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I’m Just Waiting for a Friend (1998) – The Original ZUKO THE DOG

I’m Just Waiting for a Friend (1998)

Los Angeles Bundy Animal Shelter

The West Los Angeles “Bundy” Animal Shelter pictured here in early 2013 is obviously lifeless now, the animals long ago having been moved to a new larger and upgraded facility on November 5, 2007, located at 11361 Pico Blvd., Los Angeles, California 90064. Prior to the renovation of the building by the city in 2013, the “Bundy” Shelter was abandoned and overgrown. The “We’ve Relocated…” sign is drooping and tattered, the parking lot is overgrown by weeds (yes, that was once a parking lot), and the grass and greenery have died. Even though the city enclosed the building and grounds in a fence, it was still overrun by excessive unsightly amounts of gang writing on most of the building walls not pictured.

18 years ago today in 1998 I sat on the steps of this animal shelter waiting for the doors to open. There was an amazing puppy in there that I had such a strong connection with that I had to have him, and he was not eligible for adoption until the doors opened that day. I was told he was found running around in an intersection in downtown Los Angeles, and we had to wait until August 26th to give someone who may have lost him the chance to claim him. I first discovered my little friend on August 22nd, and I went back to see him every day. I could barely sleep the night before the adoption because I knew there were other people there that were interested in him too. The staff told me that if two people showed up at the same time for the same dog there would be a bidding war, and that was horrifying to me at the time because I did not have much money.

It all worked out like it was meant to be. I was the only one that showed up at 9:00 a.m., and that puppy that we later named “Zuko” after John Travolta’s character Danny Zuko in “Grease” has been one of the best friends I could’ve ever hoped for. We are still blessed to have him. It’s a friendship that never ends.

©2016 Donna Novak

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