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Desperately Need Foster/Babysitter

August 23rd, 2007, 11:21 AM

I have three dogs whom I had rescued from terrible situations. In fact all of my animals, including my goat, are rescues. Obviously I live on a hobby farm and I am near Maxville, ON (about 1 hr. from Montreal and 45 min. from Ottawa).

A little over a year ago, my husband was involved in a very serious car accident near our farm. He remains in the hospital in a wheelchair with a serious brain injury. I also found out that I had conceived our first child 10 days before the accident and we now have a 5 month old. Because of a major mold problem I discovered last fall in our 150-year-old home and the trials of living alone on a 50 acre farm with so much going on, I have been staying elsewhere with my son. I have someone go everyday to feed and to give love to my animals and I am up as much as 5 times a week. I feel that I am providing most excellent care to my rescues. I was able to find babysitters for two of my dogs. I plan to return to the farm this Spring after some renovations have been done.

The problem, however, lies with my dog, Ava, even though she is the most problem-free of all my critters! She is a three-year-old husky/lab mix, medium-sized, spayed and UTD on shots, who is great with kids and even livestock. She does not have a mean bone in her body. She loves the indoors yet curls up just as happily each night on a soft bed. In her former home, she was crated 10-12 hours a day with no break so she was never really housetrained properly. When I got her at a year of age, her bladder was weak from having to strain to hold off on relieving herself for so long. I brought her to the vet to try countless treatments but in the end she has a weak bladder. All this means is that she has to go more frequently than the normal dog. She does not leak urine. Unfortunately, I was not able to completely housetrain her, probably due to the fact that I am outside with her all day so she does have the occasional accident when in the house or rainy or cold days. She can go 8 hours overnight though so I am confident she could be trained. I do have a crate for her that I try not use (based on her past) but she does not seem to mind it as much anymore.

I am looking for a babysitter until I can return home in the Spring. I have her with a local farming family right now, out of desperation. They believe dogs are livestock and they do not allow her indoors. She gets food, water, shelter and the companionship of three children, but obviously this situation is far from ideal. It is better, however, than the kennel I had her in from early Spring to early Summer. It is operated by a neighbour so I stupidly didn't check it out more thoroughly before I put her there. In all fairness, I was also extremely ill at the end of my pregnancy and had to be rushed into the hospital for an extended stay until the birth of my child. Oh, and of course, I was dealing with all of the fallout from my husband's accident. Let's just say that the kennel was just that: she was kept in a 4 x 3 concrete, heated, inside enclosure with access to a 4 x 6 fenced outdoor run. She was fed and watered but she was never allowed out to run. I pulled her and put her with the local family as soon as I figured everything out.

You may ask why she cannot be where I am staying and the answer is that she cannot. You may ask why I do not rehome her, as I had to do with one of my, formerly, four dogs, and who found a great home. The answer is that she is my husband's baby. For all his brain damage he knows her and loves her and the dog lives for her visits with him. Although my husband can never come home, he will have visits with his son and the dog. So I need to find a temporary solution for a few months for this wonderful girl. I will of course provide all pet food. She eats a quality food and I am particular about that. I am on social assistance due to the horrible circumstances of my life but I can provide a small monthly payment for anyone who can babysit. I am truly desperate and need help to make this work. Despite everything I have taken wonderful care of my critters and love them so much.

Thank you,
or send a PM

I should also add that the local family is moving in two weeks and does not want to babysit her anymore.

August 23rd, 2007, 12:40 PM
I just wanted to say that with everything you are going through, it is so wonderful that you are trying your best to 'hold the fort' and keep the family together. Few people would go as far as you have. Your love and ethics around animals obviously runs deep.

You have said that Aya is fine with your rescue animals and kids. It might be helpful for people if you can say whether or not Aya specifically gets along with cats and other dogs? Also, it seems you need to find a home within close driving distance to your husband? How close and how often are you hoping for?

All of this may be helpful for prospective foster people to know.

All the best to you and yours, especially hoping for your husband to be able to come home with you. You are very strong.


August 23rd, 2007, 06:53 PM
Thank you.

Ava is excellent with other dogs, male or female, and is fine with cats.

A good foster home is more important to us than having Ava within short driving distance. I should have clarified that the place he is in now does not allow animal visits anyway. I actually had more luck with the bigger hospitals and was allowed to bring in a dog AND my husband's favourite cat. This is the 5th place my husband has been in and by no means the last. By Spring he should be in another facility and I think that the new one will once again allow visits. My husband will just be happy that she is being taken care of properly until Spring. He has major brain damage but he still loves all of our creatures and even asks about them by name.

August 23rd, 2007, 07:59 PM
I don't know if this will help but check your pm.

August 25th, 2007, 11:14 AM
Although Frenchy gave me an excellent tip, I am still desperately searching for a foster for Ava. The family is pressuring me.

August 25th, 2007, 01:13 PM
Canine14 are there any vet schools or colleges out that way? perhaps a vet tech or someone looking for a place to live while at school?

August 26th, 2007, 03:07 AM
Winston, that's a great idea but no vet schools near me. I tried asking at my local vet but, no luck. I am in a rural area.

August 28th, 2007, 10:43 PM
Lots of crossposting thanks to some really great folks, but no offers yet!

August 29th, 2007, 10:29 AM
Hello Canine14,

So sorry my tip didn't work out. It's hard to belive there wouldn't be someone in your community that would want to help you out under the circumstances and also take in what sounds like a lovely dog. By the way, why is it not working out for her to stay with the current family? You have one week left with them?

If I wasn't so far away and hadn't just adopted a second dog ( a rescue coming from Chatham I haven't met yet that I'm trying to organize transport for, eight hours away ), I would consider it.

But that doesn't help you. Hope something develops soon for you.

August 30th, 2007, 08:01 AM
Hi Amaya,

Thank you so much for your kind words. I live in a rural community and sadly many people still chain dogs 24/7 or treat them as livestock. The family I have Ava with now is moving to a new farm and they don't want to be "bothered" with her during the move. Also, they have no shelter for her at the new place and are unwilling to make any for her so she would be outside 24/7, even in thunderstorms, which she hates. I cry every night looking for a solution for my poor girl.

August 30th, 2007, 08:36 AM

I saw a small classified add in the animal welfare section of the Montreal Suburban about your situation. I hope the phones ring off the hook, offering to help you.

August 30th, 2007, 11:18 AM
Really?! Oh my goodness, thank you thank you thank you thank you! I will keep you posted.

August 30th, 2007, 11:30 AM
Here's the add

Volunteers needed to help a volunteer: Lisa, who belongs to no specific rescue group, has rescued countless cats & dogs from horrible situtations. Lisa lives on a hobby farm near Maxville, ON, about an hour from Montreal & about 45 min. from Ottawa. She urgently needs a foster home or babysitter for her dog Ava, a rescued three-year-old Husky/Lab-mix. Due to Ava’s past living conditions Ava is not completely housetrained, though she can last overnight for eight hours. Ava’s current babysitter family is moving in two weeks, so Lisa is desperately looking for assistance. If you can help in any way, please contact Lisa at

August 30th, 2007, 12:02 PM
Hi Canine14, I just started my appeal for help...the message is getting trickled down the phone, internet and neighbourhood line...I hope we can up with someone before long. Hang in there.

August 30th, 2007, 12:36 PM
I need a picture ASAP...I may have someone.....get back to me

August 30th, 2007, 12:59 PM
:fingerscr :fingerscr :fingerscr that this works out.

August 30th, 2007, 06:40 PM
You guys are the best...I have been praying for home for this poor pup and
I just know you will find one....One wonderful group of people here so kind
and supportive...:fingerscr :fingerscr :fingerscr

August 30th, 2007, 07:47 PM
I have posted the ad to a Golden group I belong to, our rescue group, as well as to someone who works in the animal community and has many contacts with vet clinics, rescue groups etc... I hope it helps.

August 30th, 2007, 08:14 PM
Okay everyone, I am IN TEARS at everyone's kindness. After the year I've had, full of a despair and darkness that would make even Oprah cry, I am beyond grateful for this overwhelming support. My animals were the only thing that kept me going when I was alone and pregnant and dealing with the tragedy surrounding my husband. I am so grateful for your understanding; it has helped to restore my faith in humankind.

A well-known and respected poster on this board saw this very post and I am bringing Ava to her house tomorrow to see if it will work out. I could not ask for a better place so :fingerscr that it works out.

Words fail me. Please know that you are all appreciated.

August 30th, 2007, 08:19 PM
A well-known and respected poster on this board saw this very post and I am bringing Ava to her house tomorrow to see if it will work out. I could not ask for a better place so :fingerscr that it works out.

:goodvibes: good luck ! :fingerscr :grouphug:

the gang
August 30th, 2007, 09:31 PM
wounderful news please keep updated, i have fingers and toes crossed for the pup brenda and the pins.:pray:

August 31st, 2007, 09:15 AM
This is so wonderful, all of it… the coming together of all that support and the finding a possible place for Ava.

Good Luck, hope it works out.

August 31st, 2007, 03:21 PM
Has anybody heard whether the dog found a temp home?

August 31st, 2007, 03:50 PM
OMG,Canine14,I had no idea what you have been through,so sorry:cry:
Reading through all these posts made even me cry,what a wonderful bunch of people we have here.
I :pray: something will work out for Ava.:pray:

August 31st, 2007, 07:01 PM
I just saw this post now - I so hope you find a good foster for her!!! And my heart goes out to you as you cope with such daunting challenges!!! I'll keep thinking good thoughts and hope Ava and you and your family get the outcome you need and deserve! :goodvibes: :highfive:

August 31st, 2007, 07:51 PM

Ava is hanging out at the mystery poster's home for the weekend! All I can say is that the mystery poster is truly a guardian angel and her kindness is beyond words. She has one of the gentlest and warmest spirits around. Her dogs also seemed to like/get along with Ava, as well as her kids. I am hoping everything goes well. Heck, I might even move there, that's how well she treats living creatures!


August 31st, 2007, 07:52 PM
:pray: for a happy ending :fingerscr

August 31st, 2007, 08:39 PM
Hope it works out ! :fingerscr :goodvibes:

August 31st, 2007, 08:47 PM
Okay everyone, I have permission ... it's LUCKYPENNY!

She just emailed me and Ava is doing really well!

August 31st, 2007, 08:55 PM
:laughing: I kinda expected it :laughing:

:thumbs up

August 31st, 2007, 08:56 PM
So now I want pics !

August 31st, 2007, 08:58 PM
You've got to bug Luckypenny! I'm the kind of terrible Mom that doesn't even carry pictures of her unfurry son around!

August 31st, 2007, 09:03 PM
You've got to bug Luckypenny! I'm the kind of terrible Mom that doesn't even carry pictures of her unfurry son around!

LP lives 5 minutes from where I work , I will drop in on her for a visit soon :D

August 31st, 2007, 09:11 PM
She's a darling :lovestruck: .

I just tried to take a photo of her laying by me feet but I think she's a little camera shy. Now I feel guilty for disturbing her :o .

August 31st, 2007, 09:33 PM
That is so kind of you LP, hope all works out :cloud9:

August 31st, 2007, 10:04 PM
And here's the little :angel: all tuckered out and dreaming sweet dreams of her loving mom :cloud9: .

August 31st, 2007, 10:09 PM
awww , she looks so peaceful :cloud9:

September 1st, 2007, 07:08 AM
I'm glad it all worked out...:lovestruck:

September 1st, 2007, 07:25 AM
LP,what can I say??Thank you,thank you for opening your home to Ava,she looks like a sweet doggie.
I am soo glad she gets along with everyone:thumbs up
It must be a relief for Canine14,at least one problem is solved and Ava could not be in a better place,thank you again

September 1st, 2007, 06:39 PM
I have been following this story :sad: but haven't posted as I live so far away and couldn't offer any help. :o I am so happy to hear that Ava has found a foster home.....Luckypenny, you are awesome. :angel:

Canine 14, I hope things turn around in your life soon. :grouphug: :pray: :fingerscr :goodvibes:

the gang
September 1st, 2007, 10:22 PM
lucky penny you are a true angel:angel: ava your one lucky girl, we do not have enough angels out there in rescue!!!! brenda and the pins.

September 1st, 2007, 10:46 PM
LP you're an :angel: for fostering this sweet girl :highfive:

September 4th, 2007, 07:32 AM
How kind of you, Luckypenny to help out this dog and her family.:thumbs up

September 4th, 2007, 09:23 AM
This is just wonderful. Luckypenny, HUGE mitzvah, take a bow. Canine 14, I hope this is just the beginning of better times for you and your family.

September 4th, 2007, 07:00 PM
Luckypenny you are a guardian angel to Ava and her family. Thank you.

September 4th, 2007, 07:56 PM
Well, thank you all for all the thank yous :o :) . And thank you Canine14 for trusting me with your precious Ava.

I've recently read MX3 use the term, "Pay It Forward." Those precise words, as well as all of our concerns for Canine14 and her family, and of course for Ava, is what motivated me to help. Just as BMDLuver, Fosterpat, and BHRR came to my aid in a desperate situation (my sincerest appreciation and admiration to you), I felt I was in a position to do the same for someone else in need. And it's all my pleasure.

October 23rd, 2007, 10:06 AM
Hey Luckypenny! How about an update on Canine14 and her beautiful girl Ava that you are taking care of? I take it things are working out well?


October 23rd, 2007, 11:10 AM
Happy to oblige Winston :).

Ava is a wonderful girl. She does love everybody but, men, either canine or human, is her obvious preference. The big flirt :D . She often lets out a little whine while walking if we pass men who do not come to greet her. Never women, just men. She's too cute.

She absolutely adores Lucky. It took him a little time to get used to all her attention but he welcomes as much as she can give now. Penny still ceaselessly brings her toys to encourage Ava to play with her too for a change, lol.

Attached are a couple of pics. One of Ava and Lucky who always pile up the cushions in the living room. Yes, that's aluminum foil on the new couch cover. I try to keep this as the one piece of furniture for guests that don't appreciate doggy hair stuck to their clothes :rolleyes:. The next is of Ava who, when I'm not looking, takes all of my pillows off the bed (and only mine :confused:), and any available blankies to snuggle up in. I often catch Lucky in the act of bringing her another when she may have missed one :eek: . I'm not kidding, lol.

She's an extremely friendly girl, tail always wagging if you even just look at her. She plays real hard but rests real hard as well. She seems to have a little separation anxiety (the first time I heard her and Lucky howl/wail in harmony nearly gave me a heart I took the day off of work :D). I exercise them well in the morning and leave them with their breakfast frozen in their Kongs when I leave now. As per the several videos I occasionally take while I'm gone, they both settle very well. I only do short shift work, unless it's Sunday when I work the entire day, but the rest of the family is home then to keep them company.

We don't regret for a minute taking her in, and will certainly miss her in the Spring, but we're looking forward to the happy moment when she can be reunited with her family who loves her so much.

October 23rd, 2007, 11:44 AM
Your an:angel: Luckypenny!!! and Ava looks like she's fitting in just fine:lovestruck:

October 23rd, 2007, 11:53 AM
Thank you Luckypenny!! What a great little update! I have often wondered what could have happened to poor Ava if you had not have taken a chance on her! This is awesome news! I bet she feels so loved! Not that she didnt before but with all she was going through in her surroundings it must have been really tough on her and her Mom! I am glad that we have so many wonderful people and connections on this site because who knows what may have happened???

My hats off to you and your crew! Boy Ava's mom is going to have to take some of your blankies home when Ava leaves!!


P.S Nice photos! she looks sooooo happy!

October 23rd, 2007, 01:29 PM
Luckypenny truly has a special place in Heaven. I cannot tell you what relief it gives me to know that Ava is in the best place possible. It is a one shining positive in my otherwise bleak world.

October 23rd, 2007, 01:43 PM
Luckypenny truly has a special place in Heaven.

I have about the first 18 years of my life to make up for :evil: , so yeah, I must work hard now to secure my place :D .

How are you doing Canine14?

October 23rd, 2007, 02:01 PM
This is such a "feel good" story....beautiful Ava :lovestruck: being fostered by Luckypenny. :angel2: She could not be in better hands. :angel:

I love the pic of her. :cloud9: are things going for you? :grouphug: :fingerscr :goodvibes: :goodvibes:

October 23rd, 2007, 04:38 PM
Things have been almost unbearably hard lately. Still in danger of losing the farm. I always seem to have the rug being pulled out from under me. I am a simple person and I don't ask for much money-wise; I just want a place where I can live with my son and have all of my precious, beloved animals. It would literally kill me to give them up.

Thanks for thinking of me.

October 23rd, 2007, 05:33 PM
Things have been almost unbearably hard lately. Still in danger of losing the farm. I always seem to have the rug being pulled out from under me. I am a simple person and I don't ask for much money-wise; I just want a place where I can live with my son and have all of my precious, beloved animals. It would literally kill me to give them up.

Thanks for thinking of me.

sending:pray: and:goodvibes:your way, hoping things turn around for the better.

:grouphug: too!!

October 23rd, 2007, 06:47 PM
Well Canine14 it is nice to hear from you...I am sure you have your hands full...Just know that some of his think of you and Ava and how lucky she is! I hope things pick up for you and your family soon...


October 23rd, 2007, 08:38 PM
I'm confident that everything has a way of working out for the best. I can understand how it must be totally overwhelming at times. Stay positive and optimistic, Canine14. We'll pray for you and your family and continue to support you in any way we can. Big :grouphug:s for you and your little guy too.

October 24th, 2007, 12:49 AM
Canine14, hang in there :grouphug: .....there's an old saying about "when the door closes watch out for the window that opens". :thumbs up And, we have a great support network here, so if you ever feel like talking just jump into the TJT thread (it's a sub-forum in the Off Topic Forum). I hope to see you there. :fingerscr :goodvibes:

October 24th, 2007, 02:42 AM
:goodvibes::fingerscr that the corner turns for you Canine14

LP :dog::angel2: extrodinaire great photos :thumbs up & update

October 27th, 2007, 10:34 PM
Hang in there. I am so glad that LP is guarding over Ava for you and your husband while you get back on your feet and that you fought so hard to keep her.My heart goes out to you and your family. :grouphug::grouphug: