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swazzie

Foster Question

15 posts in this topic

swazzie   

Wasn't sure if this should go in rescue section but anyway here goes

I've been thinking about looking into being a foster doggy mum.

After losing bru this year it's way too soon to adopt for us but I miss having two dogs, Chloe would love the company and we have lots of backyard space.

I get the feed from lab rescue and think each day- we should foster , why not

My questions and dilemma is

-I don't think we'd be very good at it- I know the point is to help short term accom for dogs before their forever home but I'm worried we'd get so attached each time that it would be too hard to give them up.

Also we both work, although me part time so not sure how that would work.

The other thing is our 3yr old who is dog obsessed thinks all dogs are like Chloe( and Bru was) ie love a cuddle , wrestle.

Anyone willing to share how you fare with fostering ?

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juice   

Give it a go, if it doesn't work stop, you don't know till you try.

Matching dogs up with your own pack ( and your lifestyle), is paramount, i always knew what fitted in my lot.

I never let a dog go that wasn't going to better place than i could give it, i said no more than once.

Make sure you have full back up from rescue if the foster dog isn't a good fit, happened once with me and the dog got moved no probs to another carer.

I found it immensely rewarding , letting them go isn't easy, a few i could have kept (and did), but you know its freeing up space for another to save.

I havn't done it for a few years, as my pack started to get too old for it, but one day when i move to more garden i will set up a run etc and do it again, i do miss it.

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I lost the doggie love of my life just over 4 years ago (only 3 weeks after losing my husband) - it was horrible at the time but a friend who is involved with rescue, told me about a little dog that needed fostering, just one week after losing my boy.

The house was so quiet and I was so broken, I didn't think it was a good idea but I just decided to go and meet this little guy anyway.

So off I went to the pound, met Gus and organised to bring him home the next day.

The next day my son wanted to come along to pick him up and while we were there he asked the ranger if he had any Staffy's..

I said no way, it is much too soon.

But we met 3 of them. The two older dogs were not what I would have looked for in a dog but the younger one, was an absolute heartbreaker..

So 3 days later, we went and picked Zig up from the pound (as a keeper)..

I've had another 7 dogs through now and I could have kept most of them but I tell myself that there is a better home of their own out there for them.

Honestly, it is a wonderful feeling to hand over a foster to a home that truly adores them and to see them all so happy, well - that's why we do it.

I have Mila here at the moment and she is as sweet as can be.

I personally do some training with all my fosters before they go to new homes - I like them to have some manners and always suggest that their new homes keep up the training at their local dog club.

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Anyone willing to share how you fare with fostering ?

The most important thing is to have a document setting out what you expect of the Rescuer and what the Rescuer expects of you. If they say they are too busy or give any other excuses not to have it all in writing, don’t touch them.

Expect to fall in love with most of your fosters, not all, but most LOL.

Remember, it is a partnership: yes, they have rescued the dog and spent all the money. However, you are one getting to know the dog and a rescuer should be confident enough to accept your input, particularly if you think a proposed home is not suitable for the dog you are fostering.

A DOLer has written a book on fostering, but I don’t know whether she still comes onto the forum. I’ll check.

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I have the utmost respect for people who foster. I have once, and Benny has been here for over a year now. I couldn't let him go.

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I foster both dogs/puppies and kittens. And yes you do fall in love with some of them!! But I think it's also about how you think about what you are doing. I view fostering as me helping the animal move on to the next part of it's journey in life. It also depends why they are in foster, I take those who have behavioural or medical issues or are too young - I don't foster those who just don't have a home yet. That makes it easier for me. When they are old enough they move on, when they are well they move on, when their behaviour has reached a point where they will be safe and able to cope in a different family they move on. But I also do a lot of scouting for homes for my foster furries.

But fostering is really rewarding, especially when you hear back from new homes about how well the animal is fitting in and how much they love them!!! I just spend a lot of time telling myself that I am helping them get ready for the next part of their life! And I do think my dogs love it - having new friends in for a while!!

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HazyWal   

I started fostering greyhounds after my old Ridgeback cross passed away at age 16. I swore I'd never own another dog, my heart was broken but being on my own and having no kids I so missed having a dog in the house. Stan was my first foster grey and an instant foster failure, then 10 foster greys later in walked Miss Maddie and my little family was complete, foster failure number two :heart: You do become attached, I cried a river of tears over most of my fosters that went off to their new homes, some not so much lol. It's a wonderful thing to know they're off to a new life and then a new hopeful little face appears at your door. I loved fostering and I do miss it but Maddie can be a bossy little cow so no more for us :)

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I started fostering again after my old girl departed. She needed extra care in those final years and I didn't think it would be fair on her. I have a weakness for SBT's so decided to foster a breed of dog I had no idea about - had never even seen in person, on the basis I wouldn't fall in love with them so easily. So while I didn't end up with a foster that I couldn't bear to part with, one foster herself chose us and it became clear it was in her best interests to stay with us. We then had a full house and had to stop fostering again. I have absolutely no regrets as I now love the breed (shar pei) and of course adore our funny little foster failure. There were a couple of other fosters that broke my heart when they left but they had chosen special families for themselves and that is what it is all about. I can't provide the kinds of homes they went to and luckily most of the new parents have stayed in contact with me. I've also seen several of them since they were adopted and they couldn't care less about me!

It is important to find a group whose practices and values you support, the ones where you get a say on the dog you foster and who considers your household requirements. There are ones out there who will just dump any old dog on you and that is not good for you or the foster dog. It is easy to fall in love with your charges but what they need most from you is a safe and nurturing place to become their best selves so they can find their forever home. I found it so rewarding to see a terrified or shut down dog start to trust and engage again. Our other dogs really enjoyed the experience too and helped a lot with the transitions our fosters made. I've shed lots of tears but they were all happy ones.

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tdierikx   

Anyone willing to share how you fare with fostering ?

The most important thing is to have a document setting out what you expect of the Rescuer and what the Rescuer expects of you. If they say they are too busy or give any other excuses not to have it all in writing, don’t touch them.

Expect to fall in love with most of your fosters, not all, but most LOL.

Remember, it is a partnership: yes, they have rescued the dog and spent all the money. However, you are one getting to know the dog and a rescuer should be confident enough to accept your input, particularly if you think a proposed home is not suitable for the dog you are fostering.

A DOLer has written a book on fostering, but I don’t know whether she still comes onto the forum. I’ll check.

Here's a link to where you can buy the foster manual... well worth every penny and more... http://www.fostermanual.com/

T.

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Panto   

When I fostered, and may yet again, I knew it wasn't my dog, it was just that somebody, (maybe the foster dog themself) hadn't told me who owned them yet. I told myself, it's not my dog. It's someone else's.

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tdierikx   

Your first foster can be the hardest... you are so wanting to do everything "right" and find them the perfect home... but don't overthink it...

You know that you've done a great job of selecting their new family when the "ungrateful" foster doesn't even look back at you as they are driving away... *grin*

As others have said, make sure both you and the rescue involved have similar expectations of who does what, who pays for what, and that you have backup if things aren't working out. This is paramount!

Also... there is no shame in you ending up adopting a "foster failure"... this is a good outcome too, OK? (I have 2 myself)

T.

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swazzie   

Thanks for all the really helpful replies .

DH thinks we should wait a few months, so I figure I'll research abit during that time and I'll get that book- thanks for the link .

It's interesting idea and probably a good one to consider fostering dogs that aren't your favourite breed.

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tdierikx   

Definitely get the book - she's really quick in sending it once you've paid - it's got everything that you'll ever need to know in order to have a good experience with fostering. So much info that you may not have thought of... an excellent resource IMHO...

T.

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Your first foster can be the hardest... you are so wanting to do everything "right" and find them the perfect home... but don't overthink it...

LOL - was going to say that too, but then I remember someone (ummm, me ?? :laugh: :laugh: ) in the beginning, way back when.

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tdierikx   

Your first foster can be the hardest... you are so wanting to do everything "right" and find them the perfect home... but don't overthink it...

LOL - was going to say that too, but then I remember someone (ummm, me ?? :laugh: :laugh: ) in the beginning, way back when.

Me too... for my first 3 or 4 actually... lol!

It certainly does come easier once you have a little practice at it, yes?

T.

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