Tag Archives: foster

The One That Got Away

8 Apr

One year ago I was 3 months pregnant.  My husband and I had also recently had a stretch of foster dogs who were all around 1.5 years old.  As far as I’m concerned a 1.5 year old, untrained dog, is just about the hardest foster dog.  You don’t know their history. You don’t know if they are misbehaving or if they simply don’t know better.  They have SO MUCH ENERGY.  Let me stress this again.  1.5 year old dogs have a LOT of energy!!  Especially pitbull-type dogs because they are an active breed. So, we took a mini-foster-break until we could get a foster puppy.  Puppies are not especially relaxing either, but they have their pro’s.  Mainly the fact that they are just so stinking cute.

Enter Rory. A tan, wrinkly-faced, wiggly-bottomed, puppy with oversized feet and a couple of adorably-white toes.

Rory.

The day we picked him up.

The day we picked him up.

Rory was beautiful, handsome, precious. I could go on and on.  Just look at him. He’s one adorable dog.  He also reminded me of my first-true-dog love, Hartley.

So cute.

So cute.

The first night we had Rory we had him in a crate in the room next to ours.  He cried ALL night long.  My husband and I took turns sleeping on the floor next to the crate.  My dog Chase occasionally got up, walked over to Rory’s kennel and nudged it.  I don’t know if he was offering sympathy or telling him to be quiet so he could sleep.  It was a long night.  We were clearly delirious from listening to the whining and from lack of sleep, because not once did it occur to us to move the crate in to our bedroom.  When our brain faculties returned to us the next day we tried this, and it worked like a charm.  Rory wanted to be near us.

Rory was a people dog.   He like Mylo and Chase, but his strongest desire was to be near his people.  When I let him out of his crate when I got home he would quickly potty, and then cling to my leg.  If I walked he walked as close to me as possible. He begged, with the cutest face and wagging tail, to be pet. He simply wanted to be adored.  He would eventually go play with the dogs, but he needed me first.

Rory was also a quick learner.  Because he wanted attention SO bad he was initially a jumper.  He learned that I wouldn’t pet him if he was jumping so as I walked around he scooted along on his butt trying to stay attached to my leg.  How cute?

Pet me please?!

Pet me please?!

Rory became very happy in our little family and I fell in love. Chase and Mylo liked him. Gene liked him. He was perfect.

Rory and Mylo

Rory and Mylo

Rory and Chase

Rory and Chase

The only thing that wasn’t perfect was that we had a baby on the way. Three dogs is always hard, and three dogs and a baby? I didn’t think we could do it.  We wouldn’t even all fit in a vehicle together.  How would I walk all three and push a stroller? Our house is so small, there wouldn’t be room for everyone.

I also struggled with the fact that Rory was SUCH a people dog.  Would he do better as the only dog in the house? He would certainly get more attention. Even before the baby, with three dogs, there was always a struggle for attention.

I knew that I couldn’t be a very good foster parent for Rory.  I wanted him too bad.  Even if, rationally, I knew that we couldn’t keep him, I wouldn’t ever think another family was good enough for him.

So, I made the gut-wrenching, heart-breaking decision to give him to another foster family.

I cried the entire 2.5 hour drive to drop him off with his new foster mom.  I remember my husband asking me “Do you really love the dog this much, or are these pregnancy hormone related tears?”   I wasn’t sure. I knew that Rory was perfect.  You don’t come across such a wonderful dog very often.  But I was pretty sure we were doing the right thing for everyone.

Last day with Rory

Last day with Rory

Rory’s new foster family also fell in love with him, and considered adopting him, but ended up letting him go to a wonderful couple who had no other dogs.

I’m happy he was adopted. And I hope he has an amazing life.  But I don’t think I’ll ever stop being sad that we couldn’t keep him.

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My First Nomination!

17 Jan

Thank you SO much to Pocket Pittie in the City: http://pocketpittieinthecity.blogspot.com/ for nominating Pitties for your Thoughts for the Liebster Award!

liebster

>”Liebster means Dearest in German, so the Liebster Blog Award is the Dearest Blog Award. It’s an award intended to recognize worthy, lesser known blogs and to help expose their work. Of course, accepting The Liebster Award comes with a few rules!”

Liebster Blog Award Rules
These are the rules as have been given to me:

1. Thank the giver and link back to the blogger who gave it to you .
2. Share five things about yourself.
3. Answer five questions presented by Pocket Pittie in the City.
4. Ask five new questions to your nominated bloggers
5. Reveal your top five picks {with less than 200 readers} and let them know by leaving a comment on their blog.
6. Copy and paste the award on your blog
7. Hope that the people you’ve sent the award to forward it to their five favorite up-and-coming bloggers and keep it going!

I am honored to accept this darling award, so here goes!

5 Things about myself:
1. My first true pittie love was my adopted Pitbull-Lab mix Hartley. He injested rope from a rope toy and died due to blocked and damaged intestines. He was only 15 months old.
2. I heard about Mylo a week after Hartley died. He had been abandonned in a house for 2 weeks and needed a home. I needed a reason to get up in the morning so it seemed perfect.
3. I have a math degree and am doing absolutely nothing with it.
4. My two biggest pet peeves are when people discriminate against Pitbulls and when animals are overweight.
5. It is my dream to own a boarding facility.

5 Questions present by Pocket Pittie in the City:
1. Is formal training “worth it” and why?
I believe that formal training is an excellent opportunity for both dog and owner. I wish that I had more time to take my dogs to classes for retrieving, agility, refresher courses, ect. I think it’s a good way to make sure you aren’t forgetting to continually work on your dogs behavior. This being said, my dogs have not had very much formal training. Haha.
2. What is your favorite activity to do with your pooch(es)?
My favorite activity is off-leash hiking. I know this goes against many dog owners belief systems, but my absolute favorite time with my dogs is when we’re deep in the woods with no one around and they get to be free. They are wonderful company and it’s always so beautiful to be outside and to watch them enjoy themselves.
3. If you like to cook, what’s your best dish?
I like to cook, but I’m not the greatest of cooks. I make a pretty good lasagna, but I can’t take any credit for the recipe. That was handed down to me.
4. What do your dogs do that makes you laugh EVERY time!?
My lab Mylo does actual FULL somersaults on the couch. He moans and groans and snorts the entire time and it’s hilarious.
5. What are your favorite things about dog blogging?
My favorite thing about blogging is discovering all the people out there that are just like me and understand what I’m doing.

I honestly have NO idea how to tell if I blog has more than 200 followers.. (I’m absolutely terrible with electronic concepts..) but here are my questions:
1. What kind of food do you feed your dogs and why?
2. What is your favorite animal related book?
3. I know you are all dog people, but what other kinds of pets do you have?
4. What is your favorite “guilty pleasure” food?
5. Do you exercise your dogs before work or after work?

and my nominees are…. Drum roll..
1. Leroy and Company: http://leroyandcompany.wordpress.com/
2. Temporary Home, Permanant Love: http://temporaryhomepermanentlove.com/
3. Pittieful Love: http://pittiefullove.wordpress.com/
4. And Foster Makes Five: http://andfostermakesfive.wordpress.com/
5. Dream Big, Bark Loudly: http://dreambigbarkloudly.wordpress.com/

Thank you again for the nomination, we all appreciate it!

The Pitties For Your Thoughts family.

The Pitties For Your Thoughts family.

Missing in Action. A little bit of news!

10 Jan

So, I feel like I haven’t blogged in FOREVER. Let me tell you right away, this IS NOT because I haven’t had anything to blog about, but instead because I don’t have the right words for all that’s happened lately.

I intended on writing a wonderful post about Sophie’s Christmas surprise. A couple of days before Christmas my brother and sister-in-law decided to start the “foster-to-adopt” program with Sophie! I was SO excited! Not only does she get a fantastic new family, two human siblings and a great new home, but I’ll also get to see her for the rest of her life!! My 7 year old niece, Mia, had been begging for Sophie for over a month and couldn’t believe it when her parents said she was staying. Sophie has met Mia before and has always been head-over-heels for her in return. The first thing I felt was extreme happiness and then a huge amount of relief. This time, instead of being torn into pieces between the fact that I SHOULD be happy, and my sadness and hurt about giving up a dog, I can focus on the fact that one of my fosters, and one that I love SOOO much, will remain in my family! I’ll even get to dog sit! I’ll get to see how she’s doing and I’ll always know JUST how much her family loves her. What more could a foster ask for?!

So you’re probably wondering WHY I didn’t write her amazing adoption story 2 weeks ago when I found out that she was getting a home, especially such an EXCITING home, for Christmas. I had every intention of doing so.. but the longer I waited the more we discovered that Sophie isn’t quite as happy about her new home as we all are.

Here’s a little backround on Sophie.. Sophie was just 12 weeks old when she came to our house. She had been with her siblings her entire life. Her first night in our house was her first night without them. She was scared and probably felt all alone.. but she soon discovered that she wasn’t alone. She bonded immediately to her foster-brothers Mylo and Chase. She became a confident, ram-rod of a puppy, and people who met her fell instantly in love with her.

I never had ANY idea that without her big brothers around she’d be insecure, afraid, and lose all of her spunk and character.

When we dropped Sophie off at her new house she was very scared. She wouldn’t go up to anyone other than Mia and she wouldn’t wander around the house. We all assumed that she would adjust quickly and be her ramrod-self any day. We all said “theres a lot going on today, she will adjust in a couple of days” and “She’s a puppy, it wont take long.”

During the next couple of days Sophie spent a lot of time with Mia but she continued to be afraid of her new house and her new family. Unless she was with Mia she mostly stayed in one room. Worst of all she decided to be incredibly afraid of her new dad. She wants nothing to do with him no matter what he does.

I have been putting off writing her adoption story because I assumed she would adjust soon and then I could write her happy story. I didn’t want to write about her incredibly happy news if she’s NOT happy and we’re not sure it will work out.

I decided to write her story now, though, because there are lessons to be learned from it.

Sophie has been in her new home for two weeks now. She has stopped running away from her new baby brother (she’s still not too sure about noisy babys but he’s not QUITE as scary anymore), she recently decided to brave some new rooms in the 3 story house, and she has gotten pretty used to her new mom. Unfortunately she’s still incredibly scared of her new dad.

Sophie’s behavior and attitude towards her new dad is such a shock because she was a huge daddy’s girl at our house. She’s never been afraid of men in our house, in fact, she’s never been afraid of anyone. What we failed to think about, however, is that Sophie had never spent a day of her life without a dog sibling. We got her directly from her litter as a pup and then she had Mylo and Chase. We never imagined she’d be so insecure without them. She was always so incredibly brave and outgoing. I never stopped to think about how she would adjust to being an only dog. I’ll admit that I’m always a fan of my foster dogs going to homes with other dogs, but I do also strongly believe that single dog homes are wonderful too. Especially single dog homes with children. I was so focused on the fact that she’d be getting two amazing parents, a 7 year old who can’t get enough of her and a bouncing baby brother to grow up with. I was completely sure that it’d be a great situation. Now I’m discovering that it’s a situation for me to learn from.

As a foster parent I will have to do a better job of testing my fosters in a variety of situations. I’m not saying it’s my fault that she’s adjusting so slowly, but if I had been expecting her to be a nervous, shy and insecure dog I would have been able to discuss this with the new family. If they weren’t EXPECTING her to adjust quickly, as puppies typically do, it may not seem so weird that she’s not.

Perhaps if I had tested her in a larger variety of situations I would have known what we needed to work on. I could have taken her to public places without Mylo and Chase. She could have been entered into puppy socialization classes. These are things that her new family will probably have to do now because I didn’t know that she needed it.

Her new family is trying everything they can to make her comfortable, but she’s simply not adjusting to her new dad. This makes ME sad, and I know it’s making her new family sad. I continue to tell them to give it time but eventually it needs to be decided if the situation is good for anyone involved.

I am keeping my fingers crossed that Sophie will get over her fears and get to stay with her new family, especially since I was so excited about this family! I thought that I had escaped the heartbreak of giving her up. We all want it to work out SO badly, but now we need to focus on making sure that whatever happens we act in the best interest of both the family and Sophie. I hope that, no matter what, her story can be a learning experience for everyone involved.

Dear Santa

11 Dec

Sohpie

Dear Santa,

 My Chelsea-Mom told me I could use her computer to write you a letter.  She told me that if I send you my wish list my wishes jus might come trues!

 This is my first Christmas.  I am spending the holidays with my foster family because I don’t have a real family yet, so this year I’z wishing for my Forever Family.

 If you could send me a Forever Family who likes to hike and walk, likes to play outside, likes to snuggle on the couch and would give me lotz of nummies and chewies that would be great.  (Chelsea-Mom says I can’t have LOTZ.. but I can wish right??) 

 Maybe you could send me a family that has some of those yummy bones laying around, and someone for me to play tug with. 

Sohpie2

 Chelsea-Mom says it’z a lot to ask, but if you could send me a family that will let me sleep in bed I’d really appreeci-ate it. 

 If you send me a Forever Family I promise to put up with costumes and jackets.  I will learn how to walk on that rope thing and I will always do my dogly duty and hand out kisses.  I will try not to potty in the house and I will try not to eat things. 

 I’m not too picky.. I love having siblings to play with but I’d love having a family all to myself too.  I love having children to play with, but I would be contents to be a solo man or woman’s best friend. 

Sohpie1

 I feel bad wishing to leave my foster family behind, but this year, this puppy’s only wish is a Forever Home. 

 I hope you get this Santa, it makes me sad to keep waiting!

Merry Christmas,

 Sophie.

Snuggles on Sundays

4 Dec

This is my attempt at a “Wordless” Wednesday post.. even though it is Tuesday. 

My favorite day of the week is Sunday.  It is the only day that both my husband and I have off so we typically get a lot more time with the dogs than any other day. 

There’s something so precious about dogs in snuggle mode.  They curl up in teeny balls, or wind together in the most precious positions and I don’t know about yours, but mine turn in to limp noodles.  They will be my pillow or my leg warmer. They will be little spoon or lay completely on top of me.  They aren’t too picky.  

Here are some snuggle photos from Sunday.

Mylo curled up.

Mylo curled up.

Chase curled up.

Chase curled up.

Sophie and Chase.  So cute.

Sophie and Chase. So cute.

Sophie and Mylo.

Sophie and Mylo.

Sophie and Chase again.

Sophie and Chase again.

I was very foolish to believe that it would be easier to give up a foster puppy that it is to give up adult fosters.  Look at her sweetness.  She’s pretty much irresistable, even to Mylo and Chase.

Sophie Here!

23 Nov

Hi Hi!  Sophie here!

Whoops. I got stuck.

I hyjaked hijacked Chelsea-Mom’s computer.  I REALLY enjoy stealing her things, He-He (don’t tell her I hid her shoe in that box I sleep in).I try not to damage her stuff, but I just can’t help myself sometimes. I AM just a baby after all..(Chelsea-Mom says it’s lucky for puppies that they are so cute.. I don’t know what I need luck for, though.. I’m so awe-some I should be called The Incredi-ble Sophie!)  Pajama pants are my favorite things to steal from Chelsea-Mom, but it’s not just her stuff!  I like to steal Gene-Dad’s stuff too.  He has such nummy slippers.  Anyways, before Chelsea-Mom see’s me I have some things to say!  Chelsea-Mom told me the other day that I have a LOT to say and that I’m very noisy for such a little gal. I’m pretty sure she’s fibbing.  She says that I’m even noisy when I’m SLEEPING, but I don’t see how that’s paws-ible.  Gurl dogs don’t snore.  Everybody knows that.

Me NOT snoring with Mylo.

So, first off.. My Chelsea-Mom tells me that she and Gene-Dad are not my “forever” fambily.  She says that I’m jus living here for awhile.  Well, what the heck?!  Where’s my forever fambily!? I really like life with Chelsea-Mom and Gene-Dad and I love my  brothers Mylo and Chase! (They let me pick on them a lot.  Chelsea-Mom says that’s what little sisters are for.) I like snuggawing with my whooole fambily on the couch, I like to play with everyone outside, and I LOVE playing tug-o-war with whomever (2-legged or 4-legged) wants to play with me.  So, you see, I’m kinda sad that this is not my forever home.  Chelsea-Mom tells me, though, that there are thow-sends more than I can count, dogs looking for forever homes, and that she likes to help as many as she can.  She PROMISES me that I will love my new forever home as much as I like her home.  I want to believe her, but I’m still kinda nerv-us.

Chase makes me feel better when I’m ner-vus.

Even though I’m kinda nerv-us and I don’t want to leave my “foster” (I guess I’m a “foster”?) house I can’t wait to meet my new parents and see if I’ll have siblings to pick on or not!  I hope they take me for car rides, let me play with tug toys, let me snuggle on the couch, and maybe even someday sleep on the bed!  As much as I love Chelsea-Mom and Gene-Dad I’m ready for my new parents!! How much patience can one little puppy have?!

Some other things I love?

Leaves.  Chelsea-Mom says something called the “wind” is what makes them fly around and makes them so fun for me to chase.  I’m not sure what “wind” is.. but I know leaves are a whole lotta fun!!

When Mylo and Chase (my “foster” brothers) wear collars.  Then I have something to grab on to!

Wearing sweaters.  Chelsea-Mom calls me a Purdy Girl when I’m wearing my sweaters.  Gene-Dad says that one of my jackets has an El-vis style collar.  Who’s El-vis? I bet he’s not as cute as me!

El-vis collar.

Jumping!!  I love to pounce off the couch!  Preferably right on to one of my foster brothers.. but I’ll jump on to other things too.

Chase wanted to wear a sweater too, but it didn’t fit him.

Tug-o-War!  Chelsea-Mom says I’m fereles feerless not a-scared of anything.  Brother Mylo pulls me all over the place!  Brother Chase is usually on my side though.

Something I don’t like?

Something Chelsea-Mom calls “Sno.”  It appeared on the ground last night and it’s really cold!!  Chelsea-Mom said that I still have to go potty outside tho. Boo.

I also don’t like that I have to sleep in that box thing while Mylo and Chase get to sleep on the bed. SO NOT FAIR.  Chelsea-Mom says it’s because I’m a puppy and that my new fambily will want me to be used to that box. I told her last night that if she let me sleep on the bed JUS ONCE! I’d never tell anyone.. and I thought she caved, but then in the morning I woke up in that box thing again!!

Me in my crate when I was littler. I broke the box the other day.

I like pretty much everything else.  I’m happy to be with Chelsea-mom, Gene-dad, and Mylo and Chase for the time being, but I really want to be someone’s forever pet.  Will you take me home with you??  I’d make a GREAT Christmas present.  I look adorable in ribbon. 

11 (because I apparently can’t count) Things I’ve Learned from Fostering

16 Nov

1. The earth will continue spinning even if my couch covers are never on correctly.

I am a slightly anal and compulsive person.  I was a math major in college, this probably explains it.  I like things centered, I’m not artistic, I don’t like clutter.  Living in a 900 square foot house with three dogs sometimes has me reeling.  I can’t even count how many times I adjust my couch covers a day.  I just can’t STAND when they are crooked and

Do you think they do this on purpose?

apparently it’s impossible for a dog to get on the couch without screwing them up.  I have learned  I am learning that nothing bad will happen if I wait to fix them until tomorrow.  I will not have a heart attack.  The dogs will not judge my crooked couch covers, and the husband thinks I’m crazy for caring in the first place loves me no matter what our couches look like.

This same lesson applies to the dog hair situation in my house.  No matter how distraught I feel about it NOTHING bad will happen if I skip vacuuming for a day.

2. Caring means Sharing.

Sharing dads lap.

This is a lesson that everyone in our family has had to learn.  When we have a foster dog Gene and I share our floor space, our couch space, our bed and our time.  Mylo and Chase are forced to share their food, their dog beds, their toys and, most importantly, their humans.  At this point I’m proud to say that I’m pretty sure we would all pass kindergarten with our sharing skills.

 

3.  Accidents happen.

Milk gets spilled, injuries happen, rugs get peed on.  This is just part of being a dog mom, and also a regular mom, I suppose.  Things get chewed on, windows get broken.  It’s

“But MoooOOm. It wasn’t my fault!”

important to remember that you love your fur-babies and not to get too upset about material things.

4.  Judging a potential adoptive family is about what’s best for the dog, not about what you personally think about people.

I find it very hard to not be too judgmental when I meet prospective adopters for my foster babies.  See, I KNOW how happy they are at my house.  I know what their life is like with me, and I don’t want them to have to give anything up.  Dog people all have different views and different ways to treat their dogs.  Many people wouldn’t agree with everything that I do, just as I don’t agree with things that other people do.  This doesn’t necessarily define either of us as bad dog owners, just different.  (There certainly ARE bad dog owners.. I’m just observing differences between good ones).  Sometimes dogs do best in single dog homes, sometimes they do best with other dogs around. Some dogs are trustworthy off-leash, and some dogs aren’t.  Some dogs couldn’t live in the city (exhibit A: my lab Mylo) and some dogs do just fine.  I have to work really hard to remember that simply because people may be different than me doesn’t mean they won’t be a great home for my foster.

5.  Adult dogs bond just as fast as puppies.  Maybe faster.

Many people have the belief that it’s necessary to get a dog as a puppy in order to have that indescribable dog-human bond.  I myself always wanted puppies.  Since becoming a foster, though, I have had 8 adult dogs come into my house and I have learned from these dogs that it’s JUST as possible to form a bond with an adult dog.  They are more mature and more capable of forming relationships.  They want to learn from you and they are experiencing a new life with you.  This is a good way to start a relationship.  The other benefit of getting an adult dog?  They are typically potty trained, and are usually through their chewing phase already.  Also you know what they’re going to look like!

 

6.  Dogs who have never been given anything don’t expect as much.

Gene and I have both noticed that the dogs who have had awful or neglectful upbringings tend to me much less obnoxious clingy demanding endearingly-needy than our boys who have been spoiled for years.  They tend to be more appreciative of extra attention, treats, toys, and even the simplest of things like heat and a place to lay.  My dogs think that it is their  “whoever is in charge of doggie Heaven”-given right to lay on the couch, get at least one rawhide a week, play fetch once a day, sleep in bed, and the list goes on and on.  Sometimes it’s pleasant to lay down and snuggle next to a dog who hasn’t experienced that before.  The look in their eyes is priceless.

7.  I’ve learned to appreciate my own dogs even more. 

One of the things that I appreciate the most as a foster parent is that my perma-dogs ALLOW me to be a foster parent.  Over the past year I have fallen more and more in love with my own dogs for being so amazing and polite about letting strays into our family.   I love the time in between fosters when it’s just the two of them (which isn’t often) because this time makes me love them all the more for sharing the rest of their time with whatever foster we have at the moment.

8.  Money donated is money well spent.

I don’t have a lot of money.  I have a mortgage, insurance bills, cellphone bills, dog food bills, my own food to buy, ect.  Everyone I know can relate to this.  But somewhere along the line I started donating.  Not a lot, maybe $5 here, $10 there, but nevertheless, donating.  Once I started this I could no longer sit in a tanning bed, or buy a new shirt, without a twinge of guilt.  I always feel like maybe my money could be going somewhere better.  I don’t think anyone should donate outside their means, and I think everyone should splurge on themselves every once in a while, but I do think that once a month, or maybe twice a month, skipping that latte and sending $5 to a charity of your choice will make you feel amazing. I suggest you all try it!

9.  Fostering has brought me to a new level of contentment with myself.

I have always been a pretty happy person.  I love my family and my friends.  I am fortunate enough to be married to the man of my dreams and now I have his family as well.  I have always been happy enough with myself as a person and never really felt as though I was missing something.  Now, however, I have discovered how truly happy a person can be if they are doing something that they really believe in.  Having a passion gives my life purpose, and joy beyond words.  It makes me a better child, friend, dog-mom, and wife and I choose to believe that “A family that saves lives together, stays together.”

Family

10.  It never gets easier.

I have fostered, and given up, 9 dogs and I am on my 10th.  One would think that at some point it would get easier to say goodbye, but this never happens.  Each dog is so different and touches my heart in different ways.   Each dog thinks they are here to stay.  They fall in love with our family and they don’t understand that we are not their forever home.  Even when I say I won’t, I fall in love with them as well.  Often ours is the first good home they’ve been in.  Every time I find an adoptive family I worry that my foster will feel like I am just one more person that has abandoned them.  I wonder if they ask “why do you keep those two dogs (Mylo and Chase) but you won’t keep me?” My grief over giving up a dog is not typically sorrow for my own loss, but worry and fear about the rest of the dog’s life.  You can’t tell them what is happening; all you can do is give them a hug and a kiss and drive away.

Sometimes I wish Chase would drive me home.

11.  Broken hearts do indeed mend. 

My heart begins to break as soon as I even start THINKING about sending my foster away, and continues to rip until I am actually driving away.  At this point all I can do is hurt.  I have learned, though, that despite the immense pain I feel at that moment in time I WILL feel better.  My heart begins to heal, and while it’s left with a jagged mark, that mark fades with time.  In order to heal myself I spend time with my own dogs and I wait anxiously for updates about my foster-baby.  Knowing that I found them a wonderful home goes along way towards helping to heal my heart.

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