Saturday, March 26, 2011

I See a Foster in my Future...

This week has clearly had a lot of ups and downs.  First Skye’s medical mystery threw me for a loop or two, then I get some unexpected news.  One of my past foster dogs, Lola, is coming back to the shelter.  When I heard about this, my first thought was, “what did she do?”  I hate that it was my first instinct, but Lola wasn’t an easy dog to place in the first place.

Who, me?

Lola came to the shelter originally because her family didn’t have enough time for her.  Honestly, it was one of the few times I wasn’t annoyed by this excuse.  Lola was insane!  She never seemed to get tired, had no manners, and didn’t even get along with most dogs.  Those first time dog owners were way over their head with Lola, and they knew it.  But her personality and exercise requirements made it hard for her to be adopted, and she was overlooked for a long time. 
I'm very lazy and mellow..
She was adopted in the nick of time.  I was fostering another pit at the time, and Lola wasn’t trustworthy to share her house space with another dog.  But a family came and fell in love with her.  Their 14 year old daughter ran cross country, and wanted a dog that could handle 5-10 mile daily runs.  It helps that Lola absolutely loves people, so she won them over.  It seemed like a happy ending.

Cause I'm cute, see!

Of course it’s never that easy.  The mother didn’t realize that Lola wouldn’t want to stay outside all day while their daughter was in school, and she didn’t want a dog that scratched the wood floors.  She claimed Lola, a marathon napper, would never settle down in the house.  So they returned her 2 weeks later, to the distress of their daughter.

Luckily, the day before this Junior was adopted to his own perfect home, and I was foster free.  I took Lola, and worked hard with her from day one.  I didn’t anticipate her staying with me for 2 months, but that is how it happened.  She was the first foster to teach me that I am not a patient person, and I often overreact without realizing it. 
It's okay, I forgive you!

Then, a family called to ask about Lola.  The next day, they came to meet her and take her home.  They weren’t particularly active, other than having two young girls with boundless energy, but they were not short on love.  They didn’t care that Lola jumped up to kiss, or that she might scratch their floors.  They wanted a dog that got dirty and slept on the furniture and had some flaws.  It was a good match.

I definitely get dirty.

They e-mailed me a few months later to let me know that Lola was doing great.  They loved her, she was settling into their routine, and all was well.  So when I heard she was coming back, I couldn’t imagine what she could have done to ruin such a great set up.  But, like so many other dogs in the shelter system, she was simply a victim of the economy.  A job loss is turning into a forced move, and Lola is unable to follow them where they’re going.  They are devastated, but know that this has to happen, that they’ve put it off for too long. 

So tomorrow I’m going to get a phone call.  It’ll go something like this:  Jenny, you know how much trouble Lola has in the shelter. You know she doesn’t show well, and goes downhill fast.  You know we all have fosters right now, and too many picky dogs at home to try and take Lola on.  Do you think you could take her?

I want to say yes, because I love my Lolita.  She is a world class snuggler, and I truly enjoyed fostering her.  I know she and Parker get along in neutral territory, and she is typically good with small dogs.  But Skye?  They never met.  If they were at the shelter at the same time, they wouldn’t be in the same playgroups.  Skye can be pushy, especially at home, and Lola reacts to those types of dogs with her teeth.  Can it be done?  Yes.  With lots of crate time for Lola, constant supervision, and careful training.  Does that sound like fun?  Not even close.  But fostering isn’t meant to be a vacation, it is meant to help dogs in need.

Bottom line?  I’ll go see her at the shelter.  Introduce the dogs slowly and carefully, and go from there.  If Lola is out for blood, then it’s a no go.  Parker and Skye are finally in a happy place, and I’m just getting back on track with their training, which was in hibernation this winter.  I’m not going to make our house a war zone over a dog that is going right up for adoption.  But I’ve had fostering floating around in my head for a little while now, and this is certainly an opportunity to get back in the game on that one. 

Parker and Skye gave me their typical reactions to the news…

Is it fun? I LIKE FUN!!!

Why me?

Well, happy Saturday!  For those of you hopping by, thanks for visiting!


  1. lola is GORGEOUS. we hope her and skye get along! you obviously are more patient then you think - because youre considering taking her back! we (especially Havi) thanks you for all you do!

  2. Thanks for all you do.
    Did you see my video about Moses?
    If not, you should check it out. It's on my blog, right side, under the giveaways carousel. I saw him last night and he has gained some weight. I posted a before and after pic on my Facebook. He's doing well after only two weeks.

    Anyway, we are stopping by from the hop to say hello! Have a PAWsome weekend!

    Doreen, Kiko, Riley and Millie
    Doggies and Stuff blog

  3. I understand your challenges of living with two dogs. The niche of my blog is largely problem solving for folks who live with dogs that challenge them in some way.

    Yesterday we had a "Pittie" visitor, lingering for several hours to hang out with Tanner, my Golden Retriever, and eventually falling in our swimming pool after he broke through the screen to investigate. Fortunately, Tanner got my attention and I rescued the big guy. When he headed home he looked a bit over-stimulated, so I suppose he's home sleeping it off today. LOL! Never a dull moment.

  4. Lola sounds like a handful, but hopefully the right home will come along for her.

    Just hopping by on the Blog Hop.

  5. I really admire your honesty. Two exuberant female Pitties in one household definitely sounds like a whole ton of work. I really hope they take to each other and it's an easy, short visit for Lola with a permanent happy ending.

  6. It is really sad, regardless that it happens all the time that dogs are returned over and over again. Bless your sweet heart for thinking of taking Lola in again. I really hope things work out for all of you. Patience is something I struggle with my dogs as well, it is a slow process and they are teaching me well.

  7. Sounds like you have a careful decision to make


  8. I really admire people who can foster dogs. The shelter I volunteer at is always looking for fosters, and one of the volunteers I know has fostered the same dog twice too! I do hope it works out for you and your pack, maybe this will be Lola's final journey to her forever home and how wonderful that you could be a part of it.

    Kirby's mom


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