We started fostering dogs because Katie has a conscience. She came home one day after work and told me that her life lacked meaning. Thinking this was going to be one of those talks that people in relationships dread, I shifted in my seat. She continued to tell me that she didn't feel fulfilled at her job and she wanted to be involved in things that "made a difference" in the world. She told me that she filled out a few applications to be a foster home to rescued dogs. I couldn't help but laugh a little at her need to "make a difference." Katie is a legal advocate for victims of domestic violence. She helps people after they've experienced a huge trauma and makes a concrete difference in their lives! She has a positive impact in other peoples' lives every day. How many people can say that? I thought maybe she was trying to earn her way into heaven and I agreed to be open to the idea of fostering dogs.
Shannon McKenzie, Underdog Rescue's director, gave Katie a call and came over for a home visit and informal interview. I guess we didn't show any obvious signs of mental unstability because she told us to meet her at Minneapolis Animal Control later that week to get our first dog.
A little background info on how Underdog Rescue gets their dogs:
Most of the dogs come from Minneapolis Animal Control, which is essentially a dog pound. Depending on how the animals arrived at the pound they have a certain amount of time before they are euthanized. If an animal is an owner surrender, meaning the owner of the dog or cat willingly brings the animal to the pound saying they can't take care of the pet or some other lame excuse...the animal could be euthanized within a week of arrive at animal control. If the dog is a stray and brought in by someone from the community or picked up by an Animal Control officer, then the dog has a little more time to live. It may sound horrible but many of the animals at local shelters are very close to death. If it were not for rescue groups like Underdog Rescue and others these dogs would be killed. Sometimes they are adult dogs but there are often unwanted litters and puppies at Minneapolis Animal Control.
Obviously we are animal crazy and I should mention that Katie and I have two dogs of our own. Emma is a 3 year old lab/collie/white shepard/boxer mutt and Moose is an 18-month old lab mystery mutt. Emma came from a local rescue and Moose came from the Golden Valley Humane Society. Pictured below is Emma enjoying the view after a summer swim and Moose (as a pup) snuggling with our friend Susan.