Foster
the foster dog

a tail with a happy ending

 

We took in a foster dog on Saturday the 26th of May. He is not quite as big as Blaze, but every bit as beautiful and deserving of a happy home. Being shy and a little distrustful of humans, he has taken up temporary residence in our downstairs bathroom. He is most comfortable in very small spaces.

Foster, whose racing name was Oregon Snow, was a racer at Caliente. He came to us having been abused enough to cause him not to trust people. He spent his first evening with us in the position you see here. This was the smallest spot he could find in our home. He laid down on the cold terra-cotta floor and I really had to work just to get the pad under him. Poor little dogger!

 

 

On Sunday we fed Foster a good breakfast, walked him and let him watch us give lots of love to Blaze, his new mentor. Foster was still very shy, but let us pet him from time to time and looked sad when we'd leave him alone again. He still stayed in the bathroom, with the exception of walking, peeing and eating, but seemed much happier.  

 

By Monday, Foster had discovered that when I go into the kitchen, it usually means food! This was his first venture out into our living area, other than running through to go pee or eat. He stayed in the kitchen with me until his breakfast was ready, let me pet him and was very sweet.

Later that day, we went to the boardwalk in Carlsbad. It was his first public appearance and Foster was a gem. He got skittish on a few occasions, but a hug and gentle words calmed him right down. Foster also made his first trip upstairs on Monday (a complete success) and gave the dog door a try (this needs more work). He still won't take a treat, and has no idea what a toy is, but that will all come in time. Foster has made remarkable progress in his first three days.

Foster + a little patience = one great dog!

 

 

Over the course of the last few days, Foster has continued to learn to trust us. He very much liked his walks, and we no longer have to carry or drag him to the door. Getting him out of one of the three bathrooms, where he loves to hang out when home, only entails putting his lead on him and saying "waaah-keees". He's learned to love riding in the car, with his head out the window of course, and continues to follow Blaze around learning the basic happy dog stuff. He still won't take treats from our hands, but loves them now - especially sow's ears!
On Friday afternoon, we found Foster in our upstairs bathroom with a plush squeaky toy, a purple rabbit. This was his first time with a toy and it was so good to see him so happy and playful. Friday evening we found him downstairs sleeping soundly in an upside-down pose which is the ultimate greyhound sign of trust. We chose not to photo either event so as not to disturb him.

 

 

Saturday afternoon, Foster went to the Solana Beach street fair and was an ambassador for his breed along with Blaze and Magic. He got a bit skittish a couple of times, but again a little hug and reassurance was all he needed to trust me and follow me again. Many people asked about the dogs and were invited to the Greyhound Reunion the following day.
Saturday night, after a hard day's work, Blaze, Magic and Foster had a sleep-over at our house. They all had a great time running in the yard and slept very soundly.

Sunday, Magic's mom came up and we all went to the Greyhound Reunion together. The picture here is all three dogs enjoying their afternoon at the reunion. Foster went into the "adoption corral" at the reunion. This is where prospective greyhound families look at the dogs and can apply to take one home. I put Foster in the corral, but was skeptical of his new found social skills and fully expected that he'd be coming home with us.

 

 

 

Foster was adopted! A very nice family with two lovely and social greyhounds opened their heart to him. I saw Foster with them over the course of the afternoon and he seemed very happy. This was the last time I ever saw Foster in person.

A few weeks after this day, Foster was returned to Operation Greyhound. He hadn't socialized as well as his family had hoped. Aparently he didn't really do anything wrong, they just had a routine with their other greys and Foster just wanted to do his own thing.

   

My Foster baby was adopted again very quickly. He was such a sweetheart, I knew he wouldn't be at the kennel very long. This is a photo of Foster (now Oren again) with the canine portion of his new family. From left to right the dogs are Lucy, Stan and Oren.

Oren has now been with this family several months and is getting along just fine. We wish Oren, and all of the wonderful greys out there, all the best.