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Pippa and Watson’s mom
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Poor Ranger, and poor you! It's so tough when you see him hurting and you can't make it all better with a hug and a treat :(

I have no experience with fosters, so I might be way off with this, but I would worry that bringing another temporary friend into your home any time soon might be the worst thing for Ranger. He clearly is very sensitive--what if he forms a deep bond with the next dog, and that one disappears, too? :--appalled:

Maybe it would be best to just help him get over this and, if the right time comes, welcome a permanent friend then. If not, then maybe wait a good long while (a year or more?) before fostering again?
 

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Registered
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299 Posts
Poor Ranger :-( Sounds like he really did enjoy having a little brother around. Levi does the same thing every time one of his fosters goes to their forever home. He's really pouty for about a week and then he just seems to snap back into being an only child. I do play with him a bunch and take him every where I can and have play dates with another dog during that week.

I hope that Ranger starts to feel better or you get another foster ASAP!
 

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Inactive
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11,326 Posts
Oakly's dad had the best suggestion by far, but since that's not feasible right now...

It can help to get into Ranger's head a little bit. They don't miss other dogs quite the same way we do (not less, just different), so anthropomorphizing can get in the way of helping the dog. They don't miss the idea of friends quite the way we do, but they feel it very strongly when the time of day comes to interact with a friend and that friend can't be found. My guess is the biggest factor in the mopiness is the disruption in Ranger's routine. Instead of having Scout to play with, things are much more boring, so he goes off to lie down (probably with a big sigh).

A new game for you and Ranger or a puzzle toy might help distract him a bit as he adjusts to the change in routine.

I know when I used to leave for summer camp as a kid, our Golden had a rough adjustment for the first two weeks. Apparently, he'd go off his food and spend the day staring sadly off into space with his head between his paws. After a couple of weeks, though, he'd go back to normal once he got used to the new routine.

So my advice? Distract Ranger with a change in his routine, particularly at the times of day that he seems to expect Scout and mope because Scout isn't there.
 

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Logan & Lacey in R hearts
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1,812 Posts
Oh the part about the play-bow in front of the crate just killed me. I am sure it is a sad time for both of you, so just try and do some fun things.
 

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Knife Swallower
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6,783 Posts
Discussion Starter #26
Thanks everyone for all the wonderful advice!! I'm doing it all! I took apart the crate and washed it so it's not a big empty reminder and so Ranger can't get his hopes up by expecting Scout to be in it in the mornings. We've got a few playdates arranged with friends' dogs so that'll be something new and exciting. I love tippykayak's idea of doing something fun around the times that he expects playtime with Scout, so I gave him a stuffed kong before he ran downstairs to check out the crate.

I'm also going to go buy a few more toys...I ended up giving away three of Ranger's toys when Scout left because Scout had loved playing with them so much. They were toys Ranger played with, too but I was trying to make Scout's transition as easy as possible. So we're going to make a trip to the toy store today...the toy store where all the employees know Ranger and spoil him to death. Hopefully that'll help too.

Thanks so much everyone! This has been hard on both Ranger and I, in different ways, but I'm so grateful for the help, advice, and support this board offers! I won't be able to give up fostering, as hard as the aftermath is, because it's harder knowing that there are dogs out on the reserve that desperately need help. I'm willing to be sad and broken-hearted for awhile if it means I'm helping a save more lives...and Ranger, being a rescue dog himself, would understand that (if he were a human.) If someone hadn't been able to stand a little pain for his sake, there wouldn't have a been a home for him to go to and he'd probably still be stuck in his s***-hole life and not the happy, well-looked after (spoiled) dog he is today. I need to keep that in mind...

Thanks again everyone - this is the best board on the net!
 

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Premium Member
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798 Posts
Awww, special hugs and kisses coming to Ranger! Hopefully a trip to the toy store and playdates with your friends' dogs will help him to not be so sad. And hopefully it won't be too long before he has another friend come to stay for a while.
 
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