This UK Terrier was rescued after the vet refused to put him down. 

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Buddy in his new home. Facebook

Buddy, a terrier from North Somerset UK, has had quite a journey. He went from being given up for destruction by his first family, to being spared, and then, ultimately, being adopted after a prolonged stay at a shelter. It’s the kind of story that you love to hear, and it highlights some very important points about dog ownership that are often taken for granted by many. 

A little over a year ago Buddy was brought to his vet by his first family. They complained of Buddy’s behavior and requested that the vet put him down. The vet wasn’t having any of it. He took one look at Buddy and considered the owner’s story and said no. 

Buddy enjoying a belly rub from Mr. J. Facebook

There’s no other way to say it – this vet, whose name I could not find, is a hero. He or she could have simply taken the cash and gone through the motions and ended the life of this wonderful animal, but he clearly followed a deeper ethical code.

It should also be noted that this vet did not make a purely reactive decision. Was Buddy misbehaving because there was something inherently wrong with him? Or was he simply responding to his environment and trying to protect himself? It was only after spending time with Buddy and taking a moment to assess the situation that this vet figured out what to do.

Buddy battling a toy for ultimate domination. Facebook

Well, it turns out that the decision to spare him was indeed the right one. After spending 500 days at RSPCA’s Brent Knoll Animal Centre Buddy was finally adopted by a loving family. The shelter used positive reinforcement training to do away with some of his negative habits in that time

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Now Buddy finds himself with Mr. and Mrs. J, as they are identified on the shelter’s Facebook post, and he looks like he’s as happy as can be with endless games of catch. He is described as being a, “cute lad is an affectionate chap who sadly had a less than ideal relationship with his previous owner.”

This is so great to see and hear. Cheers to Mr. and Mrs. J for finding a place in their hearth and hearts for Buddy who seems to have simply been misunderstood. 

Was Buddy misbehaving because there was something inherently wrong with him? Or was he simply responding to his environment and trying to protect himself?

Which brings up a larger and more important point and it is about how we think about a dog’s behavior. Buddy’s previous owners likely bore him no ill will, but they were convinced that he had issues that could not be remedied. But that just wasn’t true, and isn’t true for the vast majority of dogs.

So, if you or someone you know is having issues with their pup, maybe it’s not the pup’s fault. It’s always a good idea to take a step back, and maybe consult with a professional to see if there’s anything that can be done before any drastic steps are taken.

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