Friday, November 4, 2016

Happy Trails to You

The last two weeks have been a whirlwind. Two weekends ago, I was supposed to take Sal to the shelter to meet a potential adopter. We'd scheduled a time and he and I took a final selfie after playing a game of fetch in the yard. Then I got a call from the foster coordinator saying that they were sending a volunteer to pick him up to meet the adopter and that he'd be going home with that person immediately. 


I was confused as to why I wasn't supposed to take him, but I also needed to paint the room he'd been sleeping in before my parents brought up some furniture from their basement, so I said my goodbyes and then got to work painting. Honestly, even though I was confused, mostly, I felt relief. Barley and Sal had not made any more progress in co-existing, so everyone was separated into different zones and I was rotating between the animals to give everyone attention. It was exhausting. 

A couple days later, I noticed he was still on the shelter website and listed as available. To make a long story short, there was miscommunication between shelter workers and they thought I was unavailable to bring him to the shelter, but actually the potential adopter was unavailable. This was the second or third time she'd rescheduled, so the shelter decided to move on to another adopter. 

They called me, explained the miscommunication, and asked if I could pick up Sal and hold onto him a little longer.

He didn't care that the walls were a different color as long as his ball was still there.

Luckily, there was another adopter who was approved--and she happened to be a member of my extended family (you know, one of those relatives that nobody knows the labels for, but you see them at family reunions)! I'd shared his pictures on Facebook and fun little stories about our days together and she'd fallen in love with him. For about a month, she thought about him and we messaged back and forth about him. By the time she decided to submit the application, the other adopter had already been approved and we were both sad Sal was going to miss out on a life with her. I'd hated that Sal was going to be spending life with someone I'd never met, so when I found out that my relative was approved to adopt him when that didn't work out, I was ecstatic! She had a 10+ hour drive to get Sal, so I held onto him for a few more days, but she was willing to drop everything and come get him the same week I picked him up from the shelter.

My relative arrived late Thursday night and spent the night with us. Sal was a little nervous at first, but she was patient with him and after a few treats, he was snuggling up against her. She moved his bed across the hall into the guest room and he spent the night alternating between sleeping on his bed and walking over to nudge her hand for a few more pets.

As soon as the shelter opened, we headed there to sign the final paperwork and pay the adoption fee and then I put Sal in her car and they headed off to his new life.

Sal wasn't sure why we were getting back in the car, but I was happy this would be his last ride to the shelter!

I've gotten a few updates. He was the perfect road trip companion and did beautifully in their stay at a Red Roof Inn on the way home (thank you Red Roof Inn for making this adoption easier and having pet friendly rooms!). He's embraced his fancy new dog bed, but has also shown that despite having some old creaky joints he can hop up onto the couch. He couldn't have found a better home.

Barley and I celebrated returning to our own routines with a nice fall walk followed by a mini pumpkin blizzard from Dairy Queen (Barley thought getting to lick out the cup was the best part of the whole fostering experience).


We haven't ruled out fostering again in the future, but it won't be something we start during the school year again. It's definitely a better summer activity when the pets can have all of my time and I don't have to compartmentalize my days so much. 

We're wishing Sal many happy years in his new home. He's one lucky pup!

16 comments:

  1. That's wonderful he is in a good home where you will hear about him now and then. It would be so hard to have a dog for a time and give him up, even if he causes some stress in the family. So wonderful of you to have helped out Sal!

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    1. Surprisingly, it wasn't hard to give him up at all! From the beginning, I knew he wasn't my dog and there was always an end date in sight because of my holiday travels after the semester ends, so it just felt like an extended dog sitting gig. I had expected myself to fall in love and want to keep him myself, but even though he was the sweetest boy, it wasn't love with us--we just liked each other, so I felt nothing but joy seeing him ride off to his new home :)

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  2. This brought happy tears to my eyes, yay for Sal and his new Mom! What a great thing you did helping him to get ready for his new home, and to actually have helped him find that home too.
    I'm sure it's a bit of a relief to have things back to normal for now. I'm glad this turned out to be a good experience for you and that you might do it again at an easier time.
    Jan, Wag 'n Woof Pets

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    1. It is wonderful to know he's in a home where he's going to be loved the way he deserves! From Barley and Soth's behavior the last few days, I think they agree that it's wonderful, too :)

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  3. We're so glad Sal found his forever home ... and even better, with someone that you can check in on. I always think I should foster ... and I've gotten a lot of feedback from cat people that my biggest excuse (I'd get too attached) isn't as bad as they thought. And by that, I mean it's easier to let them go when the person remembers that without her help, the foster wouldn't have left the shelter alive. Puts a new perspective on things.

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    1. I was afraid I'd get too attached to let him go, too, but it really wasn't that bad! It might have been harder if my pets had really embraced him, but my cat Soth was pretty indifferent to him and Barley had no interest in becoming friends.

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  4. Wow, it took kind of a circuitous route, but it's awesome how this all worked out for Sal. We are so happy that he found his forever home, and with your relative! You'll get updates, and you know he'll be loved to pieces. :)

    Barley looks pretty dang happy in that photo. Cute!

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    1. It was a strange route it took, but he is in the best possible place for him!

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  5. I am so glad Sal found a wonderful home. You did such a good job with him. I bet he has a wonderful life!

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    1. He is already loving his new home! He loves his new yard and his couch and his mom :) It's the perfect fit!

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  6. Yay Sal! This makes me so happy :) Glad he gets to be part of the family still!

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    1. I'm glad he still gets to be part of the family, too! He's a good boy!

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  7. I'm so happy for you. I think the best part of this is that you will stay in touch with your relative, and get updates on Sal. What a great ending!

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    1. Yes! I've already gotten updates to let me know he's being loved exactly the way he needed to be :)

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  8. Sounds like Sal ended up right where he belongs! What a lucky dog!

    I picked your post to feature for this weekend's Pet Blogger Showcase. Thanks for sharing it!

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    1. He is definitely right where he was supposed to be! Thanks for featuring this!

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