Dear Wheatens in Need Rescue,

My name is Baxter Boy Toro, and I have a story to tell. Last February 2006, you helped me out. Before then I had two different homes. I am not sure why the first guy gave me up, I was just one year old and I can’t remember things from then, but after that I found myself with a new family; a family with four dogs, two cats, and a human baby. Things were a little hectic there. I think those folks meant well, but I really need more attention than they could give me. Looking back at my pictures, I didn’t get too many baths or haircuts; you know the things that Wheatens need regularly. I was kinda matted and stinky, so that may have been why I didn’t get so much loving. And my ears hurt a lot because the hair was so long. I got lots of ear infections. That may be why I still don’t like strange People messing with my ears. And they called me Turd. When I first came here, I really didn’t answer to Baxter much and my new family couldn’t figure it out until they saw that my belongings were labeled Turd. See that’s what they called me. How can you get any respect with a name like Turd?

The best thing that my second family did for me was realize that I was not getting the attention a boy like me needed and contacted WIN rescue. I stayed for a while with Guy and Joanne in Pennsylvania. They were really nice foster parents. They helped to find my new family, The Toro Family in NJ. They drove me all the way out there; from Pennsylvania to New Jersey just to be sure that was the right home for me. I wish I could say it was love at first sight with my new family. They loved me at first sight, but I wasn’t too sure of them. I was scared. You see, I had some trust issues from the other places I lived. I was afraid of my new mommy touching me, the doctors say I might have been treated badly by a mommy before, but I can’t remember that.

After a while, I got to trust her and now we are like peas and carrots, mommy and me. My new little human brother scared me sometimes too, but I think he is the best cuddler in the house now that I am used to him hugging me all the time. I hit it off right away with my new daddy and big human brother. I really like to be around strong men like me. And Sissy, my Wheaten sister Emma, she’s just the kinda sister a guy like me needs. She always lets me be leader, and I have to be the leader, it’s just my nature. She is a good follower, I am a good leader. It works out. The only time she leads is in the running games. She jumps on me all the time to get me to chase her around the house or yard. We like that game and we get lots of good exercise playing it, mommy says. I still have some fears though.

I don’t like fireworks, bangs or especially storms. I can feel a storm coming on an hour in advance. I am quite the weatherman, my family says. Scolding makes me nervous, so they don’t do that around me. I prefer positive reinforcement, so that’s what I get. It makes me uptight to be left home alone for a more than a couple of hours, so we worked that out too. I also don’t like the crate I came with from my old house. It gives me anxiety, my doctor says. They don’t think I like to feel confined in a small crate. Might have spent too much time in there or was punished in the crate. So my mommy put Sissy in that one, and I got a bigger new one. One fit for a king like me.

That’s right, a king. I am surrounded with so much love an attention I feel like a king every day. I sleep in a big comfy bed at night with my mommy, daddy and Emma. I have all the toys and treats a boy could want. I get my teeth cleaned, my hair brushed and regular trips to the groomer and vet. I get presents. Lots of presents. So many People love me, that I am always getting gifts. Vacation souvenirs, gifts for every holiday, and sometimes treats just because they come to visit. I have aunts and uncles, grandmas, cousins, neighbors and friends. I love company. I like to lean on my guests, that’s how I hug. I’ve been on vacations too. I’ve traveled to Maine and to Massachusetts on vacation. My mommy says I am even better than Emma in the car, and she’s pretty good.

In the spring I might even drive to Florida. See, my new family is going to Disney World, and we can’t bear to be apart. So my sissy and I are going to come along for the ride and be boarded down there, just so my family could visit me every day. They say that is worth the time it will take to drive. Being able to see us every day. See that, I am that important, who would have thought it, me, the guy formally known as Turd, with the big yucky ears and stinky teeth would get to live the rest of his life like this.

The king of a whole family. So, I guess what I am trying to say is, thank you. Thank you for finding me a home to give me a second chance to be the center of a whole family. Yes it was work, it still is. I had a lot to get used to. New house, new rules, new family, but it is worth the effort. Sure my parents could have bought a pet store puppy like so many other People do, but a rescue dog like me can give more love than any fancy pet store puppy ever could. You see, I know what it is like to not have, and to want a perfect family, and now I got it. Every day is an adventure for me now. And I am on the top of the world.

Thanks from the whole Toro Family,

Michael, Tricia, Chris, Nick, Emma Clayre and me, King Baxter Boy Toro