Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Savings Lives

As most of you know my dog of over 13 years passed away last month. It was really weird not having a dog in the house given I have had one for over 20 years. I really wasn't ready for another big commitment, but on the other side I really missed having one around the house.

Yes, I admit, I am a big time dog lover. I did a bit of research on the internet I came across the idea of fostering dogs. This is the taking in of dogs that have no homes and have no one yet to adopt them. You take care of them until they are able to find forever homes. I thought this was a great way to help out animals that needed help, all while being able to have a dog back in the house.

I checked out a few groups that foster, and signed up to the LAB-RESCUE group. It took about a week after submitting an application that I was contacted and interviewed. Yes, they said, I was a good candidate to foster, but they were going to look for a dog that was easy for my first time.

Well, about a week later I got a call that they had a dog for me to foster. I was so excited and made arrangements to meet with them and pick up the dog a few days later. Little did I know what would be there to meet me.

Timbit, as he is called is a 130lb Yellow Lab. I don't think I have ever seen a dog that big. He was huge. His story was that someone found him collapsed on their lawn and called animal control. They picked him up and kept him in the shelter. Given his size, if the rescue didn't step in to help he probably would have been euthanised. I don't know how he got that way but he was just huge. It was difficult for him to walk but he was just so happy to have some attention. He had bed sores on his legs, and the muscles would shake when he stood and eventually he would have to sit again.

I got Tim in the car, and the two of us made are way home. The first time I took him for a walk we were able to get about 20 paces and then he needed to lie down and rest. This is how it went with 4 rests to get to the end of my property line, which is about 70 ft. And then of course 4 more rests to get back. Although he was filled with a ton of love, Tim is in bad shape. Who would let him get like this and then toss him away.

In the first few days I saw that Tim loved to get into the garbage to see what he could find. Of course now it is under lock and key and I am teaching him to start to leave it alone. Not an easy job for a food minded dog.

The first week of fostering has now passed. I have learned so much about patience and understanding. I hope Tim can find a great home, but until then I will love and care for him. Together we will slowly try to get some of the weight off so again Tim can run and play like other dogs.

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