Fostering a greyhound(15 Posts)
Have just sent in application to foster a greyhound - have always had sighthounds, haven't had a pet for last few years so have an empty house and garden. Have 2 DC aged 4 & 18mo. Both used to dogs as my DM has two. However don't know if this will go against us as possible fosterers.
Have large garden, live in countryside and am SAHM so thought was great opportunity to have a dog back in the house and do some good possibly. Anyone have any experience with fostering and any advice?
Fostering is a great idea and many congratulations on wanting to do it.
Most rescues are absolutely delighted when families are available to do fostering, as it enables dogs to then go to family homes with DC experience under their belts, so to speak.
The rescue will have a chat with you about the support you'll be offered. You should have access at all times to a foster co-ordinator who you can discuss any concerns with. Initially, at least, I'd expect them to place dogs that have previously been in a home with you. These can come back to rescue for instance if their owner dies, or as an owner surrender (typically, divorce, emigration etc) and a dog that's not used to kennel life or an oldie especially would go to a foster home in preference.
I'd expect the rescue to discuss ground rules around how you and your DC interact with the dog - this is NOT trying to interfere with your parenting but is trying to ensure safe, happy co-existence between DC and hound. For instance, I'd expect you to ensure that dog is never disturbed when sleeping or eating (and make sure DC know about greys sleeping with eyes open), and that it might be a good idea to have baby gates to allow separation of dogs/DC for everyone's safety.
Crate usage might also be an option to allow hound to have designated safe space that is out of bounds to DC.
To be honest, if your parenting style tends to the very crunchy/"my darlings are spirited" then this might not be right for you - I don't think it's fair on any dog to inflict noisy, grabby toddlers who are never given boundaries (hasten to add this may not be your parenting style).
Other things to think about - walks - will you walk dog plus toddler in buggy? Or are you expecting to do dog walks separately from DC?
Car travel - do you have a secure boot, preferably with boot guard? Will you be able to take foster dog to any necessary vet appointments, and will you be willing to follow guidance on basic training (e.g. whistle recall) and/or take foster to training classes?
Biggest danger - you will fall in love and join the "failed fosters club" - quite a few of us are proud members of that.
I've fostered greys before. Usually the ones that come out on foster are ex-racers that have never been in a house before, so the rescue will want them to be socialised - and get used to stairs! - so that they are then suitable for a forever home.
Be prepared for having to teach them how to go up and down stairs. Also grabbiness around food and counter surfing may be a problem, especially if there's been mistreatment in the past. It can be common to have food insecurity and bolt what's given through fear of not knowing when they'll next be fed. Routine and patience will address this. The rest would usually be pretty standard - socialisation, being OK around small furries and cats, walking nicely on the lead, looking adorable on sofas
I was a rubbish foster Mum though because mine never went back - the rescue knew that my foster dogs would never make a return journey because I got attached and couldn't let them go again
One big tip would be to get them used to having their teeth cleaned. Most are OK with having nails done because it has to be done regardless, but many racers teeth are appalling because they are never looked at - and as you'll already know, as a breed they are prone to tartar build up and decay problems because of the shape of the jaw.
If you can get them used to having their teeth brushed properly then this is a massive plus.
Ahhhh replies, thank you!
Scuttlebutter - thank you so much. Great insight, both children are with dogs regularly and will most definitely not be allowed free reign - i do know what you mean though!
Have a good little area plenty big enough for a big bed and some space for a mooch that can be gated off so they can get some peace and quiet. Is just me and 18mo at home throughout the day, and after initial excitement he's pretty calm (much like a puppy himself). And obviously never left alone with dog etc
Walks would be a mixture of pram, verrryyy slow walks with DS, walks with DS in carrier, trips out with whole family in car to woods etc, walks with my DM dogs (if dog friendly) so hopefully a good mix.
Hopefully I'll Be back with some photos of our new (possibly) temporary house member soon!
Paul, I read on one greyhound rescue site that they discourage fosterers from letting them on the sofas incase not allowed in their forever home. Don't know how I'd not let them sofa surf though! Z
Also, good tip about the teeth, never even thought about that.
Wind and drizzle, who needs the stairs when you look that dashing lounging around!
Possibly - in which case I'd say good luck to them. If you don't want a dog on a sofa then don't have a grey! My local rescue would laugh themselves to death
Anyway, most right-thinking people can't resist the pleading lure of a grey who just wants to snuggle up next to you. It's the best thing about having them
let's not talk about the most disgusting farts known to man and the greyhound screech of death
Exactly what I thought! The sofa is the bed we used to have a French bulldog and a wolfhound x greyhound, and between them they could clear the house, never mind a room
I'm also not thinking about the fact that the Old Boy now costs more to insure than my car!
Didn't know about greys sleeping with eyes open! I've fostered some dogs before, it's a lovely thing to be able to do.
This is brilliant! Second the stuff about the teeth, stairs and not letting them on the sofa. Our grey has a bed of his own in each of our downstairs rooms and that works fine. We had decided (DH with some reluctance) that we'd let him go on the sofas, but he has never tried and looked politely confused when we patted the sofa so we've not pushed it and he's quite happy on his own beds. (It does mean that I spend a lot of time sitting next to him on the floor but neither of us mind that.)
I failed with keeping my foster grey off my bed.
He's now with a fab new owner. I was able to have a big part in deciding where his new home would be which was slightly terrifying but worked well. I was very protective of my foster hound and only the best home would do.
My foster was pretty cruisey about the who,e living in a house thing but I know some need a bit of extra support.
Here's my ex foster being cute
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