A Word From Maggie:

Hey there everybodies!  Moo here.  Has you heard the news?  I got ‘dopted!

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I have a little confession to make though.  I already knew I was with my forever family, it just took foster momma a little longer to figure it out (she’s slow like that, ya know?)  Oh, and that’s another thing!  I can finally stop calling her “foster” mom now.  She insisted that I say that before, and I was like, “Ok lady, but you know you is my mom.”  Sometimes you just gotta let them have their way.

IMG_3277 Mom has been really slacking on the bloggy lately and I knows you all have missed hearing bouts me so I thought I should tell you a little about my new house.  Really, the only important thing to know is that it has the biggest, most wonderful yard ever!  It is so awesome, we can run and run and run and…well you probably see where I’m going with this.  And we hasn’t had to wear our leashes at all!  So cool.  The picture below is of me and my most favorite thing about the yard: the big chewy tree.

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Yup, I gets to tear of the pieces and chew on them!  I know, I really do have a pretty cool momma, huh?  While I has been doing important things, like chewing, and running, and sunbathing, mom has been doing what she calls “improvements” around the house.  I don’t see what there is to improve though, the yard is already awesome.  Despite that, she has been spending a lot of time with these roller thingies putting stuff on the walls.  Looks about the same to me, but she says the color (what’s color?) is more her style.  Whatever lady.  And she has been doing this other project that keeps making dad go somewhere called “Home Depot”.  (What’s a de-pot anyways?)

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The “before” picture. Fingers crossed I am able to channel my inner “Martha” and turn the guest bath into something a little more snazzy!

I sure hope she knows what she’s doing.  I guess she has pretty good taste though, she did pick me after all.  Well, I guess that should just about catch you all up on everything you missed.  Oh!  I almost forgot.  Mom says we get to go to the beach this week!  Since the beach is pretty much The Greatest Place Ever, I’m pretty excited.  I’ll make sure she gets some pictures so you can all admire my pretty face.  Ok, bye for now friends!

It’s OFFICIAL!

Maggie has been ADOPTED:

FUR 006 edit-(ZF-1860-91697-1-001)Our more astute readers probably picked  up on my oooh-sooo subtle clues that the family was in fact mine: the experience with pitties, the willingness to continue working on obedience training, the two dogs, and as of two days ago when we moved into our new house, the big backyard.

FUR 007-(ZF-1860-91697-1-002)To be completely honest, I never ever wanted a third dog.  My two are so easy and wonderful that I wanted the third-dog-slot to be permanently reserved for foster dogs.  And if I was going to pick a third dog, it most certainly would not be a little 40 lb. one.  But what Maggie lacks in size, she certainly makes up for in personality.

FUR 035-(ZF-1860-91697-1-007) With us moving from Tallahassee to Jacksonville, and no other foster home available, Maggie would have been placed in boarding until she was either adopted or another foster home became available.  My long term readers know that Maggie went almost an entire year before the first person expressed interest in adopting her–and they weren’t even approved.  How could I, in good conscience, allow her to be sent to a boarding facility for what likely would be a very long time, when she had a perfectly good home already, right here with us?  After all, my responsibility as a foster mom is first and foremost to do what is best for my foster dog; my personal wants are secondary.  Don’t misunderstand me, we all love Maggie dearly and she really is part of our family, I am just a little sad because with this adoption I think my fostering efforts will be halted, at least for now.

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So, we made the decision that Maggie would stay with us forever.  We moved the day we got back from the honeymoon from a little apartment into a home that is nearly triple the size and, to all of our relief, a nice big fenced in back yard.  I’d say Maggie is a true rags to riches story.  She is home, permanently.

Big, BIG News!

I am super excited to announce that we may have finally found the perfect family to adopt Maggie Moo!  I can’t believe, after just over a year in my home, she may finally be getting her permanent, furever family!

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They have already filled out and turned in their application for her.  I have to admit, they sound perfect.  Stellar vet records, experience with “bully” breeds, a willingness to continue working on Maggie’s obedience training, a large fenced in yard, AND they have two dogs already so Maggie would still get to be in a “pack” which I know is so important for her and she loves so much.  Sounds like the perfect match for our girl, huh?

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You might remember how tough it was for me last time I thought there was a family interested in Maggie, if not, read about it here (warning, I’ve been told it was a wee bit of a tear jerker.)  After going through the whole sadness thing, I really did get myself excited, and then was hugely let down after doing the meet-n-greet with the prospective family.  Well, I have to say, I don’t feel any of that fear or apprehension this time around.  Instead, I am just excited for Maggie–after all her happiness really is my number one concern and I think this family can offer her all the happiness in the world.

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So, tomorrow is the wedding and then we leave bright and early Sunday morning for the honeymoon.  We’ve decided to go ahead and board Maggie as planned because, let’s be honest, there is no way I would enjoy myself on the honeymoon if I was stressing about how Maggie is doing.  We get back on Friday night and the movers arrive early Saturday to take us to Jacksonville so we’ve told the family they need to have a firm decision made before Saturday.  No wishy-washy, unsure, waiting-days-to-tell-us-their-decision allowed here!

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Tuesdays are for hiking.

I feel like that should be a rule.  Who do we talk to about making it one?

IMG_3032This whole having-a-week-off-work-and-nothing-specific-to-do thing is sure making our dogs happy.  We were out the door, headed to beautiful Torreya State Park, by 8 am this morning.

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IMG_2956After we got a ways down the trail and realized there wasn’t a soul in sight we let the girls off the leash so they could run free.  There was this huuuge ravine and I swear, it was like an amusement park ride for the dogs.  Maggie and Tag ran up and down and off the walls and up and down and…you get the picture.  I can honestly say it might be the happiest I have ever seen Maggie.  That dog is an acrobat!  She was in pure Heaven.

IMG_3028Buddy and Tag helped themselves to a sip of water from the Apalachicola river, but not Maggie!  She jumped right in and swam all around.  She is such a water lover, it never ceases to amaze me.

IMG_3013I have to take a second and brag: my girls are awesome.  Seriously, they barely veered off the path and the second I called their name they turned and came running right back.  Maggie was especially impressive and anytime she got more than about 20 yards in front of us she would stop, turn, and check in with us; waiting for the ok to continue further ahead.  Can you ask for anything more than that?!

IMG_3057So, even though there are a few wedding/move related things I need to get done this week, I foresee more adventures!  I could I resist when it means I get to look at cute boys like this:

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“S” is for…

Summer, sand, and SUN:

IMG_2924The elements necessary for a happy Morgan, and happy dogs.

IMG_2929Yesterday Maggie and I spent the day at a lake soaking up as much sun, and as you can tell by the pictures, sand, with some of our best friends; human and non human alike.

IMG_2912IMG_2922IMG_2928Tomorrow Rich and I are packing a backpack with water, snacks, and my camera and heading out with our three mutts for a day of hiking.  And the next day?  Probably the beach.  Gotta spoils the pups as much as we can before we leave for a week on the honeymoon!  What elements bring you and your dog the most joy?

There’s always room for Hope.

Happy Mother’s Day to all you mom’s of the 2, 3, and 4 legged variety.  Today I am especially thankful for one particular mom, and she isn’t even mine.  She’s the newest foster mom to Last Hope Rescue and she came just in the nick of time.

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On Monday, Last Hope Rescue was contacted about the pretty girl pictured above.  A Good Samaritan found her on the outskirts of town and, already owning 5 rescues of her own, knew she wouldn’t be able to keep her.  She also knew the dog, a pit bull who had obvious medical problems, wouldn’t last more than a day or two in a shelter already bursting at the seams.  Despite that she also recognized an incredibly sweet dog, desperate for love and affection, wanting so badly to please, that deserved a chance to have a family of her own.

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The Good Samaritan took her to the vet where they learned she suffers from a prolapsed rectum and is high heartworm positive.  A grim prognosis.  Last Hope Rescue didn’t want to see this girl go to a shelter either and put out a plea for a foster.  Thankfully, her new foster mom stepped up right before the Good Samaritan had to take her to the shelter.  Plans were made and the dog was named: Hope.

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The Good Samaritan and Hope.

Yesterday I got to go pick Hope up and take her to her new foster home–after I spent some time playing with her first.  She is sweet as sweet can be and wants desperately to please you.  If I wasn’t afraid Rich would call off the wedding, I would probably have taken her home with me right then and there.  Hope got along great with all 5 of the Good Samaritan’s dogs and I envisioned her and Maggie, both higher energy than my two old dogs, becoming instant friends.

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Hope, full of kisses and cuddles.

The foster family was absolutely delightful and very excited to be getting her.  The mom couldn’t stop saying, “Look at that face!  She is sooo cute!”  Yea, there’s no way around that, she is a doll.  For quite possibly the first time in her life Hope got her very own toys and was smothered with love and affection.

IMG_2887Even though Hope is safe and sound in a foster home, she still has a long way to go.  She is high heartworm positive; the treatment will be long and hard on her (not to mention expensive.)  Hope also suffers from a prolapsed rectum which is quite painful and will require immediate surgery.  Her spirits are high but she will need all the positive thoughts and prayers she can get.

IMG_2903If you would like to donate to the fund for Hope’s treatment, please go here.  We aren’t able to take in and save dogs like Hope without the support of generous souls.  Even $5 would be greatly appreciated!

For the Love of Dog

If you’ve been following my blog for long you might remember the The Butterfly Effect post from back in December.  I talked about how one person’s actions can touch so, so many people.  Today was the last day at my job of the past five years.  Aside from Buddy, this job was the most consistent thing in my life since I was about 16, and I spent the day thinking about what a “butterfly effect” the job has had on my life.

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  Sure, I have learned a whole heck of a lot about real estate and managing large properties, but it’s the people that this job has allowed me to meet that has made the biggest impact on my life.  I met Rich, my very soon-to-be husband, through this job.  Of almost equal importance, I met my friend Kayla, “The Catalyst.”  In addition to being a great person and hilarious friend, she is the one that told me about Last Hope Rescue, which I started fostering through, and then became a board member of.

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Kayla on the far left and Mariah on the far right.

Through Last Hope Rescue, I have met countless (seriously, I don’t even want to try to list them for fear that I would forget someone) people that, without a doubt, are some of the best people I have ever been lucky enough to know and call friends.  These are the types of people you read stories about and go, “Whoa, I’d like to be friends with them!”  Yea, I get to actually call them my friends.  They have bigger hearts, and more giving souls, than anyone I have ever met in a church.  The president, Angela, has taught me more than I would like to know about running a rescue all while becoming a great friend.  And I can honestly say that I have learned something from each and every person I have met through Last Hope Rescue.

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Ohhhhh, Mariah.

Through work I also met two other girls that have become a couple of my very best friends.  Mariah started working here and after quickly realizing that her love of animals (and scary movies/books and health food) rivaled even mine, I started pestering her to foster.  It took some convincing but after she committed, she never looked back, and her home has seen a lot of dogs pass through it on their way from hell (aka the shelter) to their forever homes.  We all joke that she is the “magical foster” because she has a knack for getting dogs not only adopted quickly but, more importantly, into perfect homes.  I also pestered her to start a blog, which if you haven’t already, you should totally check out here.  (Apparently sentimental was the theme of the day…)  I don’t really believe in soul mates, but if I did, Mariah would probably be mine.  I love her dearly and know that we will always stay close regardless of the miles between us.

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Me, Mariah, and Chelsea “modeling” for the Pin Ups For Pound Pups calendar.

And then there is my friend Chelsea.  She is a resident of one of the properties that I managed and when she moved in she listed her dog as a “Doberman” mix.  I ran out the door after her and told her to change the breed “because those are considered dangerous.”  (There’s that damn BSL!  Don’t even get me started on this–it’s probably the thing I disliked the most about my job.)  We started chatting and I told her about Last Hope Rescue.  Not long after that she started volunteering at the Wakulla County Animal Control after seeing repeated posts from Last Hope on FB begging for help for them.  Then we got together and started a FB page just for WCAC.  You might remember posts like this, or this, or this where I shared stories about some amazing successes.  Chelsea is probably the most impressive person I have ever met.  It’s hard to find words to describe her but let’s just say her inner beauty is even greater than her outer, which is really hard to fathom because she should probably be modeling rather than going to Law School (yea, brains and beauty–it’s just not fair!)  Her dream job is going to take her away from Florida but it’s ok because just like Mariah I love her dearly and know we will always stay close, no matter the miles between us.

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This is what animal rescue looks like: Friends, tied together for the love of dog.

Each of these girls have gone on to get other people involved and it really has been a butterfly effect in our little community.  We may not be changing the whole world, but for one dog at a time, we are changing their world.  Every single one of them (again, waaay too many to list) have touched my heart and changed me in some way forever.  I will take them with me everywhere I go.  And I know this isn’t the end because we will all continue working together to save lives.  Now it’s time for me to tackle a new city.

We Be Movin’

Like I’ve mentioned, we be movin’, and soon.  I thought I knew for sure how each dog would handle this.  As usual, my mutts are proving me wrong.

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Since Buddy has moved with me all the way from Nebraska to Florida (and about 10 times since we have been in FL) I assumed he would take this move the most in stride.  Since Tag is always insecure and needs to be reassured that I do in fact love her (silly goose!) I assumed she would just need a little more reassuring but go with the flow too.  Since Maggie is the most unsure about new situations (though vastly improved from when I got her) I assumed she would be a bit of a mess.

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You know what they say about assuming, right?  It makes an “ass out of u and me“?  Yea, my dogs are totally making me look like an ass.  Buddy is a hot mess.  He’s acting like this is the first time he has ever seen a moving box and seems to think he is going to get left behind.  He won’t leave my side and has been “talking” to me even more than normal.  Tag is acting totally normal, no reassuring needed there.  And Maggie?  The boxes that I was sure would be so scary to Maggie are like her new play toys.  I thought she would be all distressed and confused seeing all of our things get packed up and the house in disarray, but nope!  She’s taking the whole thing in stride.

IMG_2259A while back I read a great post from one of my favorite blogs, Love & a Six Foot Leash, about moving and everything they did to make the transition easier for their dogs.  I have been taking their tips to heart and I hope that Buddy’s insecurity (which really just manifests in wanting to cuddle more–so I’m not complaining too much) is the worst of my worries.  I suspect that I will have some funny antics to share as we get closer to the big day, so stay tuned!  I’m curious, have any of you been through a big move with your dog(s)?  How did they handle it?  Did you do anything special to ease the transition?  Spill the beans!

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(almost) Wordless Wednesday

Maggie is not very happy with me.  She says I have not been home enough lately and, even more importantly, I have not been keeping up with my blogging duties.  She says her fans miss her and I need to rectify the situation immediately.

IMG_2298My apologies to everyone, including The Moo.  This month is crazy for me: ending my job of five years, getting married, honeymoon, and moving.  So, I may neglect the blog some but I promise to do my best.  I know I’ve got legal issues that need addressing and I shall get to them just as fast as I can!  Promise.