Richmond SPCA’s new mural pays tribute to successful adoption story

Updated: May. 7, 2021 at 4:32 PM EDT
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RICHMOND, Va. (WWBT) - The Richmond SPCA has a new face, and it’s now immortalized in a mural on its walls. Meet Sundae, a 13-year-old rescue. She didn’t have the easiest start in life, but now her parents are hoping her face will inspire others to adopt pets.

Sundae, a 13-year old rescue dog
Sundae, a 13-year old rescue dog(Emily Harrison)

“She was just sitting there in the pen, with her little paws up towards me,” said Nancy Boyland, Sundae’s mom. “I literally yelled over to my husband ‘Honey look at this one!”

That same day the Boylands adopted her. Sundae had been living in the shelter for about a year at that point and had difficulties trusting strangers and men. Her new family started her in puppy school and agility classes to help her find her confidence.

“She’s come such a long way since then, she still has her difficulties but she’s hardworking and an overall great dog,” Boyland said.

To honor her progress and to show everyone that no dog is past love, the Boylands placed their bet on a package at the Richmond SPCA’s ‘Fur-Ball’ to have Sundae commemorated on one of their walls.

“It’s not a package that we offer often, but it couldn’t have gone to a more perfect family or better dog, as Sundae is a perfect representation,” said Tamsen Kingrey, CEO of Richmond SPCA.

The mural stands 2-stories tall and was completed in just three days by local Richmond artist, Nils Westergard. The money raised by the Boylands to have it done went back to Richmond SPCA to help countless other dogs and cats.

“Because of that funding, it makes it possible for us to make sure there’s bottle-feeding available for infant kittens 24 hours a day, that pets that have heartworms are treated for that, orthopedic conditions, cardiac abnormalities, diabetes, upper respiratory, you name it,” Kingrey said.

The Richmond SPCA said they are not offering another mural chance as of this moment, but if a local Richmond artist were up to the task - then they would consider doing it again. For the Boylands, they hope people will see Sundae’s mural and think about the adoption story behind it.

“I hope people will realize how many amazing dogs there are available for adoption and what you can do with a shelter dog,” Boyland said. “You can really take a homeless dog from here, give them a home, and do whatever you want to do with them.”

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