• Emma Bennett

Fostering.....


Some time ago Steve spotted a dog on a rescue site, well the owners Facebook page. A dog perfectly healthy, but going to be put down as he had been found and placed into the dog pound in Cyprus. Now you can't save them all, but sometimes one catches your eye and for some reason you're moved to help. For this little doggy I think it was his face, and his bounce when being walked along the road side, He looked so happy, very responsive and obviously loved life. How harsh it seemed for him to be put to sleep simply because he was one of too many dogs in that country, unloved and living on the streets.

We all know the root cause is usually human related. The lack of thinking when breeding too many dogs and not caring what happens to them after they are sold. They are dumped, left to roam and as animals do, they breed. So, more animals are left roaming the streets only eating what they can scavenge.

He couldn't bare to see a healthy happy dog put down, so we offered him a bed, willing to foster until a forever home could be found. Eventually we thought a home had been found, he was safe! So June, the owner of the charity messaged me. If I wasn't fostering him what about another?

She struggles to get the larger dogs adopted, I think it might have something to do with their size, and the fact that you can't meet them till they arrive at the airport and they are yours.... Some people are more cautious about large dogs. Not us, our worst nightmare was Domino as a young terrier!

So Scope flew over. He was flown to Heathrow, and although the trip was 4 1/2hrs away one way I took it as a trip away from our place, somewhere I rarely get a break from these days.

Scope appeared from behind the desk, a stunning, if not skinny dog. Beautiful face, strong stance. Somehow looking different from images from the rescues website. You never quite know how they will present themselves after a flight, but Scope wasn't phased by any of it. In fact on seeing me, arms outstretched he jumped up and gave me a hug.

With Scope safely placed into the car, our nice little run about, the JAZZ, he promptly jumped into the front passenger seat. And that is exactly where he stayed all the way back home.

Scope has been interesting. He is a big dog although very soft and loves cuddles. He thinks that he fits on your lap nicely, which he does not, but still he tries. He has though been able to escape our dog run and garden, and on that occasion decided that our free range chickens were fair game. Unfortunately 11 of them were on that occasion. It took only minutes, and those minutes were when I'd only just popped inside to make a brew before hearing the hectic fluttering of chickens outside.

Needless to say it wasn't his fault, its highly likely its what he's done to survive on the streets of Cyprus.

A week or so passed and June messaged me, that the dog we'd originally offered to foster was 'back on the market' as it were. Apparently the person who had wanted to adopt him was turning out to be unreliable, therefore not suitable to adopt. A good decision i've no doubt. Issue was she couldn't take him as he hadn't been tested around cats, and June has a few. There was a question here I was sure....

'We'll take him in, if you can fly him over' (preferably not Heathrow was the undertone) I'd enjoyed my day trip out, but the thought of another 11 hours driving was not so appealing.

'Really? Your wonderful!' came the reply, Gullible more like I was thinking, stupid? possibly. Mad...? Oh yes. We were about to increase the pack to 10.

Thankfully Ozzy (we call him Cody) arrived at Manchester Airport, much more convenient and Steve was there to sign all the animals in and hand them out to the awaiting owners. A job i've done several times now and loved it each time. He stayed with Steve in Manchester for a few nights before arriving here. Dog number 10. Yes we'd decided looking at each other, we are slightly mad.

Cody is lovely. Jumpy and nervous of most things he took ages to settle. He too loves to hug and properly gets a good grip with his front feet around what ever part of your he has reached. For such a big lad he's very gentle and graceful.

Now, regrettably after leaving all the dogs sleeping I wandered to the neighbours a week or so later. I was gone only a short time. On getting back, Scope had opened the bathroom door busted out of our bathroom window (cottage rotten wood and on ground level I might add, the window has never really shut property). He managed to get another 6 chickens and my favourite duck.....

Well I thought, at least he stayed on our land..... Small compensation for my duck, but since then no issues. We have a routine, and Scope is put on a long tether when left outside (and never left in the house). He doesn't mind, and settles each time with the pack, sometimes I don't think he notices he has the tether on.

Just this week we've had contact from someone wanting to adopt Scope, they want to visit him and meet him. There's no way anyone thinking of adopting this dog for the rest of his life meets him and walks away. He is amazing, as is Cody.

Can I hand them over to new parents, Yes. Scope is a sweetheart but for the sake of our poultry this isn't the perfect home for him, and until he is adopted we get to enjoy seeing him run in our top field, mornings or evening (when chickens are securely away and safe), get hugs from him, and enjoy training him. We have been given so much affection from Scope and it has been very rewarding to see him begin to enjoy his life but its very important that he, along with all the other dogs, find that place and family they can call theirs forever.

Cody... well that might he harder to say goodbye. Despite the minor issues we've experienced, fostering these dogs is highly rewarding. Knowing that without your help some are likely to have been put down by now. Giving them the opportunity to find forever homes here in the UK puts a smile on our face. Not only do we help these dogs but we help the charity by freeing up more space in Cyprus.

If you like our adopted dogs from Cyprus, Elsa, Ripley and Obi, or our fostered lads, Scope and Cody visit Cyprus Pride House website. Adopt an amazing dog, most of whom are mistreated, abused, starved or abandoned. All of the dogs we have met from Cyprus are, despite the mistreatment, the most loving creatures you could ever meet. They thrive off being in a secure and loving environment and reward you in the most amazing ways. And after meeting Cody, we are definitely glad we didn't let them put him down. If you can, you could always donate funds to the charity. Every month they run a fundraiser to help raise cash to save more cats and dogs> This also helps to fund sending them to their forever homes.

Despite clearly being mad, fostering and adopting these dogs is and has been an amazing experience.

If your interested to know what we feed our pack on visit www.fergusadogfoodcompany.co.uk

We are proud to say our pack are the face of FERGUSA in company with 3 wolfhounds. Each one has their own story to tell.

#dogs #fostering #rescuedogs #dogfood #fergusadogfood

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