Ruby is a mix of Australian Shepherd and Border Collie… and she’s a wild thing. She’s so wild that before she even reached 8 months old, all of her new owners had to take her back to the animal shelter a total of 4 times because of her behavior. No one could seem to tame her. So, sadly, she was marked as “unadoptable” and set to be put down.
But something quite amazing happened just two hours before she was scheduled to die. One of the volunteer trainers at the shelter, named Pat, believed that under all that craziness the dog showed was a very intelligent animal. She believed some good training and discipline could turn Ruby into something very special. So she contacted the Rhode Island State Police and offered up Ruby as a candidate for their K-9 unit. And it just so happened that one of the officers there, Dan O’Neil, was in need of a K-9 partner.
So Dan learned about Ruby, was told about her rambunctious ways that no one else could deal with. Pat was very upfront and honest with him about her. Dan decided to take her on, and the very first night he had her at his home, she jumped past his pregant wife and made a real mess all over the living room floor. Some first impressions are just not good, and this was one of those. But Dan stuck with her. And after a lot of hard work and a lot of patience, Ruby started changing. And she changed so much that she became an outstanding and loyal K-9 partner.
Several years went by, and when Ruby was 7, a mother reported her young son missing. Dan and Ruby, and well as another K-9 unit, took to the nearby wooded area to search for the boy. After a while, Ruby seemed to catch a familiar scent, and quickly ran down into a ravine. Dan ran after her.
When he caught up to her, she was licking the face of a little boy who was lying unconscious in the leaves. He was injured and he had a weak pulse, but he was rushed to a nearby hospital and made a full recovery. It was amazing that Ruby had found him. But something else happened that was equally amazing. When Dan came back with his K-9 and told the boy’s mother about his dog finding him, she asked Dan a very strange question. She asked if he had ever run into any police dogs named Ruby. Dan was taken aback. That was HIS dog… the one who found her son. The young boy’s mother could not be happier.
Her boy was found, and he was found by a very familiar dog to her. That mother… that woman… was Pat, the shelter volunteer who rescued Ruby just before she was to be put down; the one who believed that Ruby could be changed with the right patience and discipline; the one who made that fateful call to the Rhode Island police. The woman who had saved that “wild” dog now owed her son’s life to that same animal. How’s THAT for an incredible full circle?