Being in rescue, a certain part of me is ready to lose an animal that we took in to Little Paws Dachshund Rescue and just wasn't strong enough to recover. It's sad. I cry. I mourn...but I recognize that it's an "occupational" hazard.
This weekend I lost a foster mom. My heart is broken. Claudia came to LPDR by accident. She fostered my friend Fabre's little girl Papi, and we just absorbed her into the organization. I came to love her broken English (she was originally from Germany), the endless pictures of her dogs, and especially her fearlessness when it came for fighting for animal rights in her North Georgia community.
Claudia's story isn't mine to tell, but she changed her life dramatically when she came to the United States. I think that championing the rights of animals and ultimately welcoming over a thousand animals into her home (some just overnight, some for longer fostering stints) is what kept her going through a number of ailments. Claudia's heart just couldn't keep up anymore and after being on life support for three days, her loved ones were guided by doctors to let her go. Her loss to the rescue community is palpable.
Today I ask you to hugs your dogs (or kids) tight. Consider doing something for others - whether it's making a donation to a rescue, buying the person in back of you in line their cup of coffee, or just making someone smile. These small things help honor Claudia's memory.
As for me... I could really use a hug. And a LOT of chocolate.