'How Luke stayed in the care of Battersea for so long is a mystery to me, any new owner would have been lucky to rehome him,' said the pup's new dad.
Editor's note: This article was originally published on April 14, 2022. It has since been updated.
Luke, the 5-year-old pooch from Kent, England, has finally found a family. The former shelter dog earned the title "heartbreaker" in February 2022, when he made headlines for getting stood up at his Valentine's Day-themed adoption party. As news of the poorly attended event—organized by the Battersea Brands Hatch shelter—spread worldwide, the pup's story of being unlucky in love touched many who felt "shattered," the shelter said in a press release. Soon, they started receiving mountains of mail from Luke's growing fanbase, including toys, handwritten love notes, donations and letters expressing their interest in adopting the canine.
Karl and Jill Kendrick of Derbyshire, England, were among those who reached out in the hopes of bringing Luke home after learning the dog got stood up at his Valentine's Day adoption party. According to PEOPLE, upon careful investigation, Battersea Brands Hatch determined that the Kendricks and their two daughters would make the ideal forever family for Luke. After spending 225 days at Battersea, the pup moved in with the Kendricks a few weeks ago on a trial basis to see if the family was the proper fit for him. Luke is absolutely in love with his new family and has quickly adjusted to life outside the kennels.
Dog in Shelter Over 200 Days Still Looking for a Home After No One Shows Up to Adoption Party pic.twitter.com/aSx7rkZt5P— People (@people) February 15, 2022
"How Luke stayed in the care of Battersea for so long is a mystery to me, any new owner would have been lucky to rehome him. Since we've brought him home, he's shown himself to be the perfect dog and has really settled in so quickly — we already love him so much and wouldn't change him for the world," Karl Kendrick said in a statement about welcoming Luke into the family. "We feel so lucky to be the family who gives Luke his forever home, and he has really made our family unit complete. He'll never spend Valentine's Day alone again."
In its press release, Battersea shared that Luke has already found his favorite places to nap in his new home and he has his own duvet. "Over the years, we've seen many of our dogs appear in the news, but we've never seen any of our animals capture as many hearts across the world as Luke did. From receiving love letters to gifts in the post, it's clear to see that thousands of people fell in love with this very special boy. We're so pleased that so many people support rescue dogs like Luke, and that he's finally found the loving home he deserves," Michelle Bevan, a center manager at Battersea Brands Hatch, said.
Battersea also shared the happy news in a celebratory post on Facebook, writing: "Remember Luke, our Battersea resident who got stood up on Valentine's Day? Well, we have good news... he's finally found his home! After 225 days, and hundreds of people reaching out, Luke has found the perfect home to match his needs. We hope you have a wonderful time Luke!" The pup's well-wishers showered the post with blessings and love for the canine. "Chuffed to bits for Luke and his new family, they're very fortunate to have him, he's a beautiful boy," commented Pam Kitchen.
"How wonderful for you Luke. I'm so happy for you to have found your forever-loving home. You deserve all the happiness and love in the world with your special new family. Keep safe and be happy beautiful Luke," wrote Maureen Ryan. "I'm so happy to hear he has now got his forever home he deserves all the luck in the world best of luck Luke. Thank you to the staff at Battersea for looking after him," commented Tess Gilmore.