Cooper and Nico: How Two Rescue Dogs Changed One Woman's Life

Cooper and Nico the rescue dogs
Brothers Cooper and Nico, two rescued Rhodesian-Lab mixes, enjoy a nice snuggle. Nico has more black on his nose and has floppy ears. Cooper is bigger than Nico, and his ears are more Lab-like.

Katie O’Regan didn’t intend to rescue two dogs. She just wanted one. But when she found out that the Rhodesian-Lab mix puppy she wanted to bring home had a brother, she couldn’t say no.

In May 2013, O’Regan adopted Cooper and Nico from Warm Fuzzys Cat Rescue, a facility in Tupelo, Miss., that saved the pups from euthanasia. The adorable brothers recently turned 1, and O’Regan says her two pups have changed her life for the better.

“I tell people all the time, it's the best decision I've made in such a long time — getting both of them.”

We caught up with O’Regan, a 28-year-old teacher who lives in Quincy, Mass., to hear more about her pups’ remarkable rescue story.

Q: Can you tell us the story of how you rescued Cooper and Nico?

A: Last May, I started looking for a dog. And I knew that I wanted to get one dog. So I went onto Petfinder, and Cooper’s photo showed up. I called this pet rescue down in Tupelo, Miss. It was originally a cat rescue, but they ended up starting to rescue dogs. The dog hadjust been posted on Petfinder the night before, so I was pretty anxious and eager to get on the phone with the woman who had the dog. I had tried to rescue a couple of other dogs, or put in inquiries, and realized the dogs went quite fast when they were put up [on Petfinder].

So I spoke to her, and she said that his brother, who was also in the litter, was in her possession as well. I started thinking about it and thought, "Well, you know, if I'm going to get one dog, I might as well rescue both of them.”

As soon as they went up on Petfinder and I straightened everything out with her, they were on a puppy transport up to the Boston area.

Cooper and Nico the rescue dogs
Cooper and Nico are best friends. They play with each other all day and sleep with each other at night.

Q: Do you know anything at all about their lives before you found them?

A: The woman didn't know a whole lot about them — just that they'd been dropped off with their two sisters to a shelter down there. And what this woman literally does is go through the shelters and try to find dogs that are adoptable. And she happened to go by the shelter one day, and both of the dogs — Cooper and Nico — were already signed up to be euthanized. She decided these dogs were very adoptable and there was no way she was going to let this happen. She was actually the one who went and pulled them out of the shelter and took care of them for a couple of weeks.

I was pretty apprehensive, you know, getting these dogs and committing to it without ever having met them. But she was extremely reassuring and super informative. The dogs had all their puppy vaccines, and they'd been neutered and all of that before they even got onto the puppy transport. They'd been checked out by vets several times.


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