Thursday, September 18, 2014

From A Foster Parent: Dog Adoption

WOOF! Barkingly pawsome are the Foster Parents and Families which take in dogs and cats in to their homes-

Today, I am pawed to share this story from Dennis Norkus, a foster parent whose family is contacted by A Forever Home to care for dogs.

"We have fostered several dogs since becoming involved with A Forever Home Rescue Foundation. All have been worthwhile and satisfying experiences. It has helped in the fact that we have three dogs of our own, two cavaliers (mom and daughter), and our daughter's 3 year old black lab.

Every dog we have fostered has appeared to fit into our three dog's schedule. Most of them attach themselves to Brady, the black lab since he likes to run and
play with them more than the cavailers. With every new foster, we introduce him/her to the others by bringing them into the fenced in back yard first and let everyone get acquainted. It seems to lessen the territory/ownership factor once inside the house. I have yet to meet a dog who doesn't like a treat. After all the dogs have gone out in the backyard to do their business, they would come in and line up near the treat jar and patiently wait their turn. 

Used by Permission, D. Norkus
Another thing they all seemed to enjoy was to take a walk around the neighborhood. Our development has quite a few dog owners and we always stop for the dogs to get to know each other.

We did make a mistake with Baylie though. She was a little skittish when we first got her. When we brought her around to the backyard and mistakenly 
took off her leash, she ran away from us and wouldn't come no matter what. We chased her around the yard for about a half hour. My wife then had the idea to bring the other dogs in the house and then place a few treats leading up to the door and into the house. It worked to coax her into the house, and eventually she settled down.

Lovey was an interesting corgi that we had for a while. Being low to the ground and a little overweight when we first got her, she had trouble getting up the steps.  She would stand at the bottom and bark for a while, turn a few circles to get some momentum, then charge up the steps. At times, she would stop half way up, which would put her in a dilemma. She would have to turn around, go back down and start all over again. After going for walks and slimming down a little, the steps became a little easier for her.

Brodie, a lug (lab and pug mix) was the latest foster that we had. Being a puppy, he did like digging small holes in the backyard. He didn't chew things much, but at times you would find someone's shoe in the hallway that he had carried from the closet. He had a playful gait to him, prancing around the yard with not a worry at all. He had so much energy and it was funny at how he chased Brady around the back yard.
Used by Permission, D. Norkus

I have to admit, you do get attached and the hardest part is seeing them go once you get used to having them around. One thing we did last year was to invite all of our past fosters with their owners over to our house for Brady's birthday party. It was good to see them all again and to know that they are being taken care of in a loving home.

About the Author: Dennis Norkus has lived in Northern Virginia for some 40 years, after moving here from Kansas City Mo.   He retired from the federal government in 2007 and is now a government contractor for a military agency.  His twin daughters graduated from Battlefield High School where they played varsity soccer.   He followed the program since then, taking videos of the games and posting the highlights for the coach and teammates to view. Battlefield won the VA state championship this past spring.  Also, he likes to garden, but feels his success rate is only about 60% of things planted. Growing up, he was a competitive roller skater and placed in the top ten in the nation in several years.

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