Tag Archives: Quirks


I have a confession to make.

Cooper sleeps in our bed. 

I know, I know, there are plenty of reasons that this is a bad idea.  Maybe tops among them, Cooper’s future People may not want a bed-mate.  Breaking him of this habit could prove to be a difficult chore should he get adopted into a home with a “no dogs in the bed” rule.

Believe me, I know.

But life is short, and dogs’ lives are shorter.  Fostering is tough, and we do what we do to get by.  When Cooper let us know is no uncertain terms that crate training was not for him, we had a choice to make: force him through it, or find other ways to work through the destruction and accidents.  We chose to work through them.

And Cooper’s progress really has been amazing.  The side effect of our choice is that Cooper has figured out a soft bed snuggled in between mom and dad is a pretty great place to count sheep.  No big surprise, since he’s such a love bug. He knows our bedtime routine, and he’s learned that if he’s not careful when he jumps on the bed and lands on Oscar, he’ll get a corrective growl and little nip from his big brother.  Coop has no problem making himself comfortable, sometimes spooning with foster dad and kicking foster mom in the kidneys, sometimes the other way around. Sometimes he lies on his back with is feet in the air.  Sometimes he wedges himself between the wall and my pillow, with his front and back legs on either side of my head.  Or he’ll curl up in a ball over my shoulder and lay his head on my chest with a big content puppy *sigh* and synchronize his breathing with mine…this one is my favorite.

Yep, Cooper sleeps in the bed.  And I’ve come to love it.

But then the other night, something…well, strange happened. 

My schedule is pretty crazy sometimes, so I was getting home late after Foster Dad was already in bed.  I opened the door and wasn’t too surprised that I wasn’t greeted by two waggly brindle butts – it was, after all, bed time.  From the front door of our one-story ranch house I can see all the way down the hallway to the master bedroom.   As I started to walk towards the back to say hello to my men (furry and otherwise), Cooper came wandering, sleepy-eyed, out of the guest room. 


This was odd because the only (only) time I’ve ever seen Cooper in the guest room is when he follows me in there…because as I’ve mentioned before, he’s a shadow.  I went in to check it out and sure enough, there was a Cooper-sized spot in between a folded up quilt and the guest bed pillow that was suspiciously warm, as if a Cooper-sized body had just been snoozing in it moments ago. 

Foster Dad confirmed, when he and Oscar went to bed, Cooper decided to try out the guest room.  I guess he found it pretty comfortable, because he completely snubbed us that night and chose the guest room over us.  Over us!  Har-umph.  I didn’t know whether to be offended or a little bit proud of our boy for branching out and asserting some independence…

…until about 3 AM when he got startled by a passing truck and darted back into our room, where he stayed until morning.

If you can’t wait for Cooper to keep you warm at night, please fill out an adoption application with Agape Animal Rescue.



Filed under Our Foster Journey

There’s Something About Cooper

Something about Cooper just makes you fall in love with him over and over again.

Maybe it’s the perma-grin? The puppy enthusiasm?  The stunning good looks or comic timing?  The tail that wags so hard that there’s a distinct thud-thud-thud on whatever surface it’s against, even if it’s a soft pillow?  The fact that he wants to please you SO. BAD.

…or the fact that he simply can’t all the time, even though he tries so hard – it’s enough to bring tears to your eyes.

When you leave the house, he will break your heart in half – the way he gets so freakin’ excited, “Surely you’re going to take me with you!” then you watch his ears droop as he realizes he has to stay home while you head out to some exiting adventure without him.  If only I could explain to him that work or the grocery store are not, in fact exciting adventures!

But when you come home again, the excitement and pure joy you see on Cooper’s face is enough to make the stress from even the worst day fade into a memory.  That’s not even fair, because it’s not just on his face – the elation Cooper exudes seems to fly off of every inch of his body – it’s contagious.  There’s just no really good way to describe it – Cooper is Happiness.

At the same time, it’s gonna take a very special kind of family for Cooper.  One that has unending amounts of love to give, and lots of patience.  I’m not gonna lie, Cooper is a handful. He’s clingy. He’s needy. He wants to be right next to you all the time.  He reminds me of this, but sped up about a hundred times, and not standing nearly as still:

He sleeps on our pillow at night – not just in our bed, but up on our pillows.  He’s still not 100% potty trained – his limit is about 5 – 6 hours he can spend alone without leaving a little puddle on the floor.  He has separation anxiety and a taste for hardcover books, remote controls, CD’s, coffee table corners, pillows, board games, leather chair arms, and pretty much anything else that’s handy.  He refuses to be crated – he’ll either escape or make himself bleed trying to.  He’s dog reactive on a leash.  He’s possessive of his toys and his People, and will snap at another dog if they try to invade his cuddle space.

“Hey, wait just a minute!  Aren’t you trying to get Cooper adopted, here?  Shouldn’t you be advertising his good qualities instead of listing the bad?”

Of course, our end game is to find Cooper the most perfect Furever home in the entire world.  That is – the most perfect home for Cooper.  We’ve already had one match that we thought was made in heaven turn out not to be the “happily ever after” we thought it would be, and the last thing we want to do is repeat that. We want Cooper’s new family to know exactly what they’re getting with Cooper – a lovable snuggly little wild man, with boundless energy and an appetite for chaos – who is utterly impossible not to fall head over paws in love with.

Cooper’s quirks could take months to work on, and will probably need a lifetime commitment of continued training and practice.  We’re taking steps to work on each and every one of them, which I’ll talk more about later this week. Every day is a learning experience with Cooper, but man, oh man…we just love this dog. 

After all, sometimes it’s the dogs that are the hardest to love, who need our love the most.

If you’ve got enough love and patience in your life to share with Cooper, please fill out an application with Agape Animal Rescue.



Filed under Our Foster Journey

Miss Independent

Molly Tamale is an independent gal.

Can you really blame her?  She hasn’t had anywhere to call “home” for any significant period of time in her entire life.   She’s had no one to rely on but herself.  But don’t you feel sorry for Molly Tamale – all that moving around has done nothing but toughen her up.   She’s happy, easy-going, confident, spunky, and she knows what she wants. 

She likes her personal space.  Her favorite spot at Foster House is on a folded up blanket next to the window, or laying in Cooper’s crate in the corner, where no one bothers her.  She’s not exactly a “snuggle bug.”  Once she knows she can trust you, she’ll jump up onto the couch next to you and allow you the privilege of petting her, but she’s not one to crawl up in your lap and demand attention like some (ahem, Cooper).   

Independent, yes, but not aloof.  Like every dog I’ve ever met, Molly Tamale loves being part of a family.  She’s waiting by the door, wagging her tail happily when we come home (meanwhile, our darling devoted Oscar can hardly be bothered to raise his head off the couch half the time when we return).  She goes absolutely bananas if you pick up the leash: “Are we going for a walk?  For a ride?  To the vet?  I don’t care, let’s just go already!!”  She loves her foster brothers – she runs and plays and wrestles with the boys when they insist on it, but we think she’d be just as happy as the only dog in the house….

…with People who are going to love her for who she is – independence and all.

If you’re ready to give Molly Tamale her furever home, please fill out an application with Agape Animal Rescue.



Filed under Our Foster Journey

Pig & Piglet

If Cooper is our Pig, Roxie is our Piglet. 

She’s a little pint-sized version of our Pig.  First of all, she also completely idolizes her (nick)namesake – the two of them are inseparable! 

Secondly, she scarfs down food like it’s the last meal she’ll ever get.  I know she’s a growing puppy who was underweight to begin with, but sheesh…she puts away kibble like it’s goin’ out of style. 

And finally, there’s this… (volume up – it’s worth it!)

If you think Roxie is the Piglet for you, please fill out an adoption application with Agape Animal Resuce.



Filed under Our Foster Journey

Tucker’s Big Adventure

Fully aware that I have been a slacker in the posting department this past week, I’m sharing an old story that I wrote a few weeks ago, but wasn’t sure I wanted to share.  This little event happened the very first weekend Tucker was with us.  At the time, it was a very traumatic experience, and I thought it painted us as horrible, neglectful foster parents.  Looking back, it was really quite funny, and since no harm came of the entire ordeal, I thought what the heck – at the very least it can help Tucker’s future People make sure they’re prepared from the beginning… 

Remember how I’ve shared that Tucker is an escape artist?  Well this weekend he reminded us that you can’t take your eyes of him, even for a moment, if the door is open.  He’s sneaky, he’s curious, and he’s FAST.

This past Sunday morning, as we were about to leave for breakfast, Tucker made a break for it.  The door was open for a split second and out he went, through the yard and up the street and out of view.  My heart literally stopped.  As Foster Dad followed him, at a casual pace as not to lend to the game of “chase,” calling his name cheerfully, I flipped out.  Oscar knew immediately something was wrong as I went tearing to the back of the house to get my shoes, threw them on my feet (not bothering to care that they were from two different pairs), grabbed the leash and the dog treats and ran after Foster Dad.  By the time I caught up with him, we were in the yard of what we call the Cat House, three houses up from ours.  These folks have feline friends in numbers that I can only estimate to be somewhere in the double digits, who come and go as they please through a cat door cut in their front porch.  Well it might as well have been Christmas for Tucker – the smells!  The freedom!  The CATS to chase!!  Looking back on the incident, after my heart re-started, it was absolutely hilarious watching Tuck literally bound like a deer around their yard, chasing after cats he had no prayer of actually catching. 

“Tucker!  Come!” (At this point, Tucker barely responded to his name, let alone “come.”) 

“Want a treat??”  (While Tuck is fully aware of what freeze dried liver is, and that he LOVES it, he certainly did not know it as “treat.”)

While he was distracted by the felines we thought we might have a shot of catching him, but he saw us and turned on his little paw and bounded off towards the back of their house, and over a drop off in their back yard to the street behind our house.  At this point, I am FREAKING OUT – he’s gone for good, no one will ever be able to catch him, we’re going to get black balled from our rescue’s foster list, ultimate foster fail. 

Foster Dad, thank GAWD, kept a clear head.   In situations like this when I am a complete basket case, I respond best to direct orders, so when he turned to me and said, “Go get the car!” I jumped to action.  I took off running in my mis-matched flip flops.  I ran to the house to grab the car keys and back to the front porch.  Thinking twice, I turned around to grab Oscar to bring him along, thinking maybe he could entice Tucker back to us.  Like I said, Oscar knew something was wrong, so he obediently sat while I clipped his collar and leash on him with shaking hands, and ran with me to the car.  Now Oscar doesn’t really care for the car all that much – while he’s very athletic and can leap to the top of a picnic table from a stand still, the back seat of my Accord poses a huge challenge for him.  Not today – jumped right inside, and I made a mental note to reward Oscar with the biggest peanut butter stuffed Kong he’s ever seen if we successfully get Tucker back in one piece.

By the time I got Oscar in the car, Foster Dad had gotten back too and jumped in the drivers’ side.  The Hollywood driving outta him I saw that morning was nothing short of impressive.  We tore around the block to the street behind our house, to where we had last seen Tucker disappear to.  Foster Dad spotted him darting between two houses.  We pulled into their driveway, tires squealing, he jumped out and ran to the back yard while I grabbed Oscar.  When we got to the back of the house, there was Tucker, having the absolute time of his life.  As soon as he saw Oscar he ran right up to us – Foster Dad gave him a treat and scooped him right up. 

The entire ordeal couldn’t have lasted more than 10 minutes, but it felt like hours, and definitely took at least a year off my life.  Thankfully, Tucker got home safe, and perhaps this little event will help Tuck’s People to always remember to guard the door with your life – Tucker’s might depend on it!

To adopt this little Houdini, please contact Agape Animal Rescue.




Filed under Our Foster Journey

Dreamin’ of Furever

Tucker completely zonked out after his big day on Saturday.  Here he is, dreaming of…hmm…probably meeting his furever family and giving them lots of kisses.

To adopt Tucker, visit Agape Animal Rescue.


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Filed under Our Foster Journey

Captain Underbite

You’ve heard of Captain Underpants?  Well somehow Tucker acquired the nickname Captain Underbite.  Not really sure where it came from…

….but it stuck.

To adopt Captain Underbite, contact Agape Animal Rescue.


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Filed under Our Foster Journey

The Tucker Sleeps Tonight

Tucker does have plenty of energy, this much is absolutely true.  So after getting completely, well, “tuckered” out, he turns passing out into an art form.  You name a position, and he has passed out in it.

The Superman:

The Stuck Turtle:

Sitting Up:

In a chair:

On the floor:

I know, buddy, it’s hard work being so heartbreakingly adorable!

To adopt Tucker, fill out an application at Agape Animal Rescue.



Filed under Our Foster Journey