Monday, August 8, 2011

Mikey ... Home at last!

Last August Mike (now known as Mikey) was returned to Pet Haven. Poor Mikey was terrified of everything. He needed to be in a foster home that would be patient and willing to work with a scared, gentle soul .... Not long after he came in he lucked out and ended up in the home of experienced fosters Merry and Aaron who had 2 dogs of their own: Jack (a gorgeous german shepherd) and Geordie (a big black lab mix ... and yes, just as gorgeous!). Both Jack and Geordie were adopted from Pet Haven. Mikey not only had experienced fosters ... he had 2 canine foster brothers to play with and learn from, a loving human 'foster brother' to snuggle up with, and feline 'siblings' to visit in laundry baskets and other hiding places.

For a year, Mikey's fosters continued to bring Mikey to adoption events. This poor boy continued to be overlooked. Only a handful of applications came in for him. He was scared to death at adoption events and didn't 'show' well as he would drool nervously. It didn't matter though, his fosters continued to love him, work with him and treat him like one of their own and it was clear that Mikey was continuing to improve and gain confidence. Mikey was so fortunate that his fosters could see the gem he really was beneath the shaking, drooling, barking and other ways he would display his fear and terror.
Geordie (front), Mikey and Jack

About a month ago, Merry and Aaron lost their beautiful Jack to spleen cancer. Merry and Aaron were down to 2 dogs in their household ... Geordie and foster dog Mikey. Then this past Saturday, Mikey's wish came true .... he was officially adopted by his foster family. Little did he know that he has been home all along. The bright star of Jack shining from up above has given Mikey the greatest gift of all ... a forever place in the home and hearts of Merry and Aaron and their son "I". Thank you Merry, Aaron, and 'I' for all you have done for Mikey this past year ... and for all you have done for all the foster dogs.  They currently are fostering Justice, another big black lab mix ... it appears Justice has a home visit scheduled for this week. Paws crossed for Justice!!

I asked Merry to share an update on Mikey for the blog ...

I would love to tell you about Mikey. He is a sweet, affectionate dog who loves to cuddle. When we sit on the floor with him, he leans his head against our chest and absorbs all the snuggles and pets he can get. When we're working at a desk or computer, he comes up and whips his head under an arm, asking for pets. He also wraps his head and neck around a forearm so we'll pet his chin and his chest. He is still an anxious guy, but his safe places are either the upstairs bathroom, downstairs bathroom, or his kennel. One way to Mikey's heart is with pastrami and if we have some kind of treatment we need to do, we feed him bits of pastrami while we do it and he's OK with the whole procedure. We have a calming music playlist for when he and Geordie need to be home alone in their kennels, and he has music we play at night when he sleeps in his kennel. We've offered to let him sleep in our room like the other dogs, but he prefers his kennel. Some things that other dogs do - like sit on the couch or bed with their family - is an act of bravery for Mikey. We're always so happy when he feels brave enough to join us in the kitchen when we're fixing dinner. He loves playing with balls and will bounce the balls and play with them by himself, but also loves to have us chase him and throw the balls for him. When Jack died, it usually would have taken a long time for us to decide to get another dog. But Mikey had already been part of our family and had nestled himself in our hearts. He and Geordie had a rough start together but they've developed a rhythm and understanding of one another and are friends now. From the outside, Mikey might seem like a difficult dog, but we've all figured out a rhythm that works for him and for us. He is such a sweet, brave spirit and we feel so honored and happy to have him be a permanant member of our family. 

Thank you!

Snuggle time on the couch

Jack and Mikey pay the kitty a visit
in the laundry room

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