The poetical legacy from a dog fosterer

On Monday, I drove to Limoges and the giant cemetary there for the funeral of a Scottish lady who had fostered dogs for Phoenix for many years. I have known her since 2013 when I delivered my first one to her and until the last one of dozens, 4 years ago.

Her name is Yvonne Anderson and she lived alone in a little house in the south of Haute Vienne. When the few of us gathered around the grave as she was lowered in, there was no religeous ceremony but Tiffany, the current Presidente of Phoenix, read out a poem that Yvonne had written about her passion in life

It is not going to qualify for any award, its form is distinctly amateur, but it does sum up what many of us feel.

Why do I do what I do

I’m often asked one question,
And that is “why do I do what I do”
Well for me its very simple,
Its the joy that I get seeing it through.

Sometimes its easy and sometimes its hard,
The training we give is to help you survive.
You came here with problems that no one will know,
So we start very simply and go with the flow.

I hope you have learned a thing or two here,
you were a pleasure to work with and care for my dear,
It is now your time for the world to see,
How endearing you are with a plea from me.

You will change someones life, for that I am sure,
As everyone knows a dogs love is pure.
I’m not going to tell you its easy,
when the time comes to say goodbye,

For experience has taught me one thing,
And that is, I always cry.
So your adoption is now underway
and your four legged friend leaves your side,

He struts out the door at a pace,
maybe a backward glance he will hide.
You close your door, its now time to wait,
28 days since he left through that gate,

The waiting is over and the adoptions complete,
another arrived and is sitting at your feet.
So now I will start all over again,
continuing my work with my four legged friends.

Each one of you who, came through my door
Is remembered with love, forever more.
Your paw print has left its mark on my soul.
And because of you,

I will continue to foster forever more.

A Daisy Poem


You have to love people like that. I bet there was not a mean bone in her body and earthly possessions were secondary.

It’s true, but she was a rough diamand, ex-Navy, gravelly Fife accent which to my ears sounded more like Glasgow, and normally with fag on the go. I heard from someone else that she was a drinker, but I never saw her without a cup of tea in her hand on my many visits, along with my own.

The last time I saw her I was delivering a load of puppies and she already had an elaborate pen for them set up in her living room with all kinds of climbing equipment and tunnels for them to play in. She always had a few dogs of her own with her, mainly older ones but the place didn’t stink despite the lack of space in her living room and kitchen.

She had a small back garden and each year she hosted a BBQ for friends and fellow fosterers and others from Phoenix. Fran and I could only get to one of them, I was normally elsewhere in the world ferrying canine companions, but on this occasion we had a great time. She was cognisant of Fran’s alcoholism and made sure she was shielded from the temptations which abounded in such an atmosphere and kept her fed and made sure there was always a cup of tea or a non-alcoholic beverage available.

Although the last time I saw her was 4 years ago due to changes of policy at Phoenix, I was thinking of her as I passed the end of the road that led to hers only recently, and I will miss her cheery generosity.