Rescue Dog Fostering.
“How Do You Let Them Go?”
It’s the first question everyone asks about fostering rescue dogs
The answer is with great difficulty and sometimes we fail and end up adopting the dogs ourselves.
When a dog leaves it feels like a bereavement. However, there is the knowledge that the dog has gone to the perfect home.
We do get attached, they become part of the family and you start to wonder however you will cope when they leave. It’s so hard to imagine your foster dog curled up with someone else. Will the new owners be able to find the tickle spot? or remember that there’s always a treat just before bed?. Such mundane things, but they mean such a lot at the time. Of course, it’s the main things like diet, exercise, health that matter most but dogs are so individual and sometimes it’s the little things that mean a lot.
You learn to put the dog’s needs before everything else and spend time getting to know the dog so well that they will get the perfect forever home. It would be pointless rehoming an energetic young collie with an elderly person but that person could provide a loving home to an elderly Yorkshire terrier.
How does the foster dog get on with other dogs? cats? children?
All questions a fosterer will assess and the person wanting to adopt will find invaluable.
So, a fosterer doesn’t just give a rescue dog food and shelter, by assessing everything the right home for that dog can be found.
In my opinion, the main reason we can let the dogs go is because there are hundreds of homeless dogs in kennels, Therefore, by letting a dog move on we have a space for another.
I always ask the new owners to keep in touch but I would never contact them. However, the odd postcard or email means such a lot and reaffirms that the dog is in the right place. I keep a scrapbook of all cards, letters, and photos sent to me.
As for now, my foster place is being taken up by a permanent fixture ie Darcy the miniature dachshund. He has behaviour problems (not his fault) so he can’t be rehomed.
As for the future, I would love to think that there will be no need for me to foster again.
However, that’s probably too much to hope for.