Faith, Trust, & Foster Pups

Helping dogs on the road to forever, forever finding ourselves as we walk that road with them.

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2012 Updates and A Spoonful of Suga

Well goodness, it’s been awhile since we’ve had an update, hasn’t it? I guess time flies when you’re back in school, switching jobs, helping get a dog park built, and of course, getting some Lucky Dogs Adopted! Shortly following my return to VA after Christmas, Loopy got herself a forever home. I was a little nervous about the family at first, simply because it contained two resident Pomeranian siblings. Those of you who had the pleasure of meeting Loopy knew that she was a big love, but also a dog who didn’t know her own size and strength. This worked out fine for Ollie, who was a quintessential Jack Russell, happily chasing, wrestling with , and oftentimes pinning her. Our playful Rottie mix pooch would carefully seek out one square foot of space on the couch and then prance herself up on it, usually sitting on whoever or whatever else was just outside its borders. I was a wee bit concerned as to how her social graces (or lack thereof) would impress upon two small fluffy dogs who had never had to interact, much less live, with a 55 lb lap dog.

In our initial introductions to her adoptive home, Loopy tried to play with her new prospective adoptive siblings a la her standard play initiation move: by taking her big ol’ paw and bringing it down upon the bodies of her new tiny and fluffy siblings. Suffice it to say the Poms were less than thrilled. I explained that an adjustment period was to be expected, and training and exercise would help ease the transition. But to be sure, I asked if her new parents were sure about bringing her into the mix, as I acknowledged the importance of respecting the needs of the resident pets. Mom and Dad were ready for whatever lie ahead, and we took her to Petco to get a collar and a new bed. Loopy, now Leela, made herself cozy in the middle of the store upon her new bed, but old habits die hard and she is thankfully still a welcome addition to the couch, where miss Loops/Leela happily snoozes in her spare time.

Loopy on the couch in her foster home…

…Loopy on the couch in her adoptive home.

I actually just got an update from Loopy’s foster tonight, here’s how she’s holding up: “Just wanted to give you an update and some photos. Leela is very loved and spoiled and gets along with Holly very well now. Teddy is just a grouchy old man but she knows to leave him alone 🙂 I recommended your rescue to some clients at my work (vet hospital) so hopefully they can have the great experience I did! Thanks :)”

Loopy and Holly, her Pom Sister, co-existing peacefully.

We stayed foster-less for pretty much the entire month of January, and brought our first Lucky Dog of 2012 in on January 28th. Mitzie was a super cute, mis-categorized pup who was labelled as a stocky, rugged muscular dog called a Mountain Cur. When I picked her up from transport, this teeny, 18 lb terrier is the dog that greeted me:

Suffice it to say that while I’m not quite sure what she was, she was definitely not a Mountain Cur. Mitzie was an incredibly easy foster…no accidents in the house, no chewing, got along great with Ollie, snuggled right into her crate at bed time. She was also incredibly affectionate, lovey, and playful. So it’s probably no big surprise that she was adopted a mere 24 hours after her arrival. Two families were taken by her charms at an adoption event after she got to town, and one was lucky enough to keep her at home after we stopped by for the home visit. But she didn’t need more than a night to get comfy and snuggle into our hearts. 

So, fast forward a week, and a transport from our friends at the Florence Area Humane Society. Many a foster is needed on transport weeks, and so I took a look at Kate’s weekly foster needed list to see who I could help out. I saw there were a couple dogs who needed to go to a foster with a second dog (typical for dogs who are noticably shy in the shelter), and offered to take one of them. I ended up getting assigned to take a Dachsund mix named Suga. She arrived last Saturday and came off transport shaking. Likely because it was cold, but also likely because she was terrified. We got her a doggie jacket to keep warm and patiently waited to get a collar and leash while it started to rain. I brought some high value treats with me, but she was just so scared that she wouldn’t take any. Leashed and collared up, we finally got her photo snapped and headed down to the parking garage. We got to the car and she attempted to hide under it.  I lifted her into the car and she curled up in the back seat. We got home and she ran up onto the steps, where she seemed to feel as safe as she could, given her scary and stressful day…and all of a sudden being in a place that was completely unfamiliar, wondering what was next.

It probably didn’t do much to get in her good graces by giving her a bath next.

Then Nick brought home Ollie, who immediately wanted to play and sent her running for her life. Suffice it to say we weren’t off to a good start. But we got all the uncomfortable transitional stuff out of the way, and I was forgiven after a warm meal and a comfy snuggle spot on the couch. She was exhausted, and I didn’t blame her. But she slept like an angel in her crate and awoke the next morning with her tail half mast and half wagging (a marked improvement from the night before). The adoption event that next day frightened her (not surprisingly), but Suga was a good sport and got through it. For the following week she’s been able to work on building confidence, her housetraining, and seeing the world through new eyes.

I don’t know what Suga’s life was before she came to Lucky Dog, but whatever it was, it left her faith in humanity somewhat shaken, and left her not entirely sure how to socialize or play with other pups. But like most dogs, she is resilient and eager to find reason to have that faith restored. While she may be afraid of loud noises, she is curious about the world around her. While she was too afraid to go to the bathroom for our first two days with her, she is following the example of her foster brother to learn what to do. There are mistakes and missteps along the way, but above all else she loves to be loved. I came home from work only two days after welcoming her into our life, and she greeted me with such excitement that her entire body was wagging. We have immediately learned that she is a cuddle bug and loves human affection once she gets comfortable around you. 

We have immediately learned that in spite of her shyness, she is a cuddle bug and loves human affection once she gets comfortable. That said, her fear of loud noises leaves her best suited to a family with older kids (12 and up). Small kids just don’t really know how not to be loud I’m afraid. Also, because she is still learning how to trust people and work on her socialization, sweet Suga needs to go to a home with a second dog. She also does not like being left alone when her people need to leave, so a buddy to hang with when the humans are out is a big help to her. Outside of that, she’s pretty much a perfect companion who loves to play but doesn’t need a ton of exercise to keep her from going crazy. We are still perfecting her housetraining, but hey, it’s only been a week and she’s come a long way in that time. As you can also see, she’s very comfortable in her crate and sleeps like an angel through the night, as long as she can be by your side.

If you’d like for Suga to be by your side, feel free to check back on the blog for more updates, and check out her bio at to learn how to adopt her! In the mean time, she’ll be crashing at my house, and I’m pretty okay with that 🙂

Puppy kisses,
Lynn & Suga