Fostering Bella

Miss Bella. 

Christmas Eve saw Midnight’s departure with his new family. They had their hands full, and wanted to return him on Christmas Day. The wonderful adoption coordinator talked them off the ledge, and as I hear it (from the adopters), they’re totally smitten with him. That was a giant relief.

We had plans for New Years Eve that saw us staying the night in Inwood, WV, after a murder mystery dinner. Midnight was amazingly social, but a bit of wrecking ball, so we weren’t planning on taking a dog to Matt and Amanda’s, though they’ve never said no, strictly speaking. We didn’t want to risk having a dog that wouldn’t get along with Dexter, so we took a break for a week. I hated it.

We got that old familiar email…

In Buckeystown, MD: 

BELLA #4 has been waiting patiently for a foster opportunity. She’s a sweet and calm 7 year old. Needs to go to a quiet neighborhood as she’s not fond of bicycles. She is a snuggler and rides beautifully in the car. She also likes calm dogs. Not good with cats. Approved for kids 10 and up. Bella weighs 55 pounds.

Along with this sweet picture:

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So, Laura and I packed up and rode out to Buckeystown Vet to meet the foster coordinator. We met a very sweet chocolate lab, named Annie, who was meeting her potential new-parents. Its a bold move to “show” a pup at the kennel. Its super stressful for dogs to be in there, so, I hope that the adopters were ready for that! 

Anyhow, Bella came out with Silvia and she was a little scatter-brained, which is normal. It caught me off guard how NICE she was on a leash. After spending time with Midnight, who could pull a car, I’m convinced, she was… Dainty? I don’t know. 

Another interesting tidbit is that apparently Bella had some some service work at a prison. I don’t know what capacity she filled, but even if its just for comfort, she’s so sweet. 

We took Bella home that day, and were immediately concerned, as her hair is SO SOFT that we figured she’d shed quite a bit. I think half a dog came off of her in that first bath, and I can’t really overstate how soft this dog is. She was really super cool. She was an owner give up, for chasing a cyclist… Which, I don’t super understand, but, to each their own. We had a very quiet first week with her. We introduced her to dog beds, and, she did the Post-Kennel-Amazingly-Relaxed-Sleep in that dog bed. I need to come up with a better word for that. Just-obtained-temporary-alternative-residence-until-longterm-adoption? JOTARUL. I like that. Turns out Bella was a serious, serious window watcher, so she’d pick her head up, look around, and sigh, and fall back to sleep. 

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We tried to get her to hop into our bed, because, as I previously mentioned, the SOFTNESS. She wouldn’t do it! 

There was extra applicant screening with her. We knew (from past reports and personal experience) that she wasn’t good with younger dogs. She isn’t interested in playing. She did fine with my in-laws dog, they almost cuddled.

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So we had an applicant come through, after the reports that Bella and Bailey had done so well together. The folks were nice enough, and brought their 10-11 year old lab. He was pretty nice on his own. I got a text from this person (after they showed up 30 minutes late)…

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Well, in case anyone wasn’t aware, most dogs sniff noses and butts. Well, Bella and this guy didn’t see eye to eye at first meeting, so we decided to take them for a walk. They actually did really well on the walk, and when we went back inside we all relaxed a little bit. Just at the point where our guard was down, the potential adopters dog basically lunged towards Bella, and left a tooth mark just below her eye. Off to the vet we go! Two stitches 🙁

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Bella healed up really nicely. I formed an opinion that, even though she did ok with Bailey, she would be best as a quiet couples “only child”, including dogs and children. I was away from home for Snow-Apocalypse-Mageddon 2016 (30 inches in 24 hours or something?) and Bella romped around the snow and had a grand time. We received a call that there was a couple from Delaware that was very interested in Bella, and wanted to come see her on Sunday. 

When they arrive, the “dad” is immediately smitten with Bella. I love it when potential adopters come in the door, and flop on the floor. This guy is going to treat her like a princess. Makes this whole process very easy 🙂 

More pics after the jump, of course. And a video!! We’re “off” from fostering for a bit while I go to Katsucon and MagFest. We’ll get another one right away!