Jayme Harley woke up to the sound of text notifications from her phone early one morning two weeks ago. She opened the messages and saw her boyfriend had sent a photo of a sad-looking dog at a gas station and written, “Go get him!”
Harley, still groggy, started to realize this was a critical moment. She had been pushing to adopt a second dog, but her boyfriend hadn’t been too keen on the idea. So, if he wanted her to rescue one, this was big news.
“When it registered with me that it wasn’t a dream, I knew that it was a serious thing, that he really wanted me to go get him,” Harley told The Dodo.
Her boyfriend, Aaron Peters, spotted the pit bull as he was driving his early morning FedEx delivery route. He made a stop at the gas station and was captivated by the dog’s kind bright blue eyes.
“He looked like he needed a family,” Peters told The Dodo. “I figured we could give him somewhere good to live.”
Harley got in her car and rushed over to the gas station in Kinta, Oklahoma.
When she arrived, she offered the dog water and soon learned he was abandoned.
“A girl pulled up, and she told me that she’d seen him jump out of a car,” Harley said. “And no one would take him in because he was a pit bull. That broke my heart because it should not matter what breed he is. All he wanted was somebody to love him.”
Harley decided this dog was absolutely coming with her. She put him in the car and before she had even driven out of the parking lot, he was asleep and snoring.
“It made me feel like that was the perfect moment,” Harley said. “I felt like he knew that he was going to have a place to sleep that night. He was going to have food. And he finally had the help that he needed.”
Harley brought him straight to her veterinarian’s office. The dog didn’t have a microchip, but other than a bit of mange, he was in good shape.
She named him Rufus and headed home. She was a little apprehensive about how he would fit in — but he became instant pals with her dog.
“They just started loving on each other, and they have since been best friends. They sleep together. They do everything together,” Harley said.
It took Rufus no time to also bond with Harley’s cat, kids and boyfriend. The dog made himself right at home.
Peters just knew the dog would fit in the moment he saw him. “He’s a good dog,” Peters said.
Peters and Harley now think it was all meant to be.
“Bringing him in has added this warmth to our home. He has added so much more laughter,” Harley said. “He was the final piece to our family that we needed. He was the final piece we didn’t even know we needed.”