Seattle-based photographer Tilly Goble knew that she wanted to add a canine member to her family when she and her husband found out they were pregnant. But they didn”t want to add just any pup, so the search began.
Goble began researching rescue shelters and humane societies up to 500 miles away. For a long time, none of the pups jumped out as being the right fit for her family, until one day at work when she saw an ad for a dog named Abby. She was a state away. When Goble called the rescue, they told her that she had a handful of behavioral issues to work out, including being unfit for a household with babies. None of this squashed the feeling that Abby needed to become a member of their family, so Goble and her husband drove out to meet her.
After a nearly 450-mile drive, they arrived at Abby”s foster home. She immediately put her head into Mr. Goble”s lap. Since she was usually very aggressive with males…
This was all the convincing that the Gobles needed. Abby was meant to be with them. They took her home shortly after.
It wasn”t all roses at home, as Abby still had to learn to regain trust.
This isn”t uncommon for rescues who have experienced abuse from humans in the past. The couple worked through Abby”s issues, slowly but surely.
Friends questioned whether the Gobles were being smart by bringing a little one into a home with a dog that still showed some aggression…
But as soon as their son Henley was born, Abby knew that she just took on a new responsibility: protector and best friend of her new little brother.
Abby took her big sister duties very seriously…
Checking on Henley while he napped, making sure to be there when he woke, keeping a close eye on him during playtime, and simply being there whenever he needed her.
Then one day, the Gobles noticed a lump on Abby”s neck. At first they thought it was just a common cyst…
But when it grew to three times the original size, they took the pup to the vet and found that it was cancer. They immediately scheduled a surgery that left Abby with a huge incision on her neck.
That”s when Henley knew that it was his turn to take care of his big sister.
He kept watch over her, making sure she always had a pal by her side.
Now that Abby is four and Henley is two, the pup is fully recovered and the siblings are closer than ever.
Goble says that “[Abby] teaches sharing, gentle cuddles, social cues, and so much more. She teaches patience and how to give space or snuggles as needed. She is the most interesting and special animal I have ever known.”
The emotional and financial investment into the canine member of the family was entirely worth it.
Henley will have a loving friend and sister to grow up alongside, and surely they will continue to learn from each other through all the adventures to come.
(source Naissance Studios, The Dodo)
In addition to her touching personal story, you can check out Tilly Goble”s professional work on Facebook and her website.