Bandit’s Story

As told by Carol Young
A few years after we moved to Indiana, my husband and I were discussing adopting a second dog as a buddy to our Border Collie, Zoe. I had come across a photo of a handsome tricolor Pembroke Welsh Corgi named Banjo on Facebook posted by a local rescue organization. We never owned a Corgi, but every time we took a quiz about what dog breed would best suit us, Corgis came up as number one.

When I read that Bandit Banjo would be at the local PetSmart adoption event, we headed over. Surprisingly he was still there, even though one of the vet techs from Banfield had filled out an
application to adopt him. The second that Banjo saw us, he jumped into my husband’s lap and stayed there for pretty much the entire 2 hours we were there. The other applicant had a toddler
at home, so the rescue decided that we would be a better fit for Banjo. We took him home for a “test run, and a day later we completed his adoption. We renamed him Bandit because he had
immediately stolen our hearts.

We learned that Bandit had been found wandering outside in the snow on a cold January day. His original owner had passed away and her son had taken him. Apparently at some point, the son decided he did not want him anymore, and he opened the door and tossed him out of the house. Thankfully a neighbor found him and took him to a good rescue. Bandit had never been neutered so we took him to the rescue’s veterinarian to be neutered, and he and Zoe quickly became fast friends (both literally and figuratively).

Three years later, Bandit needed his teeth cleaned. We had held off as long as possible, but in February, which was veterinary dental health month, we took Bandit to the vet where he had
been neutered. We had pre-surgery blood work done and knew they were using same anesthesia that he had 3 years earlier. Bandit trotted off with the vet tech, happy as can be.

Two hours later, I received a phone call from the vet hospital. I was told that the veterinarian was performing CPR on Bandit because his heart had stopped beating during surgery. I rushed over with tears streaming down my face and my heart pounding, but by the time I arrived, Bandit was gone. I was allowed to go in and see him and say my good-byes. I was crushed.

My husband was as devastated as I was. We literally could not function for days. Bandit was truly our heart dog. Later that year, Bandit’s story became the inspiration for a new program to help others whose dogs needed urgent veterinary care. The Bandit’s Bandaid Program was started in his memory, and five years later Bandit’s BandAid transitioned from a program to its own nonprofit corporation. In 2021, our name was changed to Bandit’s K9Care, but Bandit’s memory still inspires all that we do.