foster care for dogs

United States
February 16, 2009 1:23pm CST
I am currently a college student so I do not always have time for a pet but my weekends are usually pretty free and I saw on the website of a nearby shelter that they do fostering for the dogs for weekends or longer if you want and I thought that would be great. I have always had dogs and I miss having them around the house. Has anyone fostered a dog? Is it really hard to give them back to the shelter when the weekend is over?
1 person likes this
4 responses
@trickiwoo (2702)
• United States
18 Feb 09
Fostering is such a wonderful thing to do! Rescue groups have a huge shortage of foster homes and desperately need them! Many private rescue organizations don't have a physical shelter location, so they rely entirely on foster homes for their animals. However, with those, the pets live in your home for several weeks, months or even years. I've never heard of a shelter that lets people foster dogs for the weekend, then return them to the shelter... but I think that's a wonderful idea! I volunteer with shelter dogs and when they're at the shelter for long periods of time they get so down. You can really see it when you look at them. Even just a day trip to an adoption event outside of the shelter where they're out of their cage and get a lot of attention from other people really perks them up! They're noticeably happier when they return to the shelter, and this extra spark they have is what often gets them adopted! I imagine it would be a lot more difficult to give up your foster dog to return to the shelter than it is to give them up to their new owners. If you think that would be too hard for you and that you wouldn't be able to do it, perhaps you could volunteer at a shelter on the weekends. Shelters are always in need of volunteers to walk the dogs, take them out, give them love and attention, etc. And rescue organizations often hold adoption events on the weekend that they need volunteers for. Someone to play with the animals, hold leashes, talk to potential adopters and answer questions. That kind of stuff. If you're interested in doing something like that, you may want to check out the website http://www.volunteermatch.org/ You can do a search for nearby animal rescue organizations that need volunteers. If you can't find any, you can contact local groups through their websites. Whatever you decide to do, you'll be making a huge difference!
• United States
19 Feb 09
Thank you for your detailed response. I am also a volunteer at the shelter where I have now decided to foster dogs so I will get to see the dogs again after I give them back which makes it a little easier.
• United States
16 Feb 09
Wow, this sounds like a great thing to do. I've never fostered a dog before, but I imagine it might be hard to give the dog back if you know it still doesn't have a safe home to go to. Nonetheless, dogs need love and attention and being able to care for it temporarily I'm sure would be more than worth it. As a dog-lover myself who is unable to have a dog full time, I think I'll check around to see if there is a program like this near me as well. Thanks for the good topic discussion :) and good luck!
• United States
16 Feb 09
Awesome, I am glad I have inspired you to check into the program too. It does sound wonderful. Thank you for the response!
1 person likes this
@kezabelle (2980)
16 Feb 09
I should imagine there will be the odd dog you really take to and struggl;e to hand back but if you go into it with your eyes open i dont really see the problem. It sounds like a really wonderful thing to do
1 person likes this
• United States
16 Feb 09
Thank you for the comment. I am hoping to have a dog every weekend so when I give each dog back I know I will be getting another one five days later so it might not be so hard.
• United States
16 Feb 09
I had thought about fostering pets for an animal shelter, or for deployed military pet owners, because while my husband and I miss having pets, it seemed crazy to get one now since we're moving cross-country in a year. But he was against fostering because he wouldn't want to give it back, so now we have a 6month old kitten from the pet rescue, and his foster owner seemed really sad to give him up. Fostering may have been more practical, but it really depends on if you can give up the pet.
• United States
17 Feb 09
Thank you for the response. I believe I can give up the dog, although it will be hard.