Two years ago I moved to the Bay Area from Kansas, with my parents, where I grew up and lived most of my life. We moved for my dads job but also because I have Cystic Fibrosis, a genetic chronic lung disease, and I needed better health care and knew that Stanford University Medical Center was the best place for me. Moving away from all my friends and family was going to be a really big change for me since I didn’t know anyone in the Bay area, apart from my parents. So I decided I wanted to adopt a dog. Growing up we had two family dogs, a Weimaraner (Dolly) and a Westie (Happy), we had gotten Dolly from a breeder when she was just a puppy but Happy we adopted from a shelter. After having Happy I never wanted to get a dog from a breeder because there are so many dogs who need good homes.
I went on Overstock.com because they have a pet adoption section on their website where you can type in your zip code and it pulls up animals that are available for adoption. I knew I wanted a small dog because I would be living in an apartment and a small dog would be easier for me to care for. I came across a senior female Chihuahua named Sasha and I thought she would be a great dog. So my Dad began the process of adopting Sasha and had the paperwork done but unfortunately Sasha passed away before we were able to adopt her. My Dad didn’t tell me that Sasha died until I moved out to California because he didn’t want me to be upset. He also didn’t tell me about Sasha because in the time between Sasha passing away and me moving out to California he went to Palo Alto Animal Services to adopt Tucker. I love the story he tells me how he found Tucker.
My Dad goes to look at the dogs available for adoption and see’s a little female Chihuahua but he said she was very afraid and kept barking at my Dad and wouldn’t come near him, so he moved on and saw Tucker. He says that Tucker barked at him once and then came over started licking his hand and was very friendly. My Dad continued to look at the other dogs but said Tucker stood at the fence and watched him the whole time. So he comes back and asks to play with Tucker and he said immediately he knew that Tucker would be the perfect dog for me. He was at the shelter for an hour maximum.
When I arrived in California my Dad broke the news to me that Sasha wasn’t available to be adopted but that we could go to a shelter and look for another dog. I was definitely bummed out. But when I came home to my apartment I opened the door and I see this tiny little guy with big ears running toward me. My Dad had adopted Tucker and told my entire family but kept it from me so I would surprised. I fell in love with Tucker instantly.
I can’t imagine life now without Tucker and it seems as if I have Tucker forever. He really ended up rescuing me because he has been by my side through countless hospital stays and doctors appointments. Having Cystic Fibrosis is very hard and it can get lonely and isolating being constantly sick but having Tucker helps me feel less anxious and keeps me positive. He stays with me when I’m in the hospital and always snuggles with me when I’m sick and really doesn’t like it when we are separated.
We aren’t entirely clear about Tucker’s past but we believe he was with a single mom and her daughter who had special needs. I think they got Tucker to be a companion for the daughter but it ended up being too much to care for the daughter and Tucker and so Tucker was left alone a lot. This is why Tucker doesn’t like to be separated from me and get extremely distressed when he is left at home, even for short periods of time, which is very rare because I take him pretty much everywhere with me…even when I travel! You can see all his activities on his ‘TinyGuyTucker’ Instagram! – Tucker’s Mom