Blog Archives

When I was looking for a dog, I really was not quite sure if I would be ready or not to get another dog, since I had to put my dog to sleep five months prior. But one Friday afternoon, I pulled up your website and I saw this sad looking puppy asking for a foster so this dog could heal in a home rather than a High Kill Shelter. Tyler had two dog bites on him that had gone down to the bone of his hips and shoulders and he was so thin and frail looking it just broke my HEART. I knew right then, that I HAD to have him.

TylerI filled out the adoption papers that evening and emailed the volunteer listed on the site, which was Kim Webster. She wrote me back that evening and told me that he was in WV and believed he was in foster care there, but would let me know. A couple days later, she told me that the foster lady might want to keep him due to his sweet disposition, but then a couple days later she called me and told me he was ready. HT came to my home to check things out and spoke with us, let us know when he would be here. I was so excited, I showed my family his pictures (the bad ones) and my Mom was stunned to why I wanted a dog that looked so badly, I told her that was more reason for me to get him.

thumb_Tyler_OldSo…from WV to Hagerstown to Arlington he traveled by van, and we picked him up at 2:30 that day. Kim Webster was great with us, there were so many dogs coming in that day, it was a mad house, but there standing very quietly and oh so SKINNY was my little guy Tyler! He just walked around on his little leash quietly not really knowing what was going on.

We drove him home and he nuzzled up to me and slept the way home. Our adjustment was really easy with him- he never once gave us any kind of problem, he’s been a true joy, one of the sweetest dogs we’ve had and almost close to PERFECT! Now my Mom (known as Grandma) to Tyler thinks he’s the most BEAUTIFUL dog she’s ever seen, she tells us all the time “YOU PICKED A GOOD ONE” ha! Which ! makes me smile. I beleived in this little guy from the get go! :o) HT is an amazing rescue and all the people who donate their time and efforts for these animals are AMAZING!

-Teresa, Woodbridge, VA


We just want to say thank you for giving us Potter. He is a really sweet dog who gets better with every week. He has stopped jumping our fence for the most part. We’d like to think it’s because he’s realized how good he has it here.

PotterThanks to Sara for providing a foster home, and being honest about his strengths (many) and weaknesses (few). Keep up the good work!

-The Bauer Family, Gainesville, VA


We met little Susie Q in June of 2009. She came from a WV shelter and was only with her foster family for one week before we adopted her. She was 5 1/2 months old and was a bit shy at first, but soon adjusted to her new home.

Susie QShe loved the snow this past winter and loves playing with other dogs and people. She is our best friend and brings constant joy and laughter to our lives. We love you Susie Q!

-Jeremy & Anna, Reston, VA


I wasn’t actively looking for a a puppy, but would check out PetFinder every once in a while just to browse. One day in July 2008, I was perusing the site when I saw the CUTEST photo of a little white puppy and his two brothers, who had been named Simon, Alvin, and Theodore by Homeward Trails. I immediately fell in love with Theodore, and sent out an email to his foster right away. She responded quickly and said that he was going to be at an adoption event in my neighborhood the very next day!

TeddyThe next morning I excitedly went to the event and waited for Theodore to show up. The second he got out of the car and I saw his face, I knew he was mine. He was an extremely confident little 9 week old puppy who was not rattled at all by all the sounds, sights, and smells at the event. He let me hold him, and gave me tons of kisses. I applied to adopt him then and there, had my home visit the next day, and within 72 hours of seeing him on PetFinder, had him home with me.

Teddy_PuppyTeddy’s Petfinder Picture

It’s almost been two years since I first saw his face, and I honestly cannot imagine life without him. He is incredibly smart and sweet, and is a celebrity in our neighborhood because of his friendly and outgoing nature. I truly could not have asked for a better dog, and I will be forever in the debt of Homeward Trails for rescuing him, fostering him, and allowing him to find his forever home with me.

-Dana, Washington, DC


I bought my house back in October of 2009, and I knew I wanted a dog. I used to own a Boxer, so initially, I browsed adoption sites for Boxers. I was in contact with Homeward trails trying to find one. Then I got an email with a link to Dexter. He is a hound/pointer mix, but when I saw that face I knew he was mine.

DexterI love every second with him, and believe me when I say, he is a bit spoiled. His previous owners left him tied up in his backyard, no food, no water. I could see ribs when I got him. I firmly believe in the adoption of animals, especially for reasons like this. He is the sweetest dog in the world and I cant see ever hurting or neglecting him. Thank you for this wonderful dog.

-Natassha, Woodbridge, VA


My boyfriend and I were at a PetMAC adoption fair in 2007 and immediately fell in love with Mischa, a little grey and brown tabby girl. The minute we saw her, she reached through the cage and grabbed my hand and we were immediately charmed. She sealed the deal when the three of us went into the bathroom at the Arlington PetMAC to let her explore and she curled up on my chest and started purring!

MischaAt the time we met Mischa, our three-year-old cat Marty had recently lost his brother, Oliver, to FIP and Marty was at home alone 8 hours a day for the first time in his life and feeling very lonely. Our adoption coordinator warned us that Mischa was quite energetic, but we knew she would be just the friend he needed.

Mischa has developed into quite the quirky girl – she carries toys around in her mouth like a little dog, is obsessed with running water, and loves the sound of dishes being loaded or unloaded from the dishwasher because she knows that usually means its dinner time. A total tough girl, she frequently initiates wrestling matches with her brother Marty, who is literally twice her size. We’re so thrilled to have her as part of our family! Thank you Homeward Trails for helping us find her!

-Kris (& Andrew & Marty), Arlington, VA


We were beyond ecstatic when we received an application for Bunny’s adoption, a feline leukemia (FeLV) positive Manx kitty.  Upon notifying our partner shelter in Wetzel County, West Virginia of this news, we learned that Bunny had a best friend and cage-mate, Freda, a lovely FeLV+ tuxedo kitty.  The thought of Freda alone in her cage was painful to fathom so we decided to bring her up to DC with Bunny to find a foster home for her.  Our initial excitement was quickly topped when Bunny’s potential adopters suggested that they would consider adopting Freda as well!!  Freda, a fluffy purring machine, quickly won their hearts just as Bunny had, and these kind people were the proud parents of a two new FeLV+ cats.  These two kitties are now living in New Jersey, snuggling with two small canine friends and another resident FeLV+ cat named Brandy as well!

Bunny & FredaWith Bunny and Freda adopted, this brings the number of FeLV+ kitties living at Wetzel County Animal Shelter down to 4.  Please consider fostering or adopting a FeLV+ kitty.  Remember, feline leukemia cannot be transmitted between species, so humans, dogs, rabbits, and any other non-feline animal are completely safe from infection.  Please help us spread the word about feline leukemia positive cats; ask your friends and coworkers to open their hearts to one or two of these special cats.  Together we can help all of these deserving kitties find a loving family and a home to call their own!

Stay tuned for out next featured cat, Tommy 2 Toes, who is living with both FELV and FIV.

See all posts about: Bonded Pairs


I was just browsing the internet one night and somehow came upon the HT website. As I started to look, one photo caught my eye- a sad looking puppy staring through the cage bars. As I continued to read his details, at the very end it listed the shelter he was at and it also gave a euthanize date (only 4 days away).

ParkerParkerPFIt almost broke my heart so I contacted HT right away to let them know that we wanted to adopt him. When we got him, he was certainly a handful. Not very well behaved (but not in a bad way).

After doggy school and some maturing, he has become the most loving and affectionate member of the family possible. Some say that dogs know when they have it good and who saved them. Parker shows his gratefulness every morning when we wake up and that tail goes crazy, just knowing he has a family that loves him.

-The Grube Family, Herndon, VA


I adopted Scout and Riley in August 2009, having first met them in July 2009 at an HT adoption event. My cat of 11 years had just died suddenly in June 2009, and I went to the adoption event to begin the process of thinking about getting another cat, but didn’t think I was ready just yet.

Scout & RileyThirty seconds after walking into the adoption event I saw a sweet little brown tabby cat named Ginger, who walked up to me through her cage and started purring. The HT volunteer was astounded; apparently Ginger was very scared at adoption events and never approached anyone. She walked right into my arms and I picked her up and she started purring right away. Then I noticed her sister the next cage over, Lilly, a white kitty with tabby patches. I was told they were sisters and they wanted to be adopted together. Lilly was super friendly too and also purred immediately after I picked her up.

Although I wasn’t planning on getting one cat that day, let alone two, I filled out an adoption form that day for both, and a few weeks later I adopted them. Ginger is now Scout and Lilly is now Riley, and Scout and Riley have been with me ever since. In fact they are sitting right next to my computer as I type this!

They are the best cats ever–thanks to Homeward Trails for making this possible!! And for saving Scout and Riley from the West Virginia shelter!

-David, Washington, DC

See all posts about: Bonded Pairs


I have loved cats since my family adopted our first cat when I was 5. I grew up around them. When I was 7, I begged and pleaded for a cat of my own. Shortly after my 7th birthday, I got my wish and was allowed to adopt a kitten from a new born litter on my uncle’s farm. Pokey was my life-long companion from that point on. He was with me when my parents divorced and was by my side through two custody changes. When I graduated high school and “changed custody” from my dad to my mom, he came with me again and immediately adopted her two kittens as his kids. When it came time for me to move out, not only could I not give him the care he need finacially, I also couldn’t bear to see him seperated from the cats he grew to love. I was never more than two miles away and able to visit, though.

SassyOnce I got on my settled own my own feet, I wanted to bring him to my home. I also wanted to adopt a new companion for him, since he it had been 8 years since he’d been an only kitty. I discovered Seth (now Buddy) via and was very interested. And then the worst possible news came. Pokey had developed CRF and I rethought everything and again made the decision to leave him where he was. And, adoption went out the window, too. He passed away after fighting as hard as he could in December of 2009. He was 20 years old. I learned how to love uncondtionally from him and soon after, I knew I couldn’t live without that perfect pet anymore.

I looked on again, and to my surprise, the cute kitten I had been so taken with months earlier was still looking for a home. Some where along the line, he had lost his eye to a bad eye infection. But, I saw it as fate. Somehow I knew, this cat was meant to find a home with me. I applied to adopt him, and when it was suggested that he be placed with another cat, I was okay with it. Since I knew it would be hard to pick and choose another cat, I decided to consider his foster sister, Sherbert (now Sassy) since it seemed they were already settled and happy.


Upon meeting them both, I was in love. Buddy was demanding my attention from the moment I saw him, while Sassy looked on. Eventually, she came around and proved herself to be the most loving little girl. After meeting them and playing with them for hours, I knew they would both be a great addition to my life.

Now it’s four months later, and that was absolutely correct. For a cat that came from a feral colony, Sassy has really come around. She greets me at the door and demands to be petted and picked up. She will butt or rub her head against any part of me she can reach, until she has had her fill. She has also started coming around easily to family and friends. And Buddy is my little lovey-dovey entertainer. He is constantly ready to play. He is also the one to occupy my lap, sleep next to me, or just curl up quietly (surprisingly, since he is playful as can be) when I’ve had a bad day. I never thought another cat could occupy the place in my heart where Pokey lives, but these two have taught me there is always more room there. There hasn’t been a day where they haven’t made me smile and I can’t imagine life without them, even though they’ve only been with me for a short while. I am so grateful to the Homeward Trails volunteers who took such great care of them and worked to get them to me.

-Emily, Reston, VA