When a Baltimore police officer was patrolling the city's neighborhoods last week, she had little idea that it would lead to her adopting a dog.
Officer Ashley Acord, who has been with the city police department for the past three years, found the dog after investigating a vacant home in the Upton neighborhood.
Acord said she was driving along the 1600 block of Division St. on March 20 when she thought she saw someone come out of a vacant house.
"No one was supposed to be there," she said.
Acord and another officer called for backup and searched the home. There weren't any people inside, Acord said, but they did find a dog — a male gray and white terrier mix tied to a doorknob with a rope.
"He was actually groomed pretty well. He didn't show any signs of aggression. He just seemed like he wanted to attention," Acord said.
The officers brought the animal outside, Acord said, and she drove him to the Baltimore Animal Rescue and Care Shelter in her patrol car. The two bonded in just a short drive, Acord said.
Once Acord reached the shelter, she put in an application to adopt the dog. Days later, after no one had come to claim the dog, she was was contacted by BARCS.
"They said he would be mine if I still wanted him," Acord said. She became the official owner of the puppy, which she named Grayson, on Thursday.
"I had a dog growing up. I've watched my friend's dog on and off, and I've always been an animal lover, specifically for dogs," said Acord, who had long been thinking about getting a dog with her roommate.
The date she met Grayson was also a significant one for Acord. Her grandmother had gotten sick on March 20 of last year. Two weeks later, she died.
"I don't want to say I took it as a sign," said Acord, though it did stand out in her mind. "But I wanted to, at least, see the dog go to a good home."
Acord was told by shelter employees that Grayson was roughly 10 months old. Since taking him home, the two are still getting acclimated, Acord said. She hasn't noticed any quirks or distinct personality traits just yet.
"He's just really sweet, and has a lot of energy," she said. "So far, so good."