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Tuesday, Sep. 27, 2016

Love Story

Posted Thursday, August 30, 2012, at 12:35 AM

This photo is of Salsa right after she was rescued from the streets of Kansas City. You've come a long way baby!
I've fostered 10 pit bulls since I began with SEPR two years ago. Sometimes it's one at a time and sometimes two.

I've had some pretty special dogs in my home. Savannah was the first. She was a terrific guinea pig to get me started. Very calm, friendly, and in good health.

Jasmine was a bit more of a wild child. She and Ike had their moments of battling for the ball.

Ava and Drea came together. Drea was adopted after only having her for two weeks. Petunia filled the open spot and the girls got along very well. Ava was a bit more of a loner while Petunia was a lap dog. Petunia has this adorable under bite that makes the expression on her face appear as though she is always pouting. They were adopted the same day by two different families.

And then came Salsa. My first real challenge. She was a stray living on the streets of Kansas City and was found completely emaciated. The first time I saw her picture my heart sank. How could this happen to any animal? By the time I picked her up from transport, she had gained some weight and looked pretty good. No surprise to any of us when we found out she did not want anyone near her food or treats. She probably had been fighting for food for awhile and didn't understand that it would simply be given to her now. Salsa had some pretty big trust issues and was always ready for battle. It took 8 months to find Miss Sassy Pants Diva Princess a home of her own, but she certainly hit the jackpot. She is the Queen of her castle now, just she and her dad.

Blaze was the first male I had. He was evacuated from South Sioux City during last years flooding. He had the potential to become a big, powerful boy. Blaze and his dad went to obedience training. The males seem to be the bigger goofballs. Always that amazed look in their eyes when they plow into a stationary object and it doesn't move.

And then came the love birds, Boomer and Delta. They were found along with there three puppies in a good Samaritans yard one cold morning in January. The puppies were believed to be old enough, to be away from mom, so they went to separate foster homes and the happy couple came home with me. That was the end of January. It quickly became apparent that Boomer was sick. In fact, I honestly did not expect him to live. He was diagnosed with Babesia and Ehrlichia, both tick borne diseases, attacking the blood cells. Over 75% of Boomers blood cells were infected. Luckily with a blood transfusion, the generous donation from a man in TN to be able to buy the medicine he needed, and many prayers, he became healthy enough to learn to be a dog. Boomer still lacks confidence, but is learning the world isn't such a scary place after all. Some days are better than others.

Delta had heartworm, which is caused from a tick as well. The diseases would lead us to believe these dogs were strictly outdoor dogs possibly existing on the end of a chain. Delta is a rough and tumble girl, not about to be pushed around by some boy! She can be the sweetest little thing with the most soulful eyes I've seen. She helps Boomer gain the courage he needs to come outside to play, hop up on the couch, or say hello to a stranger. We've decided that they deserve to remain together for the rest of their lives and will only adopt them out as a couple. It's not easy to find one pit bull a good home, let alone two together. I may have them for awhile:-)

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Steph, you do an amazing job with all your doggies. many thanks to you.


-- Posted by Maribeth on Thu, Aug 30, 2012, at 6:20 AM

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It's a Dog's Life
Stephanie "Foster Mom" O'Brien
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My name is Stephanie O'Brien. I'm an animal lover and enjoy volunteering. I have combined those passions into providing a temporary home to animals that would otherwise be sitting in a shelter or worse, euthanized due to lack of room in a shelter. For the past two years I've fostered pit bull type dogs for a rescue in South Dakota. I've also had the opportunity to do some presentations on responsible pet ownership and have been involved in fighting breed specific legislation in SD and IA. I'm looking forward to providing the readers with animal related topics and possibly answer any questions you may have. Enjoy! Stephanie Sioux Empire Pit Rescue Volunteer
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