Once Upon a Penny

I got my first dog at age 7 because I was terrified of dogs. My parents were on a mission to break this fear in the only way that they knew how, which was exposure to having an animal in the house. For about a month I was terrified until eventually I picked up the dog’s toy and we started playing together. From there we became the best of friends and all fears were gone. He was with my family until I was 20 years old. After him, I wasn’t sure if loving another pet was an option because my heart hurt so badly from his loss then I met my wife and her family, and their zoo of animals and I was hooked. I knew eventually I would want an animal of my own again, but I never really could settle on when or what type of dog I would want.

The internet introduced me to the Pembroke Welsh Corgi breed. I was instantly in love. Everything about the breed was easy to love, their tiny bodies, their little legs, but most importantly their personality. I have never seen a dog with that much personality in a tiny body. From what I saw online, Corgis are so expressive and great companions to all their owners and their families. I knew this would be the breed for me, but it always felt out of reach because of the cost to get one from a reputable breeder. The average cost of a Corgi in the USA ranges from $1,200 – $3,300. This cost was always out of my price range and I never imagined becoming a Corgi owner because of that.

Fast forward to November 2020 and I was hit by the most unlikely of news. My wife follows Long Island animal shelters to browse for a new member of our home. The timing was never right, the breed was never what we wanted. There was always some reason not to get an animal. Until one night when she showed me a listing for a 2 year old female Pembroke Welsh Corgi. It was like seeing a shooting star! Most Corgis are surrendered to rescues as adults and younger ones are incredibly hard to come by in a rescue setting. While adopting older dogs and senior dogs are just as beautiful to do, I was desperate to bond with a dog from a young age so when I saw this, I immediately sprang into action. The next day came and I called the shelter to submit paperwork for adoption. This was too unlikely of a circumstance to overthink the possibilities of life after our quarantine. This was my dream breed that needed rescuing. Once our applications and references checked out, we arranged a meeting for the next weekend.

This was the first picture we ever saw of Penny.

The anticipation of the meeting was like waiting for Christmas morning. My wife and I were over the moon with excitement and it just carried into our meeting with our potential new dog and the rescue team. We all chatted for about 30 minutes and we were given the information that due to her being picked up with a chip (despite her previous owners not answering). The dog was legally obligated to stay within the shelter for 14 days in case the previous owners wanted to claim her. We weren’t thrilled with the idea but followed the rules and waited what felt like a lifetime of 14 days until we received the confirmation phone call that she was officially ours. She would be spayed before she was given to us and we could pick her up directly after the surgery. We began rushing around like new dog parents and getting all the supplies before the pickup day.

Pick up day arrived, and we bolted to the shelter to pick up our new dog. She was surrendered with the name football, but the shelter renamed her Penelope, and we kept the name. Little Penny Lane was the newest member of our family and it couldn’t have come at a better of a time. I was going through some of my worst times mentally and getting a companion like a Corgi felt like just what I needed. Once she recovered from her surgery, her personality shined through making the heaviness in our house a little bit lighter, giving me a daily purpose to fuss after something other than myself, and completing the dream of mine in being a Corgi owner. She saved me in ways I’ll never be able to thank her for, but I will spend the rest of her life doing my best to try to show her just how much she means. A dog is without a doubt a big responsibility but one I’ll never regret because she came into my life when I needed her the most. She’s the perfect addition to our growing family and one of the biggest highlights of the shitstorm that was 2020.

Our first picture together as a duo.

Author: Jackie Weber

Human, dog-Mom, wife, daughter, sister, and friend. Writing is my superpower! Follow along with my journey.

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