Meet "Runway": An unexpected airport guest captures hearts and finds a home
Tuesday, December 19, 2017
It’s not unusual to see dogs on airport property, whether it’s our therapy dog volunteers, K-9 unit dogs, service animals and traveling pets. However, in October we got a different kind of canine visit when a small retriever mix apparently darted through a gate when it opened for vehicle entry. An airport employee spotted the dog and was quickly able to catch him. It was obvious that the dog who would eventually be named “Runway” had been on his own for quite some time. He was skinny and a bit nervous, and he had apparently suffered a broken jaw that had healed on its own, leaving him with a bit of a cross-bite and some missing teeth. However, he seemed blissfully unaware of these setbacks, showing a sweet disposition and a hearty appetite. Though his life had obviously been difficult, you’d never know it from his friendly demeanor.
Realizing that he needed some help, we enlisted the help of our therapy dog volunteers and their connection with the Memphis Area Golden Retriever Rescue (MAGRR). MAGRR quickly agreed to help Runway get healthy and find a new home. MAGRR first sent him to The Pet Hospital in Collierville, where he was examined, treated for parasites, and given lots of love. “Once he arrived at our clinic and we coaxed him out of his crate, he warmed right up – wagging his tail and loving all of the attention,” said Phyl Simmons, Executive Director for MAGRR. “While his DNA may not be 100% golden, his heart certainly is.”
After a few weeks, he was deemed healthy and ready to begin his search for a forever home. It didn’t take long for him to capture the attention of Paul & Ruth Wallace-Brodeur, a retired couple in Montpelier, Vermont. The Wallace-Brodeur’s family dog had passed away a year and a half ago, and they were finally ready to welcome a new dog. Their search brought them to MAGRR, and after completing the application and screening process, the Wallace-Brodeurs were approved to adopt Runway. He arrived in Vermont on December 9.
Ruth provided the following update: “He has checked every inch of our house and enjoyed two long walks up the hill and through the woods behind the house. He behaves beautifully on the leash and finds everything worth investigating. He likes everyone he’s met, greets them gently, offers them a turn at tossing a tennis ball or stuffed toy but isn’t insistent. Right now, he’s sleeping on a fleece bed by my desk after a good walk in the snow.”
“We are awed and grateful that this little dog’s beautiful spirit so quickly shines on us after all he’s been through. We were going to re-name him, but after hearing of all his friends rooting for him at the Memphis Airport, we changed our minds. He is Runway, and he knows it.”
So there you have it, a friendly unexpected visitor who ended up finding a home. At MEM, we’re accustomed to making sure you get to your destination, but this trip will always be close to our hearts.
For more information about MAGRR, visit their website at https://magrr.org.