Lihini is one of The Rescued Dog’s most amazing, dedicated foster moms. All of our foster families are wonderful, they are all saving lives after all, but Lihini and her foster pup Cassie stand out.  Often times our dogs roll right through TRD: they are saved, they go to a foster home, and they get adopted. Most of the time this happens relatively quickly, averaging 3-8 weeks in a foster home.  However, every now and then we get a medical case unbeknownst to us and quite often we have to share this load, moving a pup from one foster home to another based on what’s best for their care, what the foster can provide, vet appointment transportation etc. Cassie initially came to us with psychological issues involving fear, but shortly after getting her Lihini noticed a limp. Cassie had an old injury and she had surgery in an attempt to fix it. Her recovery consisted of casting, rest, vet appointments, re-casting, more rest, and more vet appointments. Lihini brought her to the vet every 10 days for a good portion of her foster life! When it was clear the surgery had not helped the way we’d all hoped, Cassie had her leg amputated. Now happier, more mobile and not in pain any longer she’s a happier girl but also still healing from those old psychological scars in the safety of Lihini’s home. After 5 months of surgeries and recoveries, we think Cassie hit the jackpot to have Lihini as her foster mom. Lihini stuck this out with Cassie, she’s been there for her since day one, seeing her through her long medical road. We don’t come by this type of love and dedication every day and we know this is what has helped and continues to help Cassie heal.

Lihini is a professor of chemical oceanography at the Scripps Institution of Oceanography/UCSD. (Wow) Having known Ashley from grad school, Lihini first fostered with us after losing her 13 year old dog. She ended up adopting her first foster 5 days in! She now has 2 rescue dogs of her own and a 6 year old human child along with Cassie her foster dog! We’d say she’s pretty darn dedicated (and busy….and probably a bit tired!) Lihini is no rookie to rescue—her previous dogs have been rescues, and she recently lost her rescued cat. When she visits Sri Lanka she is constantly attempting to bring stray dogs home to her cousins, and she’s succeeded on a few occasions—they all have a street dog of some type.

When I asked her what she loves about Cassie, she had a beautiful response: “I remember as a kid I read a story (or was told a story) about a dog that sat on his master’s grave for days or weeks (I don’t remember). I think of Cassie as that dog. I have had many dogs and they have been loyal in their own way but Cassie is special that way.  She is so attuned to me, chosen me as her person (for the moment) and is extremely faithful. She will be that way with the next person that is willing to be patient with her.”

Lihini, we are so very thankful for you. We are thankful for the time, love, and patience you have given to Cassie; we could not have asked for a better foster for our special girl! Thank you!




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.