Sunday, April 8, 2007

Think about it!

There are many dogs, just like these, JUST waiting for the chance at a new life .

Please consider fostering a dog in need,...

JUST ONCE,.......


They desperately need your help!


Fostering for Rescue

When my husband and I decided to adopt a dog from a setter rescue three years ago I was impressed. Impressed by the wonderful concept of people opening up their homes to dogs that many times come straight from a shelter, making the dog part of their family life, working with them, gaining their trust, giving them confidence, evaluating their personality and then I could come along and could choose the right dog for my situation and existing family members---especially the furry variety.

I was also so positively surprised what nice people you can meet in the rescue community; people that are selfless and generous. I wanted to give back, wanted to join in and become part of the rescue family. I started to volunteer for transports and my husband and I talked about giving fostering a try down the road.

Well, “down the road” came quicker than anticipated. A 6 month-old orange setter boy was sitting in an Alabama shelter with a chest injury and a torn pad. I saw the photo---a scared little boy with a tucked in tail and sad eyes. My husband took one look at the photo and said, “Let’s do it!” This is how we started to foster and we’ve not regretted it for a moment since then.

Fostering is a wonderful, rewarding experience, especially with bird dog breeds, such as setters and pointers, who are so inherently loving and sociable by nature. Even if they’ve had a rough start in life, have been battered, bruised, and abused---many of them have never lost their belief in the goodness of people. They can learn to trust again and absolutely adore you when you give them love, attention and time and pay you back with tail wags, smiles, sloppy kisses and cuddle time on the couch.

Fostering gives you the awesome ability getting to know many sweet dogs you’ve otherwise never been able to meet up with. You gain loving memories of their traits, funny, goofy habits, and see them blossom in your care. When they are ready to get adopted, it’s not always easy to let them go----but saying goodbye is much more sweet than bitter, as their memories will always stay with you and you are so proud when you get updates from their new families on how they are doing and continuing to thrive. I CAN let them go, as I know they are going to a loving, caring new family, and there’s always another needy pup out there that needs our help.

As foster family you pay for your foster dog’s food, treats and any toys you might buy for them. The rescue group also appreciates your help in driving the first leg of a transport, if your foster dog gets adopted further away. Your expenses are tax deductible. Illinois Birddog Rescue pays for all standard vetting, such as vaccinations and spay/neuter of the foster dog-plus additional vetting as approved by the board.

When there is interest in your foster dog, you get to talk to the potential adopter and tell them about your foster and ask questions to determine if the family situation is a good fit for your foster dog’s needs and the family’s needs and expectations. I love sharing stories of my foster dog and love this part of the adoption process immensely.

Fostering has also helped my own dogs to become more sociable and more at ease with furry visitors at our home. I even threw a dog party with 21 dog guests at my house, and my fur kids didn’t even blink an eye. You also learn a lot about your own dogs in interaction with foster dogs. Since starting to foster, my husband and I have learned so much more about dog body language, pack behavior and personality and how to better communicate with your dogs through your own actions and body language. It’s fun and fascinating. We love it.

I can only warmly recommend for families to give fostering a try. Yes, fostering takes time and patience while you are integrating the new dog into your family, but what you get back in return is so much more.
Still have more questions about fostering?? Just contact IBR and ask away. We love to tell more and are always there to help---now and during the entire fostering process.

Of course there are always reasons why some people cannot consider fostering---such as being gone from home way more than the standard 8-9 hours on a work day, a fur kid that’s just not wanting other dog company no matter what, etc. If fostering is not for you, see if you’d have fun to help in other ways. We always need drivers for dog transports and people to help with home visits for potential adopters. Let us know which area you live in and that you would like to be contacted if a transport route or home visit is near where you live. Also---Illinois Birddog Rescue is always in need of donations and appreciates any monetary help you can give.

The miracle of rescue is that so many pieces make up the puzzle. Nobody can do it alone—even if somebody drives in a transport only ONCE, or fosters only ONE dog in their lives, they’ve been touched by rescue and have contributed and saved one life. That’s the beauty of it.

My First Day Without My Foster Dogs!

As reported by Lisa Floros, mother of little 2-year old Sofia and setter fur kids Mallory and Cali and foster mom to Mazie and Dorothy:

I am going CRAZY!  I don't know what to do with
myself! I have only been without Mazie and Dorothy
for less than a day and I am bored! At least I had
Willow to snuggle with last night. She took Mazie's
spot in the bed! But I took her to her new family this

Then, I brought Sofia home from Grandma's. Sofia is
beside herself that her girls are gone! (She doesn't
understand that we will be in IL next weekend to get
Mazie!) It has been almost 5 hours of her crying for
and searching for "Mazie Lou" & "Dorfy"!

Cali and Mallory are ticked off as well! They are so
bored that Cali got into a bag of garbage while drying
her muddy body in the garage! She has never done
that! At least that gave me a reason to give her a
bath! Mallory crawled into Dorothy's crate and
whimpered for 10 minutes!

I guess I'll just clean my house this week and check
with the city about a kennel license! LOL! Our walks
are so much shorter. I think I actually miss
preparing Mazie's yummy raw food! In my opinion, I don't
have enough dog hair on my clothes or in my car! My
laundry loads are so much smaller without the doggie
bath towels!

I understand Amy's boredom while she's away from
school much better!

Bottom life without my foster dogs isn't as
much fun!

Lisa F.

Libby's Story

Several months ago we came across the IBR site. Our lives have not been the same since we saw Libbys photo on PetFinder.

When we decided to try to adopt Libby back in July and were approved we sent out the following announcement by email to all of our friends:

My wife and I have been discussing a very important issue. We have been talking about adoption. I know, all of you are thinking why would someone their age even think about adoption. Well you have not met Libby. She is a beautiful girl with pretty eyes and a face that would melt the best of us. When we heard about her and her situation we didn't have to think twice. We have filled out the adoption papers and have the preliminary approvals. It looks as though we will be going to the Chicago suburbs this weekend to bring this gorgeous little 3 year old home with us. We cant wait.

Of course we attached Libby's photo at that time.

So, we did adopt this poor little lost soul. She was so scared when she came to us. I have attached a photo of her first day in the back yard.

She has come a long way since July.

So have my wife and I.

IBR has changed our life in such a good way. The joy and love that we have received from all of our foster dogs is something that can not be expressed in words. Simon, Watson, Brighton, and now Candice. We see no end.

If anyone out there is considering being a foster home, don't think twice about it.The rewards are greater then you would ever believe.

I know that IBR is always in search of foster homes for all of the dogs that they save.

You could be one of those homes.

Try it. There will be no regrets.

To all of the fosters, transporters, and volunteers that help out IBR, keep up the great work. You all know what I am talking about.

Lisa, you have touched so many lives and saved so many dogs. Your rewards are the greatest of all. Success makes for happiness.

You must be very happy.

Don't ever stop.

Greg and Patricia Holden

Here are dogs that are on our waiting list and need a foster home right now!!

Please check out the pups that are urgently in need of a foster home on our petfinder list.

If you'd consider fostering a dog, please email Lisa, IBR president at:
and also complete the IBR foster application (see link on the right-hand side). IBR appreciates your help---the dogs will repay you endlessly with sloppy kisses. We promise!!


Amazing what 2 weeks can do!!

The Story of Sherlock and Watson...

These two boys, brothers we think, showed up with in days of each other in Delaware County, Indiana, hunting season had just ended,...and so did Watson and Sherlock,...

The Boys, showin' the others how it's done!

A Note from Watson's Foster Home, the day he left for his very own Fur - ever home, Greg Writes:

It was a sad day for my wife and I today.
This was our last morning that Watson was going to be with us.
He had special hugs for Pat this morning before she went to work.
We will miss him very much.
He is such a great dog and has such a wonderful personality.

He howls to let us know the phone is ringing, he hugs us every chance he gets, and he knows just how to trick you to get out of bed to let him outside and after you are out of the bed he jumps in and takes your spot.
He has taught Libby and Sherman how to play aggressively without starting a fight.

He loves his walks and runs.
He also loves his naps.
This was a very emotional departure for us and I am sure for Watson also.

The great thing about adoptions is when you see an instant bond between a dog that you have loved, and the person that is adopting that dog. It sure makes it worth it.

I think the photo says it all. It was love at first sight.

Good luck Watson and Eric, Angelic and family.

You have a prize that will bring you happiness for many years.
Thank you Lisa for letting Watson be part of our life.
Greg and Patricia Holden, Libby and Sherman

Since then Sherlock has gone to his furever home as well!!
Watson writes a note to Sherlock, bidding farwell to a Brother, a good friend,and hunting partner;
My dear friend Sherlock,
Our travels from Indiana in early November have taken both of us many miles and into many states. All of the people that I have shared my life with have been so loving and understanding. I am confident that that same feeling is shared by you. These rescue people sure are a special breed. Their hunting skills are almost as good as ours. After all they found and saved us.

I seem to recall, Sherlock, that you once said,

"My line of thoughts about dogs is analogous. A dog reflectsthe family life. Whoever saw a frisky dog in a gloomy family, or a sad dog in a happy one? Snarling people have snarling dogs, dangerous people have dangerous ones. And their passing moods may reflect the passing moods of others."

Our investigations have certainly been rewarded. I am happy to say that we both seem to have solved “The Case of the Missing Adopters” at about the same time.
I am going to hang up my investigators hat, and retire in this great state of Michigan. The Esser family has everything that I will ever need. The search for the perfect family has finally ended.

Someday, you and I Sherlock, may have one more hunt together.
So Sherlock, until that day happens, good luck.

Your friend forever,

Brighton's First Two Days in Foster Care

Brighton is now in Wisconsin. He loves the backyard. First thing this morning he decided to take a swim in the pond. He loved it. I wish I would have had the camera. My guess is that I will get another chance. Libby is warming up to him in her own way. When we are around she growls and barks at him. When they are outside they are chasing and playing. Sherman has no problem. Brighton seems like a good fit with our dogs.

It has taken a few minutes for Brighton to warm up to my wife, Patricia , but he is getting into his comfort zone.

Day 2.
Buds already.

A Foster Dad's "Lament" (by Greg Holden)

She used to love me.

Then Simon came to our home.

She still loved me.

But she did love Simon.

Then Watson came to our home and challenged our love.

Watson had a special place in her heart.

But she still loved me.

But not by much.

Now Brighton is here and now I don't exist.

We need to find a home for this boy.

Competition is great.

When you know you don't stand a chance

you step aside.

Now her love is Brighton.

Does anyone want to adopt a fat guy that has a lot of love to give?

That would be me.

Hugs from Arwen...

Candice writes in her diary today--

It sure is nice to have a great foster home. I am so lucky to have found a home with old people. My foster parents are about 374 years old.

I sure love them but I love their grand kids so much more.

They have 3 grand kids that are 9, 48 and 49 years old.

I get so excited when they come to visit.

Of course I am speaking in dog years because I am in my 20's.

Arwen is my favorite. She is almost 9.

She hugs and pets me every time she comes to visit. Sometimes we nap together.
I sure love it here.
It must be a dream.
Don't wake me.

Saturday, April 7, 2007

The Cost of Neglect

Vetting for the IBR Foster Dogs
There are many steps that an
Illinois Birddog Rescue fosterdog must go through before
being ready for adoption. Because IBR is licensed as a shelter by the Illinois Department of Agriculture, we are required by law to

1) microchip and
(2) spay or neuter all animals before adopting them into new homes.
We also 1) vaccinate for Parvo, Distemper, and Rabies;
(2) treat for intestinal parasites;
(3) test and treat for Heartworm disease.
Since many of our rescue dogs come from homes where they have been neglected for years, proper vetting is a crucial part of the process our dogs go through before they go to their new forever homes.

While we ask for a $325 adoption donation for
adult dogs and $375 for puppies, our average medical expense for each dog is often much more than that- especially for the dogs that may have severe injuries and medical problems. .
In the 6 plus years of IBR’s existence,we have seen many emaciated and malnourished dogs.
Most of these dogs have been fed a
poor quality diet and are full of intestinal
parasites (including hookworm, round worm,
whipworm, lungworm or tapeworm) or other
microscopic parasites known as Coccidia and

Many dogs come to us that have not
been given preventatives against Heartworm
disease, and thus test positive for this
mosquito-borne disease.

Treatment for Heartworm requires two injections of a Cyanide-based drug called Immiticide. Dogs that undergo Heartworm treatment also need
several months of rest so that the dying worms can be reabsorbed into their systems.
All of these parasites can make a rescue dog
very ill and can be expensive to treat on
average about $300 per dog.
Heartworm disease does not discriminate.
In 2006, IBR successfully treated 11 dogs

In the last few years, we have been able to test rescue dogs that have been
exposed to many tick infestations for tick-borne diseases. This year alone we have treated several dogs for Ehrlichea and Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever. One English Setter needed to be treated for RMSF, Heartworm disease, and intestinal worms. He is doing well now
It is IBR’s policy not to turn away sick or injured animals. This includes dogs that may need surgeryto fix broken bones, torn ligaments, or other issues related to improper care or being hit by cars before they come into the rescue. We had a plate put into a young GSP’s leg to repair a broken hip and we also found an excellent surgeon to do an anterior-cruciate-ligament repair on an olderPointer.

Both boys were eventually adopted but all of these procedures are very
expensive and were paid for only through urgent fundraising efforts.
The most costly of all veterinary emergencies is an outbreak of Parvo.
Parvoinfluenza is a terrible virus that attacks the intestinal lining of young dogs and puppies.
The dogs die a painful excruciating death.
Usually a round of 3 Parvo vaccines given to puppies starting at 9 weeks of age will help build immunity to this disease.
Unfortunately, many dog owners do not provide proper puppy care and many dogs catch this disease while they are waiting at the local animal control facility for homes.
IBR has saved at least 4 dogs and several puppies from Parvo illnesses, and at a very high price.
Treatment for Parvo requires round-the clock inter venous fluids, antibiotics, anti-nausea medications and lots of prayers.
The vetting expese can run into the thousands of dollars.

This year’s Parvo survivor was a young female English Setter that had whelped 6 puppies prior to coming into foster care.
She broke with Parvo when the puppies were only 4 weeks old and nursing.
It was touch-and go for a while, but the mother and 5 puppies survived.

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Reserved Post

under construction

Reserved Post

under construction

Friday, March 9, 2007

Reserved Post

Under Construction

Thursday, March 8, 2007

Reserved Post

Under Construction

Reserved Post

Under Construction!

Reserved Post

Under Construction

Reserved Post

under construction

Wednesday, March 7, 2007

Reserved Post

reserved Post

Under Construction!

Reserved Post

under construction

Reserved Post

under construction

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Reserved Post

Under Construction

Sunday, February 18, 2007

Reserved Post

under construction

Reserved Post

Under Construction