When we picked up the 50-pound black-and-tan mixed-breed dog from the Maryland SPCA 10 years ago, we weren't sure what to expect. We hadn't met him, or even seen a picture. All we knew was that he'd spent two months in transit to Baltimore after Hurricane Katrina ravaged the Gulf Coast.
Struck by TV images of the disaster, my husband and I responded to a call for foster parents.
The dog was about 8 months old. He had frayed paw pads, a large gash over one eye and was filled with worms. He huddled on the floorboards of our car during the ride home, drooling and panting.
Dizzy, as we'd named him in honor of his jazz roots, was one of 189 cats and dogs the Maryland SPCA...