In September 2019, I was heading to Mix 96.5’s Dog Day afternoon with my pup, Hazel, as it was going to be one of the only days that dogs were allowed at Salvage Station, which happens to be one of my favorite spots in Asheville.  I was making the rounds and collecting all sorts of goodies for Hazel when I walked by the Mountain Pet Rescue Asheville tent and met eyes with a young pup that was sitting in a pen amongst a handful of puppies.

I began talking with Erica with MPR AVL about the dog and learned that she was almost a year old and had already bounced around from home to home before making her way into MPR AVL’s care.  Her name was Shia, fitting for her shy, skittish demeanor, but I was so drawn to her and felt like she was meant to become a member of our pack.  In addition to talking with Erica, I was able to learn even more about Shia, now Poppy Lu, from her foster mom, LeeAnn and after not one, or two, but three trips back to the tent, I decided that she just had to come home with us.

I sobbed signing her adoption contract as I wasnt sure how I was going to be able to love another dog as much as I loved Hazel and I was also worried that Hazel wasn’t going to love me for bringing Poppy home with us.  But one year later and here we are with much happier and fuller hearts.  We did have a rather challenging start with Poppy, but it was through lots of love, patience and proper training that I could help her overcome what other humans had previously done to her. And that’s when I learned what it truly meant to rescue a dog. 

Because of Poppy Lu, we both found ‘homes’ through Mountain Pet Rescue Asheville as I became their Foster and Volunteer Coordinator and member of the Board shortly after her adoption.  I will forever be grateful for the Dog Day afternoon and Poppy’s Gotcha Day as I now get to dedicate my life to saving pups like Poppy that might not otherwise find homes.

Melanie, Poppy Lu’s mama