It’s been a while since we last fostered a dog. Almost a year and a half, to be exact. Chip and I had been talking about fostering sometime soon when one of my old co-workers Annaliz texted me about a sweet, young lab named Molly (formerly named Raisin… I know, not the best dog name). She had been fostering Molly for a few weeks and asked if we would be willing to bring her into our home. Annaliz mentioned that Molly seemed like the female version of Duke, our very first foster dog. Once she said that, I knew we didn’t stand a chance at saying no. We had to foster this dog.
I picked up Molly from Annaliz’s house three weeks ago. She was so timid and terrified to leave her comfort zone, which was Annaliz’s backyard. We eventually got her into my car and she did alright on the short drive home. Chip was waiting for us when we got to the house and had put Wrigley in our bedroom so he wouldn’t overwhelm Molly as she walked in the door. We led her outside to the backyard and gave her some time to explore and sniff things out before we let Wrigley join her outside. Thankfully, they have gotten along great since we brought Molly home. It’s been so sweet to see how Wrigley has (unintentionally, of course) taught her how to be a dog. Without him, I don’t think she would be learning to trust us as quickly or even figured out the doggy door.
Molly has shown so much improvement over the last three weeks. She’s always been happy to play with Wrigley, but she gets so much more excited now when we let him out of our room every morning and they go outside together. If anyone is looking for a second dog to keep another pup company, Molly is the one for you. We’re slowly getting to see more of her goofy personality, which includes shaking her head and flapping her ears whenever she gets excited, carrying her food bowl around outside to whichever spot she prefers to eat from, pouncing after the birds in our yard (maybe she’s a hunting dog!), and wrestling with Wrigley.
During her first couple of weeks here, she was terrified to be inside the house with us. She would come in through the doggy door, but if either Chip or I walked into our living room, it was like she couldn’t run back outside fast enough. We gave her the first couple of weeks to do things on her own time, but recently started bringing her inside in the evenings and closing the doggy door behind her so she can’t escape to the backyard. Nothing like a little forced family time, right? But we really do think it has helped her get used to our voices and realize that it’s normal for us to come in and out of rooms and that everything will be fine. She now comes in on her own and naps while we go about our daily routines, instead of staring back at us with huge, dilated eyes. We still haven’t got her to spend a night inside the crate, but she’s been great sleeping on her new dog bed and hasn’t had a single accident inside.
Yesterday was a big day for Molly – we took her on her first walk with us. I’m a big fan of the Easy Walk harness so I quickly ordered one for her and after getting in the mail last week, we decided to go on a walk together yesterday morning. Chip got the car ready with dog blankets and waited outside with Wrigley while I (slowly) got Molly in her harness. She was pretty skeptical and froze when it was time to get in the car (Chip had to carry her in), but we eventually made our way down to Blue Star. We love the path there along the River and thought it would be calmer than walking her at a park. Considering that she was shaking the first few minutes in the car and had her tail tucked under when we started our walk, she ended up loving the morning. It didn’t take long for her to enjoy sniffing along the path next to Wrigley and wagging her tail as we finished our two mile walk. So glad we had that little 24-hour taste of Fall weather for a nice, cool walk and an afternoon of the dogs napping inside with the windows open.
She’s still learning her name, and she’s still hesitant to come up to us, but she’s always wagging her tail when we talk to her and is slowly learning to trust us. She’s a sweet dog and we can’t wait to see her find a forever home.