If you follow my Tails of a Foster Mom facebook page, you may know that it is my birthday today!!! And if you don’t follow it….well, follow it!
So today I thought I would celebrate by talking about my proudest moments as a foster mom! 🙂 (Listed in no particular order!)
#1-I got an update yesterday on my previous foster girl, Sassy! She was the pup that almost died from parvo, then was adopted, and then returned after being left as an outside dog, and never getting any attention or training. She came back to me as a 7 month old, crazy puppy with NO manners! I worked with her to teach her basic obedience, and told her every day that she had to become a valuable member of society. When I met Jan, I had a feeling she just might be the perfect person for Sassy. She was patient, understanding, and so loving! Sassy is now named Kali, and this is what her mom said: “Kali is doing great! We have just finished the intermediate [obedience] class and Kali now passed the Canine Good Citizen test. She is my baby and I am so glad she is here with me. I love her so!” Hearing this is similar to what I imagine it will feel like when my son passes a college course…I know I didn’t do the hard work, but yet I am so very proud. I am so happy that Kali has gotten the forever home she deserves, and am very thankful to Jan for giving her the time and training she needed!
#2-Seeing my fosters out in public, knowing what great dogs they are! Lola has actually been the only one I’ve seen out around town, but I get updates on Petey all the time since he is with my brother, and I check in on Chelsea pretty often too. There are always good things being said about these dogs! Every time I have seen Lola, she is calm and happy. It doesn’t matter what is going on around her, or if there is a crazy dog near her (ahem, Oscar), she just wags her tail, smiles, and goes with the flow. My brother’s report on Petey is always “he’s a great dog”, and Chelsea’s family continues to give her the love that she needs, and they see improvement in her every day.
#3-My first couple of fosters were owner returns. Meaning, they had previously been adopted and then for some reason, had to be returned to the rescue. My first dog that was from the shelter was Lola! I saw her picture posted on the Wakulla Animal Control page, and B-E-G-G-E-D to save her! She was out of time, and the shelter volunteers were posting her like crazy, asking for someone to save her. My home had just opened up, and I kept asking the rescue boss lady to please let her be my next foster. There was just something about her sweet face! I truly loved fostering her, and though I say things about her being my favorite and how obsessed I am with her, this is why. I feel like she was the first dog I ever really saved. She will always have a special place in my heart. As will the amazing family who took her in as their own, and will spoil her with love for the rest of her life!
#4-I recently got an update on another foster of mine, Toby! Toby had come to the rescue with his litter mates, and was adopted. About a year later, his owner decided that Toby was just too big and returned him to the rescue. I offered to take him…and had no idea what I was getting myself into! I thought I was a “big dog” lover but Toby was giant! The first hint should have been his breed…he is a Great Pyrenees and Anatolian Shep mix! Toby was very well behaved, and SO sweet…and very playful! This was a lot of dog for my little town house. We made it work though, and it helped that I started taking him to Doggie Dayz every so often to let his energy out. We had TONS of inquiries about him, but it never seemed to be the right fit. The rescue group is very big on their dogs being inside, family pets. They are not to be used for outside guard dogs…and that is exactly what people wanted Toby for. Finally we found the right person. I talked to Bob several times on the phone, and without ever meeting Toby, he was already in love. He and his wife traveled all the way to Tallahassee from South Florida, and the rest is history! Unfortunately I don’t have any new pictures of Toby, but here is what Bob has said about him: “He is amazing. He has the most wonderful temperament of any animal I have ever seen. We signed him up for classes… The trainer who has trained dogs for the ASPCA for 20 yrs, wanted us to bring Toby in for a free evaluation before the classes begin. The trainer was really impressed with Toby, and she has advanced him directly into the next class for obedience training. What she was really impressed with was his temperament and intelligence. I hope we can advance to the point where he will be a service dog and I can take him to schools and nursing homes. He loves and looks after Sandra, but he is really bonded to me. He is constantly by my side when I am home, which is most of the time. Thank you so much for the work you and your organization are doing for the animals and thank you for allowing us to adopt Toby.” Proud foster mom moment!!!
#5-The little things are wonderful too! Like when crazy Sassy finally learned to “sit”. Or when Lola who gets extremely car sick, laid down in the back seat and relaxed, making it home without throwing up. When Chelsea, who is literally scared of everything outside of her cozy kennel, runs and plays in the backyard like a real dog should!
No matter what the issues have been, or why they came to me, I have loved all of my foster dogs. Whether I accomplished something big while they were with me, or if they have made great strides since being adopted, I am so very proud of each and every one of them. I will always consider them as partly mine, and they all have a special place in my heart. With each one of them, I was able to bond and see the trust they had in me. I am so grateful that I have been able to be a bridge for them, allowing them to cross over from unwanted dog to beloved family pet.
Thank you for reading about some of my proudest foster mommy moments! Please feel free to share your proud moments too, whether it be as a foster mom, dog mom, or human mom!