Secret Santa Revealed!

I can’t believe time has gone by so quickly, but the big reveal for the Pittie Posse Secret Santa is finally here! A reminder that the participants included Our Waldo Bungie, Love and a Six-Foot Leash, Two Grad Students and a Pittie, Pittieful Love, Kate With A Camera, Two Pitties in the City, A Heartbeat at My Feet, That Touch of Pit and Two Kitties One Pittie.

I actually had a big overachiever as my Secret Santa, and my present arrived before I had even sent mine out!  I was thrilled when I received a package in the mail with Kate With a Camera in the return address. Yep, that’s right – Kate With a Camera was my Secret Santa! I know how fabulous her taste in dogs, photography and blogging is, so I knew I was in for a treat with her gift – and I was right.


Is that not the cutest thing you’ve ever seen!? I am totally in love with it. It perfectly sums up how I feel about every single dog ever all the dogs I end up fostering.  I knew the absolute perfect place to put it: above my foster wall of all the dogs I’ve loved.


To add the perfect touch, Kate included this hilarious and oh-so-relevant (just wait until you see next week’s posts. . .) Holiday card:


I opened the card and immediately cracked up. This card is so spot on to my life and the life of my foster dogs! Thank you so much Kate for such a thoughtful Secret Santa gift! I absolutely love it!

Now to find out whose Secret Santa I was, head over to a blog about an adorable black pittie named Havi . . . (hint: Two Grad Students & a Pittie!).

“Take me out to the ball game” – Baxter

Some might say the perfect day would consist of a ball game, a beer, and your favorite dog. Last Saturday, I got the chance to live that perfect day. Every year the Washington Humane Society teams up with the Washington Nationals for a ‘Pups in the Park‘ event where people can bring their dogs to the baseball game. Yes, you read that correctly. People are actually allowed to bring their dogs inside the stadium to watch the game! Each dog needs a ticket (at a reasonable $8) and all the proceeds from the dog seats go to WHS! How cool is that!?  And would you guess who I went with.

I was able to go with Baxter’s whole family! Big Bruno, Baxter’s long time buddy who first helped him in the shelter, and I met up with Bax and company at the game and spent the afternoon there together. Since the last time I visited Bax, his family has added a new furry member! Meet Didi, a “pit bull” dog that seems to be mostly jack russell terrier judging by her spring board jumping abilities and her need to smell absolutely everything.

It was a good thing there were four of us, because these three pups are quite the pack together. They were all on their best behavior for the game though – I was very impressed.

There were a ton of people and dogs there, especially since the Nationals have been having such a great season.  Baxter, Didi, and Piggy all pretty much minded their own business when it came to other dogs, but the people were another story. The pups were making smiles every where they went – especially with kids!

It was a great afternoon, with the icing on the cake being the big win by the Nats.  Can’t wait to bring my own foster dog next time around!

One Year in Photos

To continue the celebration of our One Year Blog-a-versary, here are lots (and I mean lots) of photos that I feel portray some of our most outstanding moments (or that I think are just really cute). They have all been featured on this blog, and, to the best of my ability, they tell the story of the last twelve months. Enjoy :)

August 2011

September 2011

October 2011

November 2011

December 2011

January 2012

February 2012

March 2012

April 2012

May 2012

June 2011

July 2012

August 2012

It sure makes ya miss the little stinkers, doesn’t it!? I love going back and remembering all the silly things about each dog – the things that get lost as time goes on and as new ones come into your life. I still can’t express in words what this blog means to me and what I’ve gotten out of the last year, which is why I am so grateful to have the journey documented in photos.  I hope you enjoyed that recap as much as I did. Thank you all so much for your congratulations at this milestone – it means the world to me!

Baxter and Otis!

Like I said yesterday: what could be better than getting a former foster and current foster together for a play date!?

Coincidentally, Baxter and Otis have actually met before. When Baxter was in the shelter a year ago and Otis was with me for the first time, we used Otis to dog test Baxter. Crazy, right!? I obviously had no idea what impact either dog would end up having on my life a year down the road, but that was the first time I ever met Bax. Baxter didn’t feel very well for that meet and greet, so both dogs seemed like they couldn’t have cared less about each other – and you know what? Not much has changed!

I was thrilled when Baxter’s mom was happy to accept my offer to bring Otis with me to visit and hopefully have a play date with Bax (in her words, “I hoped you’d say that!” – could they get more awesome?). Baxter has been getting a little pushy with male dogs recently, so we had to be cautious when introducing the two. Otis is so “whatever” about dogs (mostly just very submissive) that Baxter had no problem with him. Baxter didn’t even mind when Otis showed some serious interest in Miss Piggy!

Here is one photo that pretty much sums up how Bax & Otis felt about each other:

Total apathy. Baxter had a “too cool for you” attitude, and Otis, well, doesn’t have very strong opinions about many things so he was fine with whatever. It actually worked out really well, and was a victory on all accounts: Baxter was accepting of another male on his turf and Otis followed Baxter’s rules to prevent conflict and everyone was able to have a healthy socialization session. Though I think Piggy and Baxter seemed to find Otis’ antics a little amusing:

They did have bouts of playing when Otis was able to convince Baxter that running around in the heat was a good idea. They played so well with each other! Even all three of them together stayed within safe and appropriate levels of play. I think the heat helped a lot with keeping everyone subdued, but still – I was proud of each one.

For the most part, they spent their time ignoring each other in the grass. Aren’t they so stinkin’ adorable together?! So many happy tongues!

I am just as thrilled about this combo as I was about being able to hang out with all the humans. Everyone got along so well and each dog was on their best behavior. If that’s not cause for victory celebrations, I don’t know what is! I can’t wait until we do it again.

For more information on adopting Honey Bunches of Otis, go to his Adopt Me page to learn more about him and how to get in touch.

Baxter’s Journey Comes Full Circle

Exactly one year, one month, two weeks and one day ago, Baxter was carried through the doors of the Montgomery County Humane Society.

He came in as a stray – emaciated and ragged, with scars all over his body. He was noted to be friendly but very, very scared. Baxter spent six weeks at MCHS, being looked after by staff & volunteers. His special angel Big Bruno, an MCHS volunteer, helped Baxter learn to walk out of his cage instead of crawl. Baxter was then rescued by Jasmine’s House, where two wonderful women took him into their heart and their home and helped put him back together physically and emotionally. Catalina of Jasmine’s House especially bonded with Baxter, as she has a history of helping the ones who need it most (see: The Lost Dogs by Jim Gorant).

After three months at Jasmine’s House, Baxter came to me. He was with me, learning about living in a home and being a family pet, for four wonderful months until he found the perfect forever home. Baxter was adopted into a family of three loving individuals: Diane & Lali, his new moms, and Miss Piggy, his new sister. I saw Bax off in that first week of March knowing he had an amazing future, but sad that I had to say goodbye. I knew I would see him again soon though.

I know most of you are familiar with this story, as you were here with me throughout it all (if you don’t know it, see the beginning of the story in this post and the ending in this post). But I needed to write it down again to appreciate the meeting that occurred last weekend between the amazing people I just described who were involved in Baxter’s rescue and rehabilitation: Big Bruno, Cat, Diane, and Lali (and myself, but I hardly fall into the category of the rest of the bunch). It was the first time we had all been together at once – it was the first time D & L had ever met Catalina! It was also the first time Cat, who so loved this dog and did enormous amounts in helping him recover, saw Baxter in his new home, happy with his new family. I managed to capture their reunion, and the photos are, of course, worth a thousand words.

It was an amazing evening.  Baxter has now been with his new family for nearly five months! I know, I can’t believe it either. Listening to their stories of how he has opened up to them over the months, how he becomes a happier dog every day – it was just incredible. This is how I can foster, giving them up time and time again: because you hear how well they shine under the love of their new families. It’s really something.

We all sat back and reveled in the magic that is this little guy’s story. Each of the steps to his new life were there, together, enjoying the victory. For those of us who do this day in and day out, whether through a rescue or the shelter or whatever – we need to see these kinds of endings. The happy endings. They remind us WHY we rescue and why we put so much of our heart and soul into it. The fact that we have watched Baxter’s entire story unfold with such a positive outcome gives us enormous inspiration to go out and help all the other dogs like him.

I am so honored to know these people, as well as grateful to have spent some time with everyone together. Here’s to hoping it won’t be so long until we all meet again!

Make sure you tune in tomorrow to see how Baxter and Otis got along! Yes, you read the right… nothing better than getting an old foster and new foster together for a play date.

Throwback Thursdays: Little Zee

In a recent attempt at a somewhat DIY project (more on that later) I was looking over old foster photographs. Going through the hundreds of photos I have of my first foster Zabora – now known as Medivka – made me miss her. Made me miss her really bad. She was such a gem of a dog – a dazzling, tender personality hiding behind soulful honey eyes. Just thinking about it makes me want to scoop her up for one of those snuggles she was so good at. Being stuck in nostalgia, I’ve decided to re-post some photos of her, especially since so many of you discovered Peace, Love, and Fostering after she left.

Her story is quite remarkable, actually. An Elderbull predicted to be somewhere over eight years old, with suspected creaky bones and a weird neurological disorder that left her bumbling all over the place. She was cute as a button and sweet as sugar, but was continually overlooked at the shelter because of her age. Lucky that Aleksandra from Love & a Six-Foot Leash knows a great thing when she sees it and plucked her out of the shelter right as soon as she could. Then hundreds of people came together to support Z’s road to recovery, proving to us all how amazing this community really is. You can read about Zabora’s story on Love and a Six-Foot Leash’s posts about her, and right here on PLF in our early days.

She is doing amazing in her home, by the way! Which is no surprise considering what a sweetie she is. Here are some of my favorite photos of her that show just how charming her little pittie personality is.

Can you tell she does a lot of sleeping? Then there was that time I fell flat on my butt and she ambled over to the rescue. What a love.

It’s always nice (and, yes, maybe a teenie bit sad) to look back on past fosters. You miss them, but you’re also so satisfied knowing they’re happily sleeping in the homes of their forever families. I’m so thrilled that’s the way the story went for our beloved Zabora/Medivka!

Updates From My Former Foster Half-Brothers and Sisters

Fostermama has been passing along updates all week from the parents of the foster dogs she had before me. I realized that since we’ve all at some point had this here same mama, I think that makes us halfsies! Half-brothers and half-sisters that is.

Former foster half-sister Zabora, now known as Medivka, recently became a big sis to a HUMAN baby! While that sounds like my absolute worst nightmare, I wish her the best of luck listening to that screaming all the time enjoying life with her new sibling. I know fostermama misses Z/M a lot, so this update was super exciting.

THEN she got a few wonderful emails from the forever mom of my former foster half-brother Baxter. His mama was gushing about how well he’s doing, including this happy tail:

“Ok, so in the same vein, I have to tell you that Bax is just totally becoming a part of our little unit. He reveals more and more of his personality every day. And it’s not just me saying it. Diane’s noticing it too. It’s been very gradual and I feel like he was just kind of hanging out and observing us for the first five or six weeks, but he has really opened up and is just being so incredibly sweet that it’s like being around a totally different dog than just a month ago! We don’t have him crated anymore, just separated, and he’s doing great. He’s a very sweet and loving little guy :)”

When fostermama got that email she did a big happy dance and stared at these pictures for awhile, especially that first one. Even I will admit that is one handsome devil. Did you know I actually met the Bax when he first came into the shelter over the summer, before I went to my most recent attempt at a forever home? We took some dog test together and both passed – musta been because we totally ignored each other. That was the first time fostermama ever met Baxter too, but on that day she had no idea how much he would affect her life.

She talks a lot about how she misses that dog, then I nudge my nose into her hand and remind her that I’M here and I love her just as much as he did. She smiles and gives me a hug and seems happy again.

To top it all off, my almost sorta kinda former foster half-sister Curious Georgia’s forever parents have a friend that just took in the famous Stevie Wonder as a foster – go check them out and see how she’s doing!

What a great week of happy updates and team work!

While fostermama misses all of her former fosters, I know she is still happy to have me around. I keep her company every night on the couch while we blog. She is going to miss me a lot when I leave, just like she does the rest. That’s not stopping us from searching for my forever family though! If you know someone out there looking for a laid pack pooch who likes snuggling and playing in the yard, have their people call my people. . .

For more information on adopting Honey Bunches of Otis, go to his Adopt Me page to learn more about him and how to get in touch.