Our latest foster is an absolute sweetheart

We got another foster dog a few days ago, and she is the sweetest. She was in a kill shelter with her mom and siblings. They were all added to the list to be euthanized since no one would take them. The mom, her 5 puppies, and 2 other adult dogs, all pit bulls, were taken from a dog fighting ring in the Atlanta area. I can’t believe that that is still a thing. Humans are the worst people. The 2 other adult dogs were put down straight away because they were way too aggressive. My wife said that someone at the shelter fought for the mom since she wasn’t a fighting dog, and convinced the shelter to keep her. Apparently, she shaped up and is turning out to be a good dog, and people have taken 2 of the 5-6 month-old puppies.

Alexis went to the shelter to meet the remaining 3 puppies and evaluate their temperament. I guess she got blasted on Facebook for saying as much, but we have 4 small dogs. We don’t want to put them at risk, but we want to help if we can. She went to meet them, and all 3 were in the same pen together. The 2 males went after each other. It took 3 people to separate them. The third puppy though, the female, avoided the conflict and stayed calm through the whole thing. Alexis decided we could manage her and brought her home.

They were calling her Iris at the shelter, but we’ve decided to call her Violet to keep with the Spring flower theme. Alexis came and picked me up at the house, we went and picked up a few things that we would need for her and went back home. Once we got back home, she let Alexis reach into the crate and put a collar and leash on her with no fuss. She reluctantly stepped out of the crate, out of the car, and onto the driveway. I was immediately struck by how pretty she is. She is a light tan with some white markings and socks, but what got me were her eyes. She has these bright, soft eyes with not a hint of malice. I can’t describe the color. Maybe a brassy silver, I don’t know, but she looked up at us with those beautiful eyes with curiosity and hope and my heart melted.

We started to lead her into the house and I began to understand how sheltered she had been. She didn’t understand the stairs. It took some coaxing, but she finally went for it and made it onto the porch. We had already closed our 4 little dogs in the kitchen so they couldn’t rush her and coaxed her into the front room. She was clearly apprehensive, but she trusted us enough to follow us in.

It took her a couple of days to get used to the sounds and smells, and we’re still keeping her separated from the other dogs. She’s getting more comfortable and playful every day. She’s super funny. She gets confused by things like a phone on speaker, the television, and music with vocals. I guess she’s confused by the disembodied voices and sounds. Alexis said she kinda freaked out and barked at the TV when she tried to watch some Bridgerton. I guess she was kept pretty isolated when she was with the dogfighting people, and I’m sure she didn’t get exposed to much at the shelter except a bunch of barking dogs.

When we first took her outside into the yard, she acted like she didn’t know what to do. The grass made her sneeze and tickled her feet. A couple of days ago, I sat in the backyard with her, and I think she finally figured out what the grass is for. She started rolling around and squirming in the grass, like dogs do, but it seemed like a genuinely new experience for her. Then she just laid in the grass and the sun for a little while finally getting to just be a dog. Suddenly she jumped up and ran under the back steps. I didn’t know what to think, but then popped back out with a toy sock (just an old sock with knots tied in it) and started bouncing around the yard, throwing the sock, then running back to get it, and throwing herself down and just playing. Again, I believe I was witnessing a discovery for her. It was like she spontaneously remembered how to be a dog and was getting to experience it for the first time.

We still have a lot of work to do with her. I don’t know if she can ever be alone with our little dogs, but I think with a little work she will make someone an amazing companion. We just have to find the right person/people and the right household. Fortunately, the rescue that we work with takes care of a lot of that.

Now we have to do something about her toots!

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