Alone on the streets of Bali, Indonesia, a small brown puppy searched for shelter. She spotted a hole just big enough for her and crawled inside. It was the entrance to a drain pipe by the side of a busy road.
The dog, later named Charlie, hoped someone would notice her. Unfortunately, the makeshift home she’d selected wasn’t helping. Most cars were going too fast to notice Charlie’s hazel eyes peeking out from the curb.
But soon her luck changed.
“I was at home working, and my partner was headed to the gym, leaving our neighborhood, when he saw her,” Charlie’s mom, Aubrey V Lynn, told The Dodo. “He kept driving past and knew he couldn’t just leave her, so [he] turned around and sent me a message.”
Charlie’s plight filled Lynn with feelings of grief and inspiration — she was heartbroken that the dog was all alone, but ready to help.
Lynn and her partner didn’t want the puppy to accidentally dart into traffic, so they knew the rescue had to be done carefully.
“We both felt really anxious because sometimes she would come out of the hole,” Lynn said. “But she wouldn’t let us get close enough to catch her.”
The pair headed to a local pet store, where they bought dog food, hoping it might help lure Charlie out of the drain. Then they waited. For over 24 hours, the puppy wouldn’t budge.
“We sat there for hours trying to grab her,” Lynn said. “She wouldn’t come out, so we went to leave, getting back on our scooter, and she ran right up to us.”
As though instantly soothed by a loving touch, the puppy, who’d been so standoffish, quickly relaxed.
“She calmed immediately and didn’t try to get away,” Lynn said.
Lynn and her partner took Charlie home. They hadn’t wanted a dog, but it wasn’t long before they realized they were falling in love.
“We never talked about it while trying to rescue her, because our focus was just getting her to safety, but I think both of us knew in that moment that she was a part of our family now,” Lynn said.
Though she hadn’t spent much time with people or in the safety of a house, Charlie adjusted without any problems. It was as though she knew she was home.
“[Charlie] adapted really well,” Lynn said. “We let her sleep and eat in safety for a while and then the first time we went to sit with her, she was timid but warmed up so quickly. You could tell she just wanted to be loved — it was really sweet.”
As they run around with Charlie in their yard and play games of fetch, Lynn and her partner can’t help but marvel at how perfectly Charlie fits into their life. Though they’d never expected it, this family of two has become a family of three.