Monday, May 12, 2008

Fresco's Adoption

I almost added the story of Fresco's adoption to my post about Mutt 'n' Strut yesterday, since technically both of these things happened on Saturday. We've actually known about Fresco's adoption for quite some time, but it didn't become official until this weekend.

I guess the story of our foster dog Fresco actually started over a year ago, when I took him to an adoption event in Kansas City after getting to know him at the shelter during the previous four months. I completely fell in love with him, so I was very pleased when he got adopted about a week later, and devastated when he was returned to the shelter about 3 months after that. We brought him home as our foster dog last August in order to save him from being put down, and then found a home for him in early October. In December, Fresco was returned to the shelter again, after having problems with the other dog in his new home. After another month at the shelter (in which he was supposed to be working on his behavioral issues with the trainer), we once again brought Fresco home with us to keep him from being euthanized.

During his last stint in doggy jail, the trainer who was supposed to be working with Fresco insisted that he was in need of years of professional help (clearly she was not a fan of Fresco), so we didn't immediately start marketing our foster dog like we'd done during his previous visit. We decided we would instead try to honor her wishes and get Fresco into a training class with some other dogs to work on his social skills. Our plan was to start the marketing campaign after he graduated, which we never actually got around to doing, because his future family became interested in him a couple of months prior to that.

While his adoption didn't become official until a couple of days ago, last weekend the process actually got started. Here's a picture from last Sunday:

Notice anything different about him? Here's a close up in case you missed it.

If you can't read it, that's Fresco's new tag, with his new last name. We bought it last weekend and then signed the adoption contract yesterday. We are officially Fresco's forever family. :)

To most of our friends who've seen Fresco at our home, this is not a huge surprise. It was obvious to everyone that we had bonded tightly to our little foster boy. The staff at the shelter joked about us keeping him long before we actually planned to, even suggesting that he purposely got kicked out of his previous homes in order to come back and live with us. I actually realized very soon after his arrival in January that we were going to have a hard time parting with him, but I had every intention of us doing so until the day in mid March when Chad took this picture:

How could we separate these cute little peas in a pod? This closeness of the dogs was really the major difference between Fresco's first stay and his second. During the first foster-go-round, Celtic was very unhappy. We loved Fresco then and often said we would keep him if it weren't for our "firstborn" Celtic. Hope and Fresco bonded through hours of wrestling, but Celtic was usually left out. He lost attention from us and attention from his sister because of the new puppy, and he was clearly depressed about it. This time was different, and strangely enough, I think it had a lot to do with the weather. Since Hope hates the cold, while she was snuggled up in bed the entire winter, Fresco and Celtic were outside sniffing around together and really bonding. They became such good buddies, and Fresco always let his older, smaller brother be in charge and be the leader. I began to worry as much about Celtic missing Fresco as I did about us missing Fresco!

Chad took a little bit longer to come around to the idea of keeping our lanky boy. It wasn't until Fresco was about half way through his training class that Chad asked me one day, "So when Fresco's done with his class are we going to start looking for a home for him?" When I replied that this was, in fact, the plan, Chad said "I don't know if we can do that." For a while after that we just ignored the subject, but by the middle of April we'd come out and admitted that Fresco was where he was meant to be. It just didn't seem fair to ship him off to another home when he'd already been in so many in his short 18 month life!

So we are once again a three dog family. While we're very happy about our new addition, it's also a little disappointing that we failed to find homes for our last two foster dogs! :)


Kristin said...

I got goosebumps when I read his new tag! I was honestly surprised when you mentioned that he had been adopted, because I was sure he was staying in the Luce household. He just fits in so well! I'm so happy for you guys and Fresco. He was smart to get kicked out of his last home! :)

Erin said...

Congratulations! I'm so happy for all of you. Fresco is one lucky pup!

Beth said...

Oh, that is GREAT! Your family is growing steadily. It is so wonderful that you not only save dogs' lives, but you love them as your own. Then they BECOME your own! :)

Kelly said...

I'm so happy for you and Chad, and especially Fresco! Glad to know we'll be able to keep up with his adventures through your blog. :)