Levi
"...I often think of Levi playing at the Rainbow Bridge with his coat perfectly groomed by angels". . . Kathryne, his foster mom
5/13/2004

Our love and our appreciation go to Kathryne. Levi was one of the kids that occasionally comes into rescue with such heavy mental and emotional problems, that you know there was a lot of fear or hurt inside. Levi was a stray, meaning he was picked up by the shelter, however he was NOT dirty as a stray commonly is, with grease, dirt and road debris and bad paws, so we knew he was not a street dog, probably just out on the day he was found. He was just a total dreadlocked mess, and it was VERY apparent that he had not been brushed or combed or groomed, possibly never.

It also became apparent that he was probably never told 'NO'. Possibly the owners elected NOT to reclaim him from the shelter, if they didn't just let him go. From the beginning, he had a major temperament problem that once he started, he could not stop, and he would continue to lash out such as two dogs who are involved in a heavy dog fight tend to lash out. Levi did not have a specific trigger to set him off - being picked up, being groomed, being in an X-Pen, having to go in a crate at times - was acceptable sometimes, and anathema at others. Sometimes he LOVED the crate and would willingly go in to nap . . . no rhyme nor reason to his actions . . . a totally darling sweet boy one minute, a raging biting boy completely out of self control the next.

Kathryne is our hero here, so new to foster care but not new to loving and caring for a 'difficult' child, doing an amazing, simply fantastic job of trying to help little Levi. She is the one who gave Levi a chance and one who did work with him and who was very professional in her reports and descriptions of what was going on. A behaviorist/trainer agreed also, saying his actions and reactions could be a real danger. Sadly some things are just not fixable and Levi's inner demons which made him keep attacking when he should have calmed down were one of those things.

We all hurt when we lose one of our kids. We can promise you all that we will lose others in the future . . . just because of the type of kids that we take in. We will have dogs that are too seriously ill to fix or dogs that emotionally we can't help. We have to remember the many that we can help, and the fact that we give as many Cairns a chance at life as we possibly can.

Levi is at peace now, running happy and smiling with the other kids who have gone before him. NO more will he have to fight any battles we can't understand. He went in loving arms, not alone or afraid. For this Kathryne, we thank you from the bottom of our hearts. We know how hard this is to do.

Karen, Danielle, and Michele
 

4/25/2004
Kathryne's first impressions of Levi:

  • He's sweet and friendly - readily gives kisses and accepts petting.
  • He needs to go on a diet - he's really chunky!
  • He knows the words "Do you have to go outside?" and knows exactly what he's supposed to do when he gets there.
  • He's curious as a .....well, as a Cairn. He's checked out every square inch of the rooms he's been allowed into - at least twice.
  • He's quiet - at least for now. He's in an x-pen with his crate, water and toys when I'm not right with him, and he doesn't make a peep. Well, except for when Mandy paraded past the pen "Hahaha - this is my house, you're in jail, I'm not!". He made some interesting sounds then.
  • He likes to play with toys - for very brief amounts of time - then he's busy looking for something else to do.
  • He tries to be in charge, but backs down fairly quickly. He nipped at me when I was guiding him into the pen, but when I yelped and scolded "no bite!" he was immediately sorry and scurried on in by himself.

That's all for now, except to say that Levi is my first foster - and I'll take all the "good luck" wishes you care to send my way.

 

Gone, but never forgotten
I think of Levi often and miss him so much. I told Danielle that my face misses his sweet kisses. I know he's around though. One afternoon I allowed Levi take a nap with me on my bed. He settled in and rested his head on my feet and didn't move from there for over an hour. I don't tell this to just anyone but I woke up a few nights ago, feeling a light pressure on my feet and a strong feeling that it was Levi. I lay there for a while, thinking that no, a pillow must have fallen across my legs, but not wanting to really look and find out if this was so. Well, I finally did look, and there was no pillow, no lumpy blanket - nothing at all. The pressure left as I sat up to look. I'm positive Levi was paying me a visit that night. Maybe just to comfort me and tell me he was well and happy.
 
Love and hugs,
Kathryne