FOSTER

 
FOSTER

COVID-19 ADVISORY: WHILE WE KNOW PEOPLE ARE LOOKING TO HELP ANIMALS DURING THE COVID-19 VIRUS OUTBREAK, SCLRR IS NOT IN NEED OF TEMPORARY FOSTER HOMES. WE ARE ONLY ABLE TO ACCEPT VOLUNTEER APPLICATIONS FROM INDIVIDUALS WHO WILL BE ABLE TO COMMIT TO FOSTERING FOR SCLRR FOR AT LEAST ONE YEAR. We thank you but ask you please not to fill out a volunteer form unless you are prepared to be an active volunteer for at least a year. PUBLIC ANIMAL SHELTERS, HOWEVER, ARE looking for temporary foster homes. Thank you again, and stay well.

How long will my foster dog be with me?
What are my primary responsibilities as a foster provider?
Who is responsible for vet costs?
What happens if the foster dog does not work out in my family?
What if I need to go out of town, or have an event that interferes with my ability to foster?
What if I work?
Am I putting my personal pets in danger by agreeing to foster?
What kinds of behavior problems might I expect?
How do you say goodbye to your foster dogs?

 

How long will my foster dog be with me?
All of our foster dogs must be evaluated for a minimum of seven days in a foster home before they can be listed as available for adoption. Generally, our Labradors stay in their foster homes for two to four weeks. However, some dogs require additional training and/or medical attention and will stay in foster care for whatever time is required. Typically, if your foster dog is going to be “long term” you will be made aware of this prior to getting the dog.

What are my primary responsibilities as a foster provider?
Most importantly, we ask that you provide a safe and loving environment for your foster dog. You are responsible for shelter, feeding (SCLRR will provide you with food), grooming and exercise. All foster dogs must sleep inside at night and be treated as a member of the family. If necessary, we may request that you bring your foster dog to the vet for any medical care the dog needs and provide periodic updates to your Foster Coordinator, either by phone or email. You may be required to provide your foster dogs with medication, which we provide. We also ask that you evaluate the dog’s temperament and help determine what type of forever home would best suit the dog. Since you, as the foster home, have the first hand experience with the dog and know the dog best, we ask you to speak directly to approved adopters about your foster dog and coordinate a meeting with the best matched candidate at your home, or another suitable meeting place.

Who is responsible for vet costs?
SCLRR is responsible for all pre-approved vet costs. To get reimbursed for expenses, simply obtain approval from your Foster Coordinator before any funds are spent. You may also be asked to use specific vets and boarding facilities that have working relationships with SCLRR. If these guidelines are not followed, you may be responsible for fees that you incur.

What happens if the foster dog does not work out in my family?
Don’t worry! Dogs, like people, each have unique personalities and may not do well in new environments or in certain situations. If this happens, simply contact your Foster Coordinator, who will first attempt to help you rectify any problem behaviors that are occurring. Sometimes new foster dogs just need time to settle! However, if necessary, your Foster Coordinator will move the dog to another foster home as quickly as possible. Please be aware, though, that SCLRR is an organization run solely by volunteers who have jobs, and lives, outside of rescue. It may take a day or two to move a foster dog to another foster family. If there is an emergency or a dangerous situation, we will move the dog into boarding immediately.

What if I need to go out of town, or have an event that interferes with my ability to foster?
Life happens to all of us. We simply ask that you let your Foster Coordinator know as soon as possible so other appropriate arrangements can be made.

What if I work?
Most of our volunteers work! Many of the Labradors that need fostering can easily be accommodated on a normal routine and ultimately, once they are adopted, most Labradors will reside with people that have working schedules. By becoming accustomed to these routines, you are helping your foster Lab adjust to life with his future forever family.

Am I putting my personal pets in danger by agreeing to foster?
No, not if you take a few preventative measures. Before beginning to foster, simply make sure your resident dogs are up to date with vaccinations, including the Bordetella vaccine (recommended every 6 months). We also recommend using a monthly heartworm preventative, such as Heartguard Plus or Interceptor, which helps to protect your dogs from contracting heartworm and other types of worms. A flea and tick regimen is also recommended for your resident dogs.

Since many of our foster dogs come from a shelter environment, they have unknown histories and, quite possibly, haven’t had their medical needs properly met. Therefore, SCLRR provides you with preventative medication for each foster dog, including treatments for fleas and worms. We provide you with all necessary antibiotics and ask that you give them according to instructions. Please speak to a volunteer or your Foster Coordinator if you have any further questions!

What kinds of behavior problems might I expect?
All of our dogs are temperament tested before we take them into rescue. We do our best to eliminate the possibility of taking aggressive dogs or dogs with serious behavioral issues. Still, some issues may arise. Possibilities include separation anxiety (i.e. crying or barking when left alone), marking, digging, chewing, and dog aggression. Keep in mind, most foster dogs simply need minor behavior adjustments which can be corrected with time to settle in and proper guidance. We have many ways of managing these problems until they are resolved and our experienced volunteers are happy to offer advice.

How do you say goodbye to your foster dogs?
The hardest one to let go is ALWAYS the first one; but we promise, it does get easier. Seeing the Labs go into a loving household is very gratifying and rewarding. In addition, you will quickly see that there are endless numbers of dogs that deserve a chance at a better life, too. Our foster volunteers have all been through “letting go” and will give you support before, during and after. On occasion, a volunteer may wish to adopt a Lab that he or she has been fostering. SCLRR does allow a foster parent to adopt one of his/her foster dogs BUT only after that volunteer has previously fostered at least 2 other dogs for SCLRR. If you decide you want to adopt your third or later foster dog, you will be asked to fill out an adoption application and pay the standard adoption fee.

Ready to try fostering a Lab in your home? Click this link to our Volunteer Form.