When Ashton Hart’s grandfather passed away lately of COVID, one of his first thoughts was to see whether he had any pets who needed his aid. He and his grandfather had lost touch and hadn’t spoken in six years, so he wasn’t sure if he had a dog or not — but once he did, he knew exactly what he needed to do.
When Hart learned that his grandfather’s dog, now known as Oatmilk Latte, was on the verge of being put down, he and his husband decided to drive the three hours to get him. It didn’t matter that they didn’t know anything about the dog they were on their way to save. They adored him even before they saw him.
“We had just started foster and were about to start volunteering at PAWS to try and find a new friend,” Hart told The Dodo. “It wasn’t a question we would adopt him — my husband had wanted a dog for a while, and we had just started foster and were about to start volunteering at PAWS to try and find a new friend,” Hart said. “Before buying my business, I spent most of my adult life working largely in animal activism, so there was no way I was letting him be put down.”
When they arrived, they discovered a large, chubby dog who clearly had a lot of problems. He was overweight, filthy, and his hair was matted. They were well aware that he could develop a variety of health problems as a result of his neglect, but they were unconcerned. Oatmilk Latte was already their puppy in their minds and emotions.
The poor puppy was both adorable and tired. His new fathers piled him into the car and drove the three hours home, eager to meet their new best friend.
Hart knew his grandpa loved Oatmilk Latte despite his illness, and the adorable dog had clearly loved him as well.
“While he is very, very nice,” Hart said, “he is certainly grieving.” “Every day we’ve had him now, he’s been getting a bit better, but it’s a process. It’s difficult to lose someone, especially a dog. For everything, they rely on us. Putting aside my grandfather’s neglect of the dog’s health, I presume he loved his pet in his own special way.”
Oatmilk Latte will take some time to adjust to his new life, but the pair is convinced that with good care and lots of love, he will be very happy in his new home. He requires extensive veterinary care, which they are gradually figuring out. When they drove three hours to take him up, they had no idea what they were getting themselves into, but now they can’t imagine doing anything differently. He’s their dog, and they’re looking forward to getting to know him and seeing how he develops over time.
“We had no idea what he’d be like,” Hart said, “but he’s wonderful for us.”