Our Foster Dogs
I've always known the plight of homeless dogs. Over the years I've picked up a few strays and found them homes. It wasn't until I joined FaceBook that I began seeing countless posts showcasing dogs living in shelters who were literally running out of time. It was heart breaking to look into their eyes knowing I couldn't help them. I admit I shed tears over quite a few but had no idea how to help this growing problem. Yes, I make monetary donations to various organizations throughout the year but somehow I needed to do more, I just didn't know what I could do.
It was during this time I discovered The Homeward Bound Project of Mississippi and knew I had found my little part in the great scheme of helping these worthy animals. Mississippi is overwhelmed with homeless dogs so this program was established to foster and prepare dogs for adoption in the Northern states. Kirby and I now keep one foster dog at a time. It's turned out to be a win-win situation. We save a dog which opens a space to save another dog. Truth be told it's really Kirby and I who are the lucky ones because these fosters are changing our lives one dog at a time.
Kirby has easily stepped into the role of therapy dog. He teaches them how to play again and the proper behaviors they need to learn. They watch him picking up on his cues and reactions. Kirby has a balanced demeanor which means he reacts well to change taking everything in stride and is virtually fearless. His positive attitude gives them a positive attitude. A good example would be when we experienced our first thunderstorm with Gracie, one of our foster dogs. She was terrified of the thunder crying and trying to hide. When the second storm came rolling through she barely acknowledged it. She would stay close to me or Kirby but remained calm only looking at him each time it thundered. She was learning to gauge her reaction based on his reaction.
So what do we get out of these endeavors? I feel a little better knowing I'm doing something to help even if it is only one dog at a time. Kirby is an only dog so he has a playmate for a time. It's heart breaking when it's time for one to leave us but we know there is always another who will need us.
I wanted to keep a scrapbook of sorts because every one of our foster dogs take a piece of our hearts with them when they move on to their forever homes. These are the sweethearts who have graced our lives if only for a short time on their journey. Read their stories by clicking on their pictures.