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Reach Out Rescue & Resources is a small group of rescuers with a large amount of passion for dogs and cats!!
Last Updated:
1/17/2020 2:16 AM


The Mama Dog
by Steffi Ridgel

Fostering sort of sneaked up on me. One day, a few years ago, a friend who worked in rescue called me with a desperate situation. They had taken in a sweet mama dog and her puppies and there was just no room at "the inn". They would all be put down. Maybe I could…? So there I was, in a weak moment, and I said "Send them over, I love puppies".

Well, the rescue van arrived and I felt like I was opening a Christmas package as I helped to pull the big, back doors to the van. There, tongue hanging out and a smile that stretched from ear to ear, stood Abby.  She leapt from the van with delight to be out in the fresh air and promptly knocked me down. She was a BIG dog.  The inside of the van seemed to be actually moving somehow, and I stared into the interior from my spot on the ground and began to see tiny partly open eyes and many little legs. The first puppy came tumbling out. There is just nothing cuter than a puppy. While I was enjoying my first puppy in years, his brother was lifted out. Then two sisters. My family was growing. How sweet, four black puppies.
Web Image: Abby with pups

Then another handful of little ones appeared. That's when I remembered I had not asked the breed or the number of my new residents. These were two week old puppies and they were huge! In fact as more came pouring out of the van, I started to feel like that scene from the Sorcerer's Apprentice by Disney where the brooms kept multiplying. Puppy seven tumbled out, then eight, and finally the van was empty with the ninth rotweiller mix. Plus mom, I had ten new dogs. That night I sat with my little boarders and was engulfed in puppy kisses. This was going to be fun!

Web Image: Abby single pupTwo weeks later, mama dog said she was done cleaning up after this brood and it took a snow shovel to clean out their pen at least four times a day. And oh they were growing so fast. No matter how hard a day I had, I always spent an hour or more in the evening playing with my puppies. Notice they had become "my" puppies. Each one had his or her own personality and they were all my favorites. Then the first application came in. I cried. Little Bear was the first to go. By now we were up to two of us with snow shovels cleaning out their pen, but "puppy scent" can go a long way to making up for physical labor and I missed each one as they went off to their new homes.

Finally the night came when it was just "mama" and me, in the empty pen. She was delighted . They had all developed razor sharp teeth and she now had me all to herself. The sweet puppy scent still lingered and I knew something she didn't. She was going to her new home tomorrow. I held her against me while she licked my hands.I knew I was going to cry again. She snuggled tighter and fell asleep with her head on my shoulder. It had been six weeks of hard physical labor. She was tired. So was I. And I couldn't wait to do it again.

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