Brodie’s Story (by Anita Hoag, his WIN volunteer foster mom)

On the morning of July 8th, 7-year-old Mr. Brodie arrived at my house in Longmeadow so that our family could provide him with a foster home until WIN volunteer, Maria Flanagan, and I could find him his forever home. We thought it would be a nice, easy placement given his sunny disposition, and he’s a beautiful, healthy dog with AKC papers. Brodie was a bit shy and confused at first—he didn’t like to be petted by people he didn’t really know, it was hard to get him to go into his crate without putting his leash on him, he marked a little in my house, he cried for his former owner, and he didn’t eat well. I wasn’t really that surprised because Brodie came from a very loving home and was only given up because of family circumstances. However, we quickly took care of Brodie’s transition by establishing a routine for Brodie with morning walks in the woods with my WIN girl, Spumoni, and one or two other walks during the day. We got Brodie to eat by mixing nitrate free hotdogs with his food for the first couple of days and then he was fine. Brodie and Spumoni coexisted quite nicely together as they played with the kids and shared chew toys, food, and their beds and everyone else’s beds! Brodie became more and more outgoing and playful and would even play a game of fetch with you! How many Wheatens do you know that can do that? He loved sitting on the couch with us, getting belly rubs and just hanging out.

Now back to the easy placement. It wasn’t to be, as Brodie’s first two potential adopters who were very excited about him didn’t work out. I started to get a little discouraged because I knew that Brodie was a very special guy and he could provide so much love to his new family. The third time is a charm! Maria had reached out to a WIN applicant who, back in October, had lost her 12-1/2-year-old wheaten. She originally told us “no” because she was afraid that she would have to go through losing another wheaten sooner than she would have liked. She was extremely honest with us, but she also said that if we had trouble finding him a home to please call her. Maria sent this applicant an e-mail after the second family fell through and within the hour, she e-mailed her back and said yes! She told Maria that she and her husband discussed it, and that if WIN contacted them again, they would know it was meant to be!

Arrangements were made, and on Friday, August 2nd, Paula and her daughter, Molly, made the trip to my house to meet Brodie. Before they made the trip, Paula had asked if there was a coffee shop nearby so they could leave and make a decision. There was no trip to the coffee shop! I think they fell in love with him before they even met him. They came to the house and we talked about Brodie. Brodie was very happy to meet them and he was giving them kisses right away! I asked if they wanted to go for a walk, and they said yes. I ran upstairs to grab my gear and I think that’s when they talked about it. We went to the woods and walked the dogs. I would talk about Brodie, and say “Well if you adopt him,” and they replied that they were taking him and they wanted him. After our walk, we went back to the house to sign the adoption papers. We packed up Mr. Brodie’s gear, loaded him into their car, and Mr. Brodie was officially adopted!

Before they left, I said that he may cry a little bit, and he might not eat. I sent them an e-mail the day after the adoption to see how the first night went. I said that if he didn’t really cry then Maria and I did our jobs in placing Brodie in the right home. I got an immediate response and was told that he only cried one time when she left the house to run an errand. Also, on the first night he jumped up on her bed and slept crushed against her husband the entire night. He didn’t move a bit! He’s enjoying his walks, he loves playing in the back yard, and he really likes their daughters. Maria and I were told that yes, we did a great job placing this special wheaten with their family! His first trip to the vet also went really well. The vet commented on how healthy his teeth looked (his former owner used an electric toothbrush on him—brilliant idea!) and how muscular his body was.

Our family misses Brodie for sure, but we enjoyed fostering him and finding him the most perfect, loving home!