Hi Mark, I just finished your book about Sprite while on vacation in NC, most of time with tears in my eyes. As I sat here alone on my deck with my foster shelter dog "Diamond", I couldn't control my emotions.
My sweet lab, Lucy who I adopted as a stray died 2 years ago at 15. I had her for all but 6 months of her life & couldn't have asked for a better friend. When the day came to put her down, I knew it was time. She no longer had the quality of life she deserved. I still miss her though.
My husband wanted nothing to do with getting another dog so I began volunteering at a local shelter. I wish I had done it sooner in my life & I just love it. I started walking dogs, then helping adopt them out (adoption counselor), & fostering the ones who needed time out of the shelter. It filled the void of not having a dog 'of my own'.
I have fostered 9 or so dogs thus far. Most of them came to my house for a quick getaway from the shelter. None of them ever made it back. Instead they stayed with me until a potential adopter came in.
Rather than stress the dog by bringing it back to the shelter, the adopter would come to my home, just as you did with the Gallups. I got to know the real dog & how it behaved in a real, loving home, not the stressed out, confused version of the dog. Very helpful information for a potential adopter. Every one of my fosters has found a loving forever home & I am proud to have been a part of the process of saving a life.
I just wanted to thank you. Thank you for being a loving family who has an open heart for a shelter dog. We have dogs come in that have been beaten, bruised, neglected, grown up with a family their whole life & then dumped at the shelter when they get old. People like you give me hope.
And mostly, thank you for bearing your soul in your story about Sprite. By someone like you writing a story like this, I pray more people will understand the life of a shelter dog & realize how many great dogs are euthanized because of lack of space. Together we save the ones we can, but sadly we can not save them all.
Lastly, I always get asked "how do you live with a dog & then give it up?" The answer is easy...by letting a dog go to a loving home & taking in another foster, I am saving many lives rather than one life.