"It was love almost at first sight"
Can you tell us a little about yourself and your pet?
My name is Annika Weber, I am a KLAWS volunteer (helping with Social Media and fostering cats), since the beginning of 2021. After fostering quite a few cats and kittens I wanted to take on the responsibility of doing the same with a dog. As I am very interested in dog behaviour training it was my wish to foster a dog that had a harder past than some of the others that come in our care. So I took over Lucky from Emily and Paudie, two of our most dedicated dog fosterers. Lucky is a Border Collie that was scheduled to be PTS before KLAWS. He tended to growl and snap at people, was very defensive and possessive. Emily and Paudie did a class job with him, to be honest, I did not have to do much, just continue the great work they had done. Which means, crate training, stability, showing him that there is no need to defend himself because my husband and I were there now. And, you guessed it, I fell hard for him in the process. I renamed him Gradey, because it was love after one week. And now he is a part of our family.
Why did you decide to adopt?
With Gradey it was love almost at first sight, but he is not the only animal we adopted. All in all, my husband and I have three dogs and two cats, all of them adopted. There are so many cats and dogs out there who need a loving home, I don’t need them to be a certain breed (isn’t this the only argument for a breeder?) and if you want a puppy (which I can understand because this is the only case in which you know exactly what you get, without any former ‘damage’), KLAWS and other rescues are looking for homes for them as well.
How did you see the pet you adopted?
I met Gradey first because of a photo shoot for our Social Media channels. He took to me almost instantly, wasn’t growly at all, and in hindsight that was a sign, I guess. But I would not have taken any of our dogs at that time because it still was about fostering. His big brown eyes sealed the deal later. On other occasions I saw “my” animals online and fell for them. There is this certain feeling, like ‘If you know, you know’. Like everything falls into place. It’s love.
Why did you choose KLAWS?
When I first arrived in Ireland (I am an expat from Germany) I wanted to do something for the community I now live in and get to know likeminded people. KLAWS was the logical choice. Dogs and cats have no mean bone in their bodies — if so, they were forced into it. Like every other country in the world Ireland always has a need for volunteers that want to help animals – be it through adopting or volunteering as a cat or dog minder or transporting the animals to the vet and back etc. And KLAWS is caring — about the people, cats, and dogs. There really was no choice.
Do you have any advice for people currently adopting or thinking about adopting a pet?
If the cat or dog is not a small kitten or puppy, it has a past. He or she is a living being, with memories, so don't expect him or her to just "function". If you are willing to put in the work you will have a friend for life.