Once Upon a Time…Carolyn Grove was looking for a new dog, several months after her previous dog had passed away. “I decided that I needed another rescue dog, because I needed and incentive to get up and walk. Otherwise, I’m a couch potato,” jokes Grove, a longtime interior designer.

It was through the website adoptapet.com that Grove found the rescue group Diana’s Grove of Cabool, Mo., and started browsing the adoptable dogs. “There were four dogs that were found duct-taped together, running through the town of Cabool,” Grove says. When she went to visit, she was told that the dogs were probably taped together because they were meant to be ‘bait’—animals that are thrown into the ring during a dog fight, to be killed by the fighting dogs. “I don’t know what happened—whether they were going to be raided, but they were set free duct-taped together,” she says.

At the adoption event, there was another family who was interested in the dog that originally caught Grove’s attention. “I thought it was a better fit for them because they had a teenager and it was a younger dog. I asked if they had the other dogs that had been found duct-taped together, and they said they had the mother, but they hadn’t brought her because no one had ever asked to see her out of her crate.”

At Grove’s request, the rescue group brought the mother back with them the next day. “She is the sweetest, most laid-back thing in the world,” Grove says. Since Samantha, a lab/border collie mix, was older when she was rescued, she seems even more grateful for the life she has now, Grove says. “For the first two weeks I had her, I would sit down and she’d crawl into my lap and put her paws around my neck. She has brought so much joy into our lives because she’s so loving,” she says. “The older dogs are the ones that really need adoption because everyone wants a puppy.”

These days, Grove takes Samantha on two or three walks a day, often with her husband, Jim Bowling. “It keeps me walking,” she says. “Sometimes you say, I don’t want to go to the gym today, but you don’t have that option when you have an animal—there’s a sense of obligation.”

Grove, also a member of the board for Humane Society of Missouri, credits Diana’s Grove and other rescue groups for the work they do in finding good homes for pets. “People don’t realize how much joy they can bring into their own lives by adopting an animal,” Grove says. “Samantha has been so loving from the very beginning, especially considering what she had just gone through. Rescuing an animal from what can be pretty deplorable conditions brings a joy in itself, and to have the animal—it is so worth it.”


For Your Own Fairy-Tail Ending:

Diana’s Grove Dog Rescue

4150 Highway M, Cabool, Mo.

573-714-4232, takeafriendhome.org

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