IF THERE was ever a dog who needed a loving home, it was Lucky.
As a two-month-old, Lucky was stolen from the Echuca Pet Shop in a multi-species heist.
Sold only the day before to a young girl from Maryborough, Lucky’s dog-napping was the talk of the town in January 2017.
The missing Catahoula-Kelpie cross was eventually found wandering along Ogilvie Ave near KFC and was handed into the Campaspe Animal Shelter.
Lucky came to the shelter significantly underweight, but not traumatised by his experience as it is speculated he was well-looked after by the thief. He was checked over by a vet, microchipped and desexed.
While his original buyer was given a sibling from the breeder, Lucky was now without a home.
Having started at the Riv in October 2016, journalist Vivienne Duck knows the story of Lucky quite well.
Vivienne moved to Echuca from Melbourne with her partner Dylan Jones and the couple had been wanting a dog for quite some time.
As soon as it was reported Lucky would become available, Vivienne headed over to the shelter to meet the young pup.
‘‘I put my name down with the Campaspe Animal Shelter as there was already heaps of interest in him,’’ Vivienne said.
‘‘On the Friday he was ready to be adopted and on the Saturday I went to have a look before netball.
‘‘I ended up taking him home with me.’’
As Lucky was only a puppy, Vivienne and Dylan had their work cut out to train their new family member into a well-trained dog.
‘‘He was only 13kg when we got him but he’s up to 25 now,’’ Vivienne said.
‘‘He was never shy. He was quite crazy when we first got him and he’s always been cuddly.
‘‘But he’s petrified of storms.
‘‘The shelter was great. They told me all about him; his temperament, breed, requirements and they said he needed a lot of love. They gave us plenty of suggestions about food to help him put on weight. They even set up the rest of his vaccination and stitches appointments.’’
Because Lucky was six months old when Vivienne and Dylan adopted him, they had difficulty finding a puppy school to accept him. So they put the hard yards in themselves.
‘‘We did most of his training,’’ she said.
‘‘It was time consuming as we both had to spend time with him and there was a lot of training to do in our backyard and dog park.
‘‘But he’s always been pretty smart so he picked all the tricks up quickly and we soon discovered he’s obsessed with balls.’’
From a nightmare beginning to now finding comfort and love from Vivienne and Dylan, the two-year-old sure is one lucky duck.
‘‘We always say we wonder what we did before Lucky,’’ Vivienne said.
‘‘He’s made us more aware, active and organised.
‘‘We take him wherever we go.’’
If you have adopted a dog from the Campaspe Animal Shelter and want to share your story, contact us on 5482 1111 or email firstname.lastname@example.org