Fostering Emmett and Finding Family

Today’s post is the story of fostering and family. Mari Sasano tells us about how she, and her Boston Terrier Henry, got into fostering.

You can follow Henry on Instagram @henrysasano!


About two years ago, I decided that I would get involved with rescue. Because my Boston terrier, Henry, has given me so much joy since I brought him home, I decided to volunteer for Boston Terrier Rescue Canada. I’d been lurking on their Facebook page for years and they posted something about a senior Boston who needed an Alberta foster home right away. I had space. My first foster!

Well, it was a false alarm. This particular rescue fellow found a place right away. I can’t say I wasn’t disappointed. But what happened next changed my life. Boston Terrier Rescue called again a week later, asking me if I’d be willing to take in a French Bulldog who was surrendered to French Bulldog Rescue Network. Well, of course!

EmmettEmerson just barely escaped euthanasia before he found his way into rescue. Over the summer, he had started to show some paralysis in his hind legs. This was likely a problem with his spine, and the cure would be complicated and expensive. Rather than have him put to sleep, his owners gave him up to French Bulldog rescue who did some fundraising for his surgery. Volunteers stepped up to find the money. He got his surgery, and was confined to crate rest. But his foster parent’s mother broke her leg, so he had to find another foster home ASAP.  And that’s where I came in.

And in a couple of weeks, I found myself in a parking lot in Calgary meeting up with a woman who handed over a 10-month old pied Frenchie named Emerson (his real name is Emmett, but all FBRN dogs have a temporary foster name). He was obviously loved and cared for: house-trained, crate-trained, and obviously started with some manners (sit, stay, come). Just your typical confident, clownish Frenchie. My job was to rehab him after so much time in his crate, balancing him on three legs, gently stretching to improve flexibility.Emmett

As for my existing dog, Henry is very particular about his friends, so we needed to be careful about introductions; thankfully, FBRN provided many resources for first-time foster homes and they had some good advice about slow intros. Henry’s first impression: he hated Emmett. They barked and growled at each other, and lived in separate rooms. It was an accident that brought them together — somehow one of them managed to muscle his way past the door while the other was in the backyard. Luckily, enough time had passed that they started to play.

It wasn’t too long before they were cuddling and wrestling together. It became pretty clear that Henry wanted to keep him, and that was that. Now I can’t imagine life without Emmett. He just fits with our little pack, and nothing makes me happier than seeing those two playing together or licking each other’s faces. They so obviously love each other.

unnamedFor the record, we went on to foster a lovely Boston/pug mix, and he went on to a very loving home, so I’m no longer worried that fostering means adopting every dog that comes through the door!

If you’ve considered fostering, I highly recommend it. If your family loves animals but is not ready for the full commitment of a ownership, foster. If you are ready for a dog, foster. It’s a great way to try out a dog and see how it fits into your family. If that particular dog isn’t going to work, it’ll go on to a forever home. Volunteering for rescue is one of the best experiences I’ve ever had, and Henry and Emmett too! I love that chunky meatball!


Have questions about fostering? Or want to apply? Visit the Foster section of our website.