Community News

No Animal is Too Small to Love!

There are times when life seems to give you exactly what you need, and sometimes what you need is a dose of hope and affirmation of the goodness of people. We got such a gift recently when we were contacted from the mainland by someone interested in one of our hamsters. What?! Why would someone drive hundreds of miles to adopt a hamster when they could go to a pet store and buy one? In practical terms, it made little sense. But when we spoke to Jacqueline, we discovered her rationale made perfect sense. She was the kind of adopter we love!

Jacqueline had just graduated from nursing school and was ready to begin her professional career. So right from the start, we knew we were dealing with someone who was not only responsible and disciplined, but also caring! She told us she thought a hamster might make a good companion. Her schedule required her to be up late and hamsters are nocturnal, so they might be perfect “roomies.” We liked her thinking! It told us that she had not only done some homework but also was interested in a life that worked for both of them. When we asked why she was willing to drive from Broward County to Key West, she told us she wanted to adopt rather than buy from a pet store AND she had fallen in love with Sprout at our shelter. To Jacqueline, Sprout was worth the drive.

We provided some resources on care, along with our recommendations of appropriate housing. We also sent pictures of Sprout’s current set-up, including a video on how we made her bin cage. When adoption day arrived, we agreed to drive up the Keys to save her a little travel time and choose a meeting place. We came prepared to hand-over Sprout in her current set-up to reduce the stress of her transition to a new home. Change for animals—even a good change—can be tough. We were shocked when Jacqueline opened the back of her car and pulled out a turn-key duplicate of Sprout’s cage, which she had built and made move-in ready for Sprout! We were in awe and filled with both gratitude and respect for this very special young woman AND her companion, who then agreed to sit in the back seat with Sprout to make sure she was handling the trip okay.

We believe people like Jacqueline are some of the true influencers and change-makers who offer hope for a more compassionate world. They care for the most vulnerable and are willing to go the distance to ensure they are provided for and kept safe. We are told that Sprout is doing great. Her trust in Jacqueline has allowed her to have an enriched and happy life with Jacqueline and her family. Jacqueline proves that no animal is too small to matter or too small to love!