In Memory of
Everyone comes to BRSM to adopt their ideal beagle --- young, active,
occasionally a couch potato --- but those dogs are rare compared to those who
have been left behind, the ones who were discarded in favor of obtaining a
newer, younger dog.
What is the story
behind the older dogs in shelters?
Sometimes these dogs had spent their lives loving a family, only to
be abandoned when their age meant they were more couch potato than
playmate, and the costs of veterinary care rose. Sometimes they were used
as hunters --- penned out in the back of someone's yard --- never knowing a warm bed
in winter or the love a house pet takes for granted. And because they are
older dogs, it doesn't matter that they are friendly, loving, outgoing, and make
wonderful house pets. Because of their age, they are either dumped in
shelters or put out of a car and left to fend for themselves. Their last memory is
often an emotionally exhausted shelter volunteer closing their eyes forever, or
of finally starving to death outside in winter . . .
They deserve better than that!
What is a "Friend of Winston?"
Winston was the founding dog of BRSM, an older gentleman who never
made it out of foster care, but found himself loved nonetheless. BRSM took care of his health concerns and allowed him to die
peacefully at his own time, not
earlier because of someone else's neglect or indifference. Most of Winston's
friends are in the same situation, and will never be adopted --- but we rescue
them from the shelters anyway. BRSM provides them with veterinary care and
finds a permanent foster home to love them. The permanent foster takes care of
the dog's routine vetting, but BRSM provides support for any
extraordinary vetting that is required.
In Winston's memory, BRSM provides
that vetting support through the Friends of Winston senior dog fostering program.
Friends of Winston participants include a network of families willing to
bring older dogs into their homes and provide them with love until
they pass over the Rainbow Bridge in their own time. We support each
other and the dogs, and form a unique sort of family.
Aware: If you become a Friend of Winston foster, it is unlikely your
foster dog will ever be adopted --- he's probably with you for life! If you
cannot help with the vetting costs (for basic care), BRSM will assist with this,
but you must use a BRSM-approved vet who is willing to discount to
rescue organizations! We realize it's not convenient when your own vet is just
across the street. But we do our best to help as many dogs as possible, and
rescue-discount vets are an integral part of that process. (And we've done a
fair job --- big pat on the back to the Friends of Winston foster homes!)
Please consider opening your heart and home to one of Winston's friends. They
don't require the non-stop attention of one of our younger dogs --- they just want
to cuddle with you when movie time rolls around. And they are fine spending their
day home alone; that means they can sleep undisturbed! It may be difficult
to think that they will be gone sooner than a younger dog, but the rewards are
ample compared to the challenges. Each of these dogs has a story of abandonment --- can
you help us make sure the remainder of their lives are happier?
If you can foster a Friend of Winston, please contact us at
It's a small way to make a huge difference, and you can make a
Please Note: Friends of Winston are always available for
regular adoption, but in the
event that they do not find their forever home, we want them to live out their
lives with a loving foster family.
All of the
BRSM programs, including Friends of Winston, are supported through
donations and fundraisers run and supported by our volunteers. BRSM does not receive any local, state, or federal funding that supports the
rescue. Our volunteers work very hard to make a program such as Friends of
Winston possible, and we very much appreciate the efforts and support of the
Friends of Winston
We had a scare in November... she was in severe pain (as evidenced by extreme shreeky beys) if you touched or moved her and a bunch of tests and MRI later, they could only determine that it was some inflamed nerve endings in her neck... which was possibly related to tooth problems....she responded well to antibiotics and then we took her in for a dental a few weeks ago and poor baby had 3 bad teeth pulled (maybe that's why she has always inhaled her food?!!) .. with some painkillers and antibiotics she is back to her old self. We will start brushing more regularly!!!
We continue to love her dearly...and love BRSM for everything you do!
Hoagie came to live with me in Northern Virginia in March of 2007. Mara thought we'd make a good pair, and boy was she right! I'd planned to foster him, but after two days I realized I wouldn't be able to give him up. he is a sweet, gentle, loving boy. And since getting his teeth fixed up, he feels like a new man!
Hoagie loves getting his belly rubbed, snuggling up to me in bed and on the couch, and going for long walks in the woods. He wants to greet everyone who crosses his path; and nobody can resist him. He also likes hanging out with his little cousin Joey (pictured). I just can't get enough of him, and he can't get enough of me, either. He goes wherever I go and never takes his eyes off of me. Hopefully, with time he will realize that I am not going to leave him. He make me laugh constantly, too. I love being his mommy!
Thanks BRSM for caring for my baby for so long. Hoagie and I are both grateful that we found each other. 5/29/07
My brother and I dash about the yard,
Rabbit scents leading us astray.
Suddenly our dad calls,
We hurry inside,
The couch awaits.
She loves her chew toys but has a favorite that she takes with her every where she goes. When she's not playing around or looking out the door keeping watch of the neighborhood, we are snuggled in the couch napping.
Update Feb, 2012: My husband hung a tennis ball from the ceiling of the garage – he uses it to gauge when to stop so he doesn’t hit the boat trailer. Today is the first day Jake saw the tennis ball without a car parked under it. He just went crazy trying to get that tennis ball, which is just out of his reach. He can hit it with his nose but he can’t grab it. It really was hysterical. He literally did this until he collapsed. Next day, went right back after it. Jake is a dog with a huge personality.
click here to see a video of the craziness
We received a new note from Jake's family in March, 2012 after moving to South Carolina: Jake is thriving in SC! Loves it! Here he is with Maggie the other day – pretending he’s an angel for my husband…
Jake is a great little dog! He loves the other dogs in his household and being part of the family!
Big thank you to Healthy Hound Playground and BRSM for making the meeting of this guy possible.
Since my new fence was installed, Homer has been safely secured in the backyard, but he's so settled in as a member of our family, that, unlike the first few weeks, he is content to be in the yard or in the house and be with the others, especially Addie, and shows little interest in roaming. Don't worry, I know he's a hound so I keep a very close eye on that!
Homer is, yes, quite a handful, but he's also so very loving that his indiscretions, while sometimes so exasperating, are quickly forgotten. I don't for a moment regret he's here.
She's a food hog and she still tips the food bowls over, but the other dogs appreciate her doing that, especially Angel, the Pomeranian. She loves her toys too - we call them her babies. She's got her own dog pillow and blanket. I tell her to get on her side of the bed, because she tried to sleep on mine, and she scoots over and puts her head in her pillow. It's so cute
Leroy is doing well also. He still has seizures but not often enough for medication. He just likes to sleep all day. He snores like no other dog I've ever seen...lol. Rich said we can never be without a beagle. Thank you for everything. You've blessed us with three great dogs!!
Paolo has a story with a happy ending. Paolo finally found a home!