Fellow Travelers

Friday, April 17, 2009

Pug Friday with a Twist...

Good Morning and Happy Friday to all. Today Pug Friday is going to be a little bit different. I wanted to take a moment to talk about Pug Rescue and Dog Rescue in general. Bumpkin on A Swing actually inspired me to discuss this. Her and her hubby's love of 'big' dog rescue and their stories have brought tears to my eyes on more than one occasion. So first off, THANK YOU to them and all you wonderful people out there that participate in dog rescue.

The Jetplanes really want to foster a dog, however with our current lifestyle its just not appropriate for us to bring in other dog, it wouldn't be fair to it or our others dogs we already have.

But due my own personal love of pugs I wanted to highlight one very special pug in our Pugapalooza contest and his own lil story that most of you probably don't know about.

Please read the story of Paul(ie) and his Mama, Sarah, from On the Rhoades of Life. Sarah was kind enough to provide a backstory on Paulie and give me (and us) an idea about fostering...

My story on why I foster…

It all started with Nutmeg. Back before I was married, my future brother in law had another friend who had a pug and needed a dog sitter one weekend. Up until this point, I had never really been around a pug that much, so I was curious. Insert Nutmeg.

We dog sat Nutmeg and I loved her!! Nutmeg was so sweet and so cute & I loved having her at our place. Keep in mind – I already have a Jack Russell Terrier, Abby. Nutmeg was nothing like Abby. Abby is independent, chases squirrels & loves fast walks, but Nutmeg was totally different. She would lay in your lap and had a cute little snore and just wanted to be your friend. I decided then and there that I wanted a pug someday. Little did I know what would really come of that.

So, when I was bored at work, I decided to research pugs and found that there was a pug rescue in Houston called PugHearts of Houston (www.pughearts.com). I spent lots of time reading the Pug Hearts story and checking out every page of their website (and donated $$!). The more I saw the little pugs on there, it just broke my heart. A lot of the dogs they had have major health problems from neglect. The pugs come from owner surrenders, shelters, found wandering the streets, etc. The worst story was someone getting evicted, moved out & left their pug in their place for 11 days without food or water before someone rescued him. WHO DOES THAT? Dogs can’t help themselves or get out of the situations they are in, so they have to rely on good Samaritans like the people at Pug Hearts to rescue them and give them a good home. I was truly touched by the things they do for these dogs. I decided that we would give fostering a try.

I contacted Pug Hearts & in less than a week (after a home visit), I was on my way to pick up our first foster pug. I showed up at the vet and my heart melted at our super cute, little snaggle tooth foster pug. Abby was fine with the new dogs coming into the house & she quickly adapted to her new “brothers”. (Personally, I think she loved the added trips to the dog park). Parker quickly came and quickly went. He was adopted by an awesome family of 4 and I knew he had found his forever home. I was so happy – just like a proud mom. I was even more proud (shocked) that I didn’t cry. Probably because I knew he was in good hands. I was surprised how much I truly enjoyed having our foster placed into a great home. One of the best feelings!

Paul: To be honest, when we first met Paul, I wasn’t so sure. He wasn’t quite as “cute” as the pugs on the website and he had something wrong with his back leg. He limped. The vet had checked him out and it looked like an old break that had healed improperly. Potentially from abuse. He had SEVERE heartworms on top of that!! I was saddened. Poor guy I thought, we would probably have him a while since he isn’t as cute or healthy and probably wouldn’t get adopted as quickly. I asked if they knew Paul’s back story and she said that he had been rescued off the side of a highway, but it appeared that he & his sister had come from a puppy mill by their mannerisms. They probably had never been someone’s “pet”.

We took Paul home and he wasn’t so sure about us. He hid in the corner and under the table at first. He had had it rough and didn’t need anything else to go wrong. To top it off, we have two flights of stairs in our townhouse and he wasn’t so sure about those either – especially with his leg injury. It took him a long time to hop up and down those steps, but eventually he got the hang of it and eventually he stopped hiding in the corner and decided we were the “good guys”. We learned that Paulie (we couldn’t call him Paul) loved toys and likes to sleep next to us on the couch.

We fell in love with the little guy and we fell hard. Who would have thought that we would fall in love with the pug with the messed up leg that initially I wasn’t so sure about?? Funny how it goes.

A lot of people have asked me: When did I know we were going to keep him? Please note: we never planned on keeping a foster for our own—I really was planning to just foster. I knew we were going to keep Paulie when we took him to the dog park one day for a Pug Meet up. Paulie was running around and SO happy! Well, the PugHearts folks were out and there was a family there who was interested in adopting. Cindy with PugHearts asked us to bring Paulie over so that she could introduce him. Immediately, I noticed how tense Jonny was. As soon as Paulie was loose, Jonny looks at me and said “Let’s go”. We leashed up Paulie and headed home in one quick movement. I knew then that this guy wasn’t going anywhere. Paulie had found his forever home.

For those of you wondering… yes, we do plan to foster again.

Fostering is a great way to help our communities – you would be surprised how many people have to give up there dogs due to health or financial troubles. Especially in these economic times, people take care of their pet last. If you foster, all you have to pay for is the food & give your love. I learned too, that if you have a dog already, fostering is a great way to see what dogs fit well with your other dog’s personality (Abby and Paulie are pals).

If you ever want to get a dog, even a pure bred dog, look for local rescues in your area. You will almost surely find any breed you are interested in – help save a dogs life!


Thank you Sarah!

Keep voting guys... I'm amazed with the outpouring of votes.

Sorry no pictures this Friday... have a great weekend guys.


MG said...

We got our first Cavalier from a Cavalier rescue agency. It has been one of the best decisions I have ever made. I can't imagine my life without her, and I couldn't have asked for a better dog!

Rescue is important!

Legallyblondemel said...

Good for you on calling attention to rescue. We're involved with the Austin Pug rescue, although not nearly to the extent that I would like to be. We've fostered two dogs, but would love to do more once my work schedule changes.

martha - ca knitter said...

Wow that was a great story. Thanks for sharing. I know a lot of pets are abandoned here in CA because people can't afford to keep them anymore (foreclosed homes). It's very sad.
I was wondering about something... can we vote more than once in the pug contest? :-)

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