Animal Adoption Stories French Bulldog

4 Years In A Puppy Mill, They Didn’t Think She Would Survive

Written by Lens And Leash

Lens And Leash: Who is this adoption story about?

Sean May: Sunny, my 9 year old female French Bulldog.

Sean May With Sunny – Photo By Pure Imagery San Diego

Lens And Leash: What made you decide to adopt?

Sean May: I’ve always known that there would be the perfect pup at a shelter or rescue and I’ve heard so many horror stories of puppy mills that I never wanted to buy from a breeder or pet store.

Photo By Pure Imagery San Diego

Lens And Leash: When and where did you adopt Sunny?

Sean May: I adopted Sunny from the Wasatch Animal Rescue in Salt Lake City, UT in January 2013.

Sunny & Her Brother Bronson – Photo By Pure Imagery San Diego

Lens And Leash: How old was Sunny when you adopted her and do you know anything about her life before you adopted her?

Sean May: She was 4 and half years old when we adopted her. Yep, she had a pretty horrible life before we adopted her. She was in a puppy mill in Wisconsin. The mill was shutdown from animal abuse and neglect charges. You could tell that Sunny had been attacked and abused from how bad of shape she was in. The rescue shelter didn’t think she was going to survive. She had horrible ear infections and had to be force fed for a couple of months. Heather at the animal rescue took Sunny home with her every day for 8 months to get her back to health. Once we adopted her we had to clean her ears out on a daily basis for months. It never ceases to amaze me at how animals can be treated poorly and still be the biggest sweethearts and full of love.

Photo By Pure Imagery San Diego

Lens And Leash: What made you decide to adopt Sunny specifically?

Sean May: My girlfriend at the time really wanted a French Bulldog so we had been searching on Pet Finder for a couple of months. We finally found Sunny and the description said that she didn’t play well with others. We didn’t have another dog at the time so we went to go see her. It was snowing and fairly cold out. When we got to the rescue, Sunny was sitting in the corner next to the heater. She didn’t budge when we walked in. She was an absolutely sweetheart but I wasn’t expecting to take her home that day. We didn’t have any of the items we needed; leash, dog bed, food, etc… so I thought we were just going to meet her and then potentially pick her up another day. However, my girlfriend had a different idea. She turned to me and said, “you know we are taking her home right?”

The Original Photo We Saw Of Her On PetFinder With This Caption: “Love this darling girl! I wish she would play nice with other dogs so it would be easier to find her forever home. :)”

Lens And Leash: What is your favorite quirk about Sunny?

Sean May: When she runs she looks like a little hippo and how she always sits on her brother Bronson.

Sean’s All Time Favorite Photo Of Sunny

Lens And Leash: Did you have to do any training with her after you adopted her?

Sean May: Yep, we worked with a professional trainer for a couple months. Sunny didn’t know how to properly interact with other dogs so we worked with an amazing trainer in Park City UT at Petco. She would bring in different dogs that would know how to run a “pack” to teach Sunny how to interact and behave. She was doing good but it wasn’t until we went on vacation and the trainer “pet sat” for the week. Sunny really came into her own after that week and we haven’t had any issues with Sunny around other dogs since.

Photo By Pure Imagery San Diego

Lens And Leash: What tips or pieces of advice would you offer to people that are looking to adopt for the first time?

Sean May: It may be a little expensive but I highly recommend you find a great trainer that can help you properly interact with your dog and train them properly so you have a lifelong friend and family member.

Photo By Pure Imagery San Diego

Lens And Leash: Would you adopt again and would you adopt from the same shelter/rescue?

Sean May: Absolutely, I wish I could adopt more dogs all the time. Once my living situation changes, it is definitely on my list.

Sunny On Her First Day In Her Forever Home

To learn more about the Wasatch Animal Rescue, click here.

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About the author

Lens And Leash


    • Thanks so much for the kind words! We are excited as well and look forward to featuring many more adoption stories and shelters!

  • I have heard that Wasatch Animal Rescue is a scam and they are really just another puppy mill. There are a lot of complaints about them. Just FYI

    • I’m really sorry to hear that Chris. It has been a couple years since I’ve talked with them and they were doing a great job back then, so hopefully that isn’t the case but I appreciate you letting us know.

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