We ended 2016 with a Puppypalooza of sorts with 2 litters up for adoption, so we thought it appropriate to spend the first couple of months in 2017 recognizing our fantastic foster families to these litters! First up is Erin Talley and her family who took on pregnant Sage who was expected (best guess) to have 4 puppies. Sage, rescued as a young stray, was underweight and had struggled with some GI issues from the get-go. Erin spent time trying various foods, home-cooked meals, numerous trips to the vet (stool samples in tow!) and lots of love and patience to help her get healthy. When Sage went into labor Erin was fascinated and involved, texting the TRD team as things were happening. We got the “4 th healthy puppy” text. Then came a “bonus puppy!” text. Then “Another!” and “Another!!!”. Little Sage, a pup herself, gave birth to seven healthy puppies. The work of a super dedicated foster mama began. Sage’s pups were known as the “Spice Puppy” litter; Basil, Ginger, Pepper, Cinnamon, Mint, Rosemary, and Clove.

Erin was born and raised here in San Diego and had also spent time in other areas including TN, NY and No Ca. Erin’s family includes hubby, Gene, ex-Marine, daughters, Alyssa 16 and Jennifer 10 and two cats, Sunny and Daisy. Sunny came from a litter of a stray Erin’s sister took in back in NY. Erin and Gene moved across the country with him when he was 6 weeks old. He’s the alpha pet in the house, dogs be damned. Daisy was rescued from the shelter here on Gaines St. when she was about 7 months old. Erin has a long list of childhood pets ranging from dogs, cats, hamsters to a rabbit. As a young girl her Chocolate Lab, Toby, would get out of the yard and go see her on the playground at preschool in Ventura. Lady, a Border Collie, was another childhood dog she adored. When she and Gene married they had Rottweiler/Aussie brothers, Max and Jake. Max ended up having Parvo and Erin and Gene nursed him back to health through that scary ordeal. When Erin and Gene moved to NY they had difficulty finding a rental and felt they couldn’t provide what two large puppies needed. Gene’s brother ended up adopting these two and taught them to be the most amazing dogs, says Erin.

Erin decided to foster after visiting the shelter for years on and off wishing she could adopt a dog, but her rental had a no dog policy. Once they bought their home she went back to the shelter hoping to add a family member but the 2 dogs she was interested in were adopted quickly. At that point she thought about fostering instead. Since she falls in love with every dog anyhow, helping to save dogs and foster seemed like a no brainer. She quickly decided she wanted to foster a litter because…. well, puppies!!! Her self-admitted “inexperience” caused her to jump in not knowing really how much work it would be. She says it was all worth it, but it certainly takes a lot of time and patience. The most rewarding part for her is the obvious—puppy love. She says, “It was so precious watching them learn to walk, learn to play with each other, and seeing them become independent little dogs with their own personalities.” Erin tells us until about 4 weeks old it’s not too hard but after that, once they bark and potty everywhere, it’s a true test of will-power to be able to handle it. Erin’s advice for anyone considering a litter is to have patience—it’s work to clean up after 7 puppies! She says she fell in love with all of them and thought about keeping a couple of them all the time. However, she continued to remind herself there will be many other foster dogs who need her.

Fostering a litter is no small feat. We can’t thank you enough, Erin, for not only helping to raise healthy puppies for 8 weeks but also for your love and dedication to Sage to be the healthiest mama she could be. All puppies and Mama Sage have found their forever families and Erin is back at it with 2 adorable foster dogs in her home this month. Thank you Erin for all you do for rescue pups!




I got my start in dog rescue by using Facebook to help network dogs who were in high kill shelters in San Bernardino, CA.  While that was fulfilling, I really wanted to be more hands-on and interact with the dogs who were being saved.  I wanted to personally see the transformation from a scared shelter dog to a happy and adoptable dog.  So far I have fostered four wonderful dogs for The Rescued Dog and hope to foster many more!  I also love volunteering at the adoption events and watching when a match is made between a dog and their new owners.


My design thesis in my senior year of college revolved around re-designing the animal sheltering system. I spent hours and hours a day volunteering at a handful of shelters. I saw someone bring in a terrified dog as he screamed at shelter staff: “I just don’t want the damn thing anymore..” That was the tipping point for me… Also, this is my favorite quote…ever: “All his life he tried to be a good person. Many times, however, he failed. For after all, he was only human. He wasn’t a dog.”


Life has so much to offer if we remember to look beyond ourselves. I volunteer because it continuously teaches me something new about people, about cooperation, about compassion, and about myself. I have a great passion for animals. We have three rescue dogs that came to us in 2008.  Since then I’ve wanted to work with an origination that helps save dogs and put them in forever, loving homes so when I came across this opportunity with The Rescued Dog to help I jumped at the chance.  I am passionate about their mission to save dogs from high kill shelters and I truly believe that help comes in many forms, volunteering is one way to accomplish what we are supposed to accomplish in this lifetime.


I started volunteering with TRD in 2015. Volunteering has been great. I love dogs, I mean who doesn’t right?! However, I do not own a dog…not yet. I live vicariously through the rescue. If you can’t afford to adopt a dog or don’t have the ideal living situation to have a dog, like me, you can still “scratch your itch,” that’s a great thing about volunteering with us. So, the irony is I have been telling you about how great it would be to adopt a rescued dog and save them from their unfortunate circumstance and put them in a happy and caring home, and in my case, I didn’t know it then, however, the rescue saved me. I couldn’t have asked for a better group of people to be a part of and for filling my need to be around so many furry friends.


I was introduced to rescue as a child when I met a greyhound rescue organization one night at Balboa Park and convinced my parents to adopt one.  Our family greyhound Bookie and I were best buds for the ten years we had him.  Since then I have been a sucker for rescue dogs.  I am so glad I was introduced to TRD by a friend and fellow foster, and have had a chance to work with some great people and dogs, and found my little buddy, Madison!


I was introduced to The Rescued Dog while working at a local shelter.  I was excited about their mission to save dogs from high-kill shelters & wanted to participate with this mission.  I love working with the TRD team and fosters to get these pups out of the shelter, into a great foster home and finally on to their furr-ever homes!


I have always been a firm believer that doggie cuddles could save the world. So, when my mom said she wanted to start fostering dogs I was very excited. In the short period of time I have been volunteering with The Rescued Dog I realized I want to be an advocate for change. I took on this role not only to push myself but to also be a bigger voice for all of the shelter animals, since they can’t do that on their own.


The bond I have with my dog, Otis who I rescued about 2 years ago,  is that of a family member, a best friend, and a companion. Saving dogs from high kill shelters is a rewarding task, but adding a new member to someone’s family is life changing. Rescued is truly the best breed.


I got involved with rescuing dogs when my own dogs and animal loving kids got a touch older and realized I had a tiny amount of free time to fill! My kids begged for Chihuahuas, Daschunds, Huskys etc….so naturally I thought fostering would be great!  Once I got in, I was hooked and wanted to do more to help shelter dogs find the forever love my own dogs had. In regard to volunteering, I believe that if we all give a little we can accomplish a lot!


10 years ago I took a road trip from Philadelphia to San Diego with my beloved English Bulldog.  As a travel nurse, I was given the opportunity to move across the country, and with working only three days a week, I had time to volunteer with my first passion, rescue dogs.  Through volunteering, I met an amazing group of women who shared my same vision, so we collaborated The Rescue Dog!  I am so proud of our accomplishments and I look forward to continuing to educate and save lives!


I was fostering for the SD Humane Society but was looking for a rescue I could become more involved in. A friend foster failed with TRD so I filled out an application. I feel like I’ve found my calling! There is nothing like getting a dog right out of the shelter and making him feel safe. Now as an adoption coordinator I get to see the rescue through to the end, a great family and a forever home!!


I rescued my first dog in 2010 and started volunteering with a rescue a year later and loved it! After meeting a few amazing friends, it became evident rescue work was more than just a fun hobby. I truly believe the best dogs are rescued dogs and have come to find my true passion in life is in dog rescue. Fostering is one of the most rewarding experiences one can have and I highly recommend it to everyone! I can’t imagine my life without dogs, and thankfully I’ll never have to. I’m so excited to be working with such a fantastic group of people and I can’t wait to see what The Rescued Dog accomplishes!



It is easy to buy a dog from pet stores, online ads, or from dog breeders, but rescuing a shelter dog is definitely more rewarding.  How can you not admire that once sad dog, now all waggy and happy because they’ve been given a second, sometimes third chance at finding their forever home?  The ability of these pups to recognize and embrace their new life never ceases to amaze me.  The Rescued Dog saves dogs from high kill shelters and prepares them to meet and be adopted by a loving family.  TRD fills the corners of my life and it makes me happy to know I’m doing something worthwhile for these sweet pups.  Having rescued – and been rescued – by my own dogs proves that rescued really is the best breed.


My passion for rescuing dogs comes from my great experiences with rescue dogs in my life. I personally have had my life brightened by many great rescue dogs, and I have seen how having pets, and dogs particularly, has improved the lives of my friends and family. For me, the best part of dog rescue is seeing the connection that dogs and people make, and knowing that when we connect the right dogs with the right people, we are improving the lives of everyone involved, both human and canine.