Monday, October 13, 2014


Yep, I admit it, I am a foster failure. Not just once, mind you but many times over. But this time I did it in grand style with Yolo. We lose many wonderful foster parents at Planned Pethood because they adopt their fosters, have a full house, then drop out. To date, I have two dogs, Stanley and Ida, both of whom were pulled from the pound with heartworm which ensured a long stay in foster care. They never left. My cat, Mamie, is also a foster failure. She was on the edge of unadoptable with a nasty case of ringworm and wild behavior. You can take the girl out of the hood but you can’t take the hood out of the girl. She stayed. Now Yolo has followed in their footsteps.

Yolo (You Only Live Once), dubbed by my niece Morgan, could not have a more appropriate name. This handsome two year old black dude has been through lots of trials and tribulations in his short life. He came to his foster home at only 4 weeks old. He came from a horrific hoarding situation. An elderly woman housed over 70 cats and kittens. There were actually dead kittens lying in the home and she wasn’t even aware of it. Yolo came to Planned Pethood sick and puny with 5 of his sibs. One poor tiny dude, Yancey, did not make it. But Yolo and the others recovered and things looked very rosy for them. But…

He developed a chronic ear infection shortly after his arrival. Then came a series of vet visits and a variety of treatments continued for well over the next year and a half. He had thick black gunk that smelled in his ears for months at a time. The first vet wanted to remove his ear canals. The second vet switched him to prescription food thinking he had food allergies which meant ALL the cats in the household had to switch too. They hated the new food and all the permanents lost weight but Yolo’s infection persisted. But the THIRD vet discovered he had huge polyps in his ears that were causing the chronic problem. Throughout this process, Yolo endured having his ears treated nearly every day of his life but he remained a cheerful (unless you are a vet), highly entertaining little brother. But then, oh no poor Yolo, the infection reoccurred AGAIN in one ear. Back he went to vet #3 to discover one polyp had grown back in a matter of months. But he was repaired, hopefully permanently. Shout out to Doctor Bart!

Yolo is happy as a lark and loves his foster family: Stanley and Ida (resident shepherd and lab), 3 cats, and foster dog after foster dog after foster dog. He sleeps with his foster mom and Ida every night. He wants to help you type while using the computer. He loves to investigate places he should not be, thinking his name is dammit Yolo now that he can hear.

All the resident cats in Yolo’s home are older than him so he must resort to entertaining himself. One of his favorite extreme sports is to run full speed ahead and leap onto the top of the cat tree, making it sway dangerously toward the ground. He has recently tried to play with his own image in the mirror by furiously pawing at what he must think is another cat. Our theory is he develops his solitary cat games because no other cats will give him the time of day.

My final push to adopt Yolo came when he was marked down. Actually, ‘free’ is my favorite four letter word but ‘sale’ is right up there as well. All of Planned Pethood’s black dogs and cats and senior animals were discounted. Black animals are adopted the least, euthanized the most, and linger in shelters more than any others. So now he is member of the permanents and I have fastened my seatbelt for what may lie ahead. If you ever stop by, I can guarantee his black furry butt will plop right into your lap to say hello.

by Judy S. 

Tuesday, August 12, 2014


I got the call from Planned Pethood. Would I foster a seven year old yellow lab who was being returned? PPI always takes adopted dogs back, no questions asked. They want them to be SAFE. This return was exactly in my wheelhouse. I love labs and have always had my own lab companion and I enjoy older dogs. What could go wrong? They failed to mention the new dude weighed a whopping 138 lbs., and by the time I discovered this seemingly unimportant fact, it was too late to back out. To put this in perspective, this is the first foster dog who weighed more than me and my house is a tiny cracker box. If this beast needed a crate (actually unnecessary), where the hell would I put it?  My initial reaction when I met the big guy was holy sh..!

Probably on more than one occasion, my house has been called the Fat Farm. I love chubby dogs. It is a challenge for both them and me. Mac certainly fit the bill and I became his personal Richard Simmons. Diet and exercise was the order of the day for my new huge friend. It was Biggest Loser/Dog Edition. Green beans, green beans, green beans were on the menu daily. It took a while, but when he was finally adopted, he was a fatty no longer, he weighed a svelte 117 lbs. and looked stunning. People stopped us wherever we went, wanting to know what breed Mac was, they even stopped their cars to ask. I would always respond yellow lab and something big.

The big guy and I were together for six months, and truth be told, he would still be here if I didn’t already have two dogs. He is so chill, he goes with the flow no matter what situation is handed to him. His adoptions kept falling through for crazy reasons. One very nice couple fell in love with the Macster at an adoption event. They told me they had a golden retriever named Amber who could be ouchy with other dogs. So off Mac and I went on the home visit. Out walks a black shepherd mix who definitely had no use for Mac. I asked, where is Amber? That WAS Amber. Back to square one.

But you know things happen for a reason. Mac enjoyed the company of not only other dogs, but of the cats and kittens I foster as well. So it was a grand outing for him to go with me to the cat adoption events. He would hold court while being adored by Pet Smart customers. It was there his future forever mom fell in love with him. Cat fosters extraordinaire, Ron and Julie Brown, are two of the kindest and most compassionate people I have ever met. They heal sick kitties, they tend and shelter unadoptable kitties, they even bottle feed tiny abandoned kittens every two hours (sometimes with heartbreaking results). Julie took me under her wing when I began fostering kittens and showed me the ropes. I couldn’t have had a better teacher. She patiently explained the process to me. Well, I never in a million years figured them for dog people. But happily, I was wrong.

I thought it was a little strange that Julie acted concerned whenever it appeared that Mac would be adopted. In reality, she wanted to adopt him herself. Come to find out, Ron and Julie were dog people in a BIG way. Mac would become the second SMALLEST dog they ever owned. But there was a huge obstacle to overcome. Ron had fallen during the polar vortex and was badly injured. He had already had one grueling surgery and was scheduled for a second. They decided to throw caution to the wind and invited Mac for a “trial” stay. He never left. I knew he was a permanent member of the family when I heard about the litter of 5 week old kittens climbing him and playing on him like a jungle gym. He had become the nanny!

Mac bunked up with family members during Ron’s second surgery. I have to share 11 year old Isabelle’s email:

“Mac was so excited to see me. We became friends by me walking him everyday and me sleeping with him and how I played with him everyday he is sooooo cute.”

“Everyday I gave him his favorite snack a hot dog” (my favorite part). “I walked him everyday (at least 3 laps). Every night he snuggles up on my bed. I walk him around my house to go potty. I think I really bonded with Big Mac. I think I did a big favor of babysitting Big Mac J.”

Poor Isabelle shed tears when it came time for Mac to go home so, of course, that made Julie cry too. But this story has a silver lining. Isabelle and her family are now fostering senior mastiff Gus for Planned Pethood. Gus took right over where Mac left off in Isabelle’s heart.

And, for all the twists and turns of his story, the right dog ended up in the right home at the right time. It is Mac’s mission in life to brighten up peoples’ (and I guess cats too) lives. For all of us whose lives he has touched, we are fortunate.

Monday, June 16, 2014


Sometimes I hesitate to tell strangers how many pets I have in my home. If you have a large pack, uninitiated people equate you with a crazy hoarder which is nonsense. Some people can only handle providing love and companionship to one cat or dog at a time. But, in my world, there is always one more refugee who needs a forever home. This was especially true before my relationship with Planned Pethood and its adoption network. It seems like I just completed my tribute to my cat Norman. And, now I have lost Joan so soon after. Each and every one of my animal kids is special and it breaks my heart when I have to say good bye.

Joan has appeared in my previous blogs but she is about to star in this one. I got a call from one of my students as we were preparing to return for another school year fourteen years ago. Ashley was in a panic about a litter of neglected kittens. She came from a tough neighborhood and a woman on her block allowed her cat to have kittens but would not permit them in the house. To the day she died, Joan had zero interest in going outside, period. Ashley knew the kittens would die in the elements that coming winter. You know the drill. I told her to gather them up and bring them to school. The next day she arrived with a laundry basket containing 5 kittens. Thankfully, we had an understanding and cat-loving principal. We were fortunate to find great, safe and caring, adult homes for all the kittens except one…

All kittens are cute and this litter of tiny grey tigers was nothing short of adorable.  Joanie, however, was kind of generic, no accents or interesting markings. But I devised a plan for her. My semi-significant other, Bob, had a cat named Betty. I am a firm believer in the ark philosophy that every home should contain TWO of everything. And, somehow I convinced Bob that he and Joan were destined to be together. That is how she got her name. I am a huge fan of Bette Davis so the name of her archenemy, Joan Crawford, was the logical choice. Bob resisted this initially since he was a single 40 something man with 2 cats named Bette and Joan but he eventually relented. But things didn’t exactly go as planned. You can take the girl out of the hood but can’t take the hood out of the girl. Joan was waaaaaaay too much for both Bob and Betty to handle so off she goes…

Joan the wild child had one final stop. She had plenty of playmates and activity at my house but more importantly, she found her new mom, Lucy. Lucille was a gentle, amazing yellow lab who was rescued from some pretty awful conditions herself. She adopted Joan as her child. She nurtured her by snuggling and cleaning her. She tolerated any play behavior the maniacal little sprite could invent. They became inseparable.  It was touching to witness such an incredible, unshakable bond.

After we lost Lucy, Joan became the cat ambassador to each and every PPI foster dog we have hosted. She always was more comfortable around dogs than the other cats in our home. When she would snuggle up, the dogs would look at her, like, really? None of them fazed her. What a great way to blend a new dog into our world, not to mention making the dog a more well-rounded companion. And I can’t remember any of them expressing hostility or fear toward her.

Joan was very personable around humans too, never shy or antisocial. Whenever company arrived, she would unceremoniously plop in their laps. She remained high energy through her middle age years. Her favorite playmate was my sister’s boyfriend, Mark. They would play and wrestle and Mark always came out on the losing end of the bargain, a little worse for wear and a little nicked up. Joanie made a beeline as soon as she saw him for a little gladiator action.

Joanie developed hyperthyroidism when she became a senior which is not unusual in older cats. We applied her meds by rubbing a special cream on her ears twice a day which did the trick. She had just had blood work and a check up before I went on a short vacation. She checked out A-o.k. But while I was gone, Bob called and said she was vomiting. When I got home, she refused to eat. That is when I knew things were going haywire. Joan always lined up first for the opening of a can of cat food. In the meantime, I found a tooth she had lost. So I figured she had an infection from that, and our vet Dr. Bart, would give her some fluids and meds and send us on our way. It was sadly much more serious than that. Doc said the problem was neurological, probably a brain tumor and the best solution was to put her down. I was blind-sided, stunned really. I knew it was best but still so difficult, another heartache. The only thing that brought a smile was the picture of Joanie and Lucy reunited, their bond which had been temporarily broken, now cemented forever.

--Judy S

Tuesday, May 13, 2014


They live their whole lives in disgusting, cramped cages. They have no opportunity to run, play, or interact with humans or their own species. They don’t get to see the sunshine or feel the grass beneath their paws. Much of the time these canines are forced to live in their own urine and excrement. Over the years, as a Planned Pethood foster parent, I have seen my share of puppy mill dogs. The scumbags running these houses of horror do not have any remorse for the torture they are putting the dogs through. They only care about the bottom line, money, money, money. There has to be a special place in hell for these evil people where they live the nightmare existence of these innocent creatures.

My sweet chocolate lab Imelda was a stunningly gorgeous puppy mill dog. She landed in the pound because she either could not or would not breed anymore at age four. She was unceremoniously dumped to this dangerous kill shelter so they could euthanize her. She was of no use to them anymore. Keeping any dog in isolation conditions is cruel but it is especially inhumane for a lab because they so crave and enjoy human contact. This poor girl was so needy that she never, ever left my side. She was the ultimate 24/7 Velcro dog. She sooooo boosted the self esteem of everyone she came in contact with. I wish I had a dime for all the times people said to me, “she really loves me”. I never had the heart to tell them she treated everyone like that. Except puppies, Imelda abhorred them. I am pretty sure that is what landed her in the pound. God only knows how many litters she had, on arrival her tummy was grotesquely stretched out, even at her young age. Mel was stuck like glue to me for the short time she had left in her life. She passed away from lung cancer at only six. But in those months, she made up for all that time in a cage by spreading lab love everywhere she went.

Meldie’s transition was easy compared to Samantha the pug. She was part of a breeding pair who were again thrown into the pound to be euthanized. If you have had any contact with pugs, you know they are happy, funny, affectionate little clowns. Not Samantha, she was terrified of everything, especially human contact. Stairs, the ding of the microwave, and all the normal household sights and sounds frightened her. Thankfully, my nieces Samantha (her namesake) and Morgan, were visiting when little Sammy came to us. Kid energy was the ONLY thing she could relate to at first. I am sure it was the first human contact this poor breeding machine experienced. But she and her partner Charlie were adopted by pug whisperer, Gloria Wu. The last time I saw Sammy was at the high school where Gloria and I worked. She was the belle of the ball, brightening up everybody’s day. It was an unbelievable transformation. Gloria, who was never even permitted to have a dog as a kid, has become Planned Pethood’s “go to” foster when we have pugs enter the program. PPI alumni Samantha, Charlie, and now Nicholas reside in pug heaven on earth with Gloria.

I get to know a lot of people from walking my dogs and fosters in the neighborhood. This includes Rich who lives on our route to the park. He lived happily with a resident English setter named Tucker but got wind of a puppy mill female who was going to be euthanized. You know that drill by now. He had the toughest time socializing Crickett and he was never completely successful. His description of her haunts me. He said this lovely girl acted like she was autistic. He was just not able to break through to her. She had erected a wall that excluded human and even canine companionship. At least she was able to live out the rest of her life in a normal home setting with love and her own bed and yard even if it was not reciprocated.

Hopefully this blog puts a face on actual puppy mill dogs. So, what needs to be done to put an end to this outrage? First and foremost, never, ever patronize the dog warehouses they call pet stores, who buy from puppy mills. If you want a purebred dog, you can get them from rescues. Planned Pethood takes them in on a regular basis. There are also hundreds of breed specific rescues throughout the country. The second part of the solution is tough regulations in each state. Ohio just passed a weak reform law. But the standards need to be much more restrictive and they need to be enforced without exception. For goodness sakes, there are laws about when you must take out the trash or shovel the snow. These are lives we are dealing with. These breeders are doing long term damage to the dogs. Overbreeding and inbreeding are resulting in a myriad of health problems. My poor lab, Rudy, had to be euthanized due to crippling arthritis, an issue many purebred labs have. The time is now. Let’s band together and put these unscrupulous losers out of business for good!

by Judy S.

Friday, April 4, 2014


As I was walking at the park with the dogs today, it happened. Splat, I stepped into a big old pile of poop, right there on the walking track. Some rude, inconsiderate idiot did not have the common courtesy to clean up after their dog. The responsible party was so dismissive of other walkers and joggers that they did not even bother to guide their dog to the grass. What a great way to ruin a beautiful bonding experience between human and dog. Feces is not exactly a topic readily discussed in polite conversation. For those of you who are a bit squeamish, you may want to skip this blog, but it is a personal pet peeve that drives me nuts. The jokes, all those awful bodily function jokes, are out there. South Park even has a character who is a piece of poo. But up front and personal, it is no laughing matter.

My dogs, Ida and Stanley, and my Planned Pethood foster dogs and I walk every day, rain or shine, cold or hot. Walking helps establish yourself as the pack leader. It is the first thing I do with every new foster. We usually head to a neighborhood park dedicated to kids’ baseball and football practice. It is a crime when people don’t clean up after their dogs, really I think it is an actual crime. It is not uncommon for the poor kids to end up running into a nasty pile or two. It is bad enough for them to have to deal with the hazards of dodging the goose crap. Many times I have politely offered a bag to these deadbeats. But instead of USING it, they become upset and defensive. They offer all kinds of excuses why it really doesn’t matter if they take the responsibility to clean up. I am sure these people do not consider nor care about the resulting health hazards involved for both humans and canines.

On several occasions, I have seen a man come to the park with his dog in an SUV. Not only does he not pick up after his dog, he never even gets out of the vehicle. He opens the door and the large dog hops out unleashed and unsupervised. Plus the dog is threatening and probably dangerous. This information comes from the owner himself who warns any other dogs away when they head his way. Talk about lazy AND ignorant. This looks like an unfortunate incident waiting to happen.

One day I was walking my senior lab Rudy when he rolled in a mammoth pile of sh*t. One whole side was a thick coat of it. I am positive he thought his smell was irresistible (and it probably was to another dog) so rolling in it was a no-brainer. It didn’t do any good to get angry with him. But I had to gag, on the verge of vomiting on what seemed like a very long walk home. He had to be bathed three times before he was fit for human companionship.

I even have a neighbor who does not clean up the crap in her yard. It smells like a defective sewer in the summer. And, after this winter, that situation is not going to be pretty. I filled many, many bags after the snow melted in my yard. In many cases, it is the people like her who neglect their pets in other ways as well. They don’t vaccinate them or make sure the dogs are on heart worm protection. They don’t spay/neuter. They allow their dogs to roam the neighborhood, unconcerned about the potential dire consequences. It takes a great deal of time, energy, and yes, money to be a responsible pet owner.

Hopefully, at this point, you are not thinking, geez, Judy is like the cranky old dude in the neighborhood who keeps the kids’ ball that comes in her yard. Nothing could be further from the truth. And, don’t get me wrong, I have forgotten the poop bags on occasion. But I always either try to borrow one or try to pinpoint exactly the scene of the crime, so I can get it the next day. And, hey you can get a 100 bag pack at the dollar store. Many of my friends save their bags for me for the cause. And if I can pick up while walking three large dogs, I know you can clean up too. I just ask you to walk a mile in my shoes. Literally, walk a mile in my gross, disgusting, poop covered shoes. Don’t be the one to ruin a beautiful walk, allow families to enjoy their surroundings in the great outdoors. Pick up after your dogs, people!

-submitted by Judy S.  

Friday, March 7, 2014


He is such a wonderful dog when I am with him, handsome and affectionate, but… To date, my Planned Pethood foster dog J.B. has quite the impressive resume of destruction. The extensive list includes a busted screen and a broken window. He has torn down blinds and curtains as well. He literally destroyed two metal crates too and this is just the tip of the iceberg. Arrogantly, I used to scoff at people who put their dogs on drugs to help them cope with separation anxiety. But not anymore.  Hands down, it is the toughest challenge I have had to face as a foster.

But let’s start at the beginning. J.B. was scheduled to be euthanized the same afternoon I picked him up from a rural pound. They said he was a neutered nine year old chow/cattle dog mix. My preference is to foster seniors. Turned out, he was neither nine nor neutered. My first indication of trouble came quickly. The morning after his first night with us, he greeted me at my bedroom door, having extracted himself somehow from his crate. Thankfully, he has enjoyed the company of the cats from day one. I should have realized it was time to fasten my seatbelt.

I had to head off to a cat adoption event and I got that he was not crazy about a crate so I decided to confine him to a bedroom. I got a call at the event from my neighbor, fellow PPI foster, Heather. She said, “hey your foster dog is on your porch”. WHAT????? I asked her to hook him onto a tie out in the backyard and I would be right home. The screen in the window was flapping in the breeze when I arrived. The next sign of trouble would be minutes away. While letting the dogs in from a potty break, I practiced my pack leader skills with the resident dogs preceding the new guy. So in goes Ida, in goes Stanley, and you guessed it, over the fence goes J. As I was running down my street chasing him, I was telling myself, I am way too old for this crap. We did recover him quickly with help from my neighbors.

In the meantime, J.B. visited the vet and was diagnosed with heartworm. So now I had a crazed cattle dog who would not be able to exercise to release any anxiety for weeks. Nor could he be neutered. Great. And to round out the bad news, no way was he nine. I asked the vet what kind of nine year old jumps the fence. He said, nine? He is maybe four. Poor J was probably tied out his whole life. His ears are literally missing chunks from where the flies ate them. My semi-significant other, Bob, tried to reassure him. He told him, chicks dig scars. His recovery from heartworm was awful for him, the pack, and me with all that bad energy pent up.

At one point I came home to find blood everywhere. It looked like what I imagine a murder scene would look like. It was on the couch, on the walls, and on both my own dog Stan and J. I put J into the bathtub to try to figure out where the blood was coming from. He turned the water red. I grabbed both dogs and rushed them to the vet. It turned out to be a false alarm of sorts. Neither dog was injured. Stanley’s tooth was cracked and it had broken off at the root, hence the blood.

At that point, J.B. was relegated to an airline crate where he could not harm himself nor could he do any more destruction. But it did not address the root of his problem, the separation anxiety. This poor dude looks like a parkinson’s victim, shaking like a leaf, when he knows I am getting ready to leave. And, believe me, he knows. He has a look of sheer terror in his eyes. Your heart would go out to him if he wasn’t so irritating, barking his head off.

We have tried soooooo many strategies. We worked with a trainer and established behavior modification routines. She actually gave us homework exercises which we religiously adhere to. He has taken a half a dozen different drugs in a variety of combinations, to no avail. We walk three miles per day regardless of weather, most days with J carrying a loaded backpack. The thunder shirt I bought him lasted three days before he shredded it. The citronella bark collar actually worked for about a day and a half. Then I think he began to ENJOY that bug sprayish whiff emanating from the collar. And there was more and more and more…

We have made very little progress in easing J’s separation anxiety but he has made major strides in other ways. He did not know how to play when he came to us. His idea of play was to physically attack the dog who had the ball. Using some snack bag water bombs helped cure that. And, now he is quite an accomplished ball player, actually as part of a team. He used to charge other dogs on the walk as well. Four to six weeks after he was neutered (good bye testosterone, yes!!), he has become very accommodating when meeting new dogs.

Let’s just say J.B. is a work in progress. A friend at the park said it took his dog two years to begin to respond to correction of his separation anxiety. Oh NO!!! In the meantime, J is stuck to me like super glue 24/7, so afraid I may leave him. One of the vet techs suggested he is like the boyfriend you dumped in high school who can’t get over it and still wants to be with you.  He is gentle, affectionate, and loving. He is a favorite at adoption events (until I mention his SA, then the people almost run from us). Stay tuned for a blog update for our troubled dude. Planned Pethood does not put time limits on a dog’s adoption. BTW, we wondered what J.B. stood for. The neighborhood kids suggested Justin Bieber but we are not going there. Two people stepped up to offer their names, my nephew John Broadway, and cat foster extraordinaire, Julie Brown. Thanks!!

by Judy S.

Saturday, February 8, 2014


Who in their right mind would put up with pee, poop, and vomit in the backseat of their new car? Who would stay up all night worrying and tending a sick foster kitten or dog? Who would lose sleep while the new foster dog howls all night long in his crate? Who can handle the heartache of losing a tiny kitten who never really had a chance at life due to the horrific hoarding situation they came from? And hair, hair, hair, no matter what color you wear, there is always a contrasting color of hair on your outfit. And, believe it or not, this is just the tip of the rescue iceberg. Today we will take a peek into the selfless life of one of my favorite, amazing Planned Pethood fosters, Nancy Fisher.

Nancy has fostered cats and kittens for a good decade or more and she branches out to include dogs now and then too. She unexpectedly ended up with two foster dogs at the same time through an accident of fate and they detested one another. She had committed to a hyperactive juvenile black lab named Gunner when a young cattle dog appeared on her porch one evening. Yep, Roo chose his own foster home. Nancy and her husband distributed flyers, contacted shelters, and did the whole nine yards to find his home with no luck. Both dogs were young males who had been newly neutered and they hated one another with a passion. Any meeting outside of the crate and it was on. Unfortunately for Nancy, it takes 4 to 6 weeks for that boy-dog fighting testosterone to dissipate and calm the savage beast. She was hilarious describing the tiff. Roo could not stand the “Richard Simmons” energy possessed by Gunner. He would flit around the place with his excitable energy and Roo, believing he was the cop on the beat, assumed his official duty of putting an end to that kind of nonsense. So Nancy was in the unenviable position of having to play musical crates, when one was in, the other could be out. Nancy has a large pack of her own dogs and they take turns hiking the long walk to collect the mail. On one memorable occasion, she believed Roo was confined when Gunner was invited on the walk. She described it as if she was participating in a Clint Eastwood movie, as a figure emerged from the mist at the top of the horizon. You guessed it, Roo’s figure became distinguishable from the fog and the boys were at it once again.

Things began to sort themselves out when Gunner was adopted to a wonderful family and Roo’s family finally saw one of the flyers posted and contacted Planned Pethood. Come to find out, coincidentally this was the same family who lost a steer that Nancy was involved in rescuing, yeah that’s right, a steer! This 1000 lb. beast had busted through his enclosure and went on a stroll. He was near the e-way and there was fear things would end badly. So, get this, Nancy got a skinny little LEASH from her car and tried to lead this equivalent of a truck to safety. It did not work so well to say the least. After several failed attempts, the group ultimately called a neighbor who showed up with his lasso and gear to finally corral the big dude. Long story short, Roo’s peeps paid his adoption fee to Planned Pethood and took him home…temporarily.  But within days, guess who was back on Nancy’s porch? Roo obviously enjoyed her company. But back he went again to (hopefully) live happily ever after. 

Nancy has one of the kindest hearts I have ever seen in this business and that is saying a lot. We all participated in a mega adoption event with many rescue agencies including a couple of kill shelters. The next thing you know Nancy is crossing the lot leading an elderly and really chubby pit bull named Raina.  She had just adopted her because she knew no one else would. She had been seized from a working girl with an arrest record as long as your arm. I am happy to say that Raina is now fit, healthy, and happy with Nancy and her pack.

But Nancy is no traditional rescuer, no way. She acquired a flock of alpacas who were ditched by their owner. Yes, you read that correctly, guard alpacas no less who warn them when someone is approaching the house. She has many hens and feral, unadoptable barn cats who no one else wanted.  

Many of Planned Pethood fosters are nurses and teachers. I think they bring their compassion from their day jobs. Nancy has helped me so many times with her knowledge and experience. You may remember the story of Elphaba who freaked me out when she appeared to turn feral. I was afraid her little head was going to spin all the way around. No, Nancy explained, she had been traumatized by her trip to the vet. Then she explained the swaddling technique which saved the day. Thanks for that and all that you do that seems to go unappreciated! The list could literally fill a book. You make the world in general and our community in particular a much more civilized, kinder place. Nice work, sister!

by Judy S