Wednesday, June 19, 2013

CP Plumeria, nka Emma Loo, Blossoms in Forever!

Contributed by Foster and Forever Mom

Emma Loo, fka CP Plumeria, one of CP’s Tropical Flowers

Just over two years ago, I became a Foster Mom for the first time.  A neighbor down the street has been fostering for another Rescue for years and years, so I thought, “…if he can do it, so can I!”  My love of dogs in general, and Cairn Terriers specifically, carried me through the decision.  As luck would have it, Col. Potter Cairn Rescue Network was who I chose to work with.  I must admit I was terrified of the unknown.  I read everything I could get my hands on.  The Foster Handbook was read cover to cover, and still I was nervous.  After I passed the home inspection, I was put on the available list.

A call came out for Foster Parents for the Exotic Flower Girls being released from Puppy Mills in the Midwest.  Lotus, Orchid and Plumeria were their names.  I looked at the attached photos and was drawn to Plumeria right away.  After her spa treatment, Plumeria was on her way up to the North Star State by our Transport Volunteers.  As the final driver in the Transport Team North, I met a wonderful Volunteer from Southern Minnesota, who had worked an overnight shift before driving hours to bring Plumeria North.  The generosity of the people in this group first struck me at that moment and have continued to amaze me ever since.

To say Plumeria was shy is like saying a lightning strike is loud.  Being all black, she was almost invisible in her crate.  While she pressed herself flat to the bottom of the crate, her eyes seemed to say “you can’t see me.”  My heart broke at the tiny amount of spirit she seemed to have after her 8 ½ year ordeal.  It was difficult to get her out of her crate, so I started to feed her inside her crate.   She wouldn’t eat while I was in the room. 

After a few days, I tried to tempt her to accept a piece of freeze dried liver.  I found her weak spot: Food.  It was so precious, she would casually wave her nose by the liver and her tongue would accidentally touch the treat.  She would raise her nose in the air as if to say, “Oh, I couldn’t possibly, I’m on a diet.”  Then, after a moment of seeing her wheels turn, “oh well, maybe just this once...”

When filing an update report online for Plumeria, I realized that I could not let her go.   She had become a part of my pack and I would not be able to let her go.  The Col. Potter Board approved my adoption on July 4, 2011 - how appropriate - Independence Day!  Plumeria became Emma Loo, but she still had a lot of blossoming to do…

There were many hurdles she overcame.  Sounds that are considered normal house sounds, like dishwasher, doors, even changes in light and shadow, startled her into the flat the ground posture, closely followed by the retreat to the crate.  There are fewer sounds that startle her now, though she is still easy to startle.  She had to learn that she couldn’t walk through the glass door, and how to climb stairs.  That was a challenge.  She’s still unable to go down a long wooden staircase, only up.  

Emma Loo is learning to have fun!

Most changes came over the last 12 months.  She started to approach the fence when our friends (dog & people out for a walk) would stop and chat.  About 6 months ago, she started dodge-playing with a dog through the fence!  She was bouncing and wagging her tail with pure joy!  I didn’t want to make a sound or move to startle her.  Tears of joy streamed down my face!  

Emma Loo befriended…

In the last 2 weeks we have started going back to the dog park.  It used to be that she would stay in my shadow, then, about a year ago, she was confident enough to make her own trail.  Last week, she met a Standard Poodle who took an instant like to her.  His size didn’t matter to her.  She loved the attention!  He followed her around the whole fenced area.  If he started to lag behind, she looked over her shoulder and waited for him to catch up.  If he got too close, she’d bolt – wagging her tail and bouncing like a puppy!


…and cultivated!

Emma Loo has learned how to smile!
I have had great success helping Fosters that were surrenders, shelter dogs, and puppy mill survivors.  Being a Foster Mom is very rewarding.  However, the pure joy at witnessing the blooming of an exotic flower is absolutely priceless!

Minnetonka, MN

Please  Consider being a CP Volunteer!
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