Dog Who Couldn't Calm Down Makes A Friend Who Helps Her Relax
"He's teaching her to stay calm and not get so wound up when she gets nervous."
Kingston and Lola only got to spend four weeks together in foster care, but they made every second count.
The two dogs came into each other's lives at just the right time - and perhaps, just for the right amount of time.
Kingston and Lola both had unhappy beginnings to life. In Kingston's case, the 4-year-old Dalmatian mix had been tethered to a heavy chain before he was rescued.
"[A Rejoyceful Animal Rescue] goes into the city of Flint, knocks on doors of people who have a dog chained in the backyard and offers assistance," Robelli said. "[The organization] educates them to get the dog taken into the house, and medically and physically taken care of."
But the group didn't find Kingston in a backyard - they found him on the streets.
"[Rescuers] were out doing their thing, and saw Kingston running down the road with a padlock chain around his neck attached to a tire," Robelli said. "They stopped him, and took him right to the vet. He had cuts all over his neck and face."
Kingston initially went into foster care with another volunteer for the rescue group. In the meantime, Robelli got Lola, who'd been rescued from a man who bought her from a puppy mill. Unfortunately, the man kept Lola inside a crate for most of her life.
"She was 8 weeks old when he got her, and he could never take enough time to take care of her and train her, so he kept her in a crate," Robelli said. "Then his work hours changed, and he started keeping her in this crate 24/7. She was pooping in her crate, she was eating in her crate - everything. She had sores on her legs for the crate being too small, and she had no socialization."
Since Lola had been kept inside a crate for so long, she used to be a very hyper dog, according to Robelli. "You couldn't calm her down," Robelli said. "The more stressed she got, the more high-strung she got."
Little did Robelli know that Kingston would end up helping Lola with her high energy issues.
The first time Kingston and Lola met was actually at a local radio station on Valentine's Day. A man was proposing to his girlfriend on air, and he'd asked for four shelter dogs to be there, each wearing a word to form the sentence, "Will You Marry Me?" Kingston and Lola happened to be chosen for the job.
"They met there, and Kingston fell in love with her and started kissing her," Robelli said. "Lola's just kind of a crazy girl, so it was pretty impressive to everybody that he could do that."
So, after some time passed, Robelli offered to take Kingston in, too.
The dogs instantly recognized each other, according to Robelli. "Kingston walked right up to Lola and kissed her!" Robelli said. "Lola instantly wanted to play, but we were in closed quarters so they just smelled each other and hung out."
Soon the two dogs were inseparable - they played together, slept together and ate together.
But their relationship was more than just keeping each other company - they helped each other deal with their individual issues.
"Kingston didn't have the inside skills, because he was a street dog, so he didn't know how to behave in a house," Robelli said. "Then here comes Lola who isn't afraid of anything, so she kind of guides him, and he's confident to try things because of her."
And while Lola helped Kingston, Kingston helped Lola.
"Kingston brought Lola to a level of, 'OK, I can deal with strange things as long as you're there,'" Robelli said. "He's teaching her to stay calm and not get so wound up when she gets nervous. So it's been a really nice fit for them. It's really great to see."
"They both came from backgrounds that weren't great," Robelli added. "But having another dog there helped them with that. It's like they say, 'If you can do it, I can do it.' They feed off each other."
Robelli initially hoped that Lola and Kingston would be adopted together, but then she found the perfect family for Kingston.
"The first thing he did was walk in that door, jump on the couch and sit next to the kids," Robelli said. "He was like, 'Yeah, this is where I want to be.' If you know Kingston, he's not that way. He's usually very shy to go into a house."
"They have another dog and a huge backyard," she added. "They had a child that he really bonded with, and I couldn't turn it away. They're perfect."
Now Lola needs to find her forever home, but Robelli doesn't think that she'll have a problem finding one, especially now that she's less hyper, thanks to the time she spent with Kingston.
"I have been with dogs my whole life, and I have never had a dog this eager to learn and this smart," Robelli said. "For instance, Lola learned that she likes ice cubes, and now every time she walks by the refrigerator, she has to do a quick look to see if there's any ice there. She notices everything and she's funny."
Robelli thinks that Lola would suit someone with an active lifestyle, and perhaps a family who has a dog already.