Fostering our sweet boy Thatcher.
Thatcher’s fuzzy blankie.
All the photos we have of him are blurry, but he still manages to be a model pup.
I love him, I love him, I love him! Everyone meet Thatcher! Josh and I believe he is a black and white lab terrier mix, eight weeks old and five and a half pounds of pure perfection. Sadly we will never know what breed he really is because he was rescued very young.
So the back story – Joshua and I decided we wanted to take the next step in our relationship and foster a little puppy. When I came to visit him in South Carolina for two weeks in December we went into the Greenville Humane Society looking for a little guy.
We walked into the building and a representative said she would bring out a sick pup for us to take home to nurture and heal for 10 days. The first dog she brought us was white and caramel coloured and probably 6 months old. He was fairly cute but he was pretty big and squirmy. We could barely hold the fella because he kept trying to escape our arms! So we said we would prefer a smaller more low-key one. The lady brought squirmy puppy into the back and we waited around looking at each other thinking “oh boy, what have we gotten ourselves into”.
Low and behold – the lady we were dealing with brings out this little black and white calm sweet boy – precious as can be. When I saw her walk out of the puppy infirmary holding Thatcher, I knew right away he was the one. His ears were perfectly perky, his little white paws were so gentle, and his eyes basically screamed “love me”. It was truly love at first sight. Josh and I got a chance to hold him and we both knew without even saying aloud he was our boy. We took him home and from there everything was such a dream.
Thatcher had kennel cough (which strangely he never coughed once lol) so we were responsible for giving him his antibiotics twice a day. I usually did this because Josh always had to be at the rink for work. I must say, giving Thatcher his antibiotics was my favorite time of the day. I would call it ‘peanut butter time’ because I would smother his pills in peanut butter and he would wag his tail like crazy, give me kisses and gobble them up! It was our special time.
In our short time we had with our little boy we learnt so much! When we first brought him home he was so clingy! He was definitely a momma’s boy. He followed me everywhere and I mean everywhere… He would stick his head in the shower and get his face wet just waiting for me. When I would be cooking in the kitchen he would sit on my feet and wait patiently for me to come play with him. When Josh took his pre-game naps, the two boys would always sleep together in our bed. It was the most precious thing I’ve ever seen and it only made me love Joshua more.
I wasn’t until the second day that we discovered once all of Thatcher’s walls came down he was not all kisses and cuddles. All of a sudden Thatcher became extremely frisky and playful. He would bite us like no other and all day long. Only when he was falling asleep, shortly after waking or during peanut butter time did we get kisses. The biting only really became a problem when I was by myself and he would get into this “attack mom” mood where I literally couldn’t get him off me. I still have scars from his bites lol – but they were love bites. Josh and I (a bit scared) then decided it was time to make a stop at Pet Smart to get some bones, treats and toys. Thank goodness for this – because it saved our body parts from being chewed 24/7. We are so lucky to have experienced giving Thatcher his first ever toy! I have never seen such a happy dog before.
As for night time, this is when Josh and I discovered we are not ready for babies. He would get up every two hours and need to pee. The two of us would take turns every night letting him out and giving him a couple pats on the back to put him back to sleep. The nights were certainly a learning experience for us. We were so freakin’ exhausted! Finally by the fifth night we discovered he slept better with his fuzzy blankie. That helped us a heck of a lot; but even with blankie we were averaging 5 hours of sleep each night max. The greatest gift Josh and I learnt throughout this process is the art of being selfless. We really discovered how to put something else in front of your needs every second of the day.
We were fortunate that Thatch was pretty much potty trained when it came to peeing, but the big number two… Well let’s just say he enjoyed leaving us little tiny gifts under our Christmas tree or in Josh’s roommates bedroom (sorry Jeff).
Overall Thatcher was so well behaved and he never barked or whined until the last day and it was so cute! We don’t think he knew how to bark before meeting us because the first time he did let out a tiny little ‘woof’ he scared himself! After that we kept trying to get him all hyped up enough to bark at us because we just loved hearing him communicate.
On the 18th, we grabbed pup and went back to the Humane Society to return him as he was fully healed and healthy. At first we felt so happy and satisfied that we had done this experience. The vet asked us a couple questions and she took him away after we said our goodbyes.
I wish I could say that was the end of the story. After the vet took him away, Josh and I thought we would go look at the puppies up for adoption to leave on a warm-hearted note. This was the death of us and this was not a warm-hearted end to the story lol. As we walked in, we see the vet drop our little boy off into a small little cage without even giving him a check up in the back. Josh pointed it out me and we went over to see him (big big mistake). I saw him in this tiny cold crate and put my hand in to get one last kiss and all of a sudden I felt the strongest overwhelming emotion of grief and sadness. I began to ball my eyes out right then and there and I’m not an emotional person. That image of him in that cage will probably haunt me forever. Josh pulled me away before things got out of hand. At this point Josh was ready to go get him back and sign those adoption papers. We wanted to keep him so bad but we knew deep deep deep down now wasn’t a good time for us with long distance standing in our way. We knew we couldn’t give Thatcher the proper home he deserved.
Once we got home I remained a train wreck just thinking about him lonely in that kennel. It wasn’t until 24 hours later and 8 phone calls to the humane society that I heard he had been adopted by a family within less than a day of us dropping him off. Which was obviously going to happen, look at his cute face! It was a sad but happy feeling for Josh and I. We knew he was being spoiled with love now which continues to comfort us immensely. While our story has ended with Thatcher, we trust he’s in good hands!
I strongly suggest if you are ever looking to adopt a puppy, go to a rescue shelter. You would be surprised how many wonderful, loving, cute puppies they have just waiting to be scooped up!
Thatcher has been such a wonderful blessing to both Joshua and I. We will continue to miss him every single day.