Updated: Feb 27
The meaning behind the name, Leo's Girl comes from my sweet rescue pup, Leo. I adopted him at my local animal shelter almost four years ago & it was the best decision I’ve made! As soon as I saw him I knew I wanted to adopt him. I mean, could you say no to this face?
He is the kindest and most loving pup, I started crying the first time I saw him! I knew he needed a good home and I wanted to be the one to provide that. I could feel his excitement just walking out of the shelter doors and I could not wait to show him his new home. I was a little nervous about how he would react to a new environment, but I think he felt right at home as he immediately jumped onto my bed lol. There were some ups and downs...I quickly learned that I had a Houdini of a dog when he kept escaping his crate while I wasn’t home. Turns out, he is a perfect angel when he isn’t in a crate... so out to the trash the crate went! He is, however, a big fan of long walks, road trips with the windows down and of course meeting new faces!
While it has been mostly good times, there was a moment of fear when one day I noticed a bump on the left side of his head that wasn’t there before. As someone who deals with anxiety, I tend to worry a lot so of course this alarmed me and I took him to the vet. They took x-rays and tests and decided it would be necessary to take a biopsy of the bump to be sure it was not cancerous. This immediately brought me to tears just hearing the word. My worst fear was becoming a possible reality and it tore me down. The anxiety heightened but I saw Leo’s face staring at me and knew he could feel that I was sad. At that moment I knew I needed to come back to reality and be as positive as I could and stick to the saying of don’t worry until there is something to worry about. Waiting for the results was the most challenging, but when the doctor called and said the biopsy came back non cancerous I had never been more thankful! I was so relieved and happy. Now I just wanted to make sure he lived the healthiest and happiest life so we discussed the next steps on what to do. The doctor explained that although the tumor is benign, it could still become cancerous later on in his life. This really scared me. As someone who has gone through losing a family pet to cancer in the past, I didn’t want it to happen again. Surgery for removal of the tumor was possible but the doctors further explained that the mass was on his zygomatic arch, or cheek bone. This was a difficult location because it was close to his occiptal lobe, which meant there was a chance he could lose his left eye if they surgically removed it. The anxiety heightened again. I was torn on what to do...either they surgically remove the tumor and there is a chance they would have to remove his eye completely or we do no surgery and hope the bump does not turn cancerous later on. It was something I needed to think about and process but I kept thinking about all the worry I would always have as long as that bump was still there everyday. Then I started to think about how Leo would react to all of a sudden having one eye. I worried that he would be a totally different dog or that it might change his personality. What if he resented me or hated me for taking him and this is how he came out? There were lots of questions and fears, but then I thought about how grateful I am just for him to be here with me and healthy, so I decided that it was best to proceed with the surgery. No matter the outcome, I knew that he would still be my sweet Leo and that we would adjust and be just fine.
The day of his surgery was a rough one. I knew he was in great hands but it was still nerve racking not being in control or being able to help. After a few hours, (it felt like forever) I got the call that surgery went as perfect as it could have gone. Once again, a wave of relief and pure gratefulness came over me. You can believe that there were lots of tears of joy in that moment. Thanks to the incredible veterinarians, Leo’s surgery went as well as it could have
gone and they were able to remove all of the tumor without causing harm or having to remove his eye! I was so thankful. I can’t say that word enough.
It has been about seven months since the surgery and Leo is better than ever! He is still my same sweet, loving, quirky pup. We currently live in Oklahoma City but are back and forth between here and my hometown near Dallas and are loving life here in OKC! But of course, what we are loving most is being able to open and launch Leo's Girl! It has been a dream of mine to open a clothing store and now that it's happening, I am trying to soak it all in and learn and grow as much as I can through this little business! I cannot wait to share the clothing I have picked out and hope you all love them as much as I do! I hope to offer a collection that is suitable for all styles and that you can mix and match to your taste.
My hope for Leo's Girl goes beyond fashion though, I really wanted to create a way to combine my two passions and help in any way I can for shelter animals near and far. If you can't tell by now, I absolutely adore dogs and my love for rescue animals grew even more when I adopted Leo and learned more about the shelter community. Leo's Girl will be contributing and raising awareness for the shelter animal community in any way we can. From events, to donations and fundraisers, I hope to make an impact in these animals' lives while providing a fun feel good shopping experience for customers! That is a big reason for adding this BLOG section to the website; this is where all announcements or details on events or fundraisers will be if you would like to become more involved! I appreciate your time learning more about Leo's Girl and Leo's story, I am so thankful you're here!! And if you or anyone you know, know of any opportunities to help within the animal rescue community, please let us know!
lots of love,
Leo & Jenna ❤