Sunday, July 21, 2013

In the Homestretch

Today starts the last week of Jim's Life at The Lodge. If you've been following his Facebook Page: 

Finding Lucky Jim His Furever Home

you'll know that I've been counting down the days with different objects. Go ahead and look, I'll wait.

Life with Jim here has been interesting these past 14 months. Yes, 14. He's been with us for a while. He's been in rescue about 17 or 18. Let's call it 18 for nice round numbers sake. 

There have been a lot of pluses. He's an awesome dog, great with my dogs and the other fosters here at The Lodge,great with the kids and visitors to The Lodge, housetrained, electric collar yard trained, good house manners. He's sweet and cuddly and has a wicked crazy hair-do. I havent shaved it this summer because his new dad likes that shaggy look. Argh, it makes me crazy. He sits before he eats and waits for the "OK" signal. He sheds less than a Labrador and more than a Poodle - which is ok I guess. He's a big dog and you can really wrap your arms around him if you're having a bad day. He never chased the cats. He likes to retrieve tennis balls. He doesnt "spin" anymore ~ which was insanely annoying ~ unless he's really crazy. 

There have a been a few minuses. He doesnt like non-Harley motorcycles. If we are driving, lets say, to the dog park, he will bark like a mad man at the "bike" next to us. He barks at rabbits in people's yards as we're driving by. Both of these barking things usually result in the driver of our car being surprised half to death and all the humans yelling at him to stop barking (once they've recovered). He's not a big fan of dogs larger than he, either here at The Lodge or at the dog park. He's tons better than he was but still argh. He gets bossy with male dogs who are still intact ~ is it a jealousy thing? Maybe. He's fussy with Golden Retrievers. None will be so thankful as Bjorn with whom he had frequent altercations at the dog park (Ok, I'll be thankful.) Though, to be fair, he was great with his buddy Mickey when Mickey spent the night a few times.  

The top minus is that he has Addison's disease. The treatment is pricey but will allow him to live a long life if managed. We've experienced the beginnings of the symptoms but never had a full on crash. Phew. 

Because of his diagnosis, it has been a bit harder to place him in a furever home. We've had a few applications but all have fallen through. So he's been here, at The Lodge, with us for 14 months. Happy to see him leave but sad to see him go. I'm planning on getting lots of pictures from his new family and his new mom has promised to keep me updated, but its not the same. 

There will be traces of Jim all over the house, mainly on the floors, in the corners, under the furniture or on my lighter colored clothes. I'm sure I'll find bits of Jim on my winter coats come December. 

I'm sending along his toys that he brought to The Lodge - a large green squeaker ball with arms that no longer squeaks and some other toys. I'm also sending along a T-shirt that has his name on it. I've worn it a time or two recently and have not washed it so it will smell like me.  

I know that the reason we foster is to find good dogs furever homes, but man, when they've lived with you for over a year, it makes it a little tricky to just turn over the leash. I've been trying to keep my mind and my heart occupied by finding creative ways to count down the days til he leaves. But in the quiet moments, when I stop to think, I start to cry ... just a little bit. 

Oh, I know, I still have crazy Alyx and Miss Sophie Mae but I need to step back and let my heart say goodbye to Jim.

Today Jim's home visit will be done. Yes, I get to do it. One of the "perks" of having a dog for 14 months. I get to make sure that his new family meets my expectations. Later this week he will have a CVI ~ one last health check to be sure he's road worthy and Friday night, he will go home.

And then, we find a home for Alyx... and Sophie ... and .... and.... and. We have a never ending supply of perfect dogs that need homes. A never ending supply of dogs means a never ending need of foster families... wont you say you will?

So there you have it. My heart on your screen. Sigh.

Thank You for Thinking Rescue. Thank You for Reading.

Oh crap, I gotta go. Alyx is eating the couch.