Dog News

Jayda’s Journey: The Transformative Power of Loving Foster Care


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JaydaJayda, a lab mix, was a part of a group of 40 dogs from North Carolina that urgently needed placement from the county shelter, due to space issues. Hubbard’s Hounds Dog Rescue, a no-kill rescue in Homer, New York, committed to taking in 12 of the 40 and Jayda was one of those 12.

Jayda was then transported from North Carolina with the other dogs. Susan Hubbard, Dirctor of Hubbard’s Hounds, had to be in constant communication with the vet because of Jayda’s poor condition. Jayda was so small, thin and sickly. Even though she was supposed to be a lab mix, her head was the only part of her resembling a lab!

When she arrived, Susan had to coax Jayda out of her travel crate. Jayda belly crawled out in fear. Susan could see every rib on her skinny little body! She put Jayda in her car and began a journey that would last nearly three years until Jayda would be adopted.

This journey began in 2010 when Jayda had arrived small and scared. She had leg and back issues, falling after climbing only three stairs to get to the deck. Susan has a huge fenced in yard and Jayda loved the sun and being able to run free in the yard.

Within two weeks of arriving, Susan saw significant improvements in Jayda’s walking and running abilities. She had worried that Jayda might have a congenital problem, but what she actually had was a lack of muscles due to being chained all the time. She was also very shy and scared, convincing Susan that she had been abused.

Jayda felt safe in the yard, but Susan could not get a collar or leash on her in order to teach her how to walk on a leash for at least 6 months. She was finally able to put a harness on her and she learned to enjoy a walk, even short walks. In fact, she was a very excited walker! She never liked a collar, though, likely as a result of being choked or dragged at some point.

Jayda before adoption
Jayda just before adoption

Jayda had also arrived with demodex mange and was on medicine for a long time. Even after she was better, she would have flare ups. She had a terrible flea allergy too and if she would get even one small bite, she would just itch until she was raw. She had very thin hair and was uncomfortable during those flair ups. Susan finally managed to get them under control by changing her to a grain-free diet. Then her hair came in thick and she stopped having the skin issues.

Jayda loved to be outside, whether it was sunny, snowing or raining. It didn’t matter to her! She turned out to be the fastest lab ever. She would stare out the big sliding glass door, begging to go out. Then she would take off and was able to catch a black bird before the bird could get off the ground far enough to get out of her reach. She wasn’t trying to hurt them, she just loved the chase!

In the end, Jayda stole Susan’s heart. By the time Jayda was adopted, almost 3 years after being in Susan’s home as a foster dog, she was a beauty! She was a muscular and normal sized lab. She had learned to trust again and actually enjoyed going for walks.

Jayda was adopted in February, 2013, and is doing wonderfully in her forever home. She sleeps in the big bed with her dad and enjoys being with him and his family. Susan still misses her but also knows she deserved her own home with her own family.


Hubbard’s Hounds Dog Rescue is a no-kill dog rescue organization in Homer, NY that takes dogs of all ages and breeds from high-kill shelters, owner turn-ins and puppy mills. They run solely on donations. Any dog rescued is put in a foster home until they find a forever home. Some even stay forever with their foster families, but they are always safe.