Not Good

He’s back…

I got a call from Isaac’s new mom last Thursday night that he had growled at an elderly lady on one of their walks yesterday and it shook his mom up. I wasn’t there so I don’t know the details; Isaac never actually physically touched or harmed the woman and while it was made to seem unprovoked, most dogs don’t get that angry over nothing. What may have appeared unprovoked to a human may have been very provoked in the mind of a dog. Again, I have no real idea what happened so I’m not going to waste time creating scenarios in my head that either excuse or blame Isaac. I do know it was dark which could easily have been at least a partial explanation.

What is fact, though, is that Isaac will not be staying in what was supposed to be his forever home; he is going to be removed and put back in foster care.

The obvious assumption is that he’s coming back to live with us. And he is. But contrary to popular belief, that is not how I wanted this to play out.

At least one of us is happy.

At least one of us is happy.

Let me say this flat out – Lucy is my number one priority. Since Isaac has been gone, her personality has been night and day. I had forgotten how energetic, active and mobile she really is. With Isaac around, she was either stuck on the couch or fearful of spending too long on the floor for fear that the hump monster would attack. I’m fully aware it seems like a minor and lighthearted problem, but it’s absolutely not. My dad even said he didn’t think the humping could have possibly been that big of an issue until he saw Isaac in action and Lucy’s fear of Isaac. Isaac is persistent and not to be stopped, no matter the punishment (timeout, a water bottle spritzed in the face, a swat on the bum, etc.).

In short, this sucks. This really, really sucks. I’m not sure if I can adequately express how much stress this has caused me. I’m tired and irritable 24/7. It’s been really fun for Marty.

I know it is not Isaac’s fault that he needs to return to foster care but it also isn’t Lucy’s fault, either, and I don’t feel as if she should have to deal with Isaac again. But Isaac has to go somewhere; his owner wanted him out ASAP and there literally aren’t any other choices since no other dog-free foster homes are available or want to take Isaac. And of course I love Isaac; selfishly I want him back but it simply isn’t fair to Lucy.

"I most definitely was not consulted on this decision."

“I most definitely was not consulted on this decision.”

Hopefully we find him his real forever home soon.

Isaac Found His Forever Home

After nearly seven months of fostering, Isaac has found his perfect forever home. It happened very quickly; the adoption was approved late Friday night and by this afternoon he was in his forever home. I didn’t have a lot of time to mentally prepare, which is maybe a good thing, maybe not.

Oh, I love him.

Oh, I love him.

I found out Friday night the adoption was approved and then spent most of Saturday at work so the adoption didn’t really have time to sink in but no doubt about it now – he’s gone. I’m not doing well; I spent the majority of the car ride home fighting back tears (and losing).

If you have any dog for 6 1/2 months there is obviously an attachment that forms. But I fell in love with him. Head over heels in love. There were so many things I love(d) about him. His eyes. His nubbin and how it shook when he was happy. His energy. The way he’d rest his head on your lap so you would pay attention to him. The way he’d flip his bed upside down to lay in it. The way he’d “run it in” on the last stretch of our daily walks. The way he’d wiggle his butt and grab a toy the minute you walked in the door. The way he barreled down the stairs, almost head-first into the front door. The perfect brown spot right over his rump. His fascination obsession with cars. The way, for the last two weeks, he’s slept in our bed at night. And how he placed his butt directly on Marty’s pillow every night 🙂

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Probably my favorite memory from the past few months is from Christmas morning. We were at my parents’ house and I was the first one awake. So I got up, fed the dogs and took Isaac for his daily after-breakfast walk. It was still early and there wasn’t a soul outside but all the outdoor Christmas lights were on, Christmas trees were lit and you could tell which families had little kids because those were the only homes with lights on inside. It was so peaceful and quiet…just the most perfect morning.

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His new home is just so perfect, though. He is so, so loved already. And his adoption is going to be so good for everyone (except me!). His new mom could not be happier, Isaac could not be going to a better home and Lucy will finally get some peace! But oh man, I miss him. So very much.

Isaac and his new mommy.

Isaac and his new mommy.

And now some more of my favorite pics from the past six-plus months:

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Utter sweetness.

Utter sweetness.

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Resolutions…2015 Version

I know, it is isn’t even Christmas yet and I’m already talking about New Year’s resolutions. I honestly don’t know why I bother to make them because, like almost everyone else in the world, I never follow through. For instance, here were last year’s resolutions:

1. Find Snowy her perfect forever home – DONE

Violet (aka Snowy) and her sisters in her forever home.

Violet (Right) (aka Snowy) and her sisters in her forever home.

2. Budget money so we can juggle Lucy, her constant vet visits and any other potential future fosters – Not so much. I definitely paid more attention to my money and where it was going and we were able to afford what Lucy needed, but I definitely didn’t save as much as I wanted.

3. Continue to work on my patience when it comes to Lucy and her stubbornness – Again, not so much. I mean, I guess I worked on my patience but without any actual improvement.

"Keep working on that patience, Mom."

“Keep working on that patience, Mom.”

4. Take the dog(s) for at least six walks a week; we all need to watch our weight and Lucy always has energy to burn off! – Sort of? Since getting Isaac in August we’ve walked at least 14 times a week and same when we had Buddy, but Lucy has definitely not gotten as many walks as she needs. And now she’s fat(ter).

Buddy, always up for a walk.

Buddy, always up for a walk.

One out of four. Pathetic.

I have a lot of non-dog resolutions rattling around in my brain for the upcoming year but this is a dog blog. So in keeping with that theme, here are the resolutions I will make and may or may not achieve:

1. Shift into a career that allows me a more “regular” schedule to continue fostering and allow me to help SNORT in more ways than I am currently able.
2. Keep on top of cleaning! That means vacuuming, dusting and even just keeping the dogs themselves cleaner (wiping paws, more baths, etc.).
3. Continue fostering.

That’s it. Not exciting but with effort, all three are doable.

My Plan Worked

This evening, Isaac had a quick vet appointment for follow-up bloodwork. Lest anyone forget, Isaac does not like other dogs. And what does a vet’s office have? That’s right, other dogs. Which means vet appointments are stressful, to put it mildly.

"They're not stressful for me! I love getting into it with other dogs!"

“They’re not stressful for me! I love getting into it with other dogs!”

So, I came up with the plan to take Isaac to the university track to try and tire him out. Normal walks don’t seem to drain his energy – at all – but I thought a car ride combined with new scenery and lots of people just might make him a wee bit tired so he wouldn’t act up at the vet.

Watching lacrosse practice.

Watching lacrosse practice.

Loving life.

Loving life.

After a lap around the track, we hopped back in the car to head to the vet…where Isaac didn’t start a fight with any of the three dogs in the waiting room. Miracles do happen.

And the miracles continued when I got to take a special trip to the back of the where they keep dogs recovering from surgery and there was a five-month-old English bulldog, Harley! She had to stay in her cage but you better believe I pet her through the grates. Unbelievably cute.

So, a far better evening than I had anticipated. Now we wait for Isaac’s test results to come back; hopefully they show his thyroid levels are in the normal range and we can move full steam ahead with finding him a forever home!

"Adopt me!"

“Adopt me!”

Do What Makes You Happy

I’ve slowly learned the value of doing what makes you happy. For years I thought I was doing what made me happy but recently I’ve come to realize that’s not the case. Some of the things that were making me happy are now making me unhappy but as simplistic as it sounds to just stop doing them, life obviously isn’t that simple.

So while I work to change those areas that are causing a lot of unhappiness in my life, I’ve started actively seeking out other things that do actually make my life more fulfilled. Fostering is one of those activities. I started volunteering with S.N.O.R.T. with zero intention to foster but once we started, I realized how fulfilled it made me. So, in the theme of doing what makes me happy, we continue to foster.

Another activity I’ve taken up is CrossFit. Trendy? Maybe. Expensive? Yes. Rewarding? You bet.

And I continue with small activities like Dog Days (to which we went back today!) to remind me that there are plenty of things in my life to look to for happiness.

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She found the ice cubes.

She found the ice cubes.

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She makes me so happy.

She makes me so happy.