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Fostering saves lives
a first-hand account
Julie Prickett gets to know Lindy the day she left the shelter with friend CoCo (on left). - photo by Prickett


I was handling my emotions pretty well until Patsy Topping picked up my sweet foster dog Lindy and took her inside of the transport bus. That’s when I got a little misty eyed. Michael Schofield would soon be driving Lindy and 14 other dogs up north to the Animal Rescue Fund of the Hamptons in New York. "Oh, she’s a hugger," Patsy said warmly. Lindy, a former short-term resident of the Walter M. Crowe Animal Shelter, loves to be held and snuggled. As a first time foster Mom, the experience couldn’t have been any better or more enjoyable.

I knew my first foster would have to be a pretty special dog.  As soon as Lindy was pointed out to me as a rescue candidate, I knew that she would be perfect.  Calm, polite, and patient. Maybe she was just fooling me so I would get her out of that kennel? No, this sweet girl truly was how she appeared when I first met her. After introducing my own two dogs to her (Roxy and Shadow) they took to each other almost instantly.

I was Lindy’s foster Mom for two weeks and it was a very rewarding undertaking, as anyone who has fostered will tell you. I received plenty of support from my fellow foster friends who do this several times a year. When fostering, I just had to remind myself that I was not only saving Lindy’s life, but the life of another dog who took her place at the shelter.

Topping, who graciously coordinates these trips with ARF Hamptons lifted up every single dog into the bus that afternoon and took them to their cushioned crate. It would be a long ride, but they would be in good hands. The Danny and Ron Rescue’s transport bus is specifically designed so that all the dogs will be cozy and comfortable on long trips like these. Lindy, Gigi, Lil Man, Marcy, Mose, Pot Belly (Polly), Rowland, Juicy, Stitch, Cameo, Cotton, Misty, Pamela, Frances, and Percy were all given treats and checked over to ensure they were calm and comfortable. All the foster moms and dads were outside the bus to see it off, as if they were parents seeing off their kids to summer camp.

I have to admit I was pretty sad and my heart ached when I got home that day, but the feeling subsided and I realize it’s alright to feel that way after saying good-bye. Now that Lindy is off to find her forever home another foster will eventually come, stay for a bit, and make his or her own trip. Opening our doors, sharing our love, and saying goodbye is just a part of the process.

Being a volunteer at the animal shelter and now a part-time foster, it’s hard for me to see the amount of animals that come to the shelter every week. If I could stress anything to people out there it would be to spay and neuter your animals. It’s very disheartening to think about the number of homeless and unwanted animals in our community.

Take advantage of the low cost spay and neuter services that our shelter has to offer. Become a part-time foster for the dogs who are able to go to rescue organizations, donate your time, or show support any way that you feel you can.

If you are interested in fostering, please contact the shelter at 425-6016 For the most up-to-date information about dogs available at the shelter, visit their website at and be sure to "Like" them on Facebook www.face


Update: Lindy found her

furever home!

The staff of ARF Hamptons said they fell in love with Lindy the minute she arrived. Because of her amazing disposition, the staff's dog trainer even considered adopting her because he saw so much potential in her.

Lindy would spend hours in the adoption office with staff and would fold herself into the dog bed and go to sleep. She was adopted by a family (a previous adopter with ARF Hamptons) and has kids and a couple of cats to call her own. So far everything is going very well and her new family loves her. Happy tail wags to Lindy for her furry tail ending!