About The Foster Zoo

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We have decided to blog our adventures again. So much has changed since we last blogged. Bella and Shiloh both went to their forever homes and they are in wonderful families. June Bug got adopted. We quit fostering dogs after those adoptions because Tanker's epilepsy got bad. We quit doing therapy dog work because Tanker's epilepsy got bad. Tanker passed away June 9th, 2013. We adopted a senior border collie named Shania Tankerbelle in his memory. We still have our two cats, Sweet Pea and Little Bit. Wes has started rescuing pitiful bettas from Wal-Mart and we currently have seven. We have a camper. We camp. We have focused on giving our animals the best lives possible. We are The Foster Zoo Crew and we like to have fun.

Monday, April 25, 2011

Bella

For those of you now wondering, we are getting a new puppy. (Bella) No, we are not crazy. Boomer is getting adopted this weekend. Bella came from a litter of stray puppies that were born on my friend's farm in Alabama. She is a border collie/lab mix. We are training her to be a therapy dog for when Tanker has to retire. After Tanker's last bout of 10 seizures in which he was in the ICU for a few days, we decided that it would be better to go ahead and get a new dog to start training in case the time comes that Tanker can no longer do therapy work. She will take a year to train and she will be able to certify once she is a year old. At that point, Wes will alternate between using Tanker for less strenuous things (read dog) and Bella for longer days (events and hospital). The advantage of getting Bella now is that she is young and she will learn from Topher and Tanker. She will take on a lot of their personality traits.

I was going to hold off on telling others about this, but we are really excited about little Bella. Hopefully we will be able to fly Bella up here within the next few weeks, or we can drive to Alabama to pick her up. Either way, between doing therapy dog work with Topher and Tanker, and training Bella to be a therapy dog, we are going to be very busy for the next year.

We named our new puppy, Bella, after our favorite place to go, Bella Cafe. Everyone at Bella Cafe is like family to us. They have been with us through the good and the bad. We hold everyone there very dear to our hearts.

Thursday, April 7, 2011

In The Dog House at Anne Moncure Elementary School

Today I had the privilege to shadow my friend Kelly and her beautiful, sweet, therapy dog, Amber, at Anne E. Moncure Elementary School where they volunteer for the PAWS for Reading Program.  I have shadowed Kris many times in the schools, but she works in the special education rooms, not as much with the mainstream kids.  The group that Wes and I are a part of that goes into the libraries and schools to read, Blue Grey Therapy Dogs, requires us to shadow a Read Dog in the school before we can volunteer.  So today, that's what I did.

 Anne E. Moncure Elementary LOVES their therapy dogs!  They are such a dog friendly school.  They have a special room set up called the Dog House where the therapy dogs go for the kids to read to them.  Kids come in, four or five at a time, and read a book to the Read Dog.  It is really neat to see how excited the kids get about reading to a dog.  They try their hardest.  The sound out their words.  They strive to be their best.  Why?  Dogs are the best audience you can have!  Haven't you ever read to your dog?  Tanker and Topher love being read to. 
       
One cute story I have to share.  One of the cutest little girls came in and she looked like she had been crying.  She had long red beautiful hair.  She was absolutely adorable.  Apparently, she hadn't had the time to pick out the PERFECT book to read to Amber and she was really upset about it.  She said to the volunteer who helped us there that "this book I picked out isn't at my level and Amber won't like it."  Another of her classmates went up to her and gave her a big hug.  She said to her, "Amber is going to love whatever you read to her."  How cute is that?  These are kindergarteners.  They just melted my heart!  Kelly let her pick out a different book out of some that she brought herself and the little girl got to read a book on "her level" to Amber.  She was happy in the end.
      
Wes did not get to go today to orient because he is diligently reviewing all his notes and text for us upcoming test on Monday.  I am very proud of him for sacrificing something so fun for his studies.  He will get the opportunity soon to orient.  While I was there, one of the special ed teachers asked me where he was because remembered him from when he has been in with Kris and Titus.  I was able to pass out some of TnT's business cards to the teachers who knew us and they were thrilled to add more dog stuff to their bulletin boards.
       
Have I ever mentioned that life is great!  Something good ALWAYS comes out of the bad if you strive to make it positive.  I love helping others.  God had a big plan when I was forced to quit working and driving.  Helping others as a team with my husband and dogs and with the incredible friends we have met has been a blessing to me.  I am glad my life has turned out the way it has.

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