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This was one of the happiest holidays I can remember, filled with the love of family, friends, and the wonderful dogs that came to play with us. But I never would have expected that the greatest holiday blessing of all would come from one of my foster dogs. Rolo gave me something that money can’t buy: a deeper, stronger, and happier bond with my recently adopted fur kid Max.

MaxMax, a beautiful and laid back 6 year old Australian Shepherd, came to live with me after being severely neglected and abandoned at a vet’s office in Indiana. Though I’m told he was only with his previous family for a short time, it was clear that he was emotionally affected by the experience. I struggled to get him to play with me and, even though he’s an incredibly sweet and gentle dog, he rarely initiated affection. It’s a well known fact that there are few things more important to me than my dogs so it was nothing short of heartbreaking to me that even though he loved our hikes, our trips to go swimming, and all the tasty treats, he never seemed to connect with me on a deeper level and therefore couldn’t tell how much I adore him.

rolo rollOver the last few months I was the lucky foster mom to a wild and crazy Aussie puppy named Rolo.  Max has always enjoyed the company of his foster friends but his bond with Rolo was something truly special. Rolo was a constant firestorm of playful energy and Max was his favorite target. Hours upon hours a day were spent wrestling, chasing, and pummeling each other with reckless abandon. Max instantly went from being the wallflower to being the most popular guy in school and he loved it!

When Rolo was adopted, Max spent several days in a deep depression over the loss of his friend and I was scared that all the progress he’d made would vanish. But Max wasn’t about to let Rolo’s absence keep him from being the center of attention. My heart now soars every time Max picks up a teddy bear and hurls himself into my lap for rowdy belly rubs and vigorous wrestling; and every time I walk in the door to see his huge smile and his whole butt shaking with joy I feel like the luckiest girl in the world. Today he’s an affection loving playaholic, and I can’t help but feel truly blessed and enormously thankful to have had Rolo in my life.

Cuddling To The Max