Chloe returns unexpectedly

Chloe returns

Chloe returns

Our early summer foster Chloe (recently called Amber) is back…it didn’t work out with her adoptive family so she is back here with me. Sometimes this happens. Apparently she was acting very anxious when left alone and actually destroying parts of the house and her crates (yes crates). And I posted about her escape from the second story window, right? Anyway she wasn’t doing well and her adoptive family decided they could do no more for her. I have to respect that decision.

SO…things just got extra crazy over here. But the good news is that the dog I saw coming out of the car – ears flat against her head, teeth bared, growling and barking a warning not to get close, tail tucked hard under her, crouched down low – is not the dog lying here calmly as I write. She was VERY fearful in our first minutes together and didn’t stop barking. I just sat there and eventually she came up and sniffed me, backed away and then sniffed again and looked at me. I said, “yes, it’s me.” She then began sniffing the entire driveway, the whole gangevery inch of it. For once, I let her lead me and she sniffed her way to the puppy pen. Mike brought Willow out and we walked them together for a few minutes and everyone did fine. Then I put the two mamas into the pen with the pups and watched. Chloe’s tail, which was still tucked but less so by this time, sprang right up and began to wag happily…she remembered! You could see her sniffing the pups, remembering puppies but not these puppies…but it didn’t seem to matter to her after a bit. She licked them, sniffed them all over and lay down and rolled around as they crawled all over her – just like she used to with her group. It was wonderful to see. Meanwhile, Willow took advantage of my stationary position and the lack of puppy attention and jumped up on a chair next to me and let me pet and pet and pet her. Everyone was happy. I just sat there feeling happy for Chloe who has had a hell of a 6 weeks…she deserves this happiness.

Chloe and puppies playThe difficult thing for me was that I had second guessed my decision to let this family adopt her in the first place. It is hard not to think “what if I had honored my instincts and said “no” – then none of this would have happened.” I don’t think most people realize the position us “rescue folk” are in – we get these dogs in terrible shape…we clean them up, get them healthy, teach them how to live in a house and give them some manners and just when they are good members of our families we have to let them go…to perfect strangers. We try to screen, interview and I know for a fact that this process of trying to determine a good match really pisses some people off…believe me, I’ve been yelled at a lot more than I’d like to be lately. But we do this to try to prevent the heartbreak that happens when we are wrong…I know that Chloe’s adoptive family is feeling terrible right now. I don’t think there is any easy way to let a dog go, not one that you’ve spent time loving and getting to know. But I just wish there was a way to know for sure if they and the dog will be a good match. I do know that I learn more and more each time I place a dog. And I really do learn more from my failures than my successes…still, I hate to see the suffering.

Chloe relaxingSo, if any of you have to deal with us rescue people, and our annoying applications and redundant questions, please have a bit of patience. We are just trying to do our job well. And if any of you want to give Chloe a second chance at happiness please let H.E.L.P. know…she’ll need a family with a lot of dog experience, one where the main “pack leader” is home full time, and preferably a home with another dog, a high fence, and lots of love.

July 29, 2009 • Tags: , , , , , • Posted in: behavior, Chloe, dog adoption, dog ownership, fostering dogs, pups, story update, Willow

2 Responses to “Chloe returns unexpectedly”

  1. valerie - July 29th, 2009

    Chloe looks adorable and looks very happy with the puppies. She will find a good home. And you are doing the best you can matching puppies & dogs up with their forever homes. Sometimes, like with Chloe, maybe it takes more than one try. But overall you have made so many happy homes for these dogs. It’s awesome and I am so proud of you, sis. 🙂 Aw. Also, I cannot believe how big the puppies are now. They’re huge! They almost look like they’re the size of Ebbie!!

  2. Roxane - September 4th, 2009

    Hi Kristen,
    My parents are the proud adoptive parents of Chloe! I am their daughter and live 5 blocks away and I love Chloe too!
    She has taken to my mom and dad easily. They are active seniors who stay home a lot. I am at their house often. Chloe is doing well and is adjusting quite well to her new home. She is a wonderful dog!!!!! Very smart!

    She has only been with them for 4 days. During that time, the only thing we may need some advise on is helping her to separate when my parents leave the house together to go out for breakfast. They are only gone a couple of hours once a week. She has the run of the house. Chloe whines and howls when they are gone. She is not destructive in any way. Is there any way we can help her through this?

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.