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May 8, 2023

UPDATE - June 8, 2023 - Happy to report that FOREST got adopted!!! Yay!

Current foster dog FOREST (who is a German Shepherd mix dog) ended up in our local shelter after likely being hit by a car in late February 2023. His prognosis looked grim at times, but he came to us in early March and has been staying with us since then. He officially went up for adoption on April 22, but so far no adoption interest. I made videos to try and help. Don't miss those, including him practicing his dog-dog social skills. Also, an FAQ below.

foster dog forest german shepherd mix dog for adoption

German Shepherd Mix Dog for Adoption in Golden, CO

We keep coming up with new theories about FOREST, our latest foster dog, who is a German Shepherd mixed breed dog. Here are some thoughts about his backstory before ending up in our local shelter:

  • English might be his second language. Early on, he did not seem to understand what we said. Alas, my Dora-the-Explorer Spanish (as my sister joked) didn't seem to work either, so maybe his original name just sounds something like Bueno. I still say, "Buen chico," but it probably doesn't matter to him. He seems to understand me more now. 
  • Maybe he lived and traveled with a long-haul trucker. He seems keen on watching / hearing big-rig trucks. He is good in the car and seems to like it. 
  • He is younger than his shelter paperwork says. His teeth are ridiculously white (which is unusual for even slightly older dogs), and he acts very much like a puppy. So, we think -- at best -- he is maybe a year old or so now. 

The Adoption Bio I Wrote

Here's what I originally wrote when we thought Forest was getting ready to go live on the shelter's website as adoptable:

Meet Forest. With a puppy personality in a big-boy frame, he seems like a character in one of those movies where a kid and an adult switch bodies. The upside? He’s grown-up enough to be housetrained, travel worthy in cars, content when alone, and good on leash. He finds birds amazing and TV new and wondrous. He loves water and will treat his water bowl like a water park, so plan accordingly. He also could make paper shredding a profitable side hustle, so keep important documents out of reach and provide plenty of chews and toys. 

I also originally said this: We think he could be happy as an only dog or with well-matched canine friends who aren’t bothered by his voice and exuberant (and inexperienced) play style. Since he’s still a little mouthy when excited, Forest is available to adopters with older children or no children.

~~ A couple other thoughts ~~

Basically, FOREST is kind of rude toward other dogs. He doesn't mean to be, but he likely wasn't well socialized with other dogs or maybe got taken from his litter too young. He is probably NOT a good match for families with smaller kids or cats, etc. 

We're working on improving his social skills.

Here is another video from May 16, 2023. This shows his first time being outside with all 3 of our dogs. We always introduce foster dogs to Tori (mostly white face) last because some of her social skills aren't great either. It went really well. Forest even carried toys and played a little fetch with the other dogs around. I also called him away from Tori several times so that she didn't feel nervous. I think also having Clover and Mr. Stix around took some of the social pressure off both Tori and Forest. 

The Adoption Bio From the Shelter
Updated (May 16, 2023)

Forest's progress with dog-dog social skills is paying off. He is doing so well with time mingling with our 3 dogs now. So, the shelter's team updated his bio to say this:

Forest has his foster family have been working hard to polish his skills around spending time politely around other dogs, and we recommend he be either the only dog in his next home or join a family with a tolerant dog friend that can help him to grow.

Read his official bio and learn more about the adoption process here. He is available through Foothills Animal Shelter in Golden, Colorado. That's the shelter for which we work as a volunteer foster family -- specializing in tiny puppies / litters and "broken" dogs, typically hit by cars. 

german shepherd mix dog photo up for adoption

German Shepherd Mix Adoption Via Foster

Because he really struggles in the shelter environment, he's available for adoption from foster, which means interested adopters need to:

  1. Complete the online form at the bottom of his adoption profile page.
  2. Schedule a time to meet him at the shelter.

All that's more complicated than the usual adoption process at our open-admission, open-minded shelter where usually you can walk in and do an adoption in about 1 hour, no muss, no fuss.

So far, he has had exactly ZERO inquiries, which is shocking because he is SO handsome. Hence the video I made and this post and social media promos. Many thanks as well to our friends at Summit Dog Rescue who've also listed him on their site to help increase his exposure to potential adopters. 

Want to Share Forest's Adoption Promos?

Great. Thank you:

German Shepherd Mix FAQ

What were Forest's injuries?

Good question. I'm not 100% sure. I've not seen his x-rays or read his medical chart. However, my understanding is that he suffered hip/spine injuries that made the medical team question the possibility of him walking again. He did not require surgery or casts or anything. He simply needed good neurological pain meds and rest. 

So he's fine now?

Pretty much. He can SIT, but he rarely does so when asked, so we think it might be uncomfortable for him. He also does not lift his leg to pee ... though, we did see him try to do that recently. The shelter's veterinary team, I'm sure, can provide detailed medical info to his adopters. 

Currently (May 2023), he walks about 2 miles a day with me, including hills. He can run. He is learning to play fetch. He likes to play tug also. 

What about barking?

Yes, he does bark. (I blame one of the breeds in his DNA more than the others.) It's one of his least adorable qualities, but we're working on it. He definitely barks less now than he did when he first arrived. 

He has a big-boy ALERT  bark and a funny, shrill play bark. When he gets over-excited about other dogs, he often uses his shrill bark. So, the trick is to get him to settle down when he is around other dogs, then it's much less noisy and easier for everyone to be around. We created a little pattern game to help him settle down. 

We're also working on teaching him to carry a toy or something (like a stick) as sort of a pacifier so that he can't really bark when he has something in his mouth. It's something he does naturally, especially on walks, so we're reinforcing that more and encouraging him to carry something at times. 


*Any other questions? Let me know, please. Thanks!

Oh, and please don't say that he should just stay in our family. That is NOT an option and NOT a helpful thing to say to any pet foster parent.

About the Author Roxanne Hawn

Trained as a traditional journalist and based in the Rocky Mountains of Colorado, USA, I'm a full-time freelance writer for magazines, websites, and private clients. My areas of specialty include everything in the lifestyles arena, including health and home, personal finance and other consumer interests, relationships and trends, people and business profiles ... and, of course, all things pet related.

I don't just love dogs. I need them in my life. Seriously.

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