The springer spaniel's fur was matted and she was more than a little overweight when her former owners brought her to the Everett Animal Shelter. They said they no longer had the time or space to care for her.
Yet, there was just something about her that the Carter family thought would work for them.
Not only for them, but for their dog, Parker, a German shepherd who had been "just kind of moping" since the death of the family's other dog, who was 12 years old.
"I don't know what else to call it," Diane Carter said. "He was looking lost. Doing a lot of sleeping. Right behind you everywhere you go."
In October, the family went to the Progressive Animal Welfare Society in Lynnwood, where Lady had been transferred from Everett. PAWS shelters homeless animals and rehabilitates injured and orphaned wildlife.
Last year, the nonprofit organization cared for about 1,400 dogs. Three hundred lost dogs were returned to their owners. More than 800 dogs were adopted.
This is one nonprofit where you can give by receiving.
The Carters looked at one other dog, then spotted Lady. "She was such a sweetheart," Carter said. "She was our kind of dog."
PAWS provided an evaluation of Lady, including her estimated age, temperament and how active she was, based on their daily observations.
Lady was described as "just a lovable dog," Carter said. "You want an animal that's the right fit for you."
But the decision to adopt a dog involved more than just the family members. They made a second trip to the shelter, this time with their other dog, Parker.
After being introduced in a play area, "they seemed to get along great," Carter said. "We said, "OK, we'll give it a shot."
Lady never had the big fields to play in that she has at the Carter's home near Maltby.
"She didn't know what to do," Carter said. "She's just starting to learn where the boundaries are around the property."
The family has learned not to use strong or loud words with Lady, because she's such a sensitive dog.
Carter said she still remembers the moment Lady first met Parker. From the start, it was a good match.
"Lady was like, 'You want to play? OK! Yeah, I've done this before."
Reporter Sharon Salyer: 425-339-3486 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Jennifer Buchanan / The Herald
Mark and Diane Carter, with their son Colin, 11, adopted their springer spaniel, Lady, from the Progressive Animal Welfare Society in Lynnwood in October.
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