Tess, the Red Tick Coonhound

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Tess today

Let’s start our story with the funniest in our little family, Contessa Louise …Tess for short, and Tessie Lou when she’s feeling playful. I saw Tess on the Arizona Humane Society website one day. I don’t know what made me look at dogs that day. We weren’t thinking about getting a dog. I just felt compelled to open the site and look through the dogs.

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Humane Society picture

There she was, a beautiful Red Tick Coonhound. I closed the site but couldn’t stop thinking about her. Every day for the next few days, I would open the site and look at her picture. I kept thinking she’d be long gone, she was such a beauty, but every time I opened the page, there she was. By the weekend, I showed Mace, my husband, her picture. Really I just wanted him to marvel with me at how such a beautiful dog could be at A.H.S. all week without being adopted. He wanted her immediately, and I was already in love with her. So we got in the car and went to meet her. She wasn’t what I expected. She didn’t care anything about us even though we were in love with her. She was indifferent! She didn’t care if we petted her or liked her or wanted to spend time with her. She just ignored us. But…neither of us could walk away from her. So we did the only thing we could. We adopted her! I have to believe she was meant for us. Had we waited one more hour, she would have been gone. As we were adopting her, the phone at the A.H.S. kept ringing with people wanting to know if she were still available. She had been featured on TV at the very time we were adopting her.

the ride home

the ride home

On the drive there I was thinking about how nice it would be to have the unconditional love of a dog, and on the way home I was thinking about how much this dog needed our unconditional love. It was hard in the beginning months with her, to keep reassuring her that she was ours and we would not let her down. To watch her fear every time we took out a broom or mop. She would curl into a little ball and shiver. The abuse she suffered must have been bad. She had so much fear and she was 15 pounds underweight.

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Daddy hugs

Now, two years later, she’s used to all the hugs, and rarely ever flinches. She knows no one in this household will ever hit her. She was definitely a dog in depression that day and now she has a hard time being morose. Her tail wags at everything, and we are still so in love with her. There will be many of tales of Tess and her adventures on this blog. She’s such a big part of our lives. But this was her start.

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