Forever home hero: How fostering over 100 dogs helped bring meaning to one woman's life

Candice Miller started an Instagram account to help rescue dogs get adopted.

Six years ago, Miller was working a full-time job in retail management for L'Oreal, living in California and flying all over the country.

"But I had two teens at home and got to a point where I was really overwhelmed. I told my husband I had to step away from this job," Miller told ABC News.

Miller said she felt down and was dealing with anxiety, which led her to cut back on her hours and begin volunteering at her local animal shelter.

"I started walking the dogs at my local ASPCA and realized they don’t get out of the kennels at all unless there is a volunteer there," she explained. "When I was volunteering, you see how happy that dog is to be outside and touch the grass. That’s what we as people have to stop and do too."

"That’s what the dogs taught me," Miller added. "Life was a blur until then."

It was just the beginning of a journey of fostering more than 100 dogs, adopting a few foster fails and documenting it all on Instagram through her account, @RoofusAndKilo.

'One day they'd be gone'

But two years of volunteering at the shelter also took a mental toll on Miller for a different reason.

"You would bond with the dogs and one day they'd be gone," she said.

When the dogs disappeared, it meant they had either been adopted or euthanized, but the latter was more likely, Miller said.

That’s when decided to start fostering dogs in her home.

She said she set out to see if she could help to get them get adopted out instead of put to sleep. But she had no idea how much that decision would change her life.

Since that time, she's fostered well over 100 dogs and has permanently adopted three of them along the way. (That's in addition to the three she already owned!)

'He just takes care of them'

"Kilo was my first pit bull rescue. He was on the euthanize list," she said. "I had three dogs at home already, nobody was picking him up."

She called the shelter on his last day and when she heard no one had claimed him, she rushed over to save his life.

"He really made me passionate about rescues," she said, explaining that as a former breeding dog, Kilo now acts as papa to all the fosters she takes in. "He just takes care of them."

The next rescue Miller took in was Penny, who was just three days old when Miller found her. Most of Penny's littermates had died, she said.

Miller was having trouble getting her to eat, so she laid the bottle on Kilo's belly, which warmed it up and did the trick.

"She finally started drinking from the bottle," she said. "That was a really neat experience."

With five permanent dogs and many other fosters, the Millers started looking for a bigger home to accommodate their growing family.

But finding land in California can be tough. Then fate intervened. Miller said her husband was promoted and the family moved to a 12-acre property in Oregon.

"It's so amazing," she said. "We now have an entire room dedicated to the fosters."

The family is also building outdoor cottages for additional pups, she said.

After adding another rescue, that put the total tally at six dogs -- Lucky, 15, Kilo, 8, Roofus, 7, Moo, 4, Penny, 3, and Pearl, 1.

'These are dogs who need a chance'

Over the years, Miller has worked hard to use her social media presence to promote all of the foster dogs she takes in so they can find their forever homes.

"I’ve had people tell me rescue dogs saved their life or volunteering helped them as well," she said. "Or they started making life changes because of something I shared. That's really what the account is all about."

Miller works with the Northwest Dog Project in Eugene, Oregon to help get the dogs recognized and adopted.

Despite saving the dogs she has fostered from being euthanized, she said it's what her furry friends have given her that matters most.

"I just chill out and enjoy the beautiful views every day," Miller said. "I can be with the dogs and not have anything else in my day, and I'm fulfilled."

And that's how her Instagram audience grew into what it is today, she said.

"Every day people tell me how my dogs made their day," she added. "'I was having a crappy day, I just saw your post, watched the video and just feel so better,' they write. This is just bigger than me. While they are seeing cute puppies, they also get to hopefully help rescue dogs. These are dogs who need a chance."