"Fostering" ; and "adopting" animals

(51 Posts)
MooseyMouse Mon 09-Sep-13 07:13:09

I hear these phrases more and more and I hate it. "I'm fostering a puppy" or "I'm going to adopt a cat" or "Could you be a foster home for a dog?"

It really bugs me. I think it demeans the fostering and adoption of children. I think animals are "rehomed" rather than "adopted". I don't like the thought that my son is "adopted" just like next door's dog.

Is it just me?!

Moan over!

MooseyMouse Mon 09-Sep-13 07:14:43

Aaaaagh! Random punctuation in the thread title. That'll bug me even more than the issue I'm posting about.

lougle Mon 09-Sep-13 07:18:07

It doesn't demean children. Fostering is just that -a dog foster carer is giving the dog everything they need until they are found a suitable home.

MrsWolowitz Mon 09-Sep-13 07:19:46

I think you're over thinking it.

In animal realms adoption means rehoming but fostering is temporarily looking after an animal while it waits to be rehomed/adopted.

Seems like a very minor thing to be bothered by.

AngelsWithSilverWings Mon 09-Sep-13 07:21:50

I understand what you mean. I always look anxiously at my DS when those pay £4 a month adopt a tiger adverts come on.

I just hope he doesn't think we are paying £4 p/m for him!

Lilka Mon 09-Sep-13 10:25:10

Adoption is of those words with more than one meaning. You can adopt an idea or adopt a policy, or adopt a new way of doing something and that's not demeaning anybody.

When it comes to animals I'm fine with it as long we're describing bringing something into the home. Fostering a dog is exactly what it is. There's no other word for it, if you're caring for a dog temporarily you're fostering it. Adopting the dog - I consider it adoption as well. I adopted my cat from a shelter many years ago, and my kids talk about adopting another one (I'm not lisnteing to them yet though - maybe in a couple of years time) - they like the idea that our family should be completely formed from adoption, including the pets.

Now, 'adopting' a road or a Snow Leopard...no. That's sponsoring. If you're not bringing a lovely bit of tarmac home to love and make your own, you're not adopting it. It's not a correct use of the word.

I DO find 'adopt a family' schemes demeaning. Again, it's sponsoring, but the use of the word adopt in relation to such a family, I do find that a bit insulting really. Can't quite put my finger on why, but it really grates.

Devora Mon 09-Sep-13 16:27:24

OP, I know what you mean. It grates on me too. But the truth is that this is not an invalid use of language - it's just that we're forced to use this multifunctional word to convey something that we want our dc to understand as special and specific. We're going to have to suck it up, I'm afraid.

MooseyMouse Mon 09-Sep-13 16:48:44

Well I agree that it's not one of life's biggest problems! Just one of those things that bugs me. I suppose, given that I'm not the queen if the world, I'll have to put up with it. grin

2old2beamum Mon 09-Sep-13 18:19:21

MooseyMouse it may not be the biggest problem but it irritates me beyond words. Btw do these little doggies get the same the legal inheritance rights our children get grin

Kewcumber Mon 09-Sep-13 19:08:04

I try not to let it grate on me Moosey but I fail miserably. Walking your adopted 6 year old who's just learnt to read around a zoo is an exercise in how to make my blood pressure rise.

Every bloody corner has a big sign up about adopting a Lion or an Elephant or a ferret or a mongoose.

Organisations love to use "adopted" because its more emotive than sponsor and more people put their hands in their pockets and it doesn't mean "rehoming" MrsW - it means "donate some money and we'll pretend you are sponsoring some specific cute animal.

I have taken the approach with DS that its funny - and maybe if you adopt an Elephant it will have to come and live with you and a social worker will come and check on it periodically.

You'e not overthinking because its something most adopted children have to deal with at some point - you just need to settle on a way which works for you.

Kewcumber Mon 09-Sep-13 19:10:20

Angels - don;t be anxious about it - I would just tell DS that if he only cost me £4/month that he would be an absolute bargain (mostly...)!

Maryz Tue 10-Sep-13 13:15:09

It really, really pisses me off.

Not so much if you actually do foster, or even adopt, a puppy, as in take them home and look after them and (in the case of adoption) keep them in your family forever.

But the "adopt a dolphin/panda/donkey" ads are misleading and confusing and just plain wrong.

Maryz Tue 10-Sep-13 13:16:04

Oh, and the asking for money to adopt ones have led to some awkward questions for children in school.

dd was asked on more than one occasion how much she cost hmm

Maryz Tue 10-Sep-13 13:16:05

Oh, and the asking for money to adopt ones have led to some awkward questions for children in school.

dd was asked on more than one occasion how much she cost hmm

Bowlersarm Tue 10-Sep-13 13:19:53

I don't agree that those words shouldn't be used for dogs and puppies, only humans.

Especially the word 'fostering' - it is much more of a mouthful to say 'this-is-Binky-who-I-am-just-looking-after-for-a-short-while-until-a-permanent-home-can-be-found-for-her' than 'this is my foster dog, Binky'

Maryz Tue 10-Sep-13 13:19:54

How did that happen?

Bowlersarm Tue 10-Sep-13 13:22:29

(Sorry about Binky what a rubbish name - the first one that popped into my head!)

Maryz Tue 10-Sep-13 13:24:35

grin at Binky.

What's your stance on pandas though? "This is a picture of my panda Winky who I have adopted, even though I have never met him and in fact he probably doesn't exist as he is a generic computer generated panda who has been adopted by a thousand people for a fiver each"

Bowlersarm Tue 10-Sep-13 13:27:30

Yes, I guess I would say that you were sponsoring Winky, or supported the panda charity perhaps?

MooseyMouse Tue 10-Sep-13 20:11:11

I think animal charities have appropriated the two words fairly recently and I don't like it.

When our little boy was placed with us for adoption I had a new manager in one of my jobs. I explained to him that I had just adopted a child and he said "I know how you feel. I've just adopted two dogs". hmm

Bowlersarm Tue 10-Sep-13 20:51:32

The trouble is OP your little boy means the world to you, but to your manager his dogs mean the world to him. Why does that make you right and him wrong?

Anyway, it's a moot point. Them's the words which are used in animal rescue. I can't see that they will change.

MooseyMouse Tue 10-Sep-13 20:58:01

I don't think getting two dogs gives him any insight whatsoever into what adopting a child feels like.

As I said above - I know we're stuck with these word being used in this way. It does bug me though.

FeegleFion Tue 10-Sep-13 21:05:29

It doesn't demean the fostering or adoption process of any child.

I've been a foster carer for dogs and have also adopted dogs. I'm actually proud to say so too.

Completely baffling and unnecessary to be upset by the terms being used by anyone other than those whom foster or adopt children. confused

Bowlersarm Tue 10-Sep-13 21:06:46

Why does he want an insight into what adopting a child feels like?

Kewcumber Tue 10-Sep-13 21:26:59

Bowler thats a very peculiar attitude to take. Of course he thinks a lot of his dogs and he loves them the way most people do.

And yes I think people who have pets but not children might imagine that how they feel about their pets is like having children but surely anyone who has children must know they aren;t in the slightest bit comparable confused

If someone said to you if your child was fighting a life threatening illness in hospital "I know just how you feel my dog was dangerously ill last week" - wouldn't you think it was a bit of that someone really thought it was comparable?

I love my cats dearly and would be devastated if anything were to happen to either one of them but really is is about 10,000 times easier in every way to adopt a pet than a child.

Anyone who can imagine this really doesn't have a good grip on reality!

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