The Importance of Forever

By Music City LOAL volunteer handler Kayla Eastman

I’ve always been a firm believer that there is a kind of soul-level bond between humans and their animals. Anyone who has fostered a pet can recognize this… some animals you have little problem sending to their forever home, others you know are yours forever.

When I first met Tallon he had been found wandering through the woods in Nashville. The nice people who found him only spoke Spanish, so I went to pick him up so I could translate. They had kept him on the porch because he had “pulgas”. Turns out his “fleas” were actually over 120 ticks, which had to be carefully removed his first night with me.  Understandably, carrying around so many parasites had taken a toll.

Tallon was tired and weak most of those first few weeks. He didn’t eat much, didn’t drink much, mostly just slept. Slowly we coaxed him into eating regular meals, and his personality started to emerge. I now joke that this is when I started to realize Tallon was smarter than me.

Your heart will let you know when a dog is meant to be yours. I knew Tallon was mine. I also knew he needed a job. He was so well-mannered and loving from the start,

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even when he didn’t feel the greatest, that I knew he would make a fantastic therapy dog. So we worked, we trained, we shadowed, and eventually we became a certified therapy team.

Now Tallon LOVES visiting as many people as he can to share the love and joy he uncovered by finding a forever home. It’s taken a lot of time, effort, commitment, and dollars to get him to being a happy and healthy dog, but I’ve promised him forever, and he will know that promise for the rest of his life.