Ramblings From The Ranch
By Christina Bennett
Give Me the Unadoptables
“The main thing I do as a foster is give the dogs lots of love and teach them to not be afraid of humans. I give each dog a little piece of my heart and they give me a big piece of their hearts in return. The best reward for me as a foster is to see them loaded for their trip to the airport, knowing they will have humans of their own and live wonderful lives.”—Alice
Alice volunteers to walk dogs at The Ranch, but she felt like she wasn’t impacting the lives of the dogs. One day Alice wondered, How can I really change a dog’s life? She asked The Ranch to give her dogs that were considered unadoptable—too fearful or too feral. Her first was Luda, a wild child who always made a bad impression on potential adopters. That soon changed after Alice’s loving care. Next came Robin. He was so shy that you couldn’t touch him and he wouldn’t even go into Alice’s house. Robin soon became another success story under Alice’s kind and caring fostering.
Alice’s love and patience has paid off. She helped these dogs bond with people and learn to trust. And, with tears, she watched them leave for their new lives. Crazy Luda is now happy in the Seattle area where she runs on the beach with her new family. Robin went to a veterinary school in Oregon. A student worked with him and Robin now has a family with three children to call his own. Without Alice, these dogs would likely still be living at The Ranch.
“Puppy breath is the best.” — Cheryl
While Alice has helped hopeless dogs become adoptable, Cheryl is the puppy whisperer. Over the course of a few years, she has fostered well over 100 puppies! The Ranch receives many litters of abandoned puppies every year. Often, they are abandoned without their moms and are too small to enter a shelter environment. Too young to receive their vaccines and too tiny to survive the chilly nights, they would literally die without first having a stay in a warm, loving foster home.
Cheryl, a former neonatal nurse, has had up to eight puppies at a time, including some she has had to bottle-feed every three hours (yes, that means at night, too). The pups often arrive malnourished and full of worms, having been rescued from a ditch or from under an old car. She nurses the sick and skinny ones with food, medicine, warmth, and love.
Cheryl would love to see what her puppies look like when they grow up in their forever homes, but alas, once they leave her nest, she rarely hears from them. But you know those sweet dogs remember sleeping on her warm neck or being fed and comforted at 2:00 in the morning.
Can you help The Ranch by fostering? Here’s what your time means to all those dogs:
A day or two of your time could be the difference between life and death for a puppy who is needing a little TLC
A week or two could afford a dog who recently had surgery the opportunity to recover in a warm, quiet environment where he could receive his meds throughout the day.
Or a month? It could give a mother of newborn pups an opportunity to raise her family to a point where it’s safe to bring the pups into a shelter environment.
For more information about Lake Chapala visit: www.chapala.com