|Barked: Sun Mar 3, '13 9:23pm PST |
|I'm a bit late to this thread but had to contribute! Definitely keep a bit of emotional distance, because you are just a pit stop on their way to forever. It's our job to polish these guys up so that they will find that amazing home to fit right into and stay it until it's their time to pass on. It helps that my husband is the strong one- I BEGGED him to keep our first foster!! I am better this time around, I was able to hand him off to be placed no problem.
I do concur with what others have said, about only taking on a foster that fits YOUR home. You want a dog you can handle and that would be able to stay with you until they were adopted. I would always, always need 1) boy dogs, 2) dogs good with cats and 3) dogs that were crate trained. Just because of our lifestyle. They all go hand in hand. I have a bitch and two kitties, and I could never trust a foster in the house, unsupervised, with any of them. And they are all my top priorities. Both fosters we've had have been fairly easy boys. Not without their issues, but truly, very nice dogs in general. The first one wasn't great with walking and was a bit dog aggressive, but we worked through that. The second and last one we've had (just placed him today, cross your fingers!!) was a stellar boy, but liked to jump up and was mouthy. Very different boys indeed.
You can't be upset about messes. Accidents will happen, there will be more fur to vacuum up each time you clean. Our first one was amazing in the house, but the second went through a good round of marking before he finally settled in. Just keep lots of carpet/enzyme cleaner and paper towels on hand, and rent a steam cleaner at the end of it all.
We were also very straightforward with our adopters about what these boys are, and what their faults are. I want them to know he's a bit mouthy, I want them to know that he goes a bit bonkers when we walk by small dogs. That way they can make the judgement call about whether or not they can handle this dog.
Our rescue also has a website that is updated very frequently. I try to take pictures, and email the lady at the rescue extensively about what I've noticed, and how the foster is settling in, etc. Today the adopters told me that they loved how detailed the notes were, how it really helped them pick the right dog. So I'm convinced this is the right route to go and will continue to do this. I suppose it's a bit like Tiller said- hooking the adopter in before they've even met the dog. Paint as vivid a picture as you can of the dog you're fostering, you never know who's looking at their page.
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