Boomer’s Blog

By Erin Guilshan, Executive Director, Pets Alive Westchester 

Boomer arrived at Elmsford Animal Shelter in 2008. The two year old Boomer was one of 600 dogs that would only know life in a kennel with staff and volunteers to offer a walk or some love occasionally.

Pets Alive took over the Elmsford Animal Shelter in 2010 and acquired all 600 dogs and 500 cats. Boomer was one of many dogs listed as dog aggressive. Sadly many of the dogs were crated, stacked on one another through the hallways of this very large facility and you can imagine the pent up energy they all had being in crates most of the 24 hours a day. There were also multiple dogs chained to the walls of the kennel runs and once Pets Alive took over we were able to help with making their lives much easier in many ways. Not many dogs or cats were adopted out by the previous shelter and Boomer was one of them. He was one of many dogs that didn’t have the opportunity to get adopted at the young age of 2 when he arrived (a highly adoptable age by any standard). But, instead he lived there for 5 years. He went from a 2 year old boy that could have had a great chance at being adopted on age alone to a 7 year old and considered not a highly adoptable dog any longer.

Pets Alive took over the Elmsford Shelter in 2010 and about the same time that Pets Alive took over a woman named Leslie began to volunteer there. She was introduced to Boomer and quickly fell in love with him. Boomer was one happy boy despite all he had been through. He loved to go on walks, play and snuggle. Leslie found a boy that she would consider her dog at PAW for the next few years. Leslie’s words to the staff again and again have been “if I ever see the day that Boomer got into a home that would be one of the happiest days of my life”.  She had hope that this day would come but it wasn’t likely as his chances of being adopted over many other “highly adoptable” dogs (we all know this means young and not a pit bull) was not good. But, there is always hope and she did not give up on hope that some day it could happen.

Sometimes we just need to have a little hope and know that as a new day comes for us all, a new page turns in not only our lives but that of the animals at PAW too. New doors can open and have opened. Over this past year 30 Legacy Dogs went into homes. Many senior dogs and cats were adopted and we HOPE that in 2014 we will see many more go into great homes.

At a recent event Pets Alive Westchester had on October 26th Leslie was speaking to staff and volunteers about Boomer.  She was saying how she wished she could do something to help Boomer find a home. In our conversation she was told to do all she could through social media to build awareness about him. Do a write up about him and see where it will go. We discussed doing a blog to help this great boy find a home. At that moment Boomer climbed up onto Leslie’s lap – we laughed and called him a “lap dog”. Then I snapped a picture and posted it to Facebook.



The next day I received this email:

My name is Nicole and I’m pretty sure I know Boomer. I know this might sound weird. Back around Oct 2006 I found a pit roaming the streets and I took her in. To my surprise she was pregnant. We named her Nala. She needed an emergency C-section on December 6, 2006 or she and the puppies wouldn’t survive. Good thing I worked and still currently do at an animal hospital as a vet tech. We did the c-section. Nala and only 4 puppies survived. I think Boomer is one of her puppies. Nala passed away last year of a hemangiosarcoma. It broke our hearts because she was always our baby. WE kept 1 of her puppies, Lila and still have her. 3 years ago we acquired her sister Drea back into our lives as we were her 5th owners and her only choice other than a shelter. They are both happy and healthy. So back to Boomer. One of my husband’s friends took Boomer who lived in Ossining, NY. He promised to give him a good home. His name was Danny R. (Last name withheld for privacy.) We lost contact with Danny and Boomer over the years. A couple of years later we heard he didn’t have Boomer anymore. This left me very upset and not knowing what happened to him. We didn’t know if he got into a good home or fell into the wrong hands. I told everyone who got a puppy, if you could not keep them to please contact me and I would help re-home the puppies. Now after years of wondering I saw a picture you posted on Facebook of a brindle pit named Boomer who resembles his sister Drea. My heart dropped. I attached baby pics of Boomer so you know I am not fooling you or making this story up. This is some type of fate or something to be crossing paths with him again. (Just so you don’t think I have bad intentions I have saved a dog who was adopted from Pets Alive – his name was Blizzard in your records and needed a foreign body surgery. I think it was a guy named John who I spoke to and came to pick up the dog from our hospital. )

All I would like to do is meet Boomer and try to help him find a special home. I really hope you are able to help me with this request. I have not been able to stop thinking about him since I saw the picture last night.

Thank you for your time.



Boomer and siblings                     Boomer puppy

I read it again, as I had to take in what she was telling me. I initially thought that there was no way that this could be possible, but once I pulled out Boomers file I saw that the person who had surrendered Boomer to the shelter in 2008 was indeed the same person who she had adopted him out to. After all this time, she had finally found him. It was unbelievable and I shared the information with staff and volunteers in the office. We were all floored. What were the chances?

I wrote her back immediately:

Hi Nicole.

Your email was so intriguing. I looked up the name of the person who surrendered Boomer and indeed it was Daniel R. Boomer came to us in 2008. The listed reason for surrender was because they had a baby coming and didn’t have enough time for him.

I would love to have you come meet Boomer. He is a wonderful dog that is still in need of a great home.

It’s an amazing story and yes, I do believe it could be fate that you saw my post about him on Facebook.



After that day, Boomer’s life changed forever. All it took was one person who loved him so much. Like many times in life, there are things that happen that trigger other things to happen. In this case if Leslie didn’t speak with us about what she could do to help Boomer find a home, Boomer climbing on her lap, us laughing and taking a picture to post to Facebook, Nikki would never have seen Boomer. Was it fate? Was it coincidence? I’m not sure what it was that made the stars align that day for Boomer and Nikki, but it happened and we are all grateful that it did. Nikki came to Pets Alive Westchester the next day with her family and Boomer never looked back. After 5 years, Boomer is now in the home he belongs in. The home where love lives for him. He will have this love the rest of his life. It’s times like these that we rejoice and know that miracles do happen.

Instead of writing a blog about Boomer in need of a home, I’m happy to announce that Boomer was adopted. Another Pets Alive Westchester miracle.

boomer adoption

Filed in Animal Rescue, Why we do this by Erin Guilshan on Jan 26, 2014.  There are 7 Comments

7 Responses to “Boomer’s Blog”

  1. Elizabeth W Says:

    Another happy ending. Love it!

  2. Rebekah Says:

    Yay! What an amazing story. I’m so glad Boomer found his way back home =)

  3. Patty G, Says:

    what a wonderful heartwarming story. Animal lovers never give up. Thank you all for loving him and sharing his great story.

  4. Paula Williams Says:

    A touching story for anybody that loves pets. Unfortunately, most of the times having an old dog adopted is almost impossible, and there are many shelters- many times in unthinkable conditions- with piles of cages of dogs waiting for adoptive parents.

    Thank God for institutions like Pets Alive. And good for you Boomer!!

  5. Donna varbaro Says:

    I am in tears. What a wonderful story. I am so happy Boomer is back home! Way to go Nicole.

  6. Julie Smith Says:

    What a wonderful story, with a beautiful and happy ending. As boomer, there are many animals waiting to return home or find a good one, is good to know what institutions like Pets Alive can do. Great job!

  7. Henry Says:

    So glad this story had a happy ending! Really good job, enjoyed this article as always!

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