Heroes in the Garden

There are heroes among us. In the Homeward Bound Memorial Garden, between the Dahlias…

and the Roses…

the Lupine…

and the delicate White Lavender…

you will find some of the heroes of Homeward Bound.

1.  Robin and Jim – with their rescue, Owen who visited with us in the garden before “school” today.

Even the staff of HB was surprised by their pick; Owen had flunked adoption twice for his youthful exuberance and ill-mannered ways. A suggestion was made that they might want to foster first to determine if he was a good fit, Robin’s reply was simple: “I don’t return things.”

True to her word, she and Jim have put in the training and love needed for Owen to succeed.  A month later, he is already a changed dog. He is still a work in progress, with much more training ahead. But it looks like he has found his forever home.

2. Laura.  She and other dedicated dog-walkers were out early to get the dogs walked before the temperatures soared too high in the middle of our heat wave.  She shared the Willow Garden – the coolest spot on the property – with her golden friend, Tom (such a ham!)

Here she is with Tristan – one of the dogs who has come all the way from Taiwan.

In the past few years, Homeward Bound has taken in over 30 dogs from Taiwan, working in partnership with the Taichung Universal Action Protection Association (TUAPA) and Asians for Humans, Animals and Nature (AHAN). Many have been adopted, but Tristan remains a much-loved Sanctuary dog due to his special needs.

3. Edna. A very special hero. She – too recently – said goodbye to yet another of her permanent fosters. She has another at home. And today, she  arrived with with Jezell, her adopted pup, to share some tears, hugs, and to pick up yet another foster.

Edna is a long-time foster mom. From a 2007 newsletter speaking about one of her fosters with terminal cancer, she said, “For all that I give them; they give 1000 times more in return. It’s like having a ‘No Vacancy’ sign on your heart. All of them teach me life lessons every day. Even with Monty’s cancer, he shows me how to just be happy for this day and this moment. I try each day to celebrate his life and not cry so much about his dying. We have today and that’s a blessing.”

Edna’s heart seems to have endless capacity.

The world needs more Edna’s.

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I am a nascent gardener, rescuer, and photographer, chronicling the journey of the dogs at Homeward Bound Golden Retriever Rescue and Sanctuary near Sacramento, CA - and the Memorial Garden we have devoted to them.

4 thoughts on “Heroes in the Garden”

  1. It was nice to be back in the garden working again alongside Audrey. The pictures Audrey captured of the dog walkers and their dogs are just wonderful. The Willow tree area has certainly become a hit with the dog walkers this summer. I can’t wait for some of the other trees to grow to provide more shade in the HB garden.

  2. Just wanted to say the garden is absolutely beautiful! I love the blog and I am thrilled that Owen, whom you mentioned in this blog has found a loving home. He is a great pup and I loved working with him in the classes on Sundays. Thank you Robin for taking him and loving him.

    1. Thank you, JoAnn! I’m so happy for Owen too. Robin lives just a few streets away as it happens. I can’t wait until she feels confident enough to have Owen and my Jackson have a play date!

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