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A Christmas Surprise

Written by Carol Lisowski

This is a story of a four year-old Cocker Spaniel named Lily and how she became her new Daddy’s Christmas surprise.

Cliff and Suzi Allen lost their Cocker Spaniel, Freckles, in September of 2009.  When we lose our fur babies, we cope and grieve in different ways.  Some of us are ready immediately to bring another pet into our lives, while others need a lengthy grieving period.  It was Cliff who first began yearning for another dog, but Suzi just wasn’t ready yet.  She thought that when she was ready, it would be a totally different breed.   That was before she saw Lily’s picture on the Heaven Can Wait website.  Lily had the same coloring and the same expression on her face as Freckles. 

Suzi had begun her search for another dog because her husband really had been wanting to have a dog in the house again.  Even though she wasn’t sure she was ready, Christmas was coming, and she had begun thinking about surprising her husband with a new dog.  Suzi also thought it would be great to adopt a rescue. After seeing Lily’s picture, Suzi contacted the HCWS Dog Coordinator and thus began her covert operation to surprise Cliff for Christmas. 

Cliff is a Paramedic Firefighter out at the Test Site and is usually gone for a couple of days at a time.  Suzi set up an appointment to meet Lily.  She learned that Lily had just come from the Pups on Parole program where her handler had given her some basic training.  She also took a couple of pictures on her phone to feel Cliff out on what he thought of Lily.  Two issues she was concerned about were whether Cliff would prefer to have a puppy and if the dog would get along with Mercy, the family’s 17 year old cat.  When he came home, she told Cliff that she had been at PetSmart and saw the cutest dog.  When he saw the pictures, he said, “Why can’t I have one of those?” and further added that she “was adorable.”  Looks like Suzi had a green light to go forward with her surprise.

With the help of the Dog Coordinator, Lily was delivered with her paperwork to the house while Cliff was away at work.  Suzi took her to the pet store to get all the needed supplies and let Lily pick out her own new toys.  Cliff was coming home at 2 a.m., so Suzi hid Lily in another room.  She had been a very quiet dog since coming to her new home, but as soon as she heard a man’s voice, she began barking.   Cliff heard her and said, “You got me a dog?”  Out came Lily with a sign around her neck saying, “Welcome Home Daddy, Love Lily.”  Cliff’s heart just melted, and it was love at first sight.  Mercy and Lily have become fast friends and even sleep together sometimes.  This Christmas surprise had a very happy ending!


You can check out all of the dogs and cats availble for adoption at Heaven Can Wait Animal Society by Clicking Here.  Or you can sponsor a homeless pet waiting for a new home by Clicking Here.


One Response

  1. This is a heart warming story, it just seems this was a marriage made in HEAVEN..

    Gordie (Sheltie Dog) and his mom Marie

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