Written by Christy Holmes
Professional photography by Antony Cousens Photography
Harper was rescued by a rescue team when she was six weeks old. She was being kept in a cage with her siblings, mom and dad. She was in a terrible condition and needed immediate treatment for ticks, fleas, and worms. Once the owners agreed to hand over ownership of the dogs to the rescue centre, they were seized and put into foster care to recover.
Harper went to a wonderful family who spoiled her with love and attention. When she was ready to be put up for adoption, they posted her picture on Facebook. When I saw her picture, I fell in love with her. Her white body and black nose reminded me so much of my previous dog, a Dalmatian, who was my whole world.
I deliberated all day and finally put in my application to adopt “Sophie”. I knew that adopting her would mean that I was replacing my spotty boy, but it would also fill my heart with love and joy.
After a few days, my application was approved. They said that I’d be an excellent match for “Sophie” and that they’d come and do a home check. Harper was delivered to my house the next day. My heart was overflowing with emotion as I welcomed this tiny, 3kg, gentle, quiet pup into my home. She’d come from a terrible life but was now in a safe space where she’d be loved and adored.
As a puppy school instructor, I was insistent that she attend puppy school and socialise with other dogs, children, and adults regularly. To ensure she had plenty of opportunities to socialise, I walked her on a sports field that was open to the public every day. I cannot stress how important it is to socialise your pup with other dogs and humans from a young age and throughout their lives.
Twenty months later, Harper is almost two years old. She’s blossomed into a real girly girl and is obsessed with her humans. She wants to be near us all the time. Despite being partially deaf, she’s a smart dog who’s undergone drug detection classes, puppy school, advanced puppy school, and agility classes. Training can sometimes be a bit challenging, but I’ll never give up or stop trying. She’s ball-obsessed, and I walk her six days a week and throw her ball for about an hour every day to tire her out and let her play with other dogs in the park.
We still have some behavioural issues to work on, but Harper has come a long way. I wouldn’t trade her for the world. When I decided to adopt her, I made her a promise that I’d always give her the very best that I could and that I’d always love her unconditionally. She’s quirky, sometimes naughty, cute, sweet, and extremely energetic. I love my baby girl.
I’m moving to the UK in May, and unfortunately, Pit Bulls aren’t allowed. I decided to do a DNA test to confirm Harper’s breed so that I could take her with me.
Harper’s MuttMix Results:
Level 3 Irish Wolfhound
Level 3 Rottweiler
Level 4 Catahoula Leopard Dog
Level 5 Belgian Malinois
Level 5 Staffordshire Bull Terrier
I was delighted with her results. I really don’t mind what breed of dog she is – all that matters to me is that she’s a loving and friendly dog.