Seneca Krueger is good at teaching rescued dogs to trust people again.
But Zelda was a difficult case not only because her anxiety was hard to treat but also, Seneca had grown fond of her and it was hard to let her go.Never could she have predicted that one day, the pup would go for great lengths just to be with her again.
Seneca Krueger is a psychotherapist who is good at teaching rescued dogs to trust people again. So far, she has already fostered 30 dogs and among them, Zelda was one of the most difficult cases.
“She came with anti-anxiety medications,” Seneca told The Dodo. “Zelda paced. All day long she was either pacing or hiding.”She started tether training Zelda because she seemed calmer when on a leash. After two weeks, Seneca started adjusting her anti-anxiety medications and decreased it gradually. Two months passed and the dog finally wagged her tail. At four months, she started to become more lively, playing and barking. But still, the noise of the visitors dropping by still bothered her.
“As Zelda began to gain a little more confidence, I decided it was time for her to find her forever home,” Seneca said. “This is what you are supposed to do as a dog foster; help them adjust and then happily say goodbye as they go and live their best lives.”
But parting ways with Zelda proved to be very difficult for the foster mom after she drove 40 miles to drop her off in her new home.
“For the first time in my 12 years of dog fostering, I felt like I had given away my dog,” Seneca said.
Ten days after they parted, Seneca received a call that Zelda slipped through her leash and was missing. With the help of the all-volunteer Search, Track and Retrieval Team, they set up trail cameras and feeding stations in the area.
Soon enough, sightings of Zelda have been reported. Seneca herself refused to give up the search for the pup even after the temperature dropped below freezing point.
“The coldest days were the days I spent the most time searching because I was desperate to get Zelda warm and safe,” she said. “[I] spent hours out in the freezing cold, following dog tracks through ravines, frozen swamps and fields.”
After two months of searching, Seneca heard the news that Zelda was spotted in Minneapolis which is halfway between her home and Zelda’s new owner. She then realized Zelda was trying to get back to her.
Then finally, Seneca and Zelda met again with the help of a neighbor who found the dog. After three months of being on the run, Zelda has finally come home. She may be a foster fail, but she knew Zelda is meant to be part of her family forever.