“Angels” Adopt Elderly Dogs Who Lost Their Home When Owner Went Into Hospice

Photo credit: BARCS

Baltimore’s city shelter asked for “an angel,” as they put it, to help two very elderly dogs who lost their home.

Bruno and Caramel, 18 and 17 years old respectively, landed in BARCS last week because their human mother has gone into a hospice care center with late-stage cancer.

Bruno has arthritis and serious dental issues. Carmel is healthy, and acts as her brother’s “guardian,” as BARCS put it in a Facebook post — asking for someone to come forward, and make sure “a shelter is not where your story ends”:

You have been loyal to your mom for nearly two decades, and so you will not spend another day uncertain of who will be by your side. I will get you guys out of the shelter and care for you no matter how much time you have left.

Photo credit: BARCS
Photo credit: BARCS

On Saturday, those angels appeared.

Bruce and Jim — as they’ve been identified — saw Bruno and Carmel’s story on Facebook, and came into the shelter to give them a home.

“Bruce and Jim have vowed to love and care for Bruno and Caramel whether they have a week or a lifetime ahead them,” BARCS wrote in a Facebook post, that frankly has us pretty weepy.

“When they picked them up today, Bruno was snuggled up in Bruce’s lap. He told our staff that, ‘Bruno has a lap every day for the rest of his life, whether it’s for a day, a month or for years.'”

Photo credit: BARCS
Photo credit: BARCS

BARCS spokesperson Bailey Deacon tells Shelter Me that Bruce and Jim made “a selfless act” ensuring Bruno and Carmel would be safe.

It also eased the dogs’ mother’s worried mind, when someone from the shelter contacted her in hospice, to let her know her babies had been adopted.

“She thought for sure they would be euthanized because of their age,” says Deacon. “She was overcome with relief.”



Arin Greenwood

Arin Greenwood is an animal writer based in St. Petersburg, Florida. Previously, she was animal welfare editor at The Huffington Post. Arin is a former lawyer (J.D. from Columbia Law School, member of the New York Bar), life long animal lover, pit bull advocate, and devoted fan of cats and dogs who run for public office.

Her first novel, Tropical Depression — based on her five-odd, sometimes very odd, years living on a small island near Guam — was published by teeny indie publisher Back Porch Books in 2011. Her second book, a comic young adult mystery called Save The Enemy, was published by Soho Teen in November 2013. Hello From Dog Island!, Arin’s third book, will be published by Soho Teen in 2018.

Know a shelter with a great, innovative program? Have another animal story to share? Get in touch at aringreenwood@gmail.com!


  1. Marsha says:

    God bless you Angels giving them a loving home..and easing the Mothers mind in what may be her last days here on earth God bless you

  2. Anne Britton says:

    I read that story and I’m so so happy they found a wonderful new home. Thank you for being their Angels!!!

  3. Joanne Hamilton says:

    True angels! <3

  4. Donna Turner says:

    Thank you sweet people!

  5. C Brian says:

    Our local hospice has a Pet Peace of Mind program. This program ensures that the patients’ pets are getting all of their needs met with the same kind of loving care their families have given them. Volunteers walk dogs, provide waste clean-up, feed pets and provide transportation to veterinary visits or groomers. They also try to find placement once the owner passes if there is no one that will take the pet.

  6. Julie says:

    Thank goodness for these rescuers. They definitely have kind , loving hearts. And what a relief for their terminally ill mom.

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