It is as hard for you as it is for me to believe that we’ve only been fostering dogs for a year? February marks the anniversary of our first foster dog. Galina was so much fun. She taught all of us to put our belongings away and cleansed our house of errant, dangerous stuffed animals. I still love the video Nick posted of Galina’s path of destruction.
We loved that little girl like crazy, and there were tears when she left, but I was hooked on fostering.
On the occasion of this anniversary, I checked in on Galina who is now Strider and happily continuing to love on/torment her furbrother, Gimli. Donna gave me a full report. Galina is still a serious digger so instead of the constant dirty face and paws, the recent big snow has made clean up much easier. She is a happy, little snow bunny, dragging a reluctant Gimli out to play. Galina is the only dog I know who has a heated waterbed for her dogbed! (She claimed the guest bed for herself.) She’s still the all-star snuggler I fell in love with and spreading smiles wherever she goes!
Next, I checked in with Stitch (Symphony to those of you following on the OPH roster). We only had Stitch ten days, but she made her mark. My kindle still has the puncture wound Stitch inflicted on its screen when she carried it back to her crate to add to her hoarded collection of our belongings. Every time I open my kindle, I think of her. We loved her big smile and her generous love.
Amy was quick to get back to me to let me know that Stitch is much loved and cherished at their house, especially by her son who struggles with a learning disability and can use a buddy after a tough day at school (although his buddy recently got ahold of his snow boot and now it’s held together with duct tape!).
And then of course, there’s Carla. We had Carla for four months and enjoyed every minute of it. My youngest still waxes poetic about how much he loves Carla. How she was the best dog ever. Someday he will adopt his own 75-pound coonhound, I am certain.
Carla moved to Indiana, but lucky for me she was adopted by a relative of an OPH volunteer, so I get fairly regular reports of her antics. I checked in with Carla’s adopter, Carol, and got a wonderful update on her. She reports that Carla is still a couch hog, even rearranging cushions and pillows to suit her. She still loves the outdoors and has a buddy to run with. She is treated royally by Carol’s 17-year-old granddaughter (who lives with her) who calls Carla, “Princess.”
Carla was an OPH “return,” meaning that she was originally fostered and adopted out with OPH. She’d been with her adopters for four years, so the return was painful on all parties, but most especially Carla. It makes my heart SO HAPPY to know that Carla is now in a home where she is wanted and loved and so very happy. That’s what this fostering gig is all about. Being the bridge between unwanted and wanted. Sometimes it takes a little longer than a shelter can financially handle, so I’m glad there are organizations like OPH that save so many beautiful lives. At last count it was 5600 for OPH.
If you’ve ever considered fostering and are hesitant to try it, please let me urge you to give it a go. The worst thing that can happen is you’ll be a foster fail because there are so many amazing dogs. I’d say we could have easily kept pretty much every dog we’ve fostered. Letting them go is never easy, but we do it because we know that there is always another good dog coming our way. People tell me all the time, “You’re so good to do this,” and I always say, when it comes to fostering we get MUCH more than we give.
For more information on becoming a foster home for OPH, click here.