Tuesday, November 21, 2017

Foster Fail

Just over two weeks ago, we met Bailey. Cute little shit, isn’t she?

I’m not 100% why we meet Bailey. Maybe it was fate. We’ve fostered dogs a few times through Help Orphan Puppies. The dogs were fine (except for Comet – Comet hated me) but none of them left me wanting to be responsible for a dog all the time. Don’t get me wrong. I like dogs. I used to really, really want one. Even had some names picked out. I had planned to get one in my 20s but it never happened. As I grew older, I came to like other people’s dogs. Kind of like a cool dog uncle. I’ll play with a dog until the dog wants to quit, and then the owners have to pick up poop in their yard while I slept late on Saturday. My in law’s dog Duke was perfect for that.

Anyhow, Help Orphan Puppies often transports puppies from over crowded, high kill shelters to our area. There’s a network of volunteers that drive the dogs here. After the trip, the dogs stay with a foster family for at least 2 weeks to make sure they are healthy, good with kids, other pets and that kind of stuff. A little over two weeks ago, there was a Facebook message about 4 puppies on their way and only 3 had foster homes. My wife asked me if I cared about hosting another dog. I remember my response:

I’d rather not. Thanksgiving is coming and what if we still have the dog with a houseful of people.

I was pretty much a hard pass and fine with never fostering puppies again. They are cute, but puppies can be a lot of work. I followed up with a, “but if YOU want to, go ahead.” Translation: I’m not getting up at 3 in the morning to let the dog out, but if you want handle that, have at it.

I didn’t even know the decision to foster “Tilda” was made when she came into the house. (Tilda is a terrible name. It makes me think of tilde. How about Comma which would be short for Oxford Comma, or Ampersand or Semicolon? But I understand you can’t name every dog Maggie or Jake when you are running an organization like this. The theme for these 4 siblings was T and somehow Tilda was picked which I guess is short for Matilda. After soliciting some suggestions, the kids settled on Bailey for a name.

Bailey is already basically accident free, really well behaved (when offered a tissue or a ball, she picked the ball) and very affectionate. She often sleeps with the kids (who seem to fight less with each other with Bailey around). She does occasionally grab blankets, socks and clothes to chew on and does like moving shoes around. And I don’t know why, but things like that used to drive me nuts with the other dogs just don’t bother me with Bailey.

A Foster Fail is when the foster family keeps the pet they are fostering. The idea is that the foster family takes in a dog, helps it and says goodbye making room for the next foster that needs help. I guess once a foster family fails, they are less likely to keep fostering.

This time we failed. Bigly.

We took the leap and adopted Bailey over the weekend. Bailey melted my icy cold “I don’t want a dog” heart. Maybe she reminds of Duke. Maybe she is kind of like what I imagine that dog I never got in my 20s to be. It doesn't matter because I am oddly smitten with this dog. I’m not sure if this will be the end of fostering for us. I bet Bailey will grow up to be a good rood role model for a foster dogs. We’ll see. Right now, we’ve got a good girl that needs a belly rub.

And a vet.

And a puppy class.

And all the things on the left side of a pet store.

I wonder how she feels about pizza. I bet she likes it.


  1. Shes beautiful. We really enjoyed all this crap with Konigin:

    The Normanskill Farm Dog Park - great for socializing, super annoying when nobody was there - but lots of good room for walking around with the dog

    Parkside Vet - we LOVED this vet. It was not the first one we brought Konigin to and we seriously considered continuing to bring her here after we moved.

    Mary Maltbie/Heel Dog Academy - We did puppy 1 & a refresher class here. We observed a class before bringing her here, which was the last week of puppy 1 and we both were like...she will never be able to be that well behaved....and guess what? She was. The classes and Mary were great.

    1. Thanks, Greg. I will definitely have to check out that dog park. I don't even know the name of the puppy class we go went to but it was good. It was hard to find one that was just starting and also fit our schedule.

      We're going to give The Animal Hospital in Slingerlands a try. They came highly recommended by a Help Orphan Puppies founder. If it doesn't work out, Parkside is my next call.

      Still can't believe she's here.

  2. So wonderful! Congratulations.

  3. Mazel Tov on the new family member...she is adorable