After a long search and wait for a Golden we were happy to be given an opportunity to adopt a China dog meat trade survivor through Golden Bond Rescue!  We adopted Beauty (later renamed Bella Rose) without meeting her, having made a tough choice from several photos of dogs available for adoption.  They all looked so downtrodden and sad… but Beauty/Bella Rose was sitting up in the photo and looking at the camera, almost pleading that we choose her.  Those eyes still melt my heart every day!   Sometimes the universe knows the best dog match for you… we weren’t sure of her age, personality or history, just that she was from the dog meat trade and needed a loving home.

Bella arrived into the US on 9/1/19  & she was to be picked up by us on Labor Day.  I had some anxiety because I wasn’t sure who I would find once meeting Bella, but I knew she had been through so much and I already loved her for the courage to survive her fate.

Bella and I took a few days to get to know each other and bond before my husband arrived home.  She explored the backyard, rolled in the grass for the first time, listened to the birds with fascination and learned about the critters in the neighborhood (squirrels, raccoons & opossums).

We have had Bella Rose 3 months and I can’t imagine life without her!  I am smitten because she is the sweetest girl!  I can’t imagine how she survived the horrors in China and doesn’t seem to have any residual trauma. She has gained back all her weight and her fur has grown back in.  Her ears are soft & silky and her tail is no longer bald.  It has lots of long feathering growing in. What a beautiful girl she’s turning into!  I can’t wait to see her full coat and to be able to brush it!  She will soon be a bella Bella (beautiful Beauty), living up to her name inside and out!

Bella loves to go for walks, car rides, eat, play and be petted.  A few of the most exciting firsts for Bella was her first experience at the beach.  She had no clue what the ocean was and she approached it with trepidation.  She couldn’t figure it out and seemed to think it was alive.  She approached cautiously, then ran away when the waves came in.  She kept investigating, as it piqued her curiosity, then suddenly she realized this was the most exciting thing to ever happen to her (other than leaving China)!  She started to run and jump, circling all around me, barely containing her excitement!  Unfortunately I had to keep her on the leash, as it was a strictly enforced on-leash beach.  Soon she was attempting to roll her head in the wet sand as the waves receded, then as she got her courage she got her toes wet in the wave and ran away, until finally she was up to her elbows in the water, pulling me in with her (shoes and all) and dunking her head gurgling in the water.  It was all I could do to hold back my tears of joy to see her so ecstatic, when just a month before she was destined to be sadistically slaughtered and a meal.

Then just a few days ago, Bella Rose won first Place at the Ugly Dog Christmas Sweater contest at the Front Street Animal Shelter in Sacramento.  I remade a Christmas sweater I found at a thrift store into a dog sweater.  I used the sleeve to make a hat.  She hated the hat and tried to shake it off, but she rocked that runway with her outfit!   Who would imagine that a dog meat trade survivor destined as a meal in China would win an Ugly Christmas Sweater contest in the US just a few months later.  Now if that isn’t good karma, I’m not sure what is!

We love Bella to the moon & back!  Can you tell?  We’re so happy to have her in our life and that we can give her a Happily Furever After!  Thank you Golden Bond Rescue staff, volunteers and donators for all you do!  Bella is wagging her tail at you… honestly, it never stops wagging!

Thanks so much for our precious Bella!

Elaine, Bob & Bella Rose

Beauty, now Bella was adopted on October 11, 2019