DOG-fostering has helped Maylands woman Christine Jones recover from a violent dog attack that injured her and killed her pooch, Jeremy.
It’s almost five months since two great danes attacked her on Railway Parade in Maylands, killing her little kelpie/King Charles cavalier cross who had been named after Jeremy Irons.
In the months since, she’s had a little friend helping her on the road to recovery: a foster dog named Muppet who needed to get out of the Shenton Park dog home and get some extra care in the lead up to surgery.
Muppet turned up a bit of a cheeky boy but Ms Jones says she let him know straight away that mischief (and couch time) was off limits. Even if she’d be happy to have him cuddle up on the couch, Muppet’s new family might have strict rules and he needs good behaviour to be adopted.
Time out of the shelter is also important for dogs looking for forever homes: if they spend too long in the kennel they can get nervous and stressed, which doesn’t make them appealing to a new family.
Ms Jones says after Jeremy was killed “this place felt like a morgue. It didn’t feel like a home anymore, it felt empty”.
“It was just a house. I couldn’t enjoy my garden, I let all my plants die. I thought what’s the point of having a garden if there’s no dog in it?”
Many dog fosterers end up keeping their pooch (“it’s called ‘foster failure, adoption success’,” Ms Jones says), but she says Muppet is very adoptable and she’d prefer to keep working with dogs who need help.
Her first foster dog was Ernie, who she nursed palliatively through a terminal illness.
“I can’t say I haven’t thought about [adopting Muppet]… but it’s not about me, it’s about him, and I reckon he’d be happy with someone who can exercise him every five minutes. And I don’t think there’ll be any problem with him getting a home. I see my role as looking after them until they get to that stage.”
by DAVID BELL