I had the honor of fostering a few dogs after my boy Timmy passed away. Not ready to commit to a new pup yet, fostering wasn’t just helpful for the rescues and dogs, it kept me busy during a rough time. I didn’t realize how important fostering was for rescues and shelters. Getting a dog in a home environment allows the rescue to learn about any behavioral issues or quirks, which helps get it placed in the right forever home home.

One of my fosters was a little red fox terrier mix. I called him Red. He was sweet but had a lot of energy and I quickly learned he had bad separation anxiety. The poor guy destroyed two of my doors when I left him alone. This was very useful information for the rescue so they can be transparent with new adoptees (minimizing returns).

Have I convinced you?It’s still a big commitment to foster so I encourage you to do as much research as you can. Here’s a great post from Woof Report on dog fostering that may help… 

Give a Dog a Second Chance by Fostering

Helping pets in need doesn’t always mean adopting a dog or even donating money. Fostering a dog is an incredible way to support rescue organizations and overcrowded shelters and get a pup ready for finding his new forever home. Take advantage of the opportunity to help dogs in need without taking on the commitment of a lifelong pet adoption or as a test run to see if another dog is just what you need.

How Fostering Works

Shelters often have dogs that need a little extra socialization before they’re ready for adoption, or those that need time away from a crowded shelter for personalized care after a medical procedure. Or in the case of rescue organizations, which typically do not have a facility to house the dogs they rescue, there’s simply a need for foster homes while permanent homes are found for the dogs through adoption efforts.

What Foster Parents Do

You’ll be responsible for the basic daily care for your friend in your home. In other words, your job is to shower him with the love and attention he needs to prepare him for adoption into a permanent home. The shelter picks up the cost of any medical expenses and in some cases, all costs for food. You’ll be asked to bring your foster dog to adoption events, medical appointments, and training classes if his manners need work.

Who Can Foster

Like any parenting situation, quantity and quality time are essential, so shelters and rescues prefer foster arrangements where at least one adult is home during the day. Also, the shelter will consider other pets and your lifestyle to make sure the match is the right for everyone involved. In most cases, it’s fine if you already have a dog, as long as your dog and the foster dog are both healthy and well behaved around other dogs.

How long does a foster dog stay?

Based on the individual needs of the pup, the time can range from days to months. Upon initial placement, you’ll likely get an idea of the probable length of the stay. But be prepared – your foster just may need you for awhile.

Foster it Forward

Like anything worth doing in life, fostering will require patience, dedication and tender loving care. The dogs you welcome into your home may need to be house trained or learn their manners. They may be rambunctious or very shy. But these issues are far outweighed by the benefits and rewards of fostering – the honor to save little lives one pup at a time.

The Scoop:

Learn more about foster care for dogs – www.fosterdogs.com

Use Petfinder’s search tool to find your local humane society, animal shelter or rescue organization and see about fostering opportunities – www.petfinder.com/search

See Woof Report’s list of shelter and rescue organizations. If your favorite one is missing, contact us through the site and we’ll add it to our list – www.woofreport.com/adoptadog

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