Apollo, Tara, and Gabby
ApolloWe first started fostering for AHDRO back in December 2004, and have fostered 25 collies and shelties for AHDRO and NEOCR since then. Back in August 2007 we were asked to foster a 4 year old former stud dog named Apollo coming from a less than reputable breeder in Akron, Ohio for AHDRO via NorthEast Ohio Collie Rescue. I met Betty Hodgson, the intake person for NEOCR to pickup up Apollo.
Apollo was a beautiful, fluffy boy, and I spent many hours brushing him, removing the loose and matted hair from his coat. His white rough and feet were not so white, more of a beige, but quickly whitened up after a bath. He was such a good boy that we told Daryl that if a potential adopter named Bob didn’t adopt him, that we wanted to keep him. When Bob came to visit, he really liked Apollo, but he really wanted a younger dog, and besides, he said, he thought that Apollo belonged with us. And so it came to be!
A year ago, we lost our beloved 15 year old sheltie whom we had since she was 7 weeks old, Lakofsky’s Katie Scarlett, named after the character in Gone With The Wind. The next day, I was looking at the Almost Home website and saw that there were two 12 week old sable sheltie puppies, and one was named Tara – the same as the plantation in Gone With The Wind. It was fate! It was as if Katie was sending Tara to us!
I immediately called Daryl on my break from work, only to be told that there were already 2 applications for the puppies, but that if someone dropped out, Tara would be ours. I had reconciled myself to not getting Tara when Daryl called me and told me that someone had dropped out and Tara was ours.
We drove down to Columbus from Mentor and picked up Tara at her foster’s home and headed down to Springfield to visit my parents at the Masonic Home before heading back home. Tara was a big hit! My dad, who in his better days used to ride with me when I went to pick up fosters, sat in his wheelchair holding Tara for over an hour. We were told that Tara was fiesty, and she certainly is. When we arrived home, Tara and Apollo immediately bonded. At 5 lbs to Apollo’s 80 lbs, she constantly climbed all over him, putting her tiny face in his mouth and playing tug with his long, fluffy tail, without a complaint from Apollo. They developed a special bond, and later, when we fostered 2 shelties this spring for AHDRO, Apollo was very jealous when Tara played with them instead of him.
Then in June we lost our beloved 11 year old rescued collie, Gracie, who was the one who inspired us to start fostering for collie rescue. We immediately found a young tri-color collie named Gabriella who has joined our family. She and Tara and Apollo have become great pals also. Gabby chases Tara around the backyard and often puts her shoulder down on the floor so that now 15lb Tara can get on her to play. Gabby also lies on her back to allow Tara to climb on her chest to play. We very much enjoy watching all three dogs play together. Tara often lies on my lap as I watch TV in the evening and goes for walks with my husband. When it is dinner time, Apollo will come over to me in my chair, nibble on my arm and “talk” to me to tell me its time to eat.
These dogs are our children, and I can’t imagine not having all three of them around!