By Janet McAfee

Los Angeles residents Austin Miller and Margo Bateman were on a recent overnight trip to Joshua Tree. That evening Austin checked online for available dogs at local shelters and rescues. He was amazed to discover an adorable puppy at Loving All Animals that greatly resembled Tony, their Terrier/Schnauzer who passed away in January.

A Good Samaritan found Dobby and her 4 puppies in a rural area in our East Valley and brought them to Loving All Animals. The animals were hungry and thirsty but otherwise in good condition. Sadly, stray mother dogs with litters of puppies are becoming more common during these stressful times. With long waits for veterinary spay & neuter appointments, more animals are being born at a time when there are not enough homes. Shelters are overcrowded and some are short staffed. Thankfully, there was a place to give these precious creatures a second chance.

LAA anointed the canine family with creative names from Harry Potter. Albus, Weasley, Hagrid, Hedwig and mama Dobby were adopted, leaving little girl Hermione remaining at the shelter. Wonderful foster Dad Tony took the puppy home knowing she missed her siblings, providing neutering and training.


Austin called Loving All Animals the next day and was disappointed to hear someone ahead of him had reserved Hermione. Soon the agency called back noting that the message he left came first, and Austin headed out to the Coachella Valley the next day. He learned LAA was bringing dogs including Hermione to a Yappy Hour at The Shops on San Pablo in Palm Desert. He barely noticed the fashions or the food, captivated by the loving little creature about to be part of his family.

This creative interesting couple have college degrees in Media Studies and Film and work in the media fields. Margo had an exciting assignment covering theaters and museums for the Oscars. Self-employed Austin is a Coordinator for various television shows and movies. The duo also performs as stand-up comediennes at various Los Angeles comedy clubs. They usually work different shifts which works out well for Randi who is showered with attention.

Margo excitedly tells us, “She is the perfect dog! We have lots of time and lots of love to give a dog. We both grew up as huge Harry Potter fans.” Hermione’s new complete name is Randi Isabelle Molly AKA R.I.M. Randi is a cartoon character in SouthPark. Isabelle is the game of a video game called Animal Crossing. Molly is the name of Margo’s best human friend. We love creative names!

Austin explains, “I can’t believe Randi is so well behaved for a puppy so young! She’s leash trained, house trained, sits, and stays. It’s almost magical what a great job her foster did. Randi has brought so much joy into our home!” Valerie Masi, dog trainer extraordinare, provides training to the volunteers and fosters to ready the LAA shelter dogs for their forever homes.

Austin points out, “We always look for dogs at shelters. The mix breeds tend to be so much healthier, and the rescues do a great job with whatever vet work is needed.” Contact Loving All Animals at (760) 834-7000 if you are interested in adopting or becoming a lifesaving foster parent. This little family are loving their new homes, but you can find more sweet faces on their website