Thursday, January 31, 2013

Our #Rescue Pup's Journey - Kathryn Knight

Otis's Petfinder Profile Pic
Meet Otis, the puppy we are rescuing!  It's been a long time since we adopted a puppy - usually I try to adopt older dogs, as they have a tougher time finding forever homes.  But when I saw this guy on, I fell in love.  As of Thursday night, the time of this post, he is riding the rescue transport from Alabama to New England.

He and his brother, Milo, were found running down an interstate with their mother.  A kind soul stopped and herded all 3 dogs into her car before they could get hit and took them to a vet's office.  Otis and Milo (lol) were estimated to be about 8 weeks.  Their poor mamma was in very bad shape, extremely malnourished and sick.  But the puppies had been nursing, so they were faring OK.  The mother stayed at the vet's to recover, and the puppies had to deal with an immediate weaning as they went off to a foster house to await adoption.

The guess is that Otis and Milo are part Border Collie, part Retriever, and possibly something else.  I've always wanted a Border Collie--I've heard they are super smart.  And since right now I have a senior dog and an older cat in the house, I know my 2 sons are anxious for an animal that will play with them.  The timing seemed right.

The puppies at their Foster Mom's house

Otis is the smaller dog and was getting picked on a bit by Milo.  We had already completed the paperwork and were anticipating his arrival when we got some bad news.  Milo got a very high fever and was diagnosed with parvovirus, which is very contagious in dogs.  It is dangerously fatal if untreated, but Milo was immediately put into the vet's care.  Now we had to wait to see if Otis would come down with it too.  As they spent all their time together, I feared the worst.

He spent an additional 2 weeks with his foster mom, and amazingly, he did not catch parvo.  Thankfully, Milo recovered and went to another foster house until Otis was cleared for transport.  On Monday he got his clean bill of health, and early Friday morning, we meet the rescue van in Vermont to pick up our new sweet boy. 

I'm so grateful to Sheryl, the foster mom who took such great care of Otis, and continues to love and care for Milo and the 13 other dogs at her house awaiting adoption.  I imagine it must be very hard to love, feed, and sometimes nurse dogs back to health, and then let them go.  People who do this kind of thing to keep animals out of high-kill shelters and increase their chance of adoption are truly special and selfless.

I envision a lot of moments in the next few months where I question my sanity, but mostly I anticipate all the laughter, joy, and happiness Otis will bring.  And I'm already trying to come up with ways to gain forgiveness from both my calm senior dog and my domineering cat.  Wish me luck.

(See "Our Rescue Pup's First Week") for an update!)

Otis's foster mom sent me pictures and videos while we waited


  1. Oh my goodness Kathryn, how adorable! He's a little fluffball. Haha! We rescued our now 2 year old lab Misty from a shelter we found on Petfinder. So glad he didn't catch parvo. My heart sank for you when I read that. Thank goodness he's finding a good home with you!

    I agree. I think it takes something special to be a foster family for a dog. Thank goodness for them, though!

    Lots of luck with the puppy. Thanks for sharing him!

  2. He's adorable! What a puff of love. I so respect when a family saves a dog. It's very, very, special people, that do!

  3. There is a special wondrous heaven waiting for those who rescue, foster and adopt these precious fur babies. You are all the best kind of heroes. :-)

  4. So sweet, Katherine. Seeing his pic is a little spooky. He looks just like the little guy my best friend rescued. If he's anything like Shadow, he'll be incredibly smart and so sweet your older critters won't be able to help loving him.

  5. Otis couldn't have a better home, Kathryn. He's adorable! I think you should take Milo too. :D

  6. Awww, so very adorable. Enjoy your new adventures together. :)

  7. Thanks everyone! He's almost here! Meanwhile my cat is napping peacefully on my lap as I sit here at the computer and read about introductions between cat and puppy.

  8. Such a wonderful story, Kathryn. All my pets have been from the Humane Society or strays I found myself. Have fun with your little Otis! He's a lucky guy!