Our thanks to Tara Garland for sending us this update on her former foster boy, Stanley. We love updates! And naturally, we love Stanley. (FYI: Many people have commented on Stanley’s ‘generous’ mouth. Turns out, he is a type of Shar pei called a “meat mouth”. He sees a vet regularly, can breathe just fine – and might just be the most unique looking dog we’ve ever seen!)
What a difference a year makes…
For those who don’t know Stanley’s story, Stanley was found walking along the highway as a stray in terrible shape. He was emaciated and his skin was in terrible shape. It was clear wherever he was before was not a good place. I was fortunate enough to share my home with Stanley for his recovery and until he could find the perfect home (please check out Tara’s archives about Stanley & lots more pics, here! – MDB).
Fostering an animal takes work, in many cases it takes money, but it’s not all selfless. Stanley helped me fill the very large hole left in my heart weeks after I lost my beloved dog Tyson to cancer and he helped me smile everyday. To say he was an absolute joy would be an understatement, he is truly one of a kind. I was committed to finding him the best home possible, especially because after time I was begin to think about never letting him go. Then one day an e-mail came through that stood out as nothing short of exactly what Stanley needed. He was adopted last December and made the move out of Montreal, I was of course, sad to see him go but confident he was in great hands.
Last Thursday I was fortunate enough to be reunited with Stanley for a visit. The best adoptive homes are the ones who appreciate and understand what it means to let go of your foster pets. Of course the ultimate goal of fostering is always to eventually place them, you cannot help but love every animal that comes into your home and no matter how prepared you are to say good bye you will find yourself missing them. When you are lucky (and as a foster family I have been very lucky) you will get updates, photos and sometimes even a video or two. Seeing how happy they are not only makes your day, it also reminds you why fostering is so great.
Stanley weighed 36 pounds when I took him home, today he is almost 65. He has a backyard and his very own pool in the summer. He has a family and then an extended family, he travels for the holidays and he has more than one bed. He’s made dog friends, human friends (kids too!) and he appears to be loving his life. During my visit with Stanley it was clear he has bonded with his new owner and she had nothing but wonderful things to say about him. After a year, I still miss him often but I have no regrets about adopting him out. I am certain he ended up exactly where he was meant to be.
After Stanley, a wonderful little Staffie girl who I named Gracie came home with me for the holidays and stayed until she found her perfect forever home. Incidentally it was a wonderful couple who had come to meet Stanley when they were first looking to adopt. Once again, another foster hit the jackpot and is living the life every dog deserves.
After Gracie came another wonderful soul who had come to the shelter as an inspection case, seized from her owner and stuck in legal limbo until her owner released her or the court decided if she would return to her previous owner. She was liberated, her owner was charged and I officially adopted her at the end of October after about 7 months in foster.
I would have adopted any of my fosters. It wasn’t because I loved her more that she was the one to stay, it was just the right fit for both of us and the right time. So this year we’ll celebrate her first Christmas here. But my present came early in the form of a visit from an extremely large and squishy Shar pei.
So inspired by Stanley that you’d like to be a foster family? Check out this great Fostering series by MDB blogger, Terry Price Kimmel!