Tag Archives: adoption

Exclusive Book Cover Reveal!

Today, The Furever Home Friends is revealing the cover for their new book, Just Me, Wrigley! See the cover below!

Wrigley loves to dance. She can shake her tail all over the animal shelter. But for some people, Wrigley’s rhythm isn’t enough. Wrigley is a mutt; she doesn’t know what breed she is. While others come to the shelter looking for schnauzers, labs, and Dalmatians, Wrigley wonders when it will be her turn. Can Wrigley find the confidence to stay true to herself and dance her way into a forever home?

Like with all Furever Home Friends books, 10% of this book’s profits will benefit no-kill animal shelters!

Just Me, Wrigley is currently available for preorder on fureverhomefriends.com, and will officially release on Amazon on Saturday, August 11!

What do you think of the cover? Let me know in the comments below!


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Sterling, Best Dog Ever Book Review

Sterling, Best Dog Ever by Aidan Cassie follows the adventures of one very confused Dachshund.  Sterling hasn’t had very good luck in finding a forever home.  His owners seem to always lose interest, sending him back to the streets.

One night, Sterling notices a sign at the Butlery Cutlery Company.  Their utensils are being shipped to “all the best homes.”  He decides to hide in one of the boxes where he waits to be delivered to his perfect home.

The Gilberts are surprised to see the pup inside their box of forks.  Yet, Sterling has a plan.  He won’t just be any fork; he’s going to be the best fork ever!  But when his plan starts to unravel, will he find the courage to be what the family really needs?

I absolutely adore this book!  This is definitely one of my favorite picture books of all time.  Sterling’s character is beyond adorable.  He reminds me of my own dachshund, Hope.  Young and old alike will relate to his struggle of feeling like he needs to be something other than himself.

This story is full of emotion and heart.  I loved watching Sterling’s silly antics, yet my heart broke when he kept trying to be what he thought everyone wanted.  I definitely shed tears at the end.

The character of the little girl reminds me of myself.  I noticed that her bedroom wall is covered in dog posters and drawings.  She also has numerous stuffed dogs tucked away under her night stand.  I can totally relate to her passion for pooches (especially dachshunds).

I also love that this story sheds light on the importance of animal adoption.  As the proud pet parent to five rescue dogs, I know that many of them have a story similar to Sterling’s.  They were loved for a time, yet dumped when the owners became “bored” with them.  This book would be a great addition to the humane education curriculum at animal shelters and rescue groups across the country.

Cassie’s illustrations are truly stunning.  Sterling’s expressions are priceless.  I was in love with his character the moment I saw the book cover.  I also love the spotlight illustrations at the beginning of the book that show Sterling trying to imitate numerous items.  My favorite was the curling iron (my husband favored the jackhammer).

This book is a fantastic read for animal lovers of all ages.  Readers will cheer Sterling on in his quest to find his true purpose.  I hope to see more books featuring the best dog ever.


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Pitiful Parenting

One Friday night, my husband attempted to take me out to a peaceful dinner.  We had both been having a terrible week and I was looking forward to relaxing together.  My stomach growled as we pulled into the Arby’s parking lot.


We found a cozy both near the center of the restaurant.  As we waited for our food, we began to have a discussion about our jobs.  Suddenly, a little boy screamed, “DADDY!”  I turned around to look.  Sure enough, there were two young boys ( I would say ages 6 and 8) sitting with their father.  He was apparently oblivious to his son’s shouting.  Matt smiled at me and resumed the conversation.


Once again, the boy began to yell for his “daddy” and then whine when his other brother received the attention he was so desperately seeking.  I kept turning around and giving the older boy “the look.”  I had hoped that he would nudge his brother and get him to quiet down since his dad didn’t seem to care that his child was disturbing other patrons.  Of course, the boy couldn’t care less.  They continued to hoot and holler.


What happened next absolutely enraged me.  The screamer (as I have dubbed him), yelled “Daddy, what are they going to do with that thing they’re taking out of my neck?”  Seriously?  I suppose the dad was trying to ignore his son’s inappropriate question, however, this made the boy shout it two more times.  He then followed up his performance with, “When are they taking it out?  Will I be able to see it?  How are they going to take it out?”


I almost jumped out of my seat and reprimanded the boy myself.  Who teaches their child to behave this way?  Why would you ever just sit in silence while your child screams and proceeds to discuss medical procedures in a restaurant?  If I would have acted like that when I was little, my mom would have immediately whisked me out of the restaurant, given me a spanking in the parking lot and taken me straight home where I would receive another spanking and be sent to my room.  The dad and his sons FINALLY left, laughing and smiling.


Unless a child has a mental or behavioral disorder, how he/she acts is a direct reflection of his/her parents.  And when parents allow unacceptable behavior to go unpunished, they are simply creating a monster that everyone will have to deal with.


Not long after they left, a woman came in with her daughter (she looked to be about 5 years old).  The mother placed their order and then sat down in the booth next to ours.  She quietly instructed her daughter to remain seated while she went up to get their drinks, napkins, etc.  The little girl sat quietly in her seat while peeking over the divider at us.


When the mom returned with the food, she began talking with her daughter about their summer plans.  The girl conversed with her in an “inside” voice and never shouted.  In fact, I could barely even hear her.  She was a perfect little angel and ate her food without any fuss (even though she thought the Arby’s sauce looked suspicious).


When Matt and I finished eating, I saw the mom at the condiment counter.  I complimented her daughter’s wonderful behavior and the mother’s fantastic parenting skills.  While I felt awkward for doing so, the mother seemed quite flattered.  She didn’t realize how much her daughter’s peaceful demeanor had changed the tone of our tense evening.


The parenting skills between this mother and the a fore mentioned father are like night and day.  The boys kept fighting for their father’s attention by screaming and he did nothing about it.  But, this little girl followed her mother’s instructions to the letter and still exhibited a delightful personality.  Please understand that I do not want any child to behave like a robot.  I am simply saying that parents need to take their role seriously and expect their children to behave and follow their rules.


I have also come to find that children are also the product of their environment (i.e. how they are raised).  I will be honest, not everyone is cut out to be a parent.  Such as the people in this next scenario.


On Saturday morning, one of my friends posted a harrowing story on Facebook.  She had gone to the local Shop n’ Save to complete her weekend grocery shopping.  When she got out of her car, she noticed a baby locked all alone in the vehicle next to hers.  Aside from being this being a bad idea in general, it was also very hot outside, in the upper 80’s.


Outraged, she marched straight up to the customer service desk and began to explain the situation.  Little did she know that the baby’s parents were behind her.  They began to scream at her to “mind her own f-ing business.”  Which they followed up with “We were only going to be gone a minute.”  And guess what was so important that they both had to leave their baby for?  Alcohol.  Yep, they were buying beer.


I was so proud of my friend for standing up to the so-called “parents.”  She yelled right back that one of them needed to stay in the vehicle with the baby.  She also informed them that it is too hot for the child to be locked up like that.


I shudder to think that things like this actually happen.  What would possess you to leave anything alive locked up in a hot vehicle?  Don’t even get me started on people that do this to pets!  And aren’t people worried about their child being abducted by some creep?  I never let my dogs out of my sight even when they are in our fenced in yard.  How could you just think that leaving your baby alone is a good idea? 


My fears are further confirmed by another story that appeared on a local news channel.  A woman was getting married and she wanted to include her baby in the big day.  So, she tied the baby to the train of her gown and the baby was drug behind her all the way down the aisle. 


I seriously wish that DCFS would swoop in and take these children away from these careless human beings.  And if women find themselves “unexpectedly” pregnant and feel that the baby will “cramp their style,” I pray that they will make the wise decision and place the baby up for adoption.  A friend of the family adopted her second son from such a situation.  That little boy is getting more love than he knows what to do with.  He is leading a much better life that he ever would have with his teen “parents.”


I realize that raising a human child is hard, however, it can be done.  My parents both worked full time jobs and still managed to teach me right from wrong and shower me with love and affection.  Matt’s mother even took on the role of teacher by homeschooling both him and his sister.


As a society, we need to stand together and speak up when we see parents neglecting or creating harmful situations for their children.  Remaining silent only perpetuates the endangerment that plagues too many of America’s children.

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Shocking Shelters

The most amazing thing happened last night.  My husband suggested that we take a walk after dinner.  So, we harnessed up Cole and headed out.  As we were walking along the sidewalk, I saw something in the middle of the street.  I said, “Is that a dead kitten?”

Just then, the kitten looked at me and Matt and blinked!  “It’s alive!” I shrieked.  “We have to save it!”  Cars continued to race over the cat, who luckily, managed to stay in the middle and avoided getting squished.  Matt then began to step out into the road and tried to get the traffic to stop.  One particularly rude driver nearly hit Matt with his/her 4 x 4 and sped on.  But, the woman driving the car behind the 4 x 4 stopped.

Matt carefully scooped the kitten up as we did not know if any of its limbs were broken.  We waved ‘thank you’ to the person that was kind enough to stop to allow us to save the kitten’s life.  We then made several phone calls and much to our dismay, the veterinarian’s offices that we spoke with stated that they could only keep the kitten overnight and would then have to turn it over to their local animal shelter.  This is not what we wanted to hear.  We have 6 dogs and have never really been cat people, but we know that sending it to a shelter is a death sentence.

So, we took the kitten home with us, making sure to keep our fur babies locked in their crates since we do not know if the kitten has any diseases.  Matt and I decided that we should give the kitten a bath.  The water turned brown from all of the dirt covering the poor baby.  That is when we discovered the fleas….and ticks.  They were crawling all everywhere!  Matt attempted to pick them off with a pair of tweezers.  We soon realized that we needed to give it a flea bath.

I sent Matt to Wal*Mart while I watched the quarantined kitten in the bathroom.  When he returned, I was amazed at how fast the fleas began literally dropping off.  We are lucky enough to have a large room attached to our house that used to be a barber shop, but is now our storage room.  We placed the clean kitten in a spare dog crate with a towel and some Fancy Feast.  We were not going to take a chance of our dogs catching something, no matter how kind we are trying to be.

I called my vet the next morning and explained our situation.  I was sorely disappointed to hear that I was not going to be offered a discounted rate since this was a rescued kitten.  I take all 6 of my dogs there.  I find it very hard to believe that they cannot give me some sort of a break for trying to be a good Samaritan.  So, this will probably cost me around $100 to have the kitten tested and vaccinated.

Then the debate begins:  Do we keep the kitten or give her away?  Matt and I figured that there must be no kill shelters in the area.  However, if I am going to be spending This kind of money on an animal, I am more inclined to keep it.  Matt thought of calling the Missouri Humane Society.  We have always been impressed with their gorgeous facility.

That is when we learned something shocking:  HSMO is NOT a no-kill shelter!  Plus, they refused to take the kitten because it is from Illinois!  Honestly, I am disgusted by this.  This is one of the nicest shelter facilities that we have ever seen.   Classical music plays in each room to sooth the animals.  Small, plastic dishes with treats are attached to each dog pen so that treats can be given by visitors to the dogs via a large plastic tube.  This shelter receives thousands of money each year in donations through special events as well as private donors.  They even made enough money to build a second facility.  How can they not be a no-kill shelter?  What are they using all of that money for?  The last time I was there, there were hardly any animals present.  This disturbs me greatly.

And shouldn’t they want to help animals out no matter where they are from?  I have adopted two dogs from the St. Louis Senior Pet Project.  They did not discriminate against me because I live in Illinois.  We are only 45 minutes away from St. Louis.  Hundreds of people commute to St. Louis from Illinois daily for their jobs.  But, the Humane Society of Missouri is snubbing us because we are from Illinois?  My opinion of this group has drastically changed.

I am a huge animal advocate.  If I can save an animal’s life, I will.  Obviously, I am not going to become a crazy hoarder, but I will do my best to aid an animal in need.  I thought that was the point of a shelter, to provide shelter.  Protection.  Not a one way ticket to death’s door.

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