Forever in Foster – Forever in Our Hearts
Many of you don’t see what goes on behind the scenes at Speaking of Dogs Rescue, particularly with regards to the senior dogs in our care. As some of you know, our rescue focuses on compassionate care for senior dogs. When these beloved dogs come into our rescue, they often have needs that are beyond the scope of adoption. Still others are up for adoption for months without finding a forever home, and they eventually become attached to their foster parents. At that point we often feel that it is not in the best interest of the dog to be uprooted and put into a new home, given their age. And so, we keep some of our senior dogs in our Forever in Foster program, which has been running for over six years and has seen many dogs live out their last chapter in a loving, caring foster home, cherished until they cross over to the Rainbow Bridge. Speaking of Dogs Rescue cares for these dogs financially for the rest of their lives, covering their vetting, food, and grooming costs.
We have had some exceptional challenges in terms of health-care costs, but we cannot let these dogs down. If you would like to make a donation to our Forever in Foster program and help us continue to give our senior dogs the care they deserve, please visit Canada Helps. You will immediately receive a tax receipt, and all funds will go toward Speaking of Dogs Rescue. Consider a monthly donation to enable us to continuously assist dogs in need.
We salute our Forever Foster parents and the dogs who are being embraced by the commitment and love of these special volunteers. As well, our fundraising volunteers are an incredible group of doggone dedicated folks, and without their help we would not be able to assist the many dogs who have blessed our lives and touched our hearts.
Meet Our Forever Fosters
Sweet poodle Fawn, who is close to 15 years old, sadly lost her family when the only mom she ever knew passed away in July. When Fawn initially came into our rescue she was skittish and confused but given time and understanding she settled in. We had her to our veterinarian for a head-to-tail health check-up and found that she had some liver issues that will need ongoing monitoring. Because of her age, apprehensive nature and uncertain health needs we felt it was best to have her in the Forever in Foster program so she could stay with her current foster family. Fawn enjoys cozy times on the couch, exploring her large fenced-in backyard and treat time! She seems to have transitioned nicely now and is relaxed and at ease with her new life and family. If you would like to help support Fawn with her vetting and grooming costs please go to https://www.canadahelps.org/en/charities/speaking-of-dogs-rescue/ (a tax receipt will be provided for you).
Dustin came into our rescue in the fall from a home where his owner had been hospitalized with a long-term health issue and could no longer care for the sweet boy. Dustin is an 11-year-old Shepherd and Retriever mix who was diagnosed with renal insufficiency (from his previous veterinarian) that will progress to renal failure. We had Dustin up for adoption for several months but there was not much interest in him and no applications were ever submitted so we decided to place him in the Forever-In-Foster program after his latest urine and blood tests. Big Dust (often known as the Walmart Greeter of Dogdom) will now stay with his foster parents and live the good life north of the city and welcome new foster dogs who arrive looking for love and stability. If you would like to help support Dustin with his vetting and grooming costs please go to https://www.canadahelps.org/en/charities/speaking-of-dogs-rescue/ (a tax receipt will be provided for you).
Alaska came to our rescue in early summer of 2019 when her elderly owner could no longer care for her. Alaska is a lovely-natured 12 year-old Bichon who enjoys the companionship of people and going for walks. When she came into our rescue, we had her foster mom take her to the vet for an exam, bloodwork urine and nail trim. The vet called a few days later to say that, unfortunately, Alaska’s was in early kidney failure and she would need some follow-up tests and diet changes. We called the foster mom to let her know about the diagnosis and explained more about Alaska’s condition and what caring for her would entailed. After discussing her newly diagnosed ailment in more detail with the veterinarian, we decided she would be better served if placed in our Forever in Foster program. Alaska had already become quite attached to her foster mom and the feeling was mutual on the part of her foster mom. Now, several months later, the two ladies are inseparable and living life to the fullest! If you would like to help support Alaska with her vetting and special food costs please go to https://www.canadahelps.org/en/charities/speaking-of-dogs-rescue (a tax receipt will be provided for you).
This handsome boy is Maxwell who is approximately 10 years old and was left at a local Toronto shelter. He was diagnosed with hip displacement and arthritis. Due to his ongoing treatment for pain management we wanted to ensure he would never be without medical attention or be in discomfort so he is now a part of our Forever in Foster program. Big boy Max lives with a loving retired couple who have embraced him whole-heartedly into their lives. He enjoys his daily strolls, road trips and stretching out for an afternoon nap in front of the sunny window. If you would like to help support Maxwell with his vetting and special food costs please go to https://www.canadahelps.org/en/charities/speaking-of-dogs-rescue/ (a tax receipt will be provided for you).
Little Tara came to us from a family whose senior grandmother was experiencing health and dementia issues. She had to move to a long-term care facility and could not take her beloved dog with her. Tara is a 13-year-old shih tzu who has some ongoing medical treatments with regards to her eyes. She is now in our forever-in-foster program as she has some trust issues with having new people handle her and administer her eye creams and drops but she has learned to trust her foster parents and our veterinarian. Tara now lives (and will forever thanks to our FIF program) with a wonderful Toronto-based retired couple and a new best friend – a long-haired Chihuahua – who also has needs eye meds several times a day! If you would like to help support Tara with her eye medications, vetting and/or grooming costs please go to https://www.canadahelps.org/en/charities/speaking-of-dogs-rescue/ (a tax receipt will be provided for you).
Mollie, a 16-year-old spaniel/poodle mix, came to us as an owner surrender. Sadly, her lifetime owner was no longer able to care for her and called Speaking of Dogs Rescue – knowing that we take excellent care of senior dogs. Mollie was picked up by one of our volunteer transport drivers and taken to her foster home in early March 2020. After only a couple of days, it was as if Mollie had lived there all her life as she enjoyed playing with the other dogs, going on country walks and afternoon nap-time. Mollie has heart issues and often has bouts of pancreatitis. We felt, at her age, it was better not to bounce her around and her foster mom agreed. As a kindness, we provide her original owner with updates via email. If you would like to help support Mollie with her vetting and grooming costs please go to https://www.canadahelps.org/en/charities/speaking-of-dogs-rescue/ (a tax receipt will be provided for you).
Molly is an approximately 13 year-old shih tzu who came to us from an eastern Ontario shelter. When she arrived at the shelter she was flea-infested and almost bald as a result; had a heavily matted tail that all came off in one chunk with the clippers and nails that were so overgrown they curled around. She also had a two masses, a heart murmur and an eye infection. The shelter did an exceptional job addressing Molly’s health issues but due to her advanced age and ongoing medical concerns they felt reaching out to Speaking of Dogs Rescue was the best route to go for their special little lady – and we were happy to welcome her with open arms! Molly is a lovely girl who is beyond happy to find a bed and stick by your feet all day long. Wee mite Molly is a social butterfly, housetrained and very food motivated. She is now in her Forever in Foster home and has already seen our vet who is confident her skin issues are improving and her other ongoing health concerns are manageable with a committed foster parent which she has in SPADES! Molly has already made herself right at home in the departments of: playing, snuggling/cuddling, snoozing, dinner and treat-time announcing and other important affairs of the household! Her foster mom wonders how she ever managed to be get anything done without the supervision of the mighty Molly McGee! If you would like to help support Molly with her vetting and special food costs please go to https://www.canadahelps.org/en/charities/speaking-of-dogs-rescue/ (a tax receipt will be provided for you).
Joy came to us from a Quebec shelter in December of 2018 when she had been abandoned, just days before Christmas. Who knows what happened? But one thing we did know – we had to help Joy!
She was listed as a 10+year old terrier mix, possibly deaf, shy and quiet, with extremely long nails. Speaking of Dogs Rescue has a strong focus on helping senior dogs (as many of you already know!) and, when we read Joy’s story and saw her sweet face pleading for a safe, warm and loving home, we made arrangements that very day for her to come into our rescue and to see our veterinarian.
Joy’s foster mom welcomed her with open arms and saw to every detail – warm dinner, a soft bed, fresh water and a leash ready for leisurely walks. After living with Joy for a while, her foster mom observed that the initial pacing and anxiety we often see when dogs first arrive in foster care were not subsiding. We took her for a subsequent visit to our vet who prescribed anti-anxiety medication which has helped; he also told us that she could be older than originally noted and that some of the behaviour we saw could be a cognitive issue. As more time has elapsed, Joy has become a bit more engaged, paces less, loves her walks and enjoys the established routine she is now used to.
Putting her into our Forever in Foster Program ensures permanent stability and quality health care for the rest of her life. If you would like to help support Joy with her medications, vetting and grooming, please go to https://www.canadahelpsorg/en/charities/speaking-of-dogs-rescue/ (a tax receipt will be sent to you).
Lacy is a 14 year old Shih tzu/poodle mix whose senior owner struggled with immobility and declining vision. She could no longer properly care for Lacy and getting her out even to the backyard to go to the bathroom was a challenge. Thankfully, a kind neighbour stepped in to assist and soon help was on the way. A caring dog sitter took Lacy until a solution could be found however no one in her family was in a position to take Lacy and it was suggested that she be rehomed. The senior lady had had Lacy all her life and was devastated at the thought but knew she was not providing adequate care, grooming or vetting. But who would take in a 14 year old dog with health issues? A family friend called Speaking of Dogs Rescue to take Lacy into our Forever in Foster program and we were fortunate to have a ready and willing foster mom available. Lacy has been to the vet and now has her twice daily eye drops and special food for healthy bladder care. Her foster mom adores her and because Lacy is so friendly and social she gets to go everywhere with her including luncheons and meetings. If you would like to help support Lacy with her vetting, grooming and special food costs please go to https://www.canadahelps.org/en/charities/speaking-of-dogs-rescue/ (a tax receipt will be provided for you).
Gigi came to us from a GTA vet clinic when her owner could no longer afford to care for Gigi. She had a number of medical challenges that were not only costly but needed further diagnosis and physical care and maintenance that her owner could not provide. The vet clinic staff had known Gigi all her life and loved her very much. They hospital manager called us and asked if we would take Gigi into our rescue and we responded with an overwhelming “YES, of course we will” She is now in Forever in Foster care as her health issues are ongoing. Her foster mom writes this update about our little lady GIGI girl:
“Gigi is our Forever in Foster dog and joined our family a short while ago. She enjoys her meals and taking beauty naps afterwards. She charms her canine brother Charlie, who waits for her before asking to come inside from the yard, and she’s even had a few bouts of play with him. It’s not unusual to find her belly up and feet in the air on the sofa…snoring – so it’s safe to say that she’s relaxed. Gigi has melted our hearts. The best-ever moments are seeing her SO excited when we return from being out, the rare but special Gigi kisses and her nuzzling into my neck as I carried her up the stairs. We already can’t imagine life without her”
If you would like to help support Gigi with her vetting and grooming costs please go to https://www.canadahelps.org/en/charities/speaking-of-dogs-rescue/ (a tax receipt will be provided for you).
Cindy Lou came to us from a Toronto area shelter in May 2019. Her owner had passed away and no one from the family could take Cindy Lou. At almost 15 years old we knew she needed to be placed in our FOREVER-IN-FOSTER program so she could unpack her bags once, and only once. Luckily, we had just found a wonderful new foster family that said they were open to taking a needy forever foster and as the say goes – timing is everything! Cindy now has 2 Golden sisters, a furry feline friend and has a lovely beachfront to enjoy just blocks away. When she came into our rescue Cindy’s teeth were literally rotting in her head so we immediately booked her in for and exam and dental surgery once her bloodwork and heart had been cleared. She can now enjoy eating again and boy does she LOVE her food! If you would like to help support Cindy Lou with her vetting and grooming costs please go to https://www.canadahelps.org/en/charities/speaking-of-dogs-rescue/ (a tax receipt will be provided for you).
Little Jacob came to us from a Quebec shelter. The sweet senior shih tzu arrived at his foster mom’s house a matted mess. He was also coughing and having trouble breathing. We got him to a veterinarian right away and he was diagnosed with a lung infection. The vet also discovered his trachea had been damaged from some type of trauma (she speculated a collar correction or one that was too tight) After speaking to the veterinarian we decided to have Jacob placed in the Forever in Foster program due to his ongoing medical challenges and the cost of the cough-suppressing medication which he will require for life.
Jacob is now ‘best mates’ with his canine foster sister, Joy, and with the foster mom’s little dog. He loves mealtimes and going for walks but his favourite pastime is sleeping on the couch right up close to his foster mom, making sure that she’s there and that everything is going to be all right after all.
If you would like to help support Jacob with his vetting and grooming costs please go to https://www.canadahelps.org/en/charities/speaking-of-dogs-rescue/ (a tax receipt will be provided for you).
Hailey came to us in the fall of 2019 when her owner passed away. Hailey was being looked after by a kindly neighbour who lived in the same building as the owner. He called Speaking of Dogs Rescue because he felt could not keep Hailey. He explained that, although he was trying his best to look after her, she wasn’t doing very well: drinking too much water, always hungry and didn’t walk properly. We made arrangements to pick Hailey up right away and put her into a foster home and got her straight to our veterinarian. As it turned out, she had diabetes which had gone untreated for quite some time. It has taken many months for to get her regulated, she is vision impaired and is 10+ years old. She will need regular monitoring and supplies for diabetes for the rest of her life. As the time in foster care went by, she became very attached to her caregivers and was accustomed to the layout and configuration of their house and yard. We talked to her foster parents and we collectively agreed that Hailey would be best served by our Forever-in-Foster program. She will stay with these kind, caring people she has come to know and trust. If you would like to help support Hailey with her vetting, insulin and other costs please go to https://www.canadahelps.org/en/charities/speaking-of-dogs-rescue/ (a tax receipt will be provided for you).
Maxine, a 10-year-old shih tzu mix, came into our rescue from a Quebec shelter in January 2020. She had a mammary mass that staff were concerned about and wanted a rescue to take her in, which we did. Our veterinarian removed the mass and sadly it proved to be malignant. In addition to the mass, Maxine also has a heart condition that requires monitoring. With her medical challenges, we felt that a Forever in Foster home was the best program for her. Maxine is now living in one of our dedicated foster homes and having great fun going for trail walks, playing with her poodle sister and cuddling with her foster dad. If you would like to help support Maxine with her vetting and grooming costs please go to https://www.canadahelps.org/en/charities/speaking-of-dogs-rescue/ (a tax receipt will be provided for you).