One Couple + Two Dogs = Our Waldo Bungie

Polly is back…

May 9th, 2014 | Posted by Emily in Doggies! | Fostering. | Polly Pocket | Smiling through tears

As I shared yesterday on Facebook, Polly’s “adopted” status has been changed back to “available.”

Polly Pocket | Our Waldo Bungie
Over the past few months, I had been talking with Polly’s adopter about some challenges she had been facing after moving from a house to an apartment with Polly. Polly was having anxiety while she was away at work, and she finally decided that her home was not the best for Polly. I am bummed that it didn’t work out, frustrated that a lot of my advice didn’t seem to be followed, and heartbroken that Polly is now at a shelter instead of back in foster with me due to our current circumstances (trying to move, just coming off a long foster situation, etc). But there is good news…

photo 3 (1)

Because Polly’s adopter had been in contact with me, I was able to arrange for Polly to be returned to Great Plains SPCA, the No-Kill shelter where I work, instead of the underfunded, open-admission shelter she had come from (where Polly most likely would have been put to sleep due to the lack of resources they have for dealing with pets with anxiety). She was nice enough to wait for several days to return her until there was room at the intake center. Once Polly arrived, the amazing staff at the intake center sat with Polly while she adjusted to the smells and sounds of the shelter, and once she was ready, helped her work out some of her energy in playgroups (which Polly loved).

photo (10)
The whole time I was kept up to speed on what was going on with her, and yesterday I was able to go over and see her. She instantly recognized me and laid against me with the full weight of her body while I pet her and promised her that I would do everything in my power to find her the perfect home again. I promised her that once she was moved over to the adoption floor in my building, I would bring her over to my desk to hang out when the adoption center was closed. I promised her that she won’t be sad forever. I told her that the last year and a half was just a stepping stone to her forever. That her adopted mom had loved her very much but just didn’t have the ability to care for her the way she needed, but loved her enough to make sure that she didn’t end up in a place where she would be left to languish. That I was sorry she couldn’t come home with me, that I felt like I had failed her in a million ways. And she just looked at me with her giant smile and licked my tears and put her paws onto my lap as if to say “I know.”


This is a first for me. Not my first returned foster (Ginger was returned twice before we found her forever family) but my first returned foster that I couldn’t take back into my home. And let me tell you, that is one sucky feeling. But I am choosing to look at the bright side of all of this… Polly is in amazing hands with the animal care team at Great Plains SPCA. I can see her every day if I want to. Polly is a fantastic dog with so much love to give – and her forever family is out there, just waiting for her to come into their lives. So I am going to focus on that. Being mad doesn’t help anything. It certainly won’t help her find a home.

Polly Pocket | Our Waldo Bungie

So there it is. Polly is back. So expect to see lots of adorable photos of her in the coming days. And if you think about it, won’t you share her story? Who knows? You could be the one who finds her forever family!

Thank you for your support, too. I was hesitant to share this because I want to focus on Polly’s future, not her past, but I also feel like so often as foster parents we want to believe that we have found THE ONE for our foster dogs, but sometimes, it just doesn’t work out for one reason or another. That is a hard feeling to wrestle with – the feeling that you failed them in some way. So, if any of my fellow foster parents have felt this, just know, I’m right there with you.

You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 Both comments and pings are currently closed.

15 Responses

  • *wiping tears from my eyes* I should not have read this at my desk! I’m so sorry for Polly and for you to have to go through this. But, I know she is very lucky to have you and the people at your shelter on her side! Thinking happy thoughts for her to find her forever soon! :)

  • avatar Emily says:

    You know I have felt this before. When madden was returned we had two fosters and couldn’t take her back. She sat in boarding and stressed and lost weight until finally we were able to take her back.

    Maybe Polly’s forever home can have another pup to help her anxiety.

    Sending good feelings both of your ways

  • I’m sorry to hear that beautiful sweet Polly was returned! I have had a couple fosters returned as well, and it just sucks all around. I have felt like I’ve failed them also, BUT when they finally do find that real forever home, it will all be worth it. Hang in there, do what you can, and Polly will have you in her heart always as her hero!

  • avatar MayzieMom says:

    Well, crap, now I’m crying. I’m so sorry for you and Polly. I really thought this was her happily ever after. But as Mayzie has taught me in a million ways, the road to the destination is not always a straight line. Polly is just taking the scenic route to her forever and always family. I’m sending lots of love and good wishes to you both. (And Mayzie sends brindle kisses!)

  • avatar Gabi says:

    I have yet to have a returned foster (that I know of – some of ours we have fallen out of touch with, but I keep track of their records and none have been returned to our shelter at least…), and I can’t imagine it! I’m glad that her old mom was able to get her to your no kill shelter where she can be with you and have a great chance at a new home. Sorry you’re going through this but know that her perfect home is just around the corner!

  • I hate people but I love you.

  • I’m sure this is hard. So good to hear that she is in a place where she’s not on a clock. I’m sure she’ll love getting time to hang out with you. It’s good too that you know your limits right now. Having gotten myself into overwhelming foster(s) situations I applaud you for doing what is ultimately best for you and her. Her furever family is out there and none of us have any doubt that you will find it for her!

  • avatar OhMelvin says:

    You know my feelings about this already! This is a disappointment, for sure. But….this disappointment comes with so many positives, the biggest of which is her familiarity with you. I bet the sweet scent of you walking up to her gave her instant relief from the stress that has been haunting her. Sure, the circumstances are different, but the goal is the same. You will make it happen!

  • avatar Nancy says:

    I’ll never understand how someone can give up a dog after a year and a half. So sad. Poor Polly. I hope she doesn’t get depressed.

  • What a bummer! She is such a beautiful dog. I could never imagine dumping my dogs back at the shelter just because we were moving. This must be one of the top reasons I would see dogs on Craigslist when I was hunting for mine. I would rather live in my car with my dogs than giving them up! To each their own:( Glad she’s got people like you that love her to give her a chance at a happy life:)

  • avatar ninawenaNina says:

    My dog Choco (who I’ve had for 4 years now) had been “rehomed” 4 times before she found me. I know it was hard on her, and she still shows signs of separation anxiety, but we were meant to be best friends, and everything happened for a reason. She has brought us so much happiness and love, and I wouldn’t have it any other way. Polly will find her forever home, and it will be perfect.

  • This brought tears to my eyes but at the same time I’m glad that her adopter was in touch with you and was willing to wait those few days. It’s heartbreaking now but I’m hopeful that there is a great home ahead for her.

    • avatar Mary Jane Sepmeier says:

      What does she need to help her with her anxiety issues? Is it like separation anxiety, where they tear up things or go through Sheetrock by chewing when their owner leaves? Do y’all have a veterinarian evaluate her for possible Rx of anti-anxiety meds. Or are things not that severe? I’m not trying to but in, but she is a beautiful dog and if I could help with anything I would be happy to //

  • avatar Lili's Notes says:

    How could anyone return Polly?! She is amazing and so beautiful! I’m sorry, I hope she finds an amazing truly forever home. I imagine her with either a single young active adult or a young active couple who will spoil her rotten. Best wishes and a big hug to Polly.

  • avatar cafall says:

    I’m glad she is still safe. I’m sorry it didn’t work out.

    Monty and Harlow