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June 16, 2020
Fostering a dog is an incredible way to help numerous pups, and it can be extremely rewarding. It’s also not for the faint-of-heart, requiring quite a bit of dedication, time, energy, and of course, having to say goodbye to all of the animals that you’ve come to love once you find them their forever homes. With almost 670,000 dogs being euthanized in shelters each year mainly due to overpopulation, fostering becomes even more critical to saving lives. Do you think you might want to join the ranks of dog foster parents? Here’s what you need to know!
Before you can foster a dog, you need to get acquainted with an animal rescue that is looking for fosters. A great starting point is petfinder.com, a wonderful resource that can help you locate rescue organizations near you. If you're willing to extend past your local area, you can also look into rescues that have personal meaning to you, such as certain breed-specific rescues or organizations that specialize in senior dogs or dogs with special needs.
Once you've nailed down a rescue or two that interests you, the next step is to contact the rescue, introduce yourself, and request a fostering application. Review the application carefully and make sure you're fully aware of all that is expected of you if you are selected as a foster.
The rescue will also want to see your references and they may perform a background check. If you already own a pet, the rescue will also most likely want to speak with the veterinary clinic that takes care of your animals.
Before you decide to be a dog foster, it’s important that you ask a lot of questions, both of the rescue and of yourself. You don’t want to decide you aren’t up to the task after you accept a foster dog into your life.
If you are still willing and able to foster a dog after answering all of these questions, then move forward with the application process and get ready to welcome a pup in need into your home and into your life.
Your main responsibility as a dog foster is to make sure the pup receives all of his age-appropriate vaccinations, has regular veterinarian well-visits and health checks, and that the dog is properly fed and cared for. It is also essential to provide the dog with a lot of positive attention, love, and necessary training because your ultimate goal is to prepare your foster for adoption. Depending on the dog, this could mean varying degrees of time and effort on your part, so be prepared to do whatever it takes. You might take in a dog that is already well-trained, or you may end up with a pooch that hasn’t even been potty trained yet. It’s important to know these types of things ahead of time so that you can properly prepare yourself and your home for what lies ahead (like a lot of puddles on your floor; get the cleaner ready)!
Since the biggest and most critical part of fostering is finding the pup his forever home, you will also need to take your foster to certain adoption events and work with him on any areas that might be standing in the way of him getting adopted. For example, he might need more socialization or training, have issues with separation anxiety, or he might have a medical condition that needs extra attention.
Dog fostering is a fantastic way to help animals in need of loving homes, as well as a way to free up space in shelters for more dogs and cats. Plus, bringing a pup into your life can have many positive benefits for you and your family as you work together to care for these amazing animals.If fostering a dog is something you feel you are truly meant to do, then it can be a very rewarding experience. If you’re looking for more great insights into pet ownership, check out the rest of our blog! Whether you already have a faithful furry friend, or you’re thinking about adding one to the family, we have the answers to your questions!
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