Our beginnings

"Hello, my name is Bruno and I'm going to tell you the story of how Safe and Sound began...

When I was 8 months old, I ran away from home.

I didn't know how scary being outside would be.  You see, I had never been out of my garden before - in fact, I had never really been out of my shed. 

I hadn't eaten for days. I was so hungry I decided to brave it.  I didn't mean to leave home, I just went to find some food.  I'd just spotted some rubbish bins to investigate, when a nasty man grabbed me with a giant fishing pole and took me to a place they call "The Pound".  I think it is some sort of prison for dogs.  I don't know why they took me there.  I am not a bad dog.

The Pound was scary.  Everyone was barking and trying to get out, but no-one came to help us.  Sometimes, the nasty man would come in and take one of the other dogs away.  They never came back.  The older dogs said they had gone to P-T-S.  I don't know where PTS is, but it sounds like a horrible place.

I kept trying to get out, I was sure my family was looking for me, but the nasty man said my owners didn't want me anymore; he said they weren't coming to get me from prison, that I was never going home and that I would be put to sleep.  I was heartbroken, I missed my shed.  But I was very tired.  Going to sleep didn't sound so bad, I was so tired could have slept for an eternity.

One day, a kind lady came to visit, she gave me a cuddle and took some photos of me - this is me with Pound Lady, in the picture on the left.  I was so scared, she nicknamed me Daisy.  

Pound Lady said she was going to get me out!  I didn't believe her at first, but the next day she came to get me and put me in her car.  When we got out again, there was another lady waiting for us.  I knew she was a good lady, because she gave me food - CHICKEN!  It tasted GREAT.  Then I noticed she had a DOG with her!  

At first I was very frightened.  Apart from in the dog prison, I had never met another dog.  My shed was just for me.  It found out she was a girl dog and I soon decided she was quite pretty, so I followed her and we went for a walk together.  I was so frightened, there lots of loud noises and CARS.  So many cars!  At least I had my new friend to look after me.  She was confident and I felt safe with her.

I couldn't believe it when they took me back to prison.  I really liked her and Chicken Lady.  I guessed maybe they just didn't like me.

But about a week later, Pound Lady took me out again, only this time, we travelled far far away.  She took me to a place called LONDON.  I didn't know anything about London, but it was REALLY noisy so I hoped it wasn't anywhere near P-T-S.   When I finally got out of the station, I had the biggest surprise of my life. I turned the corner and Chicken Lady was there waiting for me!  I was so happy to see her I licked her all over! She gave me a cuddle and more CHICKEN! 

Then she took me home.  Her house was much nicer than my shed, and I had Jada (girl dog) to snuggle up next to. I was so tired I collapsed on the floor as soon as we walked in.  It was hard to sleep because my chest was so infected I couldn't breathe properly.  Chicken Lady said my lungs rattled so much they sounded like a motorbike engine.  When I woke up, Chicken Lady was stroking my sides, saying how I was so thin my ribs were sticking out and that I would have to see a V-E-T the next day.  She said it would take at least 4 baths to get the smell of wee and poo out of my fur.  This is me, all clean and refreshed, after my bath, with Jada, my new girlfriend: 

Over the next few months, I had to learn so much about the world.  At first I found everything very scary.  I had never really seen humans before, or cars, or motorcycles, or buses, or DOGS!  I didn't know what was happening, so I barked and tried to look scary whenever anything I didn't understand came near me.  Chicken Lady, my new mummy, said I had 'fear aggression' because I had spent too much time on my own,  in my shed.  She told me she would NEVER let anyone hurt me and taught me how to trust.  When I felt frightened, she would show me my favourite thing in the world - my TENNIS BALL!  Everything seemed less scary with my ball in my mouth.  In the park, I was so busy catching my tennis ball, I soon forgot about the other dogs and all the humans.

These days, I am much more confident.  I know now that men are not going to hit me so instead of running away, I try to sit on their laps!  I am not scared of cars anymore either.  This is me teaching mummy how to drive: 

SO much has happened since I left The Pound.   I am rather popular in the local park - everyone says I have come so far since I got my new mummy and moved out of my shed.  With Jada's help, I learnt not to be so scared of things.  She made me feel much safer and with her by my side, I started to have FUN.  I even learnt to smile again: 

I like to hang out with other dogs - but my favourite things will always be my mummy and my tennis balls.... And not necessarily in that order!

Best of all, I know that my new mummy will never EVER let me go.  I don't have to worry about what P-T-S means, because I know she would never send me there.  She loves me so much, she even lets me sleep in her bed under the covers.

This is me, starring in my very own video. My first holiday was quite an adventure. 

Safe and Sound was founded by Chicken Lady as she couldn't bring home more death row dogs.  
Our story shaped Safe and Sound's core belief: No dog is ever left behind.

In Loving Memory of Teddy Bruno - Feb 2010 to July 2016