Tuesday, September 4, 2007

Bye, Bye Dog

I tried to be a foster mom. And I failed miserably. Not the dogs' fault, by any means. Just things I didn't do correctly, things I didn't anticipate. So Ivan got hurt and a perfectly wonderful dog had to leave this small chunk of paradise and go back to a rescue home that's already splitting at the seams.

To wait and see if someone, somewhere, will give Malibu a chance at the forever home she so rightly deserves.

The fault, really, is Malibu's first home, the one that wanted her killed because of an allergy that required about ten dollars more a month for special food to remedy the problem. Where does it all start to break down – the contract we made a long, long time ago to honor our relationship with dog, the wolf we decided to domesticate for our own ends? We can't just undo that contract.

But I see dogs thrown away every day. Perfectly good dogs, just like this one, this great little four year old pistol with her melty eyes, huge heart, and tenacious grip on life.

Knowing all this, I should have been better prepared to accommodate her nature and Ivan's, so that the fight would never have started in the first place.

Unfortunately, this gal came to me too suddenly, as a desperate emergency. And I, a planner and preparer, had no time to do either. Next time, though. Painful as it was, this lesson has shown me what I need to do.

Not that that matters much to Malibu. Another home failed her. Where does this poor dog go from here?


Wicked Thistle said...

I think all we can do is keep trying and trust that good intentions are a credit to our account even when unanticipated outcomes occur. I'm sorry that Ivan got hurt and you got scared (well, I don't *know* that you got scared but I sure as heck woulda been)and that Malibu had to go to another house. But, on behalf of dogs everywhere, thank you for trying. I trust that Malibu knows it was all in her best interests.

Jenny said...

I'm a RETIRED foster home for dogs - I couldn't do it anymore. Don't feel bad because you tried to help. Malibu is "lucky" because she's in the system... she'll end up OK. I give you credit for trying.

the Dread Pirate Rackham said...

Ultimately, to "foster" means you give it back when find it a happier home some day. See, you're a better foster mom than me - I actually KEPT the danged cat.

I too am grateful there are people like you who at least willing to give it a shot. Without you there'd be no Malibu at all. My poor cat had a succession of people who were overwhelmed with his "neediness". And I gotta say - YOU SNOOZE YOU LOSE, SUCKAH! 'cos I got a great cat out of the deal - and somebody will get a great dog out of the deal.

the Dread Pirate Rackham said...

Plus, you know, you learned a few things this time - which is good. The more you learn, the more you can be there for the next Malibu.

www.stepherz.com said...

Oh, this story makes me kind of blue. I sure am a dog person. I love cats too, but dogs are special to me. I'm sorry Malibu is homeless, but I have to believe that she, and all the dogs like her, will find a permanent home with just the right family/person.

I think it really says so much for you to take her in and give it a try, and also, to know when it wasn't working out. She's going to be alright, I know it's hard to know that when you've grown a bit of an attachment.

Thank you for sharing her story a little bit. She is a very pretty girl, isn't she? With a face like that, she'll have a home in no time. :-)

Doris Rose said...

You and Ivan made a big leap into the abyss -which is homeless pets.Thank you. Fostering is F***ing HARD!! close, but not too close, invest a little --Not too much, protect and love them-but not too much. give IBAN a big hug and tell him, I'm bringin' a treat.

Ms Robinson said...

Oh this broke my heart but I'm sure it's very hard. Children or dogs, it is sad when the system struggles to fit them in, but I too think there is a home out there for Malibu.

Meghan said...

First of all, is Ivan okay?

Don't beat yourself up. A lot of times it's very hard to foster with another dog in the mix. Malibu is beautiful, and I will keep my fingers crossed that the right family comes along for her.

Still, I know it hurts to feel like you couldn't be the right home for an animal... even temporarily.

moi said...

Thanks, all, for you wonderful, kind comments. Meghan, yes, I think Ivan will be okay. His face was torn up pretty badly and some of the cuts are very slow in healing, but he should be fine eventually. Lots of antibiotics, cleaning of the cuts, etc.

Orangeblossoms said...

Oh honey, I've been behind in my reading-- I am so sorry to hear about this one. Injured pets are almsot as bad as feeling like we've failed. Sigh.