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Speaking of Faithful Friends, a recent adoption story highlights a special friendship.
Magic, a nine-year-old yellow Labrador Retriever, and Indiana, a seven-year-old Rottweiler, were surrendered to our Agoura Care Center because their owner was moving and could not take them along.
When the two arrived at the shelter, the staff's hearts sank. Both breeds have rather short life spans, and both dogs were very obese. They obviously were strongly bonded to each other. As difficult a challenge as it would be, the Agoura shelter staff was determined to place them together.
Magic and Indiana were gentle giants, loving both people and other animals. The first goal was to get their weight down by making sure they were exercised daily with walks and playing ball. Slowly but surely, they lost the extra pounds and increased their energy level.
A month after they arrived, a growth developed on Magic's head. Surgery was required and was successful. Later a growth was discovered on Indiana's spine, and he was taken to a vet immediately. By then three months had passed with a few inquiries about adopting Magic but no interest in Indiana.
Then a miracle occurred. Both dogs had been featured as "Pet of the Week" in Agoura's local "Acorn" newspaper just before Indiana's tumor had been discovered. A wonderful couple who had just lost their elderly Rottweiler to cancer saw the photos of Magic and Indiana and came to the shelter to meet both dogs and fell in love with them. They were given the dogs' background information, including being told about Indiana's tumor (the biopsy results had not yet returned). The man was asked how he would feel if it turned out that the tumor was malignant, and he said that he would rather have Indiana die in a loving home with himself and his wife than for his last days to be in a shelter. That same day the report came back to the shelter that Indiana's tumor was indeed cancerous. The man immediately took Indiana to his vet, where radiation and chemotherapy treatments were started. Indiana is still undergoing treatment, but he and Magic are doing very well and have adjusted happily to their new canine and human companions on a multi-acre ranch in Malibu.