Have a little Faith

Faith the beagle gets a bath in a bucket.

Is it just me or do dogs seem to have the whole “Why are we here?” thing figured out? It’s probably just me. Blame it on an overly active imagination fueled by a beagle-like need to know what’s on the other side of the fence.

But who knows? By the time you finish reading this article, I might have you convinced they do!

We begin our story back in February when an incognito beagle came into our lives. As much as I’d love to embellish her story with intrigue and espionage, I cannot. The beagle in the bucket before you was just your garden-variety stray dog. But if those big brown eyes could talk, I think we would have been in for a tear-jerker.

Judging from the graying whiskers, she’d been around the block. Nobody claimed her after she was scooped up by Toronto Animal Services, and she cringed in fear at the outstretched hands of rescuers when they tried to comfort her.

The shelter supervisor sent a message to our beagle repair shop and included a mug shot of their mystery beagle. After all these years in the rescue biz, you’d think we wouldn’t so easily swoon at a picture of a beagle behind bars. But the truth is, we melt like butter every time.

All our regular foster homes were full, but our palliative care foster mom Catherine, who runs Sheba’s Haven out in the country, was able to squeeze in one more beagle. Not that the beagle was palliative – after some necessary repair work (spay, dentistry, and fixing a long-neglected inguinal hernia), our girl simply needed a second chance.

The name came easy. The previous winter, we’d taken in a stray we eventually named Hope. It was about time we had us a little Faith!

We certainly had faith she could live up to the name. Her tail was already a believer. We just needed to spread the word to the rest of her. So off she went to paradise in the country, which ended up being more like summer camp to Faith. The call of the wild beckoned her to all-day sniffing expeditions in the back forty. She’d be out there right after breakfast and literally had to be dragged in for dinner. You could hear her hollering at invisible rabbits all day.

In June, Faith packed her bags for the boardwalk while we crossed our paws and hoped for the best. Surprisingly enough, the transition from country bumpkin to beach baby has been as smooth as butter!

Faith, otherwise known as Princess Fay Fay, is loving life in the Beach. Every time the leash comes out, she’s at the door. You can take the beagle out of the country but you can’t take the country out of the beagle.

But that nose of hers still serves an important purpose, besides leading her to that breakfast plate of eggs and toast foolishly left unattended.

Faith had been visiting her “grandparents” with her foster mom when she made a discovery in their backyard at the base of a tree. Two baby birds had fallen from their nest. She immediately dragged foster mom over to the discovery and the birds were safely returned to their home in the tree branch above. (Oh, ye of little faith … you thought that story was going to turn out differently, didn’t you?)

If you’re in search of a faithful companion, this bird-loving beagle might just be your salvation!

And yes, she knows why we’re here. From what I can make out through paw gestures, fur-clad facial expressions and occasional shenanigan reports from foster mom, we’re here for three simple reasons – to live (best defined as eating gloriously, sleeping gloriously and getting lots of glorious belly rubs), to love (the thing you do the rest of the time, which tends to result in more belly rubs), and finally, to make a glorious mess once in a while (that may or may not lead to the need for a not-so-glorious bath in a bucket).

Live, love and make the odd mess. Simple, yet genius!

Faith is an approximately 8-year-old beagle waxing philosophic in exchange for belly rubs at Big On Beagles Rescue (bigonbeagles.ca). She’s got faith you’ll be attending our 10th Anniversary Beagle Bash for Cash on Nov. 22 at PawsWay from 1 to 3 p.m. Faith says, “HOWL-lelujah to that!”

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