Susie needs a Foster Home

Postby savagem » May 23rd, 2006, 8:19 pm

I just got finished responding to the post looking for a lactating mama for the puppies in Jersey when another fight broke out between my dogs. It wasn't started by Susie but she kept it going just when I was getting it under control and I ended up getting bitten this time. There is just a hugely heightened amount of stress with Susie here, and I really need to find a new foster home for her asap. Puppies are eating solids on their own like little champs and will be fine without mama. I have two very sweet dogs (the other two I don't trust with the pups) who will continue the puppies' canine socialization until they are ready to go to their adoptive homes. I am going through a divorce, am parenting two small children on my own, and have four dogs of my own in addition to Susie and the pups. To top it off my 3 year old daughter is scheduled to begin daily growth hormone injections at the beginning of July. I've just got too much stress going on right now and Susie is kind of the last straw. The puppies I can handle until they are adopted out, as my own dogs aren't stressed out by them--just by Susie. I would not trust Susie with cats, as she has a VERY high prey drive. She is not highly dog-aggressive. For the most part she gets along fine with my dogs. She is food aggressive (with dogs) and she does growl once in awhile when I'm petting her and someone else comes over for attention. I wasn't planning on taking on Susie and pups, and wouldn't have if I hadn't been told that they were in dire need. I was ready for a break from fostering because I have so much going on in my life right now. Susie appears to be on the road to health--has been gaining weight quickly over the past few days. She is only 40 pounds--should be between 45 and 50 at optimal weight. I've seen these guys through to where the puppers can do without mama, and now I'm desperately seeking help with Susie.
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Postby LindsaySF » May 23rd, 2006, 9:14 pm

I'm sorry to hear about this Mel. :( I'm glad Susie is putting on weight though!

I met Susie on the transport, and at Mel's house. She is a VERY affectionate dog. She curled up on my lap the entire time on the transport and I totally fell in love with her. :heartbeat: If I didn't have so many small animals (rat, rabbits, cats, ferrets) I would foster her myself.

Can anyone help? I can help with transport.


Here are some pictures of Susie from the transport:

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~Lindsay~
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Postby cheekymunkee » May 23rd, 2006, 9:19 pm

can't you seperate her from your other dogs? I have two that can never be together. It was a little tough at first but we all got used to it. That is the reason I cannot foster. I have room for these three but no more, I can't stress MY dogs out by having another dog here.
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Postby hoagiesmomma » May 23rd, 2006, 9:20 pm

awww nutz!!!

I'm sorry, mel. that's kinda how it went down here with grace. sometimes the momma dogs are just a bit too much to handle...especially with other females around.

I hope you find a foster for her...

:(

I know my limits...and can't possibly handle an aggressive dog (not that anyone would WANT to give one to me! hahahah)

I'm sure you'll find someone, here.

:)
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Postby Maryellen » May 23rd, 2006, 9:23 pm

with the foster home system and rescues overwhelming right now with left over katrina dogs and dogs that people are dumping, there is no way you will be able to find a foster home for susie.. i would suggest doing a crate/rotate schedule with her.. period.. when taking on a foster dog you make an oath to make it work no matter what (unless the dog is human aggressive) you have to try to find out what the triggers are, and eliminate them.. for example., if susie does fine with 2 of your dogs, then only let her be with those 2.. do a crate / rotate with the others. if susie doesnt do good with 3 of them, then just let her be with the one that she does get along with..

remove all bones and toys from the floor, those should be given in crates only.. remove all food crumbs as well.. feed susie in her crate, locked, and keep the other dogs away from her crate while she is eating, same with the other dogs..

before fostering, make sure your private life is stable enough to foster, as this will cause tension in the house as well..

take a deep breath, and relax.. the breed is prone to fights, so you just have to deal with it, and get a system going....
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Postby hoagiesmomma » May 23rd, 2006, 9:29 pm

I'm gonna have to disagree with you on this one.

if after reasonable accomdations a foster disrupts your daily living or household to an extent that you're uncomfortable with...

I see very little reason why you shouldn't seek another more appropriate foster.

people bending over backwards for wayward dogs (and expecting CHILDREN to accomodate them, as well) always kind of amuses me...

a buttarse crazy dog has very little right to disrupt my home, my children, or potentially harm my other dogs.

if a dog is tearing its way out of crate after crate...rips up my walls, carpet and furniture...or does nothing but cry incessantly...

I'm sorry. there is very little I can do for it.



Maryellen wrote:with the foster home system and rescues overwhelming right now with left over katrina dogs and dogs that people are dumping, there is no way you will be able to find a foster home for susie.. i would suggest doing a crate/rotate schedule with her.. period.. when taking on a foster dog you make an oath to make it work no matter what (unless the dog is human aggressive) you have to try to find out what the triggers are, and eliminate them.. for example., if susie does fine with 2 of your dogs, then only let her be with those 2.. do a crate / rotate with the others. if susie doesnt do good with 3 of them, then just let her be with the one that she does get along with..

remove all bones and toys from the floor, those should be given in crates only.. remove all food crumbs as well.. feed susie in her crate, locked, and keep the other dogs away from her crate while she is eating, same with the other dogs..

before fostering, make sure your private life is stable enough to foster, as this will cause tension in the house as well..

take a deep breath, and relax.. the breed is prone to fights, so you just have to deal with it, and get a system going....
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Postby Sue » May 23rd, 2006, 9:36 pm

We adopted our first pit bull from Hartford... We brought up one of my cats and our dog Pepper to meet her and she was fine. Needless to say, within the first week, she tried to attack Pepper. Then we found out that she had a tremendous prey drive and wanted to eat the kitties - one of which was older and didn't move very quickly. After a little bit, she and Pepper learned to live together, but the cat aggression remained. It took us over 6 months to place her and she stayed with us. We had to be careful with the cats and make sure they were well hidden from her. We made it work, because we thought she deserved that much. Sure my cats were displaced and Casey spent quite a bit of time tethered to the dining room table so she could still be with us and not get at Pepper, but it worked.
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Postby hoagiesmomma » May 23rd, 2006, 9:41 pm

what I can add here is that I completely understand melanie feeling the need to eliminate the stress of a difficult dog.

she and I took litters in under similar circumstances...and did so because we wanted to help.

but there are times when...with all the other demands of keeping a household going...

enough is enough.
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Postby Sue » May 23rd, 2006, 9:48 pm

hoagiesmomma wrote:what I can add here is that I completely understand melanie feeling the need to eliminate the stress of a difficult dog.

she and I took litters in under similar circumstances...and did so because we wanted to help.

but there are times when...with all the other demands of keeping a household going...

enough is enough.


Then you should have said no. I see dogs every day in CT that are PTS because no one stepped up for them. And every day I feel terrible that I couldn't help, but I know my limitations. I do not have a yard, I do not have space to separate. Everything that is going on in the household was going on before this altercation. It's sad that Susie has to be shuffled around because she's inconvenient.
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Postby hoagiesmomma » May 23rd, 2006, 9:57 pm

Sue wrote:
Then you should have said no. I see dogs every day in CT that are PTS because no one stepped up for them. And every day I feel terrible that I couldn't help, but I know my limitations. I do not have a yard, I do not have space to separate. Everything that is going on in the household was going on before this altercation. It's sad that Susie has to be shuffled around because she's inconvenient.


I object to the term "inconvenient."

personally...I find it insufficient to describe the situation.

I'm speaking from personal experience here...but when i had a momma foster dog go after my dogs...inconvenient came nowhere near describing the situation. it changed EVERYTHING. it meant a total reorganization of space, time, resources (by no means the least of these EMOTIONAL resources)...EVERYTHING. there are times when you can accomodate a dog who DOESN'T try to eat your others...but you just can't handle enforced isolation.

after discovering grace's aggression I spent two hours at every meal time making sure that first pups, then mom, then my dogs were all fed, pottied and granted an eensy weensy bit of freedom outside of a crate and kept completely and totalled isolated (they couldn't even be in each others' visual lines). THREE TIMES A DAY.

please find someone for me who can commit to doing that and NOT have second thoughts or ask for help when they feel they're in over their head.


a fight changes dynamics...to an extent that only the person dealing with it can understand.
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Postby Marinepits » May 23rd, 2006, 9:58 pm

Sue wrote:Then you should have said no. I see dogs every day in CT that are PTS because no one stepped up for them. And every day I feel terrible that I couldn't help, but I know my limitations. I do not have a yard, I do not have space to separate. Everything that is going on in the household was going on before this altercation. It's sad that Susie has to be shuffled around because she's inconvenient.


Those are my feelings exactly, Sue.

I can empathize with savagem's situation. However, she did make the commitment to help Susie.

Crating and rotating works really well -- I've done it before with fosters and will do it again if I have to.
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Postby hoagiesmomma » May 23rd, 2006, 10:04 pm

I'm sorry guys...

I'm still sticking with: if someone says they can't handle it...

why try to "convince" them they can? what if they actually CAN'T and something goes wrong???

melanie is no amateur at this...she's fostered and placed twenty dogs in the last year (or maybe even this year?)...

simply stated: I'm willing to trust her when she says she feels its too much for her.
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Postby Purple » May 23rd, 2006, 10:11 pm

I think one shoud know their limitations before fostering. If Melanie is/was no amateur, then she should of had an idea of her limitations.
Personally, I know I could not foster. Besides the fact that we would fail, bring another dog into the mix would be incredibly stressful to not only my marriage, but to my other dogs.

When we brought on Dexter last year, I had no idea how to deal with the emotional and physical baggage this dog came with. I thought I was going to have to return him. Fortunately for me, I had a fantastic support group within the forums and joined Yahoo groups to get thru it.

The crate and rotate methode seems like it may be worth a shot, give it a try.
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Postby cheekymunkee » May 23rd, 2006, 10:16 pm

I think one shoud know their limitations before fostering.



this I agree with. I don't foster because I KNOW I can't handle another dog in this house. I will not make the commitment if I can't follow through, it isn;t fair to the dogs & it isn't fair to the rescue. Of course if something DOES happen & the foster absolutly can find no way possible to make it work the rescue SHOULD step up to the plate & take the dog back.

I hope you find a way to make it work until she finds a forever home, do you have her listed any where?
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Postby Purple » May 23rd, 2006, 10:20 pm

How about cross posting her?
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Postby Miakoda » May 23rd, 2006, 11:15 pm

Ok, Ok, bring on the lashings, but I've got to say this. If you do not wish to do the crate & rotate routine (don't understand why some people, not saying you by any means, but some people refuse to do this) & foster homes are in short supply, then there is nothing wrong with humanely euthanizing this animal who otherwise will be thrust into possibly a much worse situation.

I'm not so sure as to why people would rather see dogs sit locked up day in & day out in a cage year after year waiting on their "forever home" or rather see a dog thrust into a situation in which the dog definitely should not be put into (whether it be b/c the dog will suffer neglect, abuse, etc) than humanely euthanizing it. We ALL know how many unwanted dogs there are out there & in a perfect world we could help them all. Well, wrong. In a perfect world, those dogs needing new homes wouldn't exist.....their situations wouldn't exist.

But for me to sit back & see dogs being thrown from one unstable foster home to yet another or be dumped back into the shelter system (usually an inhumane no-kill shelter), well, it's saddens me. We need to think of the dog's needs & wants here, not our own in an effort to play God.
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Postby hoagiesmomma » May 23rd, 2006, 11:16 pm

I don't want to incite a riot here...

but I heard alot of "I can't do it because I know my limitations"

followed (or preceded) immediately by...

your responsibility. your commitment. not fair to the dogs. stick it out...et cetera.

am I the only one thinking somethings a little incongruent with those two views?

"I know my limitations"...should only be followed by "I'm sorry this is so hard for you. I'll do whatever I can (however limited that may be) to help."
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Postby LindsaySF » May 23rd, 2006, 11:32 pm

Uhh, guys?

In Melanie's defense here, she did NOT volunteer to foster this dog and her pups. She knew she did not want any fosters after her last one got adopted. She was taking a break from fostering.

But then she got a call from Eric (yes, Eric) at 11:00 at night saying that Melanie was their last chance and they desperately needed a foster ASAP.

So due to these extreme circumstances, she agreed. Are you saying she should have said no and had this momma and her puppies put to sleep?

Now I agree that Melanie should try crating and rotating for now to manage the situation. But the fact remains, keeping this dog AND all 8 pups AND her own 4 dogs AND dealing with her child's health problems is too much for her right now. Jumping down her throat over "well you shouldn't have taken the dog if you couldn't handle it" does not help anyone.

What other places can we cross-post Susie? We are all banned from pbsmiles so over there is out of the question...


~Lindsay~
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Postby Miakoda » May 23rd, 2006, 11:34 pm

I totally feel for her. I don't think anyone is "jumping down her throat" here. However:

So due to these extreme circumstances, she agreed. Are you saying she should have said no and had this momma and her puppies put to sleep?


Under the circumstances, which would've been worse? Allowing a dog to live in a crowded household for a short time only to be involved in a major scuffle & then dumped somewhere else (not to mention all the puppies) or a painless & humane end to a life already miserable? [/quote]
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Postby LindsaySF » May 23rd, 2006, 11:36 pm

cheekymunkee wrote:Of course if something DOES happen & the foster absolutly can find no way possible to make it work the rescue SHOULD step up to the plate & take the dog back.

For the record, we are talking about SPBR here...


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