Tag Archives: Foster Families

Daisy’s Sweet Disposition – The Love of a Senior Dog

1 Jul

Many people find themselves unwilling to adopt “senior” dogs because they fear that the time spent with their new best friend will be closer to reaching its painful end. This is true in most cases, but what most people do not recognize are all the reasons why adopting older dogs is so important for the dog and the owner.

Here is a story that may alter your perception of elderly dogs and encourage you to adopt them more willingly:

Jill, a professional dog trainer who has been with Eleventh Hour Rescue since 2004, has been one to look past age as a factor in determining what dog fit her and her husband best. Three years ago, there were 11 dogs that were rescued from a hoarding/neglect situation in Georgia. An e-mail was sent to Eleventh Hour Rescue asking them if it would be okay to take in Daisy, a 7-8 year old dog who they considered to be the “least adoptable” due to her age. Of course, this didn’t prevent Eleventh Hour Rescue from taking in the “senior of the group.” Jill offered to foster one of the dogs, but was asked by her foster coordinator to take in Daisy. The night she picked up Daisy, she found her extremely shaken up by the process of her transport. Although she had that initial disposition, Daisy leaned into Jill and her husband Mark for affection.

It was interesting that this was Daisy’s reaction after hearing what she had previously been through. She had surgery for inverted eye lashes from scratching, food aggression, and was filthy with an awful stench. On top of those issues, her puppies were aborted due to emaciation. Jill and Mark knew that they had a lot of work coming their way. They started with an immediate scrub down, followed by a good meal and this comfort made her feel right at home.

The temperament of Daisy was unbelievable and unexpected after her previous harsh and very poor living conditions. She amazed Jill and Mark with her wonderful spirit and love for pretty much all things besides of course, cats and squirrels. When Jill asked her husband what he wanted for his 50th birthday, he said he wanted Daisy because he was in awe of her disposition. From that day on, the least adoptable dog turned out to be the love of the household.

Jill always asks herself why she never adopted a senior dog after her experience living with Daisy.

“If you have never loved a senior, you don’t know what you’re missing. Daisy taught us that no matter what has happened in the past, you can choose to embrace the good things given and love unconditionally. And love her we do!” –Jill Makoujy

The senior dogs at Eleventh Hour Rescue need homes just as badly as younger dogs. They make for instant companions and are not necessarily the “problem dogs” as many tend to think. The act of adopting may even save their life and help them know that they are loved.

If you would could picture yourself with one of our “seniors,” please check out www.ehrdogs.org for more information on adopting or fostering.

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The Beautiful Imperfections of Honey

30 May
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In early November 2012, I received a phone call from the Mount Olive Pet Smart Adoption Center. I had just recently fostered an animal and found his forever home, yet gave in almost immediately to foster again. A girl from Pet Smart informed me that there was a female hound mix that was underweight, not eating, extremely depressed, and experiencing a skin issue. I told her that I would come and see the dog, but could not promise her anything else. I only had experience fostering smaller dogs in the past, and questioned my ability to handle one of her size. After one look at the sad girl that was given the name Gonzales Girl by others, I knew it was time for me to take her home and fix her up.

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At home, she continued in her state of depression and was incapable of acknowledging any of the attention that she was given. She only weighed about 42 pounds when at her age she was expected to weigh at least 60. Although her current state at the time was fairly poor, she reacted fine to my dog and two cats. Her poor skin condition and the fact that she was already about 6-8 years old lessened her chances of adoption. My first tackle at her skin problems was a bath lavished in oatmeal shampoo and conditioner to soothe her itchy skin. Also, I changed her food to a grain free diet but unfortunately the itching still continued. The vets determined the cause of her itchy skin to be a yeast problem. Unknowingly, the oatmeal wash I believed to be helping the issue was making her skin worse.

After the yeast problem was controlled and she was fed a good quality grain free diet, things starting looking up for Gonzales Girl who I eventually renamed Honey. Why? Because she finally came out of her shell. She began playing with my little Dixie dog, ate her whole meals, and you could see life re-entering her eyes. One night I put her on my bed to sleep and she slept there every night there after.

Once the seventh week reached, Honey was a new and improved dog! She was well behaved, full of love and life, and her skin issue had been resolved. I took her to her first adoption event and spoke with a woman that had adopted a puppy with us two years earlier. She said that she wanted an older companion for her dog that would help to calm her down. I gave her my contact information in hopes of her calling. After leaving the event, I brought Honey to her new and forever home. She arrived in her beautiful home three days before Christmas. I was immediately brought to tears on Christmas morning after receiving a picture of her and her new sister relaxing on the couch. This is one of the many reasons why I foster these wonderful animals that are neglected and left behind.

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-Geneva Soule

If you are interested in fostering, please fill out a foster application at http://www.ehrdogs.org/info/display?PageID=10971