Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Tribute to Linda: Foster caregiver for Rez pups

Linda has provided foster care for puppies for several years, starting with Animal Ark, when they still had the Neuter Commuter and went to Red Lake, and more recently for All Dog Rescue (ADR). Since May of 2012, when she started fostering for ADR, she has fostered 154 pups and all but 11 were from Red Lake or Leech Lake reservations.
Linda started fostering when there were 3 black lab/pit bull puppies at St. Paul Animal Control scheduled to be euthanized. It was around Thanksgiving and, between the holiday and people not wanting to take pits, no one could take the pups, so she said she would try. Linda explains, "I never go anywhere as I am the caretaker for my vulnerable adult son who lives with me. It felt good helping to save the lives of those puppies!" And so, Linda continued as a foster caregiver.
Initially, she used a half of a bedroom downstairs that was not carpeted. Now she has two 5' x 10' kennels set up on the cement floors of her basement. The pups are always contained in them for at least 10 days before they can start wandering around downstairs. Linda's job involves lots of poop patrol and lots of washing and the fun part of puppy piles when she sits on the floor and pups pile on for attention or to bite or to pull on her clothing! The pups get lots of TLC and she watches TV downstairs so they get to see lots of her.
The majority of Linda's foster pups are young - the youngest litter was a litter of 9 who were orphaned at 3 weeks. She has learned how to do sub-cu fluids, give shots when needed, learned about different types of deworming, differences between sarcoptic or demodex mange, and given lots of baths for the mange pups. Linda says, "I am fortunate to have the set-up for puppies - many folks don't. This way they are kept away from my three senior dogs that live upstairs (all large breed rescues that are 11, 13, and 14)."
Linda says that ADR is an awesome group to foster for. "If I have a solo pup who is older (maybe 4 months), they will find another foster to take the pup so I am able to take on a litter who Karen wants to move as quickly as possible. ADR also trusts my judgment. If the pups need medical care, I can get them in. If I do not like a particular application for a puppy, they will stand behind me when we deny applicants. We try to make it a win-win situation for everyone and I know I have a tendency to be "particular" where my pups are placed."
Modestly, Linda explains, "I do what I can do to help - there are many good folks helping out with some very senior or special needs dogs. And yes, each pup takes a piece of my heart - sometimes the ones who are here 3-4 months are hard to let go, but knowing what fantastic families they are going to makes it all worthwhile."

Karen and everyone involved in Red Lake Rosie's Rescue is so grateful to Linda! Thank You!! 

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