Interested in dog fostering,could I offer enough?

(5 Posts)
mind77 Sun 11-Nov-12 09:18:48

Hi guys! I know alot of you on here foster dogs,so thought I would ask advice.
I have been thinking of applying to a rescue for months now,but haven't as only have a years experience with dogs(my own), but have decided to take the plunge as with christmas coming up I know their are hundreds of abandoned dogs. I am nervous though and am just wondering as to whether I could offer enough?
Due to my limited experience,I would prefer any rescues dogs at th moment that I fostered to be child friendly,pref dog friendly and of small/medium sized. I have guinea pigs in the house,so would need to be a breed that wasn't reknowned to want to eat small furries and would prefer house trained(although I know accidents can always happen). Not bothered about obediance/behaviour etc as would train/work with that.
Would love to help and any foster dogs would be well loved,exercised and be completely welcomed as part of the family but is that enough?
Have applied to foster at a local rescue and was told they would be back in touch,but that was 2 days ago so not sure if they are just run of their feet or if my criteria is just not realistic as would have thought I would have heard something by now?

D0oinMeCleanin Sun 11-Nov-12 10:33:02

They are run off their feet.

Offering a loving home is enough, the rest the rescue can work on with you.

I only get child friendly, cat friendly foster dogs, although a few weeks after I used the rescue co-ordinator as a reference for a dog behaviour course she sent me puppy, who is lovely, but needs a lot of training.

Walking him used to me make cry. But she knew me by this time and knew I could cope. The first dog I got from them was an absolute angel. She was literally perfect, because at this point the rescue did not know how experienced I was or what I was willing and able to train.

There are loving, well trained family dogs in rescues who have been given up for a number of reasons and have no issues at all.

Good luck with it all. You can chase up your application if you want to, they won't mind. If you don't hear anything back don't get disheartened, come back here and we can point in the direction of different, better organised rescues. Every single rescue I know is literally crying out for fosterers atm.

You are doing a wonderful thing considering fostering. It's very rewarding.

mind77 Sun 11-Nov-12 11:31:02

Thank you DOOIN, that has reassured mesmile Not sure how well organised this rescue is to be honest. I have offerred to donate food/toys/bedding etc a few times this year and never hear anything back so maybe thats not a good omensad Will give it a few more days, and then hopefully one of you guys may be able to point me in the direction of another reputable one.
This is something that I feel really strongly about as my heart breaks when I read about all these dogs in pounds/homeless so will definitely pursue

Mind, please, PLEASE don't give up. Fostering is one of the most important elements of rescue work. smile

By fostering you will be giving a loving home to a dog that might not be able to cope with kennels (many dogs find them immensely stressful) and they are not ideal for older or poorly dogs. Also a domestic environment is great because unlike kennels, the foster home can provide a really good assessment of how the dog behaves in circumstances that will be of interest to the adopter e.g. is he housetrained, how is he on walks, does he like playing with toys, etc etc. Because you can provide this info, the rescue can then give a much more detailed assessment to adopters, and dogs who are in foster care ALWAYS get adopted faster and easier than ones in kennels sad.

Most rescues are desperate for foster homes - usually a reputable one will start by getting you in touch with a foster co-ordinator who will discuss with you your experience, expectations, domestic arrangements etc. As Dooin says, they will want to match you with a nice easy dog on your first foster, to see how things go. As your skill develops, you MAY want to (but are under no obligation) to take on slightly more complex dogs - perhaps ones that need nursing after an injury, for instance, or have special needs. But please don't think you have to - most foster dogs are just unlucky enough to have been surrendered by their previous owners, mostly for reasons nothing to do with them e.g. arrival of second baby, marriage breakdown, redundancy, etc. You will see plenty of threads here on the Doghouse, where people will be wanting to give up dogs for various reasons. It's amazing how often allergies develop when a second baby comes along hmm

Our local (S Wales) all breed rescue is Hope Rescue who are excellent and have foster homes all over the country. Click here to visit their website/forum which gives loads of info and has a downloadable foster application form. Four Paws Rescue is also very good.

Hope it all goes well for you. Fostering is so rewarding and fun, and it is the most wonderful feeling in the world when you see a dog that you first saw as a wreck later on when they are happily rehomed, well and flourishing. Cue huge lump in throat. It's also about helping people - for instance two of our current foster dogs are here because their owner became very unwell and has been in hospital. Knowing her beloved dogs were being well cared for, together in a greyhound knowledgeable home gave her a huge feeling of reassurance and she could concentrate on getting better. We've even been able to take the dogs to visit her in hospital which was lovely.

Good luck! smile

mind77 Sun 11-Nov-12 15:47:03

Thank you. Have looked on the 'Hope Rescue'. It's awful how amany abandoned dogssad Nice to have some positive posts! Have spoke to a few people in RL about my plans to foster and every one of them has looked at me horrified. Reasons ranging from me having kids and me putting them at risk, to me not having enough experience and being naive as to what to expectangry
SCUTTLEBUTTER,I would probably be happy to move on to more challenging dogs once settling into fostering.I had my own dog from an 8 week old puppy, he is now a year old. Followed people's advice(very misguided advice i now realise) to get a puppy and not go with rescue as they come with a whole load of issues. Well he had so many issues that even the behaviourist I hired commented on him being one of her more 'challenging' clientsgrin He is coming on in leaps and bounds now, but was very hard work for a few months, so I'm not totally inexperienced in dealing with problem dogs, just would prefer to find my feet a bit first! I'm sure many of the foster dogs would require hell of a lot less maintenance than my own did!!

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