This story originally appeared at InspireMore.
It takes a very special person to foster pets.
These people pour their hearts into every animal they care for, knowing from the start they’ll have to say goodbye. It’s tough, falling in love over and over with furry friends you can’t keep. But thanks to the selfless individuals who do it anyway, dogs and cats have a better chance of finding their forever homes. Such was the case of an adorable puppy named Winnie.
Kentucky-based journalist Kate Howard will never forget her first foster dog, or how heartbroken she felt at having to give her up in November 2018.
“I cried for three days after she was spayed and went up for adoption, worrying about whether she had found a good home,” Kate wrote. She never knew what became of the puppy who stole her heart.
Then, in October of this year, a woman and her dog stopped in Kate’s yard. Normally, Kate would be working around that time, but she’d taken the day off to attend a memorial service. Afterwards, sitting on her porch, Kate noticed there was something familiar about the dog. And she couldn’t believe it when she heard the woman call her Winnie. Kate recounted the incredible realization on Twitter.
“I asked the woman whether she adopted Winnie with that name,” Kate explained. “She said yes, as she didn’t want to change her name and confuse her. I asked when — she said last November. By then, I was practically leaping off the porch screaming.”
This was, in fact, her Winnie.
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Kate learned she hadn’t been the only one to fall head over heels for the sweet dog. And, it turns out, Winnie ended up with the perfect mom who needed her just as much. Perhaps the best part for Kate, however, was hearing Winnie only lives a block away!
Kate says being reunited with Winnie gave her the strength she needed to keep fostering other animals. And the outpouring of support from others who foster themselves was even more encouraging.
“I have heard from so many of you who have loved rescue dogs and fostered yourselves. Thank you,” Kate wrote in an updated tweet. “I was SO sad after I brought Winnie back that I wasn’t sure if I was cut out for fostering, but seeing her yesterday made me think maybe I can give it another shot.”
Plus, it helps to know that from now on, she and her dog, Foxy, will get regular visits from Winnie and her mom.
If not for Kate, Winnie might not have found her family. Now they’re connected forever, thanks to the loving choice she made. Thanks for making a difference, Kate.
Share this story to celebrate all the wonderful people out there who foster animals.
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