Monday, June 27, 2016

Dear Corbin.

Dear Corbin,

It's been one whole year since I last felt the chill of your cold nose on my cheek or the soft feel of your velvety fur under my fingers. One whole year since I last saw your soul through those deep brown eyes.  You told me your fight was fought and your time here was done. You gave me peace in knowing that decision was right, and any other decision would have gone against my promise to you; that I would never keep you alive for me. You were my life and I wasn't quite sure how I would go on without you.  But, your love gave me something that will be a part of me for the rest of my life. Your purpose here on earth has lived on in the hearts and through the hands of all those you touched.  The world is a brighter place for having had you in it. Your light shines on and only gets brighter as the days pass.

I miss you with every waking moment, more and more every day. I'm thankful to feel your presence with me, and I know I will have you with me always. I needed to find you. You were everything I didn't think I wanted, but fate had other plans. You awakened a part of my soul that I didn't know was there. You brought purpose to my life and lit fire to my passion. Thank you for loving me and letting me love you. My boy.... I miss you.

My heart. My soul. My Corbin.

I love you, Corbee Doo.
Your momma

Friday, January 8, 2016

Diamond update

Diamond's surgery went very well. They were able to remove her spleen and the tumor without issue. Her vitals and blood work have stayed consistant since surgery and she has been home resting. She will have one more round of follow up tests tomorrow morning before getting the all clear.

She's a tough old gal! She doesn't like hearing that she needs to remain calm and rest. It's so amazing to see her spring back so quickly, although, keeping her quiet so she can heal becomes a challenge, but she likes to snuggle, so it just means we have to be home with her more. Who could complain with that?

Thanks everyone for all the thoughts and prayers. I'm so glad the surgery part is over and we can move on to recovery!

Wednesday, January 6, 2016

Diamond needs POTP

Diamond's 2016 didn't start off as easily as we would have hoped for.  She went to the vet for a scheduled dental surgery on Monday, January 4th.  Abdominal x-rays were done before surgery because during her December visit when a heart murmer was detected, she was too wiggley to have them done. The xrays revealed a mass in her abdomen.  Surgery was put on hold and an abdominal ultrasound was done.  The mass is attached to her spleen. Since this mass could rupture at any time, Diamond's need for surgery was urgent. She went in for surgery this morning to remove her spleen and the tumor.

This surgery was completely unexpected, but necessary to save Diamond and give her the chance to live out the rest of her life, like she deserves.  

Please keep our girl in your thoughts today. 

Since Diamond is under the Mr. Mo Project, her medical costs are covered by the project. I set up a YouCaring page to help with this huge unexpected cost. All donations are tax deductible and greatly appreciated! If you'd like, you can donate HERE

Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Happy Gotcha Day, Queen D!

A year ago a saw a picture of a dog and fell in love.

 Diamond was located at the NYC shelter and scheduled to be euthanized but a rescue was looking to confirm a foster to save her. I quickly emailed them and offered to take Diamond into our home. I received an email back from Chris Hughes, co-founder of the Mr. Mo Project. He asked me some questions, but the one that stood out was "are your dogs friendly?" Uh, well... Corbin wasn't an easy answer to that question or the answer most rescues want to hear. Chris called me and I pleaded my case about how although Corbin was a jerk to introduce with other dogs, we had been a successful foster family. Chris gave me the benefit of the doubt and the wheels were in motion to get Diamond here. 

When she arrived, I went to the vet office to meet her. I walked into the tiny quarantine room and D jumped up and wrapped her arms around my waist. I knew in that moment that my crazy impulse reaction agreeing to foster this dog was 100% right. 

1 year ago today, Diamond came to our home. Over this past year we have nursed Diamond back to health and decided that she was home right here with us. I've gotten to know Chris and Mariesa and come to love these senior dogs they save. Eddie (I'll introduce him soon!) is our 46th foster dog and our 6th senior foster for the Mr. Mo Project. I'm so proud to be a small part of such a great dog rescue. 

Here are 3 amazing before and after photos to show just how far our Queen D has come. 

"Every dog has the ability to change your life, if you let them." I believe that whole heartedly in regard to Corbin, but I see the change Diamond has made in my life, too. She's opened my eyes to the beauty in senior dog rescue and adoption. Nothing compared to earning the love of a senior dog. 

Happy Gotcha Day, Diamond!

Saturday, December 19, 2015

The life of the Corbin.

There are few moments in life that you know are life changing as you experience them. 6 years ago, I woke up in a dogless home with the intention of going to an adoption event to gather some information about a local rescue I was interested in getting involved with.  The morning went on, I got busy and lost track of time. Suddenly, there was only 15 minutes left of the adoption clinic. I quickly ran out of the house shouting promises to Adam that I wouldn't come home with a dog.
I arrived as the adoption event was ending. I spoke to a woman and mentioned I submitted my application and someone called me during the week and I was interested in possibly fostering. She directed me to another woman and I chatted with her about the responsibilities and process of fostering. She had explained over the phone earlier in the week that they would not be getting more dogs in until mid January and suggested I volunteer at the clinic every Saturday until then to learn more about their group. As we were ending our conversation, a crazy blur of a dog came up to me with his foster mom in tow.
She over heard my interest in fostering and explained that the crazy brown dog at her feet was in need of a new foster home. She wasn't able to take both of her foster dogs with her for Christmas and after the holiday, her other foster dog was having leg surgery. I agreed to take this dog who never seemed to have all 4 paws on the ground at once.  I wish I knew then how much this moment would change my life. I would have paid more attention to this dog who would capture my heart and soul.
It turned out that his foster mom lived just 5 minutes from our home, so she offered to follow me and do our home visit to complete the approval of our application. I got in my car and made two phone calls on my way home. The first was to my mom. "Oh, Jenn. You're never going to be able to give this dog up." I assured her that he was just a foster dog. She bet me $25 that we wouldn't be able to let him go. She was right, of course. Mom's are always right.
The second call was to Adam. I had to tell him that I broke my promise. The conversation went like this...
Me: "Hi! Are you still home?"
Adam: "Yea, for a little longer. Why?" 
Me: "Ok, good! I'd like for you to meet Corbin."
Adam: "What's a Corbin?"
Me:  "Well... our new foster dog."
Adam: "Come on, Jenn!  You said you weren't coming home with a dog!"
Me: "BUT He's just a foster dog!"
Adam: "HE??  You said you didn't want a male dog!"
Me: "BUT! He's just a foster dog!"
Adam: "How old is he?"
Me: "Um.. 6 months"
Adam: "YOU said YOU didn't want a YOUNG dog!"
Me: "BUT!!!! He's JUST a foster dog!"
Adam: "What kind of dog is it?"
Me: "Well, he's a Pit Bull."
Adam: "A PIT BULL?!  YOU SAID you didn't want a PIT BULL!"
Adam: "click"
This conversation I remember clear as day. I was so unsure of my decision to take in this dog and I was trying so hard to sound confident and absolutely sure this was going to work. Corbin was everything I didn't want in a dog. I was sure I wanted to adopt a female, adult, 40lb Border Collie mix. But, what was wrong with fostering a few dogs while we were waiting for the perfect dog to come along, right?
I pulled into the driveway and Heather and Corbin were right behind me. They followed me into the house and off Corbin went. He went racing down the hallway, bounced off the spare bed, back down the hallway, around the Christmas tree, jumped from the couch to the love seat and back down the hallway to start all over again. Adam looked at me, rolled his eyes and left to run some errands.
Heather finished up our home visit and told me some information about Corbin, then she left to get all of his things. I remember thinking "What the hell did I get myself into..." as I watched her car drive away.  As soon that thought popped into my head and my heart had a moment of panic as Heather left... I turned around to find the crazy brown dog was curled up in a ball on my couch. And I thought: He has an off switch. He's not psycho all the time. This is good.
Looking back on that day, Corbin knew he was home. It was instant for him. He settled right in, and that's something Corbin could never do away from home. It took us a little longer to come around.
Before meeting Corbin, I had little experience with Pit Bulls and really only knew what was portrayed about them through the media. So, could I take him out in public? Could we go to the pet store with him? What would people think of me with a Pit Bull? All those questions were quickly answered over the next few days as we got to know Corbin.
He was just a dog. Like any other dog. He loved people and was good with other dogs. He enjoyed car rides and loved chomping on a good bone. He snuggled and gave kisses and loved to play fetch in the back yard. We brought him almost everywhere with us and tried to convince everyone we knew to adopt him. But, he was a Pit Bull, and while everyone he met quickly fell in love with him, they weren't sure about adopting him. Frankly, neither were we.
Corbin spent two months as a foster dog before we finally signed the paperwork to make him officially ours, even though we knew weeks before then that we couldn't part with him. I gave my mom the $25 I lost on our bet, which she used to buy Corbin his first life vest. No one else wanted to adopt him because he was meant to be ours. He knew it from day one.
Corbin wasn't an easy dog. A month after his adoption, he started getting protective, defensive and aggressive. My previous dog knowledge wasn't enough to help us through it. So, we hired a dog trainer that came to our house and trained me and Adam. He gave us the tools we needed to communicate with Corbin and help him be a well behaved, well mannered dog. It was one of the best decisions we made and enhanced the relationship and bond between me and Corbin. We worked with him every day on his training. He even went on to become a Canine Good Citizen.
That summer, we started our fostering journey. By Christmas time, Corbin made it clear that he loved being a foster brother. After proper introductions, Corbin was welcoming of every dog that walked through our door. He was patient, respectful and tolerant. He understood the scared dogs and they all mocked what Corbin did. He knew what it was like to be where they were, and he helped them gain the confidence he had to face the world. It was amazing to watch him coax a dog out of their shell and show them how life can be enjoyed. He really did enjoy it, and so did we.
Corbin really did love life. He brought a smile to everyone he met and quickly captured their hearts.  I started this blog to document the adventures he had and our fostering journey and it quickly became so much more. I couldn't believe people wanted to read what I wrote. I decided to write it from Corbin's prospective, he was so expressive and had so much to say. He was half human. As the blog grew, I began realizing that our words had an impact on people. Not only were we having fun and writing about it, but we were bringing awareness to a breed that is consumed with negative media. Corbin was opening people's minds about this breed and inviting people into his world. He was just a dog, like any other dog... the only difference was that he was a Corbin, and there was certainly no one like him. He was showing people the importance of rescuing, adopting and fostering and that every dog deserved the chance to be evaluated as an individual, not characterized by a breed label. He started conversations, changed minds and helped dogs beyond those that entered our home. Over the years, I've received so many amazing comments from people about how their life was impacted by our blog. My favorites were those that said Corbin helped their idea of Pit Bulls, Corbin's stories helped them in their own journey with an adopted Pit Bull, they had never met a Pit Bull and Corbin made them reach out to get to know some, our blog helped convince them to volunteer and/or foster, they saw a dog that looked like Corbin and it encouraged them to start up a conversation with their owner, or simply that Corbin brought a smile to their face that day.  
I can't say I'd do anything different if given the opportunity to start over. I loved him too much, and I knew that early on. My love for Corbin consumed my life. It changed my life. I had never connected with a dog on such a deep level. His soul connected with mine and I was forever changed.  Corbin came into this world with a purpose.  He was meant to be mine.  He was wired to be a foster brother.  His intention was to change as much of the world as he could, and he did that and more.  It still amazes me how many people he touched, and continues to touch after he passed.  This day, 6 years ago, changed my life.  I will never be the same for having loved the Corbin.  There will never be another one, and there never has to be.  He will live on through us, through our girls, through the 40 foster dogs he had a hand in molding and those that have come after he left, through the thousands of people who have followed along with his adventures.  He was handsome, he was smart and he was amazing.  He only needed 6 years here on earth to make his mark.  I know he's causing trouble, running wild and comforting others on the other side.  His spirit is strong and I'm thankful I can often feel him here with me.  I miss him so much every day... he left a hole in my heart that will never be filled.  But, no matter how much pain his death left me, I will always be thankful for the time we had with him.  He gave me my passion and brought me so much happiness in the 5 and a half years he was here with us. 
6 years ago, Corbin walked into my life.
Though his time was short, his impact was mighty. 
June 4, 2009 - June 27, 2015

Friday, September 25, 2015

Let's go, Mr. Mo!

I hope you enjoyed Emily's story earlier in the week! It felt good to share with you what's been happening at our home.

I mentioned in our previous post that Emily was taken in by the Mr. Mo Project, the group who also helped us save Diamond. The Mr. Mo Project is an amazing group that helps take senior dogs out of shelters across the country. They started the non profit project just 18 months ago and have already successful pulled, vetted and placed over 60 dog! SIXTY SENIOR DOGS!!! The project covers medical expenses for each dog for the remainder of their life. This takes the financial burden off of people who sometimes question taking in an older dog because of some of the medical issues that may come with it.  They also have no hesitation in taking in dogs who need extra medical care, like Diamond and Emily did, as well as many, many other dogs in their program. Emily alone cost $5,000 in vet bills to get our old lady healthy enough to enjoy her golden age.  

The faces saved by the Mr. Mo Project.

This group relies solely on donations. With all the new dogs they've taken in recently, their funds are at an all time low with outstanding vet bills totaling close to $10,000.  But, the good news is YOU can help! Right now, there are two fundraisers going on.

He loved his Ninja Turtles collar. 

The first is our great friends at Sirius Republic! During the month of September, 20% of proceeds that use the rescue code RPMM86 at check out will be TRIPLE matched for a donation to the Mr. Mo Project! Start your holiday shopping early and get your furry best friend a new collar! Corbin loved when a new collar arrived and he always enjoyed modeling his new gear for the world to see! Sirius Republic also sent sweet Emily her very own collar, which she struts her stuff in any time it's on. We love this company more than words can say!!! Visit their website at www.siriusrepublic.Com and don't forget to enter Rescue Code RPMM86 at checkout! 

The second fundraiser allows you to support the project both financially and visually!  You can get your own Mr. Mo Project shirt, hoodie or tank! Show everyone how great this program is by wearing the name proudly and starting a conversation about your love for dogs of all ages!  Visit the fundraiser site at

Maybe neither of these fundraisers speak to you, and that's okay too! Lucky for you, there are many ways to send a direct donation to the Mr. Mo Project!
Donate via Paypal:
Call the vet directly to make a payment on a vet bill: 518-371-3606
Mail a donation directly to the project:
The Mr. Mo Project
641 Grooms Road #235
Clifton Park, NY 12065

All donations are tax deductible! Make a difference today. My girls mean the world to me, and I have the Mr. Mo Project to thank.

Monday, September 21, 2015

Welcome Emily

Corbin was the voice of this blog.  The words just don't seem to come without him here.  But, like Corbin, his blog stood for something... and I will do my best to continue writing.  So, true to what this blog has always been about... true to what Corbin brought into our life... true to what Corbin stood for... I introduce you to Emily.

Emily was surrendered to our local shelter on July 30th.  On August 10th, I saw her picture and story on facebook... She was 16.  I had to have her.  I chatted with the Mr. Mo Project people and it was decided she would be the newest Mo dog.  She was picked up from the shelter that day and brought directly to the vet for immediate care.  Emily had a dangerous case of pneumonia.  She stayed at the vet office for 2 weeks while they worked day and night to get her to feel better.  


Emily wasn't improving very quickly.  She was visited every day by Chris and Mariesa with the Mr. Mo Project and I visited her as often as I could.  We all brought her anything we thought she might eat - steak, pizza, fish, chicken.... but she was rarely interested in much.  Finally, after 2 weeks, we took a chance and brought her home.  

She was so happy to get into my car.  This picture was on the ride home.  It was the most alert I had seen her since we met.  But, this picture was very deceiving.  I wasn't quite sure Emily was going to make it through the night.  

But, we made it through the first night, and then through the second.  I spent a fortune on every kind of dog food possible.  I made her meals so carefully and fed her small amounts several times a day.  Slowly her meals started to increase and the frequency decreased.  Her energy level grew and we got our first glimpse of Emily.

She now eats two normal meals a day of dry dog food, which is huge!  Emily will be going back to the vet soon to have another full check up.  Now that she's healthy, we can see how she is doing medically with out pneumonia clouding her results.  

The girls welcomed Emily with open paws and Emily seems to like them just the same.  Her energy level has increased and her stiff hind legs have started to become less stiff.  She gallops down the hallway in the morning in anticipation for her breakfast and does the happiest happy dance when we return home from work.  

Emmy will live out the remainder of her life here with us.  
Welcome to the Corbin House, sweet girl.