The Indy, Oh Indy children’s books are based on author Teresa Adamo’s real-life shelter dog, Indy, adopted in 2008.
When the Adamo pack was thinking about adding a dog to their family, they knew finding one at their local shelter would be the right thing to do. But, which dog? Teresa remembers seeing the “Pet of the Week” ad that featured a sweet, but scared terrier mix with the shelter-provided name of “Bree.” Teresa wanted her family to come with her to the Kern County Animal Shelter and meet the dog, but everyone was too busy at the time, so she went to see “Bree” on her own.
”I knew immediately that this was a sweet, loving dog,” recalls Teresa. “The shelter staff let me take her outside, walk her around a little and she was just very gentle. Her ad stated: ‘Loves to be loved’ and I could tell that wasn’t false advertising!”
But, wanting the adoption of a new furry family member to be a family decision, Teresa told the shelter she would have to wait until her husband and sons could accompany her for another shelter visit. She took a quick cell phone photo of “Bree” and went on her way.
Just a few days later, while volunteering to set up a community event hosted at a local dog park, Teresa saw the Kern County Animal Shelter trailer arrive. She knew the agency was coming to offer low-cost rabies vaccinations for animals, but the large rig seemed too big for that task.
That’s when she learned a last-minute decision was made to bring along some of the shelter’s dogs and cats to the event as well in hopes of adopting a few out to the families in attendance. Teresa, who still had that photo of “Bree” on her cell phone, showed the image to the shelter employee and asked if, by chance, he brought that dog.
”Yes, she’s in the back,” he said.
To this day, Teresa still gets chills at that memory: “When I visited the shelter that random day, I didn’t leave my name, my contact information or where I worked — there was no way for the staff to know that I would be attending that community event that weekend. And there was certainly no way any of us knew they would be bringing animals for adoption, let alone that sweet, loving, gentle terrier mix ... Without a doubt, Indy was meant to be ours.”
So, even though her family wasn’t with her, Teresa knew that this dog had some how “followed” her — as if, she was going to be part of the Adamo pack, one way or another.
Ever since that fateful day, Teresa wondered where Indy once lived and with whom. Indy was so well-behaved, apparently trained by someone who loved her — but how did she end up as a stray? What streets of Bakersfield did she wander before ending up at the shelter? Who were her friends? Who was her family?
Eventually, these questions became the premise for a children’s book: Indy, Oh Indy: Wanderin’ the Streets of Bakersfield. The first in a series of Indy, Oh Indy adventures.
And another chapter in the life of a shelter dog who wanders straight into the hearts of everyone she meets ...