When we asked rescued dog Darko’s human Candace about how he has changed her life, here’s what she said. “I could write pages on this, and it still wouldn’t suffice. Darko has changed my life on many different levels, from my routine to the people I connect with, to teaching me real unconditional love. I never saw this patient, kind and deeply loving side of me until he came into my life. I guess I’ve never loved anyone quite the way I love my boy. Between the two of us, I’d say Darko rescued me.”
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How did you meet Darko? Tell us a bit about his backstory.
Candace: I saw Darko on Instagram and was instantly drawn to him. I recall meeting him and he came out extremely hyper, jumping and pulling. It was impossible to walk with him. The rescue centre took him in, and I went home thinking this is not the dog for me. He is huge and out of control and I wouldn’t be able to handle him on the street. That weekend I went into other rescue centres, but I just couldn’t get him off my mind. I came back home that day and asked the rescue organisation for an extended trial period to see if I could train him. That was the best decision of my life.
Since Darko is rescued was the initial settling in period difficult?
Candace: It was quite a challenge yet extremely transformational for both of us. Darko taught me that all my favourite shoes don’t mean much when compared to his puppy dog eyes. Our first few months included intense training and lots of learning, fun and inspiring moments for both of us.
What are some of your favourite things to do with Darko?
Candace: Hiking and hitting the beach. I love seeing how happy Darko gets when he’s at the beach, it’s probably the one place he wouldn’t mind being abandoned at 😉 I enjoy spending time with him around the day and try to take him out with me whenever possible, even if it’s for a short supermarket run. Between the two of us, I’ve accepted that I’m the one with a higher separation anxiety.
What are some of his goofiest traits?
Candace: Darko is obsessed with the water hose and digging in sand. A juicy piece of lamb in one hand and the water hose in the other, it’s the hose that wins!
Since you are dealing with several medical issues with Darko could you share a bit about your experience and what kind of planning it requires?
Candace: This is an overwhelming one to answer, especially now. After recently discovering that Darko has chronic kidney disease, it’s not been easy on many levels – emotionally and financially. I’ve had to factor in tests to be done at least every six months. A kidney flush every few months and perhaps monthly by next year. It’s put a lot of stress on me pursuing my dreams of running my own business. I suppose now it’s all about working harder to give him the best care that he deserves.
Please share some bog lessons that Darko has taught you.
Candace: Darko has taught me how to be happy and carve a positive mindset. This for me is our biggest win! Just his presences in my life has shown me different sides of me and his cheerful happy attitude rubs off on me big time.
While having a dog in life is truly incredible its a huge responsibility too. Could you please share some thoughts especially for humans considering fostering/adopting a dog?
Candace: Before adopting Darko I put aside a lot of money for any emergency/relocation etc. I thought I had it all covered and then our lives changed drastically with his recent diagnosis. The money that I had saved is definitely helping. Otherwise, I wouldn’t be able to care for him given that I’m building my own small creative studio. Time and finances are two areas to look into before committing to bringing a dog into your life.
Finally, as a human of a beautiful dog what’s that one message that you’d like to send out to our readers?
Candace: Spend as much time as you can with your fur babies, they grow up so quickly.