Bandit is estimated to be 2-3 years old and found his way to Long Point, claiming it as his home. Despite the efforts of his previous foster home on Oatland Island, Bandit persistently refused to leave his newfound community. At first, Bandit was a flash of brown or blur in snapshots, with lots of sightings popping up on the Long Point Facebook page.
Two Long Point residents, simultaneously and without knowing, were attempting to befriend this sweet but untrusting soul. Over months both Jen Borak, now Bandit's adoptive mom and Robin Grecco, now Aunt Robin to Bandit, were slowly gaining his trust and making leaps of progress with the very scared Bandit. Each describes their introduction to Bandit differently, apart from two main similarities.
Bandit had become drawn to one of their female dogs, Cooper (Jen's Golden Doodle) and Jersey Girl (Robin's Chocolate Labrador/Rottweiler rescue). These sweet girls were instantly hooked and loved being around, following, and playing with Bandit. The other similarity was that Bandit chose Jen and Robin and stole their hearts. Jen had heard stories of bandit and the many sightings of him. She would see flashes of something run by her windows. Jen shares, " We never intended on having another dog, but we had no choice with Bandit. He found us, and he was here to stay.” Robin remembers, "Sitting on my steps, Bandit walked right up to me. It was a difficult time for me. I had just lost my dad. Floods of all these memories were pouring over my mind, and then Bandit appeared. I knew my dad had sent him. Bandit saved me, and I saved him."
Once they had earned his trust, the two women worked to get his medical needs taken care of. Mom, Jen, with help from a vet clinic, had him lightly sedated so he could safely be taken to the clinic to receive updated shots and be neutered. Aunt Robin set into action and contacted GRR Rescue, a local non-profit she works closely with, to have him microchipped. Bandit's roaming nature and preference for freedom have presented challenges, with his ability to escape yards and explore the marshlands. They have gone the extra mile to keep track of him.
Although Bandit does as he pleases and is cautious around people, he is a gentle and sweet boy – a free spirit at heart. Bandit is a leader, and you can see him roaming the back area of Long Point with a clan of dogs following him wherever he goes — a scene straight out of Lady and the Tramp. Most likely following close behind will be his sister Cooper and Jersey Girl. "Jersey Girl will start crying, and I know that means he is outside, and she wants to be let out to join him. She loves Bandit," Robin laughs.
Bandit loves his shank bone and lambchop toy. He loves hanging out with his sister Cooper and Jersey Girl and leading the way for adventures in the marsh and around Long Point. But what he loves most is his freedom. Mom, Jen, and Aunt Robin have provided him with a loving home and a second home at Auntie's. He receives food, shelter, care, companionship, affection, and plenty of cuddles. Bandit’s story is a reminder of the love and joy that pets can bring into our lives and how they, in turn, become an essential part of our families.