The Well-Being Buddy Blog

Our Inspiration & Legacy Behind the Brand: Buddy’s Rescue Story

My heart dog, Buddy, who was the inspiration behind our brand 🩵 1/3/2010 – 9/16/2023

Wow…where do I even begin to tell the story of how Buddy pawsitively impacted my life and the lives of so many others?! I feel like this will need to be a series, because there is NO possible way for me to cover his entire life in a single blog post (I mean, I could – but it would probably turn into a literal novel 😂)

So I figured I’d start with Buddy’s origin story: how and when I rescued him – I had been stalking his Pet Finders profile for about three months after I returned from my internship the country in San Diego, CA with the Navy’s Marine Mammal Program. I had just started my Junior year of undergrad at the University of Central Florida and I had my heart set on bringing a dog back into my life – a dog that would be MINE, not my family’s dog 😉 During the time I was stalking his profile, it had been taken down two different times – and my heart SANK! I wanted to at least have a chance to meet this cute pooch, who was listed as an “escape artist” and just had the cutest face in the world – so of course I was disappointed when I saw he was no longer available! But a funny thing happened – each time it was taken down, his profile was restored within the next week or two…and my hope was restored that I would get to be the human hero to take this adorably sad looking puppy home with me! 🥺 But I wanted to be responsible about things – I knew I’d be at classes for a lot of time during the day, and I needed a part-time job…which I happened to be interviewing for a Pet Trainer position with Petsmart! When I was offered the job, and told one of the perks was that I could bring my dog with me as a demo dog – I IMMEDIATELY figured out a time that I would be able to make the two-hour long drive out to Sebring, FL to “just take a look” at Buddy…

Obviously – y’all can guess that Buddy was still at the shelter AND on that fateful day, 11/18/2010, I brought this adorable, 10-month old golden lab mix home with me! 🥹 At the shelter I asked why his profile had been taken down twice, and the staff told me he had been adopted out – but both times the families returned him…😢 When I asked why they brought him back, they said he was being mouthy, jumped on everyone, and chewed up a lot of things…and all I could think to myself was, “Well duh – he’s still a puppy?!” So lucky for me – those families gave up on him, and I had some training to look forward to! I watched as they brought him out to the play yard, and he was THRASHING on his slip lead, like up on hind legs and whining and whipping his head all around…I couldn’t help but feel sorry for him, and once we were in the play yard, he hesitantly started wandering around – not really coming up to me at first…until I took out the tennis ball! And from that moment, we were besties 🩵

I was THRILLED to finally call him mine – but I can absolutely say that he lived up to his name as an “escape artist” when it came to his crate training 😂 He was a typical golden and labrador retriever: VERY food motivated, OBSESSED with the tennis ball, LOVED to swim!!! These were some of the photos I took on our way home – and I didn’t notice until now, in the selfie we have – I’m wearing my UCF Pre-Vet Society shirt! 🤩

This was the beginning of an incredible journey together – one full of laughter, frustration with chewed up door frames and torn up carpets at apartments, and LOTS of snuggles and cuddles 🥰 After the drive home (which he thoroughly enjoyed his car rides!), I took him to PetSmart and went on an ALL OUT shopping spree for my baby boy! We got him the cutest blue buckle collar, LOTS of squeaky Kong tennis balls, and a few stuffed toys (that didn’t last past day 1 😂) – I could FINALLY call myself a true Dog Mom 🥰

Buddy was the greatest thing to happen to me during my formative years of my twenties – he helped support me through multiple life transitions and various bouts of struggles with mental health: burnout, trauma, anxiety, and depression (to name a few)… Life without him has definitely been painful, but we’re slowly but surely adjusting to the Buddy-shaped hole in our lives ❤️‍🩹 I’m so grateful to have the honor of carrying on his legacy through the work we do, and I can’t wait to share more stories with you all soon! But I wanted to launch our blog by introducing you to the heart and soul of our brand and my sweet golden angel that continues to inspire me every day! 💛

Thank you all for being here, and for being part of our story with Veterinary Well-Being Buddy! 🐾

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