We think the Hawaiians say it best: you are not your pet’s “owner.” You are their “kahu.”
Kahu has many meanings, among them are guardian, protector, steward, beloved, attendant. A kahu is someone entrusted with an animal’s life.
It’s not just about providing the creature with food, water, shelter and love; we have the honor and responsibility of watching over these cherished beings as they watch over us. It’s about acknowledging the human-animal bond, understanding that they are companions on our life journey.
With that, we present the 2023 Pet Search Winners and Honorable Mentions.
Macy & Spartacus
Owner: Jeanette Rousseau
This year’s Pet Search Winners are a brother-sister English Bulldog duo from Flint. We thought they were both radiant with canine charisma!
Jeanette entered the Pet Search in memory of her parents who both passed away this year. “It’s been rough for all of us, especially the dogs. They always loved going to my parent’s house and are definitely grieving the loss, as I am,” Jeanette shares.
“I include the dogs in most of the things I do – they are like my kids! Macy’s my little road dog. She’s always down for an adventure and is out the door as soon as I lift my car keys. Most of the time she gets to go with me, but in the morning when I leave for work, I can tell she’s bummed.”
Jeanette adopted Macy after her mom’s beloved dog passed away – she’s named after mom’s favorite place to shop! Now ten years old, she never misses the opportunity to meet new people or get a belly rub. “Anytime you need a friend to talk to, she is there to listen,” her mom adds. Her favorite things include eating cheese, rides in the car and taking naps with her big brother, Spartacus. She loves to dress up in one of her many costumes at Halloween, Christmas and just walking around the neighborhood. A talented seamstress, Jeanette’s mom created all of the dogs’ costumes and outfits; the pink tutu is the last thing Grandma made for Macy.
Spartacus loves to nap all day, eat treats of any kind and snuggle with his mom. One of his favorite things was visiting Grandma and Grandpa’s house where he could play in the water, chase geese and go for boat rides. “Spartacus will celebrate his 12th birthday in March by having another party with friends and family – opening presents is always his favorite part of any holiday,” Jeanette says. “I miss my parents miserably, but I know they would have told me to ‘go for it’ and enter this contest!”
Well, Jeannette, we’re glad you did!
Owner: Angie DuBois
After being struck by a car, this pom was rescued by Mari Drago (Drago Corvettes). Mari immediately posted on Facebook and called local vets for help. After being on “stray hold” at Genesee County Animal Control, the dog was transferred to Adopt-A-Pet in Fenton for surgery on his leg and rehab. He is now healthy, his leg is healed and he is in his forever home. Mari Drago and Adopt-A-Pet Fenton saved him and his leg! He will forever be Drago!
Owner: Andrea Bergstrom
I’m a giant fluff ball that loves to watch TV with my mom. I just had nine puppies with the love of my life, Dolly. My best trick is giving high-fives.
Owner: Shawny Neubecker
This nine-year-old pit/boxer has been a therapy/emotional support animal for her owner, family and close friends. When someone is upset, she will lay on them like a weighted blanket and kiss away tears. She came from an abusive situation as a puppy but has overcome most of her fears. Holly almost died last summer and saving her life required drastic measures. She not only survived, but is now thriving, playful and ready for adventure! “We are just so thankful for her life,” her mom says.
Owner: Melissa Farney
We rescued this Boston Terrier from Adopt-A-Pet of Fenton. We think her smile says it all!
Owner: Diane Lechota
Celebrating her third birthday this month, this Springer Spaniel mix was adopted from Adopt-A-Pet Fenton at six months old.
Described as “a very high-energy, beautiful and fast runner,” Indy’s favorite things include long walks on the trails at Bicentennial Park and Seven Lakes; playing with her pals at Four Paws Hotel & Day Resort (photo taken there), and fetching balls and sticks with her neighbor pal, Willy. Last June, Indy received her Canine Good Citizenship Certificate through Tri Canine Campus in Clarkston where she takes Advanced Obedience classes. She has also participated in Agility and Nose/Scent Work classes at Companion Dog Training Club.
Midas (aka “Stinky”)
Owner: Faith Finholm
Found as a kitten alone on the side of the road, Midas was rescued by Lucky Day Animal Rescue in Grand Blanc. He was adopted with a severe respiratory infection and eye infection. The respiratory infection was cleared after a few weeks of treatment. The eye infection left him with poor eye health and he receives medication and special supplements for eye health to this day. Now four years old, he is a very energetic and playful guy who routinely jumps into fits of “zoomies” when his parents get home from work.
Midas’ absolute favorite toy is a “bee-on-a-stick” which he carries all around the house and always knows where it is. If it gets stuck as he drags it around, he tells his parents who follow him to it and help get it unstuck. “Where is your bee?” will get him riled up – he’ll hunt it down and bring it to the person who asked in hopes they will play with him. It is common to hear him dragging it up and down the stairs in the middle of the night.
Midas loves to play with his toys or do battle with his two feline brothers, Puck and Morty.
Owner: Lisa Worrell
A transplant from Traverse City to Grand Blanc, Mochi is in his second – and forever – home, after his first family had to give him up due to housing issues. He is an active one-year-old Siamese-Maine Coon mix with a love for adventure! When he’s not roaming his backyard or cruising the neighborhood in his stroller, he is looking to play fetch or chase a string around your ankles. He is known to greet people with a “headbutt-high-five,” (using his head instead of a paw) and has made himself the unofficial door greeter of the family – though we suspect that has more to do with wanting to be outside rather than an interest in greeting house guests.
MCM thanks all the participants!