Meet Smudge

Because sometimes you need to smile, and nothing beats the feeling of watching this little guy have fun knowing he has been rescued and his future has been saved thanks to an amazing charity.

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Dad said no!

I know that that makes me sounds like a 3 year old. I know that in actual fact I am an adult, but when I was weighing up whether or not I was ready to commit in yesterdays post I knew a major factor would be my parents help. Although he would be my dog I would need their support, basically I would need a good dog sitter for me to have any life outside of the dog. My mum said “let’s talk about it” but my dad wouldn’t and said it was a “stupid idea” and thus the conversation was ended. My dad isn’t usually like that, over the last few months he has listened as I have worried about my new house, worried about work, the ex… you name it he has listened and supported me on. But for some reason, last night there was no conversation it was a no.

The downside is I had made my mind up to wanting him. Well I’d not decided I wanted him more the idea of someone else having him made me feel sick to my stomach. It felt right, like he was my destiny. It felt like I felt about my house when I saw it for the same time, or how I continue to feel about the ex (yep, we’ll leave that there!!)

For the first time in 6 months the idea of leaving work and getting home excited me. I saw morning and evening walks across fields, I saw weekends off hiking up some sort of hill, I saw a life. I was still unsure. I was going to have to introduce him to both BD and Mity and it would all depend on how he would react being left for such a large portion of the day. But my dad’s firm no has robbed me of taking the next step, or at least that’s how I feel.

So now I see evenings sat in watching TV. Me alone from one evening to the next (unless I have BD of course). I know I was worried about the social life having a dog would rob me of, but when I think about it what social life? Yes, I will see my friends, but they all have partners, kids, lives, the vast majority of my time will be spent alone (Well annoying you lot on twitter). Yes, I will have days away, weekends away, holidays but when you break down my year a whole portion of it would be just me.

I know it is not up to my dad, but I am not naive enough to imagine I could have a dog full time alone. For that to happen I would have to give up any sort of social life which I just can’t do. I would need to have support and dog sitters. I text my sister to see if she would on occasions dog sit and she wasn’t overly keen. In fact the only person massively supportive (who I contacted in a moment of weakness) was the ex who said he would be more than happy to factor a second dog into the BD dog share scenario and would take it off my hands any time I was busy and needed it looking after. Which opens a whole new can…does he not realise that he didn’t want me in his life and so he can’t support me in that way? I am very aware that any day he could find someone new, or I could really piss him off and he can take BD and vanish. Plus if he meets anyone new, well they won’t want the ex around; he can’t commit to me long term any more. I am all too aware of this – why isn’t he??

And while I’m on a role…. rejection 2.

I have a rule, and you may groan when you hear it, but I try not to get excited about something. If I let myself get excited generally it doesn’t happen. I know that this may sound like it a mega negative but it has happened so many times in my life that I have just accepted it. Although occasionally I’ll forget, I’ll let myself dream dreams. I’ll quietly make plans… and then it’ll bite me on the ass as the plans fall through!

It’s happened again. I am desperately keen to become a foster mum, for animals. Growing up I thought it was something I would never be able to do but having read some brilliant foster blogs I realised that not only could I do this, but I could do it well. I have spent time researching rescues, thinking through the technicalities, and finally I took the leap with a rescue that provides accommodation for animals who’s owners are escaping domestic violence. I sent of an email introducing myself, I explained about my two part time dogs, my working hours and crossed my fingers.

The email that came back thanked me for my interest and sent me a form to fill in. I was ecstatic – beyond excited. I loved that by helping out I would not only be helping animals in need, but families. I started to dream, thinking about how I would learn to cope with different breeds, dealing with dogs who had experience god-alone-knows what. I worried about what this would do with the interaction with BD, whether it would be a case of if I had a foster dog I could only had him for short walks when they could be together, or if this would be a step further on his battles with fear aggression. I couldn’t wait.

And then I read the leaflet which clearly stated that they would not accept foster offers from people who worked more than 4 hour days. Which I do. Immediately I contacted the lady back and re-iterated my situation and I received back a very polite decline of my services. I am gutted.

I can completely understand why the ideal is that dogs should not be left for long periods of time alone…. In an ideal world. But we do not live in an ideal world, if we did we would have no need for foster parents or dog rescues. There would be no abuse, no fear, no evil. Every pet would be valued, loved and I would be living on a beach with sun, my dogs and children playing in the sea and a guy who loved me as much as I loved him lying next to me (and yes there may be a glass of white wine in my hand, or some sort of cocktail!)
But this isn’t the ideal world, and although I would be at work a lot I would have evening and weekend free. I have a secure large garden. I have an empty couch and I have enough dog toys, beds and general love that to write me off based purely on this one fact is a little upsetting. I was asked to get back in contact if my circumstances change, but the truth is when that happens who knows what other circumstances will have changed?

oh well, back to the drawing board!

Should I be allowed to adopt?

So I am determined not to fall back into that ‘my world is ended, my heart is shattered’ funk that I was in before and so I am going to wrote about something very close to my heart and I would love to know what you think about this. It is a very straight forward question that I am going to ask you:

Should someone who works full time be allowed to adopt a rescue dog?

In my current line of work I am in regular contact with various rescues across the UK, and whenever I talk to them I can’t resist looking through the pages of their websites. Page after page of dogs, cats, rabbits, guinea pigs, horses, gerbils (you name it it needs rescuing!) and I look into each of their eyes and ask myself could I give this one a home. Then there are the other lists that do the rounds “Save today, tomorrow they will be put to sleep” and I look again into their faces and pray that someone, anyone will come forwards and save these souls.

OH and I talked about adopting another dog, however this led to the conversation as to whether or not we would be allowed to adopt. OH didn’t adopt BD, apparently he looked into adopting but was told that he wouldn’t be allowed due to working more than 4 hours a day, meaning BD is alone a lot of the time (and I felt so guilty every single morning as I would give him a kiss on the nose and tell him his dad would be back later). I became a woman obsessed buying any kind of time killing toy I could find to try and relieve some of my guilt – I digress. Every evening we would come home, take BD on a long evening walk, do a little training, and then usually would spend the evening together, with him curled up on me on the settee. We very rarely went out in an evening as BD had been alone most of the day and it didn’t seem fair. Weekends would usually involve long dog walks across fields, and until I fell out with the stupid trainer (another story) BD and I went to agility for 2 hours every Sunday.

Yet, when you read all of the adoption requirements for every rescue we would not be allowed to adopt one of their dogs. I know that being alone for a large portion of the day is not ideal, and I am sure I am not alone wishing that I could work from home so I would never need to leave my dog, however for the foreseeable future this is not going to happen and so I am potentially going to be dogless until I retire. I don’t know about you, but when I think of all those dogs who spend hours alone in kennels, those thousands of animals sentenced to death because a home has not been found. Although not ideal I can’t help but feel that a life, no matter how un-ideal, is better lived? That being a part of a family is better than weeks alone in kennels?

I would love to know what you think?!

Remember me Thursday – #Lightforpets

I have to admit I have never owned a rescued pet… I have to admit that at one point I was in that group of thinking for an animal to end up in a rescue there was clearly something wrong with it – feel free to judge away!

It wasn’t until I started working more closely with rescues that I realised how many amazing animals there are in a search for their forever home, and that 99.9999999% of the animals are in there because we are humans have let them down. I try never to judge, but how someone can give up a pet because it is old, pregnant, needed more exercise than I realised (insert crappy excuse here) I will never understand. The unfaltering love and trust that I see in my own dogs eyes on a daily basis, hell I see that in any animal I look at breaks my heart when I think about them ending up alone and unloved in a kennel not knowing what they had done wrong and waiting patiently for me to come back and get them……

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Today animal lovers across the globe are joining together to help raise awareness of the plight of these homeless pets. We are being asked to light “be a light for pets by promoting awareness about pet adoption. By remembering those we have lost, we can shine a light on the ones we can save.”

As I go through the next few months and try to figure out what my future will look like, and who will be in it, I know how much my heart will ace for BD who I am having to leave with OH. I am going to try and see him once a week, and have my name down top of the list of people who should be contacted if he needs looking after for even a minute. I know that he will not understand why I have had to go away, and I pray to God that he will not think it is due to anything he has done – in fact I am telling him every time I see him how much I love him, how perfect he is, how it isn’t his fault and how it is breaking my heart to leave him. I will miss having a dog around, especially as BD took it on himself to cheer me up whenever I cried, he would get a ball and throw it around growling at it until I was crying with laughter and then would sit so close to me so I could cuddle him until I was ready to face the world…

BD has fear aggression and Mity has made it clear he is an only pet so I have not been in a position where I can adopt. This new start has made me think about it, but I am not in a stage in my life where I can. Earlier this week I saw that Bath Cats and Dogs Home are asking people to make a pledge that they will adopt in the future when the time is right – I have taken this pledge. Today will you?

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