As many of you know, I have recently joined the ranks of “doggy foster moms”. I did this because although I donate to certain rescue groups, (Best Friends Animal Society mostly), I felt the need to become more hand’s on.
Since I am a facebook junkie, I “like” or “join” lots of different rescue organizations online. I was deeply bothered by the sheer numbers of pets that were on death row for some reason. Stray, throw away, puppy-mill rescue..whatever. the entries read something along the lines of “this is rover. His owner decided that he was too big, so he took him to the kill shelter. Please help us get him out before tomorrow or he gets the gas chamber.”
Well, they can’t get a dog out unless it has a foster home (at least) to go to. That’s where I come in.
So, my first foster several months ago was a little minute of a dog I called JoJo. He was young, energetic, adorable and VERY distrusting. He was also a total mess, and chewed absolutely everything he could get his sharp little teeth on! Within a week he warmed up and decided that I had his back, and lo and behold, I became attached.
I was sure I was heading down “Foster Failure” lane, but then a good friend in Tennessee saw his picture on my facebook page and then I hooked them up on SKYPE and that was history. When I made the “hand-off”, I cried for days. Had I done the right thing? Did me miss me? Did Rebecca love him as I did? Yes, yes, and yes. He is well-adjusted now and he has a good home with her, and I hope to visit soon.
Next up, Chance. He was basically a street dog, found wandering the streets with a big pitbull mix. She was his bitch-the “crack-ho” of dogs. They ended up at a kill shelter where the big dog got adopted, but not little Chance. So here he is, lying contentedly at my feet, having no idea that the buck does NOT stop here. No, as much as I love this little guy, I realize (well, HK told me in no uncertain terms) that as long as Chance is here, I can’t foster another one. My whole intention is to save an animal, one pup at a time, so Chance needs a home. Not just any home. He is an even bigger mess than JoJo, and he is an escape artist. He screams if left alone (which isn’t often), he chews shoes, and he can not swim. This I learned after he fell in the lake twice. Even with his life jacket on, he paddles like hell with his face in the water! Certainly no one can deal with this little fuzzball terror. I assumed I would end up keeping him. THen I got a call from the rescue group. Someone wants to meet him. They are interested in adopting him. OHMYGOD!!! I was not ready for this! I cried, I called my Mommy. I posted my dilemma on facebook, and got about 20 suggestions. I know deep in my heart that I am here to save more of these little guys, so ONLY if I find his perfect forever person will I let him go.
I ask myself the million-dollar questions…am I foster material? Am I strong enough to allow these damaged little souls into my life on a temporary basis? Can I hand them off and know I’ve done the right thing?
I sure hope so. I am doing good work, saving a life, one dog at a time.