My husband and I weren't looking for a dog actively at the time that I found her. I happened to be out getting supplies for my bird and chinchilla when I saw her being featured outside the pet store by a local rescue. I was immediately drawn to her and my first thought was "she looks so happy to just be here!" One of the rescue staff informed me she was deaf and blind, but I honestly couldn't tell until I was told. I left that day without her, but couldn't stop thinking about her and looking at her picture online for at least the next week. I convinced my husband to meet with her foster mom so he could meet Toph and we could ask her foster mom about the kind of care she needed. Luckily, she's pretty much like any other dog! She gets around mostly by smell and touch, and does so pretty easily.
When my husband and I met with Toph's foster mother, we learned that she's most likely the result of puppy mill breeding. Since bi-blue merle is fairly rare for shelties, they kept her around for breeding despite her lack of hearing and sight. The vet that initially evaluated her said she had 3, possibly 4, litters of pups before she was rescued. She's only 3 years old! So this means she was likely bred at every heat cycle they could. She was surrendered to local animal control as a "stray" but with what I know of her, I'm not sure she would have done well as a stray. Not being able to see or hear oncoming traffic definitely comes to mind more than anything else. No matter how she came to be in our lives, I'm glad she is!
Toph is an extremely affectionate dog! She loves to sit on your lap and get belly rubs. I've also come to think of her as an emotional support animal. She always seems to know when I need some doggie snuggles and will come sit next to me and lick my chin to make me smile. I was especially thankful for her when my grandfather passed away. During the time we stayed with my grandma and the rest of our family, she was there to give snuggles to whomever needed them. I hope to one day train her to be a therapy dog. I think she has a great temperament for it.