Foster Hero Story: Meet Traci & Bruno

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Traci shares her story of how she and her family saved this pup’s life

Freedom ride kiss!

Bruno was a 10-month-old puppy that was dropped off at an animal control facility with an injured leg. Someone had attempted to make a splint for his leg using electrical tape. X-rays showed that he had fractures in his tibia and fibula in his rear leg. Bruno was also malnourished but otherwise, he was a healthy boy.

Traci and her family saw a video of him in his kennel at the shelter and loved how he was interacting with the volunteer despite his pain. If a foster wasn’t found within 5 days he was going to be euthanized! Traci couldn’t let that happen to him knowing that he just needed a temporary place to recover.

Video: Bruno at the shelter, hurt, scared, and longing for someone to love him.

What was your experience with fostering a pet?

We fostered Bruno through his recovery which was about a 2.5 month period. In the beginning, he had to be confined to an ex-pen/crate and kept separate from our other dogs to allow his leg to heal. (It’s always recommended that introductions between pets go very slowly so we would have kept him separate anyways.) We took him to the veterinarian weekly for splint changes and periodic X-rays. Once he was given the all-clear to play he finally got to be a dog! Our senior dog, Linus (who was previously a couch potato), played with him non stop! Bruno insisted on sleeping in our 5-year old’s bed every night, which our son loved. (We couldn’t even lure him out with a tempting treat!) Our entire family enjoyed our time with this very sweet, loving dog.

Instant brothers!

The biggest challenge was when it was time for him to move on. We were fortunate to have good friends adopt Bruno. They had two sons, one the same age as our son, so we felt it was a good match for everyone.

What is special about fostering a pet?

The reason we love fostering is it’s extremely rewarding. It allows us to make a very tangible difference. In some cases, we’re saving their life. It doesn’t get any better than that! While it is an almost indescribable feeling there are no heroic measures needed to foster. We just provided Bruno with a safe, loving home and cared for him until he was ready to find a family of his own.

We seriously considered adopting Bruno but we knew this would prevent us from helping more pets. We wanted our son to continue to experience the joy of giving back to our community. (And he’s had a lot of fun since then fostering other pets including puppies and kittens!)

The mighty duo

Who in your family or community supports your foster volunteering and how?

Fostering is a family affair! We all took on a little more responsibility when we brought Bruno into our home. Our extended family helped by giving Bruno potty breaks when we had to be gone from home long hours. They also came over to visit and play with him which gave him a lot of positive experiences with new people.

What advice would you give to first-time foster pet parents? 

When first bringing your foster pet home you’re going to be excited and you’re going to want everyone to meet him! But avoid overwhelming him. Give him time to get used to the smells, sights, sounds, people, and pets in your home. It’s best to give him a safe space where he can observe everything for a while without having to interact. (You can do this by using a crate or baby gate.)

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