Well…Carlos went back to his foster mom yesterday. We took an honest look at how things were going after a month, and decided that it just was not the best match because of the very real risk of him getting badly hurt at our house. He and Leeloo played very rough, and the problem with that is that she never learned how to be careful and he was not physically capable of teaching her that lesson. After she literally tossed him through the air last week, I started really trying to keep them from wrestling so much, and calling Leeloo off, which had the result of freaking Carlos out and making him nervous. As much as we loved Carlos and the dogs got along so well, we felt it was not the best thing for him.
What I did not realize, until Heidi came back for him, was that he wasn’t entirely happy, either; he liked it here and had fun, and loved Leeloo, but I think he was always waiting for her to come back for him. He turned into a completely different dog when he saw her and ran across the kitchen floor to her – he was afraid of our kitchen and had never left the living room in all the time he was here. We had also had a terrible time getting him to eat, and he reportedly ate a good meal with gusto when he arrived back at her house.
I had been really sad about the whole situation and steeling myself for a tearful goodbye, but how could I be anything but happy for him when I saw how overjoyed he was? She brought him from a dog who had only ever known the inside of a cage, and was so overwhelmed and terrified he was frozen, to the happy go lucky little man he is now, and I guess she will always be ‘mom’. I don’t know whether he will go on to another home after this – or if he already *is* home – but I know that this was not the right place for him.
Leeloo is fine. I worried she’d look for him but she watched Carlos leave and she’s a very smart dog. She had fun with him but I think she also may be a bit happy to have me all to herself again. I will continue to work on Leeloo’s socialization to keep that door open, but I think she actually needs a larger dog, one who speaks ‘dog’ fluently, that has a much calmer energy to balance out her wild energy. Maybe that dog is out there… and if he or she is, Leeloo will be here waiting, because I guess I can now say that she is ‘home’.