Furrytale – Cashew and Ayaka
Once upon a time, from a land far, far away, came a shy puppy named Cashew. In November 2011 when Ayaka was in midst of doing volunteer work in the Hong Kong SPCA welfare department office, she first met her soon-to-be best friend. Originally, she planned to foster parent him for a month, but after one night she knew she had to keep him to be part of the family. He was from an unethically run puppy mill, and was thrown away on the streets because he contracted severe ring worm all over his body. The little puppy was severely malnourished and very underweight when she first met him. Because he was an abused dog, he was also terrified of people in the beginning, and would run away from whoever approached him. Ayaka was determined to try her best to take care of him, regardless of his physical and mental condition and the fact that she had the disease herself from handling him. Despite months of care his fur did not grow back and his condition wasn’t clearing up. Finally, one day, after much patience and love, all his bald spots began to fill in and he became a brand new dog with a new life.
Ayaka currently lives in downtown Vancouver with Cashew, and she takes him almost everywhere with her. They travel together, go for walks to the dog park and sea wall, he eats better than she does and takes up more space than her on the bed. After a year, behaviour modification has paid off and Cashew is now very friendly to everyone and eager to be pet by strangers; no small feat, as only a few months ago that would have seemed impossible! People can hardly believe their story when she tells them he was an abandoned puppy. They say that he is one lucky dog, but Ayaka thinks it goes both ways- Cashew has brought her nothing but happiness. There are many people who say rescue dogs are the best way to go, and she could not agree more; “don’t buy!” she exclaims, highly recommending adoption to others. It’s one of the best decisions she’s ever made. Ayaka and Cashew now live happily ever after.