How does a foster dog come into the care of Peace4Paws ?
Peace4Paws receives the dogs directly from a shelter, a laboratory, or from a surrendering owner.
The dog is transported to the foster home and lives there until it is transferred to boarding (hopefully never), another foster home, or adopted (ideally).
Foster homes will be called. If we contact you to foster an animal and you cannot do it for any reason, we will find another foster home and call you the next time. It is always okay to say you are not available.
What are the responsibilities of a foster family?
As a foster family, your primary responsibility is to love and take care of the dog as if it were your own.
This dog will need time to feel secure and therefore be his or herself.
Slowly integrating the dog into your desired lifestyle expectations is the key to a happy, fulfilling transition and foster experience.
· You will need to gradually transition your new dog into any new foods
· You will need to socialize your dog by slowly introducing them to new people and animals.
· You will need to stay organized about their medical needs. Put their medical files in a folder and add to the file if there are any new records. Administer any medications if necessary and keep their routine medical protocols up to date.
· You will need to help new dog learn basic training skills and report milestones as well as challenges to Peace4Paws.
· You will need to be observant, and report any specific observations to Peace4Paws for our Facebook or website updates on the dog.
· You will want to exercise your dog. It benefits both you and the dog!
You will also be asked to make your foster dog available to prospective adopters.
What is meant by “ease them into any new foods”?
Some our dogs from come fostering situations where they have been used to a certain food.
New food and environments can be stressful for the dogs. They should be introduced to a new food gradually.
Dogs right off of transport are stressed, so taking your foster dog out a lot in the beginning really helps them adjust to the transition before moving into a routine. Please take note of how they are adjusting to their new foods. It may take a little time for them to adjust.
What medical treatments am I responsible for?
Your foster dog will need be treated with Frontline and Heartguard (or the generic equivalent) once monthly.
If the dog travels with any medication, such as an antibiotic, then you will be responsible for administering the necessary medications.
Our dogs all have a health certificate and are deemed safe to travel.
How should I prepare my pets for the upcoming foster dog?
Your animals should be up to date on all their shots and vaccinations and deemed in good health to be around any other animal.
What kind of training can I provide to help my foster dog be ready for adoption?
You will want to train the dog in ways that will make him or her adoptable. Adoptable qualities are when the dog is: housebroken, crate trained, able to walk on a leash, able to follow basic commands, and is socialized. If you need help with this, we will be here to help you. If the training issue is extreme, we will discuss formal training. Many of the abandoned dogs were neglected, and therefore never received any training. These dogs just want to please you, and will be very receptive to your efforts to provide them with structure.
What is involved with medical care?
Our dogs will come to you spayed or neutered and fully up to date on all shots and vaccinations.
If they are traveling with a medicine we will inform and advise you in advance. Please be sure to get the medicine from the transporters before they leave your house, just in case.
How much will it cost me to foster a pet?
There is no cost to fostering other than providing food and shelter to your foster pet. Peace4Paws will provide most of the supplies that you need, including crates. You will play a special role in the life of this dog, so we ask you to donate your time and attention to help him/her feel safe and loved. Anything else you choose to give is a donation.
Peace4Paws will cover costs for the dog's medical care. We will provide assistance to you to get the dog to the vet if necessary. We request that you use one of our associated vets, as they typically discount their fees. In non-emergency situations, we ask that you obtain prior approval before seeking medical attention for the dog. In emergency situations, Peace4Paws will reimburse any expenses.
Can I foster if I have my own pets, and is it safe? What are the medical concerns?
Every animal brought into Peace4Paws program is examined by a veterinarian. All dogs will be up to date on their shots. If the dog has not yet been fixed, Peace4Paws will make arrangements to do so. If you have additional pets in your home, please follow the quarantine guidelines to ensure the health of the foster pets and your own pets. This means that the foster dog may have to be kept separated from other animals in your home for up to two weeks. Lack of spaying or neutering or need for quarantine has not been a part of Peace4Paws’s history to date. Our dogs should not be a risk to any pets in your household.
Can I adopt my foster dog?
Absolutely! You will have the first option for adoption.
How do I become a foster?
Fill out our online application and a volunteer will contact you to schedule a home visit. When that is completed, the foster coordinator will contact you to discuss what type of dog might be best for your home.
Will I get ‘stuck with’ the dog?
Peace4Paws will never leave a foster ‘stuck with’ a dog. We want your foster experience to be rewarding. If you foster period is getting too long, or the foster situation is not working out, we will make arrangements to move the dog to another foster. We hope that you will be patient with your foster dog and give him or her the time they need to meet your expectations. We hope that you will be able to work with the dog under most circumstances, unless there are extreme circumstances.
What does it mean to make the dog available for adoption events?
Periodically there will be adoption events that will showcase Peace4Paws’s dogs. We ask that you work with whatever volunteer will be able to transport and show the dog, or even better, when possible bring the dog yourself and or stay with the dog at the event, as you will be the expert on the dog and it will be most bonded to you. But, we do keep a list of volunteers who want to participate in adoption events and can help.
How else can I help make the dog more adoptable?
You can help make your dog more adoptable by keeping some records of its progress (training and medical) in a file in your computer and sharing reports and anecdotes about the dog that we can put on the website and Facebook.
You can help make your dog more visible by sending us some pictures you have taken from your cell phone via text or email. Short videos also are very helpful in giving people an idea about your dog's personality, temperament and appearance. People start sending in applications after seeing videos on Facebook. So, taking pictures or videos with your phone and texting them to us really helps create matches!
Any training or socialization you can give helps make and keep the dog more appealing to the potential adopter.
I am excited! How do I get started?
We are happy to hear that you are interested in fostering a dog! Please fill out our foster application at www.peace4paws.org or http://www.peace4paws.org/Foster_Application.html. We will contact you to schedule a home visit and kick off the process.