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I've been thinking about becoming a foster home. But I'm not sure what the requirements are to become one. 
Rescue organisations here in the Netherlands are pretty vague about it and just say things on their website as needing "a big heart" and "lots of time". 
I know they do home visits and interviews to determine if you are suitable. 
I'm not quite ready to write to an organisation or call them for more information, because I want my worklife to be more settled before I take any serious steps towards becoming a foster home. 
I was wondering if in the meantime any foster homes here have any information for me. My main concern is about combining my job with caring for a foster dog. I usually don't work long hours and I have a system in place for my own dog (my mum mostly), but my dog is already trained and well adjusted. Or maybe I am overthinking this, as the rescue dogs here usually have spent time in big groups in shelters, without a lot of human contact or walks. To clarify: the only dogs I can foster here are rescues from European countries where there aren't as many rules and regulations to stop animals abuse, lots of rescue groups are trying to change this and place dogs in homes over there but also here. Our own shelters are relatively empty - there are about 150 dogs in shelters here.

Any information or stories are very welcome. I'm not sure when my situation will be more settled (thanks Covid), but I like to be prepared and make an informed decision. Plus, I might be able to make more changes in my life if I know what is required.
 

I just really want to help these dogs find a better life. I have learned so much from these boards and from my own dog, I'd love to put that knowledge to some good use.
 


 

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Good for you for thinking about this, and also for taking everything into consideration before making the commitment. I can say from my experience of 8 years fostering for border collie rescue that it was the single most rewarding thing I have ever done in my life, and when I am able I want to do more of it.

The dogs came to me in any and all kinds of condition physically and emotionally. that's part of the experience, not really knowing who will turn up next.  I am not exaggerating or saying this for effect, it is true that these dogs gave me more than I could ever have given to them. With some it was an easy fit into the household for the time they were here, and with others it was a lot of work. The more work it was, the more I learned from the dog and the more grateful I felt for the experience.

I was working full time for some of that time, and part time for some of it, but I never felt that working full time was a problem. I only had one dog in 8 years that I really didn't like having in my house and wanted to get adopted as soon as possible.  

I had things destroyed and damaged. I got hurt a time or two (not bitten). My dog got hurt once (that was the dog I wanted to adopt out fast). All of it was worth it.

Kelso of course was my greatest challenge and my greatest teacher and I am forever grateful to him and humbled at what he was able to accomplish.

If you can foster -- do it. I really think you will be glad you did.

 

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I’ve read the Kelso thread - such a wonderful story and very inspiring! 

The idea was always in the back of my mind, as I love working with dogs. But lately I meet a lot of rescue dogs from those European rescues and they are such nice dogs. Very sweet. Usually fine with dogs, but scared of the world, especially people. Living in a house is foreign for them.
Molly usually really likes these dogs as they are not that “in her face”. 
She would be a great dog to help scared dogs to trust humans as she adores everyone she meets, especially children. 
 

How did you manage fostering a dog when you worked full time? 
 

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On 12/19/2020 at 11:05 AM, Flora & Molly said:

How did you manage fostering a dog when you worked full time? 

As D'Elle says, most people who can manage to have dogs of their own can manage to foster. Some people will have someone come in mid day to let the dogs out, some arrange for doggy daycare at least a day or 2 a week, etc. If your dog goes to your mum's while you're working and she's interested in fostering it could be a joint project for you. (One woman with the rescue I volunteer with works full time, has quite a few dogs of her own and would often foster multiple dogs. She lived near her father, who also had a couple dogs and would go to her house every day to take care of the animals for a while. It worked extremely well as a co-foster situation.)

For the type of rescue dog you describe - one that hasn't had much human contact - having that alone time during the day (probably crated) - the limited human interaction could even be an advantage as the dog learns that living in a home with humans is a good thing.

Things like this, though, are the kinds of things best explored with the rescue organizations before even choosing one to foster for. Any good rescue will be very supportive of their foster homes and be great sources of information and support. Best to find one that's the best fit for you in terms of management, training philosophy, etc.

 

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Just to tag onto GL's remarks above about finding a rescue whose philosophy resonates with you ---- I personally would never foster for a rescue organization that did not give me the final say as to where the dog went when adopted. I wouldn't put my heart into the dogs if I did not have veto power and the ability to decide who is best for the dog. The foster knows the dog the best.

Not saying you need to do that....it's just my perspective, and something to consider, perhaps.

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^^ This.

I've fostered for 2 border collie rescues.

With one it was a joint decision between the rescue director and the foster home. She went through applications and approved someone for a meet & greet. I'd take the dog to their primary location and we'd meet with the prospective adopter together. We agreed on whether or not the dog would go with that applicant.

With the other one, an application committee approves apps. Once approved they can contact the foster home of a dog they're interested on. The foster home has access to all applications and can contact people who seem like a good fit. The foster home decides who the dog will go to. They have foster supervisors for the first few dogs, and help and support the foster home through several initial adoptions before they make the decisions entirely on their own.

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Thank you very much! :) I've got some things to work out, but I feel like I have a better idea now.

On 12/20/2020 at 3:27 PM, D'Elle said:

The same way I managed having my own dogs while working full time.

It seems such an obvious answer, but I really needed to hear it. I had this perfect picture in my head of fosters being people that worked from home and could always stay with the dogs. 

On 12/22/2020 at 12:38 AM, D'Elle said:

Just to tag onto GL's remarks above about finding a rescue whose philosophy resonates with you ---- I personally would never foster for a rescue organization that did not give me the final say as to where the dog went when adopted. I wouldn't put my heart into the dogs if I did not have veto power and the ability to decide who is best for the dog. The foster knows the dog the best.

Not saying you need to do that....it's just my perspective, and something to consider, perhaps.

This would be important for me too. It will be quite a task to find a suitable rescue organization. We're a small country, but there are tons of organizations that rehome European dogs, some really good ones, and a lot of shady ones. 
That's another reason I want to go about this slowly and gather more information, I want to actually help and don't want to be part of the dog trafficking that's also going on.

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