Tino | New York City Pet Photographer

Do you know I have three dogs? Three. This makes me feel ridiculous sometimes, but I wouldn't have it any other way.

This is my youngest and my smallest, Tino. He's built like a barrel, and at 20 pounds is a tiny bad-ass. I found him in 2007, abandoned at a beach in Puerto Rico with what looked like a purposefully broken back. He was dirty and skinny, and his hind legs flopped in the dirt behind him uselessly. All I could do was give him my bottle of water out of cupped hands before I had to leave in tears.

My Spanish is bad now and was horrible then, but I determinedly figured out how to tell the dog rescue organization where he was located using a combination of my memory and Google maps. It was nerve-wrecking and heart-wrenching, and by the time I had gone through that whole mess and come out successful, I realized he was meant to be my dog for the rest of his life. There was no way I could go through all of that and then not ever see him again.

He is one of my greatest victories.