Happy Tail: Rescue and a new home changed Mowgli

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Mowgli has been around. The Labrador Retriever lived in a fraternity house as a youngster, and perhaps it was something of an animal house in the worst sense of the word. He came away from the experience anxious and aggressive toward young men.

In January 2014, he was taken to a veterinarian to be euthanized because the aggression had persisted. The vet convinced the couple who brought him in to release him to Forgotten Dogs Rescue, in Walla Walla, WA, who in turn placed him in a foster home.

Mowgli keeps a watchful eye on what's going on around the house.

Mowgli keeps a watchful eye on what’s going on around the house.

There, his anxiety and aggression disappeared. An unpleasant past was behind him, and his photo and description were added to Petfinder. He needed a good permanent home.

Kelly Hughes of Marysville, WA, had been looking for a dog to adopt to help her manage her own anxiety. She’d been saving her money to pay an adoption fee and to buy supplies. When she saw Mowgli on Petfinder, who was 5 at the time, she knew he was the one.

“His age and the temperament described in his profile seemed to be a perfect match,” she says. And it has proved to be true. He is well mannered and smart and is a great exercise buddy.

“Thanksgiving weekend, we got some snow. After seeing Mowgli’s reaction to the it when I let him out into the backyard in the morning, my brother and I took him to the local school for a game of fetch in the snow,” Kelly says. “He chased the ball for well over half an hour through the snow. In the end, my brother was throwing the ball down into the ground, and Mowgli would catch it on the bounce. We had so much fun.”

Her goal is to formally train him as her service dog, but he’s already helping her cope simply by being Mowgli.