Adopting Mya From West LA Animal Shelter

Mya the pitbull

Mya at Scoops Westside by Noms Not Bombs

Mya was scheduled to die today. She had been at the West LA Animal Shelter since July and her time was up. “They can’t live here,” said one of the shelter volunteers. She had a point. The West LA shelter isn’t exactly no kill but they do keep their animals longer than most other shelters. However they also only have so much space for the rescued animals. Fortunately for this 6-year-old pit bull some volunteers had taken it upon themselves to “network” her, sending out an email to all their contacts asking if anyone was interested in adopting her.

I got the email last Friday and after watching the YouTube video someone made of this adorable pittie I knew I had to meet her. I have wanted to get a pit bull since I had one when I was a kid. They’re adorable, loyal and lovable. And Mya seemed very mellow. Love how she kept carrying her own leash.

I arrived at the shelter, which is right near Best Buy on Pico, the day after getting the email. Holly, the one-woman animal rescue who actually helped me with Molly the Houdini dog last year, set up the appointment. We were lead into the kennels where all the dogs started barking uncontrollably. “Every time I go here, I make sure to not look at the dogs,” Holly said, using her hands as blinders as we quickly walked past all the dogs so desperate for attention. I tried the blinders trick, too, but it didn’t work. I was still overcome by how many dogs there were. They barked frantically trying to get our attention. It was so sad. Suffice it to say, I was bawling.

Finally I was taken to Mya’s pen. Unlike the other dogs jumping against their gates, she sat quietly and obediently, looking up at us with those brown eyes. I knew immediately I wanted her. Since she had been at the shelter for more than 30 days, she was discounted. Normally it costs about $120 to adopt a dog but with the discount she was only $83.

When you adopt a dog (which are microchipped and spayed/neutered), the shelter hooks you up with a collar, leash and some Pet Co coupons to get you on your way to pet ownership. They’ll take the dog in the back while you fill out the paperwork and do a quick examination of it. You’ll get all the dog’s medical records. By the way, the shelter takes donations for leashes, treats and collars, so if you want to drop them by, please do. Here’s more stuff on their wishlist.

After we got Mya’s paperwork squared away, I walked her down the street to the pet supply store, My Pet Naturally. It’s where people who love their dogs A LOT shop. They have raw bone marrow in the freezer, dog collars with astrological signs on it and a variety of grain-free kibble. A couple of doors down there’s also groomers where your dog can get a quick 20-minute grooming for $15. Only problem is that you have to make an appointment as they book up fast.

So I took her to Pet Co where I didn’t need to make an appointment. After living in the shelter, Mya was a really dirty girl so I wanted to get her all cleaned up before I let her in my house. Grooming at Pet Co takes about two hours and it cost about $40 but it was worth it.

Mya is now all cleaned up, has a crate to call her own and gets walked three times a day. She is so sweet and gentle, great with people. I can’t believe she almost died today. And how there are so many other great dogs out there looking for homes that won’t get a reprieve like Mya did.

In any case, if you’re looking for a pet, I highly recommend adopting. Some shelters will even let you foster the dog for a bit so you can see if it’s a match. West LA doesn’t have a foster program but they said they’re looking into starting one soon.

11361 West Pico Boulevard
Los Angeles, California 90064 (map)

17 Responses to Adopting Mya From West LA Animal Shelter
  1. MyLastBite
    February 16, 2011 | 1:55 pm

    Love you for doing this. Looking around my office, I have my three mutts (Maxie, Martini and Harrison) and two visiting pups (Ziggy and Sullivan) as well.

    Dogs rule.

    You do too.


  2. Stephanie C
    February 16, 2011 | 2:07 pm

    I started crying while reading and watching that video.. then I realized.. I was there when you first got to Scoops! Beautiful dog 🙂

  3. Caroline on Crack
    February 16, 2011 | 2:16 pm

    Aw thanks. I’m so happy with her. I think it’s the beginning of a wonderful friendship.

  4. ShopEatSleep
    February 16, 2011 | 2:18 pm

    Aw, Mya looks like such a sweetie pie! It’s so great that you’re giving her a good home. I used to visit shelters but it just got to be too sad. PS — I used to live in that neighborhood and totally know that store. They have some crazy stuff, but it’s cute!

  5. Justin M.
    February 16, 2011 | 2:19 pm

    Yay Mya!

  6. Desiree
    February 16, 2011 | 2:41 pm

    Your story was really touching and I love hearing about people who adopt pets! I really don’t think there should be any reason not to. I rescued my dog in May and can’t imagine a better little furry friend!

    Enjoy her!

  7. Noelle
    February 16, 2011 | 3:27 pm

    Aww, she’s so cute!! Congrats. I’m so glad you were finally able to get one.

  8. Caroline on Crack
    February 16, 2011 | 3:59 pm

    Yeah, some of the stuff they have in that store is just silly. But people who are really into their dogs would love it.

    Hopefully one day soon we can do a play date with Mona and Mya at Scoops Westside!

    Thanks! Yes, I wish more people adopted and less people dropped their pets off at the shelter. I will. I love her so much already.

    Thanks! Yes, this one has no issues, unlike Molly the Escape Artist. Mya likes people.

  9. tube
    February 16, 2011 | 4:03 pm

    Very sweet story (:
    I love happy endings! Enjoy her she is beaitiful

  10. Adriana
    February 16, 2011 | 4:14 pm

    Awww, what a beautiful dog! We have two dogs at home (Frida & Che), and I guess we sort of rescued them when we went on vacation to Baja and ended up bringing them home with us. It’s true what they say that dogs find us.

    So what happened to Molly? Did she find a home?

  11. eastside food bites
    February 16, 2011 | 4:59 pm

    Congrats and thanks for writing this. We rescued our dog 9 years ago, and he’s been a great pet. There are lots of cats at the pound, too, for those that want a low-maintenance pet.

    3 walks a day–lucky dog!

  12. karen
    February 17, 2011 | 9:32 am

    very nice post and beautiful dog.

  13. yolanda
    February 17, 2011 | 11:15 am

    Such a good thing you did and she is so cute. I always wanted me a dog, but i travel way too much

  14. Food GPS
    February 19, 2011 | 5:08 pm

    Glad things worked out well for you and Mya.

  15. kate
    March 2, 2011 | 11:17 am

    You can officially take a task off your to do list. Congrats on getting a pit, they are the best dog ever.

  16. quarrygirl
    March 6, 2011 | 6:25 pm

    i was just catching up on your blog, and this post made me cry!

    mya is so cute, and lucky to have been adopted by you. <3 <3

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