Little Allie has a true Cinderella story. I first met her in a former landfill park on the east coast of San Francisco Bay. Lola, our pointer spotted her; I just heard warning barks and then saw flash of white fur. The same thing for the next two mornings. Curiously, I contacted Mary Barnsdale, a friend who runs the park’s dog user group, and learned that they had heard stories about this elusive stray for nearly six months, but no one had been able to pinpoint a location. Now we knew where to find them!
Animal Control, stretched thin, didn’t have the staff to correct her, so Mary reached out to Jill Posener at Paw Fund to see if she could humanly capture the little dog, and I was happy to volunteer to help . The first two tries fell short, but on the third day we went out at dawn, set the traps of hot fried chicken – Jill’s favorite bait for hungry dogs – and bingo, we have it!
Albany PD officer Justin Kurland helped us get Allie to the parking lot in the capture box. He was also enthusiastic; He had seen her many times when he was on patrol in the park, but he always escaped her. (For more information on Allie’s rescue, visit thebark.com/allie.) It’s amazing how much intelligence and ingenuity it took for such a young, small dog to survive on its own. Since there is no food or fresh water in this park, their performance is even more impressive.
After a brief stint at the Berkeley shelter, Jill nursed Allie, prepared her for an adoption event, and quickly found her perfect: Mary Lou Salcedo, a retired senior citizen. Mary Lou told us, “Allie makes me so happy after losing my bichon at the age of 16. Now I’ve found my new companion.” Mary Lou has the time, patience, and tender love Allie deserves.
We’re overjoyed to feature her on the cover in a photo taken barely three weeks after she was captured. The photo was taken by Mo Saito, who recently set up his Doghouse Photos studio near our office. Mo, a former London fashion photographer, made a turning point in this country. He has a masterful ability that he used well to get this shot – while Allie wasn’t scared, she was pretty busy exploring the studio. Thankfully, Mary Lou’s friend Chase Wilson, a San Francisco firefighter and passionate dog lover who was invaluable in Allie’s training, came over to argue with her. We think you’ll agree that she, Mo, and Mary Lou did the trick.