After years ( 16 to be exact) of my daughter asking for a dog daily, I caved. As the house became emptier in the fall of 2019, I was feeling a bit lonely. My oldest son was away at university, my daughter gaining more independence in her grade 12 year and my husband taking on a position coaching hockey, I found myself at home alone more often then normal. Schedules have changed and mine seemed to have some large gaps. So why not get a dog to keep me company. Here is the story of our foster fail.
Let’s Foster a Puppy
I will never forget the excitement in my daughter’s face and the look of WTF?? on my husband’s, when I mentioned the idea of fostering a puppy. Fostering a puppy would be a great way of getting our feet wet, sorta speak. We can ‘test’ drive a puppy to see if it works with our daytime schedules. Well, my husband thought I was going crazy and my daughter thought the same but didn’t care..She was getting a dog FINALLY!! Now don’t get too excited, I said..If it doesn’t work, we will not be adopting the dog. (Yeah, right!!)
Getting a Dog
Fast forward to late February 2020, with paperwork and interview complete, and deemed ‘foster favourable’, the next thing to do was visit the shelter and see what dog best suits us. We went to one of our local animal shelters – AARCS. Just as the world was shutting down and the day before my daughter’s 18th birthday, we brought our foster puppy home.
Our little black and white puppy, about 7 months old was given the name ‘Loyal’ at the shelter. By the time we got him home, my daughter had re-named him Milo. Groggy from his neutering surgery that day and also very scared, we finally got him into the house. As we sat down with him, he proceeded to greet everyone with a sniff and lie down on the floor in front of us for some belly rubs. I think we all knew at that point that we were going to be the classic story of a Foster Fail!
Things Happen for a Reason
They say that things happen for a reason and that timing is everything and Milo happened to our family at the right time and for the right reasons. The last 17 months (give or take) definitely had a softer impact on our lives because of Milo. He provided some entertainment as well as some mental health relief. Especially for my daughter and son, who had to navigate their lives as young adults differently. He got us up and going everyday for daily walks and focusing on training. Our daily steps became an obsession and Milo kept us on a schedule that I craved and required for my own mental health and ‘normalcy’.
Did you know that petting a dog, lowers the stress hormone – cortisol. And interacting with them releases the good hormone oxytocin.
A year and a half into being a dog home (because we all know that the dog does rule the home), we could not imagine life without him. Milo is such a chill dog and loves being loved! He never missed an opportunity to be a part of a hug. Some dogs love balls and sticks, well, Milo just loves other dogs. His favourite game is ‘Chase me’. He plays hard and sleeps hard too! They say that is the sign of a happy dog. He rarely barks. Only when is supper is late! Typical. His favourite foods are well anything! But honestly, I think he eats better than my kids. And snow is his favourite season!
Some may ask “why at this point of your life when the kids are one foot out the door would you get a dog?’ You know, I can’t really answer that. Maybe just not quite ready to give up the need to nurture or maybe not quite ready for an almost empty nest or maybe I finally gave in after 16 years of my daughter asking for a puppy.
But I have found out that the unconditional love of a dog, does make any day better.
Do you have a story of a foster fail? Let us know below in the comments.
Rescued is my favourite breed