August 4, 2012

A good rescue will let you take vacation

One of my favorite advantages of fostering is that generally you can have all the perks of owning a dog with half the responsibility. The rescue covers the vet bills while we "rent" Relay a playmate. But what happens when you need a break? Well there's a whole foster family network that can cover. We got a call from K9 Justice League to say that Murphy's foster parents were headed on their honeymoon, so... Introducing Murphy!
Just before Murph was dropped off, I had read a post by Blueberry's mom on Spotty, Spotty, Polkadotty musing if she should start fostering again. I commented that acting as a temporary foster or foster sitter as it turns out here can be a great way to test the waters to see if you and your household are ready to foster a dog. The time commitment is limited, and if you find it doesn't work a good rescue will find a better suited foster home. 

Murphy is an absolute sweetheart!

But oh my goodness we sent him back.

Yeah, not my proudest moment, here, but let me explain. Most rescue dogs are not perfect family pets right away (not even Relay), but thankfully most dogs have just a few rough edges that need to be worked out and become great companions in no time. I've dealt with poor potty training, poor leash manners, no crate training, dogs that get territorial, dogs that steal food from other dogs, dogs that steal food from you, some separation anxiety, and even a little barking. Murphy has all those issues and then some (big baby is afraid of doorways and storms), but thankfully he was cute and so sweet we thought we should be okay. 

Thing is his seperation anixiety is much worse than I have ever encountered. The pups sleep in the front room at night, and if you aren't fully potty trained you are crated at our home. This did not sit well with Murphy and he barked non stop. Unfortunately, we do not live in a single family home; so while I signed up as a foster to work through those sort of problems, the very kind lady who lives below us did not.

Reading back on my comments to Blueberry's mom about trails and errors with fostering I smile a little and wonder if I was just tempting fate... maybe I needed to live through something first before I was entitled to give advice on the subject. 


I think,in a way, fostering can give one self-fulfillment. Unfortunately, it certainly has it's downside.

I'm currently at my sister's and I'm trying to potty train Buchi(my sister's dog/my old dog) and lessen his aggressive behavior. That and watch every single interaction he has with their other dogs and environment ( he pees everywhere)

I posted in my blog I spent 4 hours each day with them, but in fact, it's more like 6 to 7 (just with them)- to groom, observe, exercise, play, clean, & potty train. Aside from that, I also have to help them transition in the new home because my sister and her family rebuilt their home.

Huggies and Cheese,


Oh my! That's a little funny - but also a lesson for anyone considering fostering that it isn't all rainbows and marshmallows. I fostered for several months last year and the flat-coated retriever mix puppy/dog (she was about 8-10months) was a terror. Non-stop energy and to say she was a handful is an understatement. Which is why I am taking my time making the decision to foster again. There is just no way to predict what kind of issues will surface. I love the idea of fostering short-term just to test the waters again. You've been so very helpful as I make my decision. :)

Haopee, that situation sounds like it take ALOT of patience. That is incredible that you are spending so much time to make that situation successful. Best of luck, omg...

Blueberry's Human :-) Turns out I spoke too soon. But I have found that all the other fosters I've had have been much simpler and have found homes much faster. I like to think of it as I'm in the training wheel stage of fostering. I'll wait until I've been around the block a few times before I step up to the big wheels.

Good post! We foster for Homeward Bound. My first failure was Ophelia, a lab mix. She was just too rambunctiios for us. Kept knocking me down from behind and had Kirby hiding under furniture. When she started trying to figure out how to jump our 4 ft fence I gave up. She was very sweet and smart but I felt I was saying NO way too much.

She immediately went to another foster home and has been adopted - both families have runners who wear her down. Good example of checking out a dogs personality before adopting since some are not a good fit for someone's lifestyle.

Exactly! Fostering should not have to be a battle, it should be fun! And for every dog, there is a perfect home, but that is very different from every home being perfect for a particular dog.

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