I just ordered the popular “Adopt, Foster, Sponsor…” poster (also featured on Woof & Meow’s “About” page. I have a growing collection of tees, jewelry, and other stuff to promote pet adoption and remind everyone “If you can’t adopt “Foster,” if you can’t Foster, then Sponsor…).
It’s on sale for $15 and just $10 when you use the coupon code over on Inspired Cases. Can’t tell you if it’s a “true promotion” and the price will go up or always be advertised at $15, but with the coupon and a $.99 shipping charge, this was a relatively low risk purchase (though admittedly what I DIDN’T DO is look to see if it’s a Chinese company–often the case with these lower priced goods) with mostly very good reviews.
I went looking for other pet cause related phone cases after this one came up in my Facebook feed. It isn’t unreasonably priced at $22.95 from Rescuers Club if it’s a high quality case. And who knows, maybe, I will go back and add it to the collection.
Most of us love Fourth of July fireworks. Because of their highly sensitive ears and (often) traumatic experiences, many many animals do NOT like them one bit.
Which makes July 4th one of the biggest days of the year for animals to run away and otherwise take cover from fireworks. So many animal groups have been posting articles and entreaties to remind people that they should take those extra steps make sure animals are feel safe and comfortable this holiday.
Which as this infographic highlights means that July 5th is the busiest day of the year for many animal shelters.
Animal shelters can be very stressful places for pets anyway with July 4th ratcheting up the fear and stress levels for many. To help their residents feel less stressed out, The Maricopa County Animal Shelter (AZ) started their Calming the Canines event where volunteers come and read or simply talk to and comfort the dogs and other companion animals in their care.
Over 300 people turned out for the event last year.
What a fantastic idea. And one that other shelters around the country have borrowed. Most if not all the shelters in the Chicago Southland are closed this Fourth of July. No doubt the hard-working staff looks forward to the respite and celebrating the holiday.
But wouldn’t it be a “Yankee Doodle Dandy” of an idea is someone in our area will take up the mantle and do some version of “Calming the Canines” event.
Shelter animals would love it. It would make the day a lot less scary for the animals. And without a doubt, even those who remain unfazed by what’s going on, would appreciate the company.
And the extra TLC.
Taking the idea one step further, maybe we could piggyback it with some block canvassing to educate people about being more aware of what animals go through this time of year and get people to do a in-home version of “Calming the Canines.”
Like putting on calming music or trying some soothing aromatherapy to help their own pets feel relaxed, especially if they are going out to watch the fireworks and no one will stay behind.
And let’s not forget about the resident dogs. Often resident dogs are kept outside much of the time, so bear the brunt of all those neighborhood fireworks going on. Ideally, they should brought indoors until the day is over (though unfortunately in many neighborhoods, the fireworks have become a weeks long thang, starting before the Fourth and going on as long as they have them). It’s the noise.
Outside dogs, of course, are especially in danger of running away, turning up in a shelter or animal pound the next day. If they are lucky. More frightening is they could get run over by a car or hurt by hurling or descending fireworks.
Equally awful are those folks who thinks its funny to shoot fireworks near or at the neighborhood resident dogs or feral cat colony. It’s NOT. It’s cruel.
Personally I think this should be a charge that carries fines and community service.
But I’ll get off of that flashpoint for now.
Point is, we all need to be more aware that Fourth of July fireworks (like thunderstorms) aren’t the same fun-loving event for animals as it is for us. It can be very traumatic. So let’s be extra compassionate and keep them safe and calm the Fourth…in fact, all 365 days of the year.
Remembering, that it takes a village, after all.
This past weekend I got the news that Candy had a “meet and greet” with a potential adopter scheduled. So off Candy and I go. It went well and she went home with her new mom.
It wasn’t a foster fail. But it could have been. This particular shelter, Half-Way Home Animal Rescue, has a clause in their foster application that says that fosters cannot adopt the dogs they foster. I thought it a good policy. Well at least intellectual me understood the reasoning behind the policy and thought it good.
Plus I figured it would be a fail safe for me. The reason why I decided to foster in the first place was to keep a connection to animals and to do what I do best.
Shower them with love and attention.
And because I was not sure I was ready to have another pet in my life full-time. Mainly because I work full-time and am usually gone 8-10 hours a day. Since I tend to get breeds that love and need lots of attention, they would have bouts of separation anxiety and act out. Not good.
So fostering seemed to be the way to go.
And it was a good experience.
Except that I fell in love with Candy. The first week, a honeymoon period, I thought hard about asking to adopt her anyway. Then it got a little rougher as a lot of her terrier traits came busting through. Like digging and chewing. And exuberance displays of love and affection that came with waking me up at 5 am in the morning with slobbery kisses and lots of nipping which was hard to break her of doing.
Then as we settled into a routine that included a nightly walk and outside play time (on a long tie out) where she could run around, toss balls and her Kong into the air, and chase after them soccer-style. Her terrier traits of being so cute and funny came shining though. She became pals with one of the dogs next door and showed that she didn’t have a problem with strange dogs nor people, once she felt familiar with them.
We went through both a bout with kennel cough and her heat. Nursing an animal through “difficult stuff” is very bonding.
Candy was a great dog. IS a great dog.
And I was happy that I took her and “saved” her from possible–maybe probable–euthanasia (she was at a high kill shelter and had a “due date”).
Her new mom was “grateful” to us for everything we had done for Candy. And that is what fostering is all about. Helping a dog find their “best self” AGAIN. A best self that often gets lost when an animal gets dumped and finds themselves alone and scared at an unfamilar place like a shelter.
In the best situations, like Candy’s, the animal gets their groove back fairly quickly. Someone sees them on a site like Petfinder (where Candy’s new mom spotted her) or at a pet event and decide to give them a new home.
And become the family they need, showering them with love and affection anew.
Still it is hard. Bittersweet.
I am happy for Candy but also sad. I miss her but want the best for her. So with that, I bid Candy adieu.