Success Story: Hugo

Hugo - now Fonzie - with his new mom, Michelle

Hugo - now Fonzie - with his new mom, Michelle

In April, the Michelle O’Connor set out to drive more than nine hours to meet Hugo at the CCA shelter. A former CCA volunteer and Board member, Michelle knew the pup would be worth the drive. The below story is from Hugo’s new family, who named him Fonzie. Thank you so much, Michelle, for sharing!


On Saturday, April 6, we drove over 600 miles – a nine-hours drive – from Baltimore, MD to Simpsonville SC to meet Hugo at CCA’s shelter. Why? I saw Hugo online and his pics just melted my heart. I had to meet him!


So, how did I end up driving from Maryland all the way to Simpsonville to meet a pup? Well, I used to live in SC and was both a CCA volunteer and Board member, so I already knew what a wonderful organization CCA is and how much care and compassion they have for their animals. When I wanted to adopt, there’s nowhere else I'd go.


When we arrived at the shelter and Renee brought Hugo outside, I immediately knew it was a match. We spent some time making sure he was comfortable with us, and then we hopped back in the car for the nine-hour drive back home. After over 600 miles and many stops, we made it back to Maryland around 4:00 am on Sunday. Hugo’s personality really lit up the ride home. He was such a cool little pup who made us so happy, we decide to call him “Fonzie” aka Arthur Fonzarelli from Happy Days!

One of the most comical stories I can share about Fonzie is when we opened our pool about a week after we brought him home. The cover was taken off, and, as is typical, the pool was all green and black algae. Well, Fearless Fonzie jumped right into the center of the pool! I was fully clothed, but without a second to spare, jumped right in after him. I assumed he could not swim, and I was right! We both got out of the freezing cold water covered in algae and headed right in the house for his first bath! On the bright side, at least he’s not afraid of water! (I did subsequently buy him a doggie life vest for his future swimming adventures.)

Fonzie is great in the car and has become a real traveler! He’s been to seven different states so far: SC, NC, VA, MD, DE, PA & WV. A few weeks ago, we took Fonzie to Ocean City, MD. He loved taking walks on the boardwalk and watching all of the people and doggies, too! He has such a pleasant personality for a dog who started with a trouble past.

Fonzie’s “sister” Layla is a senior Weimaraner who was also rescued/adopted from SC many years ago. Now that Fonzie has been part of our family for a while, I can tell you those 1,200 miles were a trip very well worth it. Not only do we love Fonzie, but we love CCA and how pleasant they were to work with.

Thank you CCA!