Some people despise surprises, big or small. They’re bothered when something out of their control threatens to shake up the status quo. But surprises can also create unforgettable moments…
For instance, the three girls in the stories below all shared the same animal-related wish. After having their wishes denied for years, they all faced huge surprises that would change their lives forever — for better or for worse.
Like most young girls—heck, like most people of every age—Tatum wanted a puppy. For three years, she begged and pleaded with her mom to get one. Her mom said no every single time!
Still, Tatum’s hope for a puppy never wavered. She pictured a future where she owned a puppy named Winston. In fact, whenever she saw a puppy, she’d exclaim, “Look Mom, it’s Winston!”
life_with_eliza_and_bonnie / Instagram
Tatum’s wanting made for a particularly painful experience at dinner celebrating her birthday one evening. While eating outside with her mother and siblings, a family friend walked by holding an adorable pup!
More specifically, the friends held a poochon—a mix between a golden doodle, left, and bichon frise, right—and the curly haired fella was just a few weeks old. “What’s his name?” Tatum’s mother asked.
“Winston!” the friend replied. Tatum, below, gasped. Her jaw hung wide open as she clapped her hands to her cheeks. The friend laughed at that reaction and admitted she had some…inspiration for the name.
Newsflare / Rumble
“We heard you wanted to name your dog Winston,” the friend said. “And I loved it!” Tatum reached out and pet the pup, her greatest desire at her fingertips. That’s when the friend asked: “do you want to hold him?”
Tatum held the puppy, and you could just feel the love pouring from her to Winston. She let out a small whine and smiled. Then her mom called her attention, ready to surprise her daughter.
teddythepoochon / Instagram
See, “One week before her actual birthday,” Tatum’s mother explained, “my good friend and her son helped us create the big surprise. They posed as new dog owners of a sweet little poochon.” And then?
anileydys_ / Instagram
The coincidental meeting at Tatum’s birthday dinner wasn’t all that coincidental. The puppy, in truth, was a birthday present for Tatum. But even as Tatum held the pup, she had no idea—until her mother said two simple words…
“Happy birthday,” the mother said. For a moment, Tatum stood silent, confused, processing what those words meant. But then, it hit her: she finally had her Winston, the dog of her dreams!
Newsflare / Rumble
Tatum broke down in tears of joy, sinking back into her chair as she cradled the rather confused puppy tight to her stomach. Meanwhile, her brother laughed at her. “That’s hilarious,” he said.
Newsflare / Rumble
This powerful surprise caught on camera was a moment Tatum would likely cherish for the rest of her life. But Tatum wasn’t the only person to have her life changed by a surprise. Take the kids seen below, Eva and Mila Raguso…
Like Tatum, five-year-old Eva and seven-year-old Mila begged their parents, Carmella and Christopher, for a puppy. One day, Chris, a Master Sargent in the U.S. Military, relented—but he had a caveat.
“My husband and I have always found an excuse to not get a dog. But it was time,” Carmela said. “We talked about when Chris got home from his deployment, we would make it a big surprise.” But he never came home.
The U.S. Army / Flickr
One day before his birthday, Master Sargent Raguso perished in a helicopter crash—the worst kind of surprise for the devastated family. Both girls suffered from nightmares for weeks after their dad’s death. But then?
David Wexler / New York Daily News
Paws of War, a charity that pairs veterans with dogs rescued from kill shelters, heard of the girls’ suffering. So, unknown to Eva and Mila, Robert Misseri, who worked with the charity, did some searching for the perfect dog
That’s how Calvin, a black Lab from a Louisiana shelter, ended up at the Raguso household, along with toys and dog food—a huge shock to the two girls. For the first time in awhile, the girls smiled.
“We needed today,” Carmela said of the day Calvin arrived. “This was a good thing for us. We needed happy, something genuinely happy, something to keep their minds off the everyday and something to take care of.”
Paws of War / Facebook
From that day forward, the girls had a friend at their side to love and care for, and to help them with the grieving process. As Robert put it, “This pup Calvin will help the children sleep better!”
While the circumstances were surely different, surprise puppies changed these three girls’ lives forever—and for the better! Just see how excited and shocked Tatum was when she learned she finally got her Winston!
Getting puppies created moments in these girls’ lives they’re likely never to forget. No doubt, they’ll be well taken care for!
Share these surprise puppies with your friends below!