A Day with a Homeless Dog

A Day with a Homeless Dog

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Volunteering as a Foster Parent

Fostering is probably the most rewarding aspect of volunteering, besides being one of the most important jobs.  I thoroughly enjoy taking a dog out of a stressful environment and into a loving where they can get the care and attention that is needed.  They can gain confidence, become social and learn how to become the dog they want to be.  I have done my fair share of both short and long term fostering.  I am not going to lie, it is difficult to let them go sometimes, but I know that I have to so I can help the next one.  Below are just a few that I have become a part of my life…

My very first foster – Candice!
This little mini tiger came in with her brother Champ.  He was the playful out going one, while Candice was shy and timid.  She would hide in the back of her kennel and not socialize which hurt her chances of getting adopted.  Once her brother Champ found a home, Candice really shut down and became sick.  I knew she was awesome, so we brought her home. 
She did fantastic with my big German Shepherd and probably learned a few things.  She became more social and started trusting people.  It only took us a couple of weeks to find her a FANTASTIC home.  This wonderful couple adored her to pieces and I just knew she was going to be spoiled! 

Misha and Dahlia were my short term fosters…they both found rescue out of town and just needed a place to stay for a couple of weeks.  Both beautiful in their own unique way and so happy to see them get the chance of finding a loving  home in Colorado…

The one that stole my heart – Dundee

He was a special boy, and a smile comes to my face just thinking of him!  He completely shut down at the shelter.  He would not eat; he would barely walk to go outside.  It was a pitiful site and his health was quickly diminishing.  I called the boyfriend and he agreed, we couldn’t let him stay there.  The sadness in his eyes just melted my heart.  This was going to be our first boy, so I was hoping it would all go well with our female.
It was great to see our dog be so understanding of Dundee’s needs.  Giving him his space, but also helping him to feel better quicker.  He was very slow moving his first couple of weeks until he got his strength back.  Once he was better he was my little lover.  Always by my side – such a special guy.
Unfortunately we couldn’t keep him.  The athletic Cattle dog side of him, made it very easy for him to jump our fence.  We were lucky enough that he loved us and would jump right back in, but it was scary for me.  We worked on finding him a home where that wouldn’t be an issue.  Lucky for me, I found a nice older couple.  They recently lost their Cattle dog, had a nice 6 ft fence and the wife was home most the day to give Dundee that special attention he deserved.  I was so happy, but so so sad!  The day he went to his new home was harder than ever.  He just gave me that look, those sad eyes again.  I watched him as he looked out through the back window and I lost it.  He was my baby and I missed him.  I guess it was a rough couple of days at first.  He hid from them and was a little unsure.  He finally began to trust and the rest is history – he is a happy boy with a happy family.

I would say that it is all worth it – it may be sad and hard to let them go, but the rewarding feeling of saving them from the stress is indescribable.   I hope that new volunteers will give it some thought – it is truly life changing.


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