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Happy Tail: This dog is evidence of failure


Anyone who has a pet knows it’s a big responsibility, and Kristen Goodall had grown up with one. She knew they took lots of time and care. So when she was on her own and began thinking about adopting one, she was nervous. Could she take care of a dog by herself?

Nona looks as if she would really like a treat about now.

Nona looks as if she would really like a treat just about now.

The Pacific, WA, woman began looking on Petfinder, hoping she would know when she spotted the perfect dog.“One night I saw [a listing that said] emergency foster needed. Two weeks, the ad said. I decided I could test it out for two weeks and see if I was ready.”

The dog had been on death row at an open admission shelter before being plucked to safety by K9 Rescue and Rehab. She had suffered from a uterine infection and had to be spayed. Now she needed someone to take care of her while she healed.

“Nona had just gotten out of surgery and was really nervous and tired,” Kristen says. “The first two or three days I had her she just stayed in her crate and hid; she didn’t even want to eat.”

Kristen spent every moment she could with Nona, lying down by the crate, petting and reassuring the dog. Gradually Nona gained confidence and came out of the crate and started following Kristen around.

“I’ve had her about two months now, and she’s the best friend I ever could have wanted,” Kristen says. “After the first week, she really came out of her shell and is hilarious, adorable and full of life.” She sleeps with Kristen and is a bed hog, and the crinkle of a treat bag brings her running. At the dog park, she loves playing with the big dogs, even though she’s only a foot tall.

Most of all, though, she loves Kristen. “Everyone always tells me, ‘That dog really loves you.’ That fills me with pride.”

The foster experience showed Kristen she was ready for a dog. She admits, however, she is a foster failure. Nona, now Kristen’s permanent sidekick, is the evidence.

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