Florida couple adopts puppy

Published 10:00 pm Wednesday, May 20, 2009

When it comes to puppy love, there is hardly a story around that can hold a candle to that of John and Rebecca Broski.

They are the epitome of puppy love.

Not too many couples would drive 1,060 miles to adopt shelter puppies and immediately take them into their hearts and then their home.

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That’s exactly what happened when John and Rebecca Broski drove from their home near Ft. Myers, Fla. on Saturday to adopt two 8-week-old labs from the city of Troy animal shelter.

Ken Andress, Troy Police Department animal control officer, picked the puppies up last week and took them to the animal shelter.

“One of the puppies showed up on Elm Street Road and the other on Park Street,” Andress said. “They were about the same size. I talked to Susan Green, who is the Pike Animal Shelter adoptions and programs chair, and she came out to the shelter and took photographs and put them on the Pike Animal Shelter Petfinder Web page. They were featured together.”

That’s where the Broskis saw Marley and Maggie and fell in love with them.

“We put them on Petfinder on May 13, and the next day we got a call from John and Rebecca Broski,” Green said. “They wanted to adopt both the chocolate lab and the black lab. They asked if we would hold the puppies until they made the trip from Ft. Myers. We don’t normally hold puppies but, since they were willing to drive that far, we told them we would.

“They came up on Saturday and were over the moon about those puppies. They bonded with them immediately.”

The Broskis had recently lost their family pets and were looking for just the right puppy for their family.

“We had two older dogs, 14 and 15 years old,” Rebecca Broski said. “Both of them had passed away in the last four months, and we were looking at Petfinders trying to find a shelter dog for our family. We found the chocolate lab and decided to take the black lab, too.”

Often shelter dogs are mixed breeds, but the chocolate lab appeared not to be but the black lab is a mixed breed.

“We were very happy to get both of the puppies,” Broski said. “We had found a shelter lab in Georgia, but it died before we could get up there to pick it up. Our daughters were very upset so we didn’t tell them we were going to Alabama to get the puppies. They didn’t know until they came in the house and the puppies were running around. They were very excited.”

The puppies had been named Marley and Maggie by Troy City Clerk Alton Starling, who was at the shelter when Andress brought them in. However, after their journey to Alabama to adopt the puppies, the Broski, decided to rename them, the black pup has been named Alli and the chocolate one is Bama – Alli Bama.

“My husband came up with the names, and we think they are appropriate,” Broski said. “We want to especially thank Officer Ken Andress for taking time to answer my numerous phone calls about the puppies and arranging to open the shelter on Saturday so we could get them. If he had not made that possible, we would not have been able to adopt them since we live so far away. It took us nine hours going up and much longer coming back.”

Donna Schubert, Founders chair, said these puppies have been saved by an animal-loving family because of the hard work of Susan Green, who faithfully maintains the Pike Animal Shelter’s Petfinders adoptions page, as well as the kindness of the animal control officers Ken Andress and Carol Connell.

“Happy endings are the reason that we are working so hard,” Schubert said.

Petfinders has been a very successful venture for the Pike Animal Shelter. They have received inquiries about animals from as far away as New York and New Jersey.

Green said the average adoption rate for animals placed on the Pike Animal Shelter’s Petfinders Web page is between five and 10 a month.