had shown up earlier that day. The man had not seen any of the posters so he looked around for an owner, but when he couldn’t find anybody, he was going to call the shelter, as Benji was still wearing a collar with their number.
Check out what was happening
He had Benji just walking around the house at the time and he thought that he was dealing with a well-behaved puppy. But then his own cat came along to check out what was happening. Stacy already had a feeling what Benji could have done.
Attacking the cat
Benji suddenly switched at that moment, attacking the man’s cat. He reacted just in time to grab the dog before Benji was able to hurt the cat, who ran off immediately. The man instantly put Benji in his cat cage after that. He felt like it was the only way to keep his cat and Benji safe at the same time.
Called the shelter
He then called the shelter and explained exactly what had happened. After describing the dog, the shelter told him that he needed to call Stacy as she would come to pick him up and that is what happened. Luckily Benji was not hurt.
When Stacy looked at her phone she saw that she had multiple missed calls from the shelter. It was not possible to keep this secret anymore. She took a very sad Benji from the man and deeply apologized to him. She felt like she had to explain herself to the shelter.
Calling previous owners
She then went back to the shelter with Benji. When she arrived Stacy found out that the other employees had already called a lot of the previous owners of Benji to ask if they had any similar experiences with Benji. The results of these calls were eye-opening.
Every single one of the previous owners they contacted told them the same story. The actual reason they returned Benji was that he attacked another animal at some point. This made a whole lot of things clear, they finally had a good picture of Benji. What caused this behaviour towards other animals?
The right choice
They had lied about it because they were afraid that if they told the truth, Benji might be put down. And they all loved that dog way too much to have that on their conscience. But to prevent it from happening again under their care, they all brought him back to the shelter.
Now under normal circumstances, Benji would be labeled a dangerous animal and indeed would have been put down, but Stacy and the shelter were not going to let that happen. Now they finally knew what they were dealing with. They also knew that they could help Benji.
Back to the shelter
Benji was going to stay at the shelter for a couple weeks where they started to work on getting him to trust cats more. They were slowly introduced to Benji in a controlled environment. This wasn't easy, as Benji did not want to cooperate at first, the shelter was persistant. Did this pay off?
It was a difficult process but eventually, all the aggression Benji had towards cats was coached out of him and he was given back into the care of Stacy and her family. They were very glad that they got Benji back, he was the dog they always wanted. They gave Benji a lot of love. He thanked them for it.
From that moment on, they had no problems with their new dog at all anymore. He became an addition to the family Stacy always knew he could be. Benji had finally found his forever home. No more shelters for Benji at that point, he had everything a dog ever needed.
This story is a work of fiction created for entertainment. Characters and events are the products of the author’s imagination. The images shown are used for illustration only.