Shadow's Melon asked in PetsDogs · 1 decade ago

For those who do dog rescue...?

I would like to get involved in rescue in the near future, possibly this spring. It is likely I will become involved in Border Collie rescue simply because it is a breed I adore. I would like to start with little things first, maybe transport, and eventually foster.

So how hard is it for you to keep a dog for a few months, then to have to send it on to a new home?

Does anyone keep in touch with the adoptive family and keep up with how the dog is doing?

How many times have you taken in a foster, later to end up keeping that foster, instead of rehoming?

On average, how long does a rescue stay in your foster care before finding a forever home?

Does anyone have young children? Does the rescue work to place a child friendly foster, or do they prefer foster homes not have children?

Thanx in advance for the answers.

16 Answers

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  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago
    Favorite Answer

    There is a dog for every situation.

    You could even start by helping maintain emails from home? Most rescues are all volunteer. We have someone go through our emails then send them on to us. Or start by visiting an adoption meet the people hold a leash while they take a potty break.

    Ive never had a foster a few months without keeping it or because of medical reasons. We have had a few in the program for a year but that is very rare. Its not hard to send them to new homes at all. You have to remember the more you keep the less you save so if there is someone else out there to care for the dog as well or better than you - you have to let it go so you can save another. There is always a great home for a dog but someplace for it to go till that home is found is the problem. With a decent rescue with steady adoption and adoption events and public notice I rarely have a dog a full month. six weeks tops. Unless its a momma dog. You wil find the right adopters are also worried about you and your attachment to the pet.

    I am in touch with several and once you do so many you see your adopters everywhere. I have run into adopters at home depot cuss the d#mn dog tore down the fence, but they are there to fix the problem and still love the dog. We get follow up emails we have one coordinator that calls all adopters back at one week one month and three months and a year. My adopters will call me at home to ask who it was and if everything is okay. I get christmas cards and mothers day cards and visits at adoptions weekly. I work with a guy that adopted one of our dogs. The dog has since fallen in love with his wife and he can not go to bed unless he goes at the same time as her. He loves the dog and wouldn't trade him for the world but you will find even the bad stuff they tell you the dog did and the uncoditional love for that animal still is the reason you chose them to take the dog. We started doing a yearly a calendar and have old adopters send pictures of their pet and families as a fundraiser.

    It can be tearful but the most rewarding.

    I started with two dogs I now have five !!! And there were several along the way that I demanded absolute perfection in an adopter because they just fit with me. The one reason we do so well at adoption is the fact the dogs are in our homes with our pets, children and lifestyles. We can tell them yes the dog loves kids. My daughter is now fifteen but the little kids across the street still come to see the dogs. Our dogs have to be accepting of children to go to adoptions or its a liability we don't believe the vicious should be rehabilitated. There are too many to save to worry about the one someone else screwed up. We have to be strong and realize its not our fault and while I rehab this one for 6 months 50 are dying. We have found we can do our part in training but then the proper adopters are not out there for them and they end up getting themsleves in trouble. We have kept those a lot!!

    I do hope you decide to get involved. Even with something as simple as returning phone calls EVERY little bit helps!!

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  • 1 decade ago

    So how hard is it for you to keep a dog for a few months, then to have to send it on to a new home? I rescued pits. It was always a concern that the dog I found a home for was going to be a family pet and not used for fighting.

    Does anyone keep in touch with the adoptive family and keep up with how the dog is doing? I did for a while, but it can be tough, because some people treat dog adoption, like child adoption. Not all want to be "monitored." There were a few that I did keep in touch with, and eventually became pretty good friends with.

    How many times have you taken in a foster, later to end up keeping that foster, instead of rehoming? I did that only on a couple of occasions, due to limited space. I just didn't have ample space, but would have gladly taken in more, had the space been available.

    On average, how long does a rescue stay in your foster care before finding a forever home? That depended. Some of the dogs I rescued were in grave shape: scars, anxiety, no basic training. I think the shortest time was about a week, the longest was about 6 months (he was the hardest to let go too).

    Does anyone have young children? Does the rescue work to place a child friendly foster, or do they prefer foster homes not have children? I don't have children. My rescue work became word-of-mouth. I didn't work with a rescue group, Humane Society or ASPCA. I rescued my first pit from a fight and it snowballed.

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  • 1 decade ago

    I have fostered mainly cats and kittens. Well over 300 cats and kittens, but only a handful of dogs. I get too attached to the dogs. Cats although I love them dearly for me are so much easier to let go of.

    With cats the new owners never stay in touch. For me maybe that's better as I am very emotional so for me it's easier to let go and move on. It really has to be up to the new owners.

    I have had cats for several months when they have been badly hurt, but I had a Golden Retreiver last week for just 4 days. Lenth of time often depends on the reason they are in foster in the first place. Each one will be different. Be prepared for the odd one you can;t let go of and end up adopting. I guess over time I have kept about 30 or so of the cats. Only 2 dogs.

    Molly the Golden just needed a little adjustment time after her owner had passed away. Because she was an older dog they felt it best she go into foster than into a shelter. She spent a few days at the vet because she was dehydrated when she was found and had a terrible upset tummy once she started eating, but she was fine in a few days. The parents of the girl who reported she had not seen her owner for a while were the ones to adopt her. They say they will keep in touch who knows.

    If you would like to work with Border Collies it's best to contact with a Border rescue. If you do it with a shelter or Humane Society you get what they send.

    I fostered before I had children and still do. My kids are all grown up now. The youngest 23. It's very doable, but you do need to be much more careful what you take in when you have young kids. You don't need to be taking animals with agression problems. A lot also depends on the kids. If they can respect the rules as to the animals it will work. If they are very headstrong and hard to handle themsleves then it's best to wait until they are older. You pretty much set the rules as to what you will accept into foster, but no decent place would ever try to place an aggressive animal where there is children.

    Good luck. I won;t say fostering is easy, but it is very rewarding when you see someone so happy with their new family member and know you made a difference in helping an animal in need find the love it so deserves. Oh and yes you will cry with every one you place. It's only natural.

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  • Shanna
    Lv 7
    1 decade ago

    How hard is it to send a dog to a new home? It depends. I have had dogs that I bawl for days, and I have had ones that I am a little relieved to have them go, not because they were bad, but just difficult. It is hard either way bacause you invest a lot of time and effort and you can't help but get at least a little attached.

    Do I keep in touch with the adoptive family? I do if they would like to. I feel that they have a right to their privacy and if they passed all the requirements of adopting then they don't need me barging in. Some still send me emails or pictures and everyone has my number so some still call me to check in or if they have problems.

    How many times have I kept a foster? Twice. One was 6 years ago and one was just a few months ago. I don't know why those two in particular won me over, but they did. The older one is a bit of a mess and I think I kept her because I knew that nobody else would put up with her. I think I was her last chance in a lot of ways.

    How long do dogs stay in rescue? Well, the dogs we get in rescue are evaluated, and the ones we feel would benefit most from being in a home situation get sent to fosters. The others stay with the director at her facility. Some stay with the fosters until they are adopted and some go back to the director if we feel that they are ready for adoption and another is more in need of rehabilitation in the home. On average, most dogs are adopted within 2-3 months. One poor dog we have though has been with us for 4 years. She is a good girl, but nobody seems to want the poor thing.

    Young kids? Nope, not me. I don't know if I will still foster with small kids, we will see if it is too hard or not, but we do have foster homes with kids, we just don't send the ones that we are totally unfamiliar with to homes with kids, which leaves me the unpredictable ones!!

    I have had a few that I have had to send back and label as unadoptable and that is really hard. I cry for days because I know I have basically signed their death warrant. Some of them are based solely on health issues and those are the hardest because they are so sweet and it isn't their fault.

    All in all, rescue is the worst job you will ever love. It is thankless in a lot of ways, but you get a lot out of it too. If you are not ready to cry yourself silly most days, don't do it. It isn't for the faint of heart, but it is more rewarding than I can even tell you.

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  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    1) Sometimes it is hard, but when you get the letters and cards, and pictures of the dog happy in its new home, and see the loving faces of its new family, it's all worth it. I try to keep foremost in my mind that if you keep them, there's one less you can foster and help out in the future.

    2) Yup. It's part of my contract that I be updated once a year, and I usually tell adopters that a card for Christmas is good. Most are much closer.

    3) Keeping a foster dog is irreverently referred to as being a "foster failure". It's not meant to be mean or insulting. I have only been a 'failure' once. And it was just a couple of months ago. Not bad when you consider I've been doing rescue for aobut 20 years. A dog that was supposed to be "some kind of collie mix" showed up at my door. He was filthy, and matted, and only had one eye. He was also a golden retriever/alaskan malamute mix! Much bigger than I was led to believe. Once I shaved him down, treated his infected skin, and watched his previous owner walk away without so much as a glance back, (sorry, wrong order) and after I had rinsed aobut a half inch of mud and filth off the bottom of the floor, I fell totally in love with him, and so did my hubby. My hubby doesn't ask for much, but he asked to keep this dog. Who am I to say no? Ok, yeah, he had to twist my arm... ;-) And if you are wondering, he was dumped at 9 years old because her boyfriend's American bulldogs picked on him, and he drank too much water. (?!?!?)

    4) Depends on the needs of the dog. Some are puppymill dogs that need lots of socialization. Some are great dogs whose family has hit a rough spot, like a death or having to go to a nursing home, and they are quick to be adopted because they don't have many issues.

    5) Children are never endangered in a good rescue's foster program. I've had my sons grow up with rescues. Many good potential homes have kids, so it is good for a suitable dog to live with them in foster care. If the dog is not child safe, the rescue will find it a child-free foster home.

    Hope this helps. E-mail me if you need moral support.

    Source(s): Rescuer, vet tech, professional groomer, and show exhibitor of Shetland Sheepdogs for 20 years.
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  • 1 decade ago

    Bless all of you who rescue. My personal belief is that all RESPONSIBLE breeders should support or work rescue. I've done a lot of purebred rescue (Samoyeds) and actually started before I became involved in breeding. I think the hands on contact with rescued dogs gave me a deeper appreciation for my breed and the eccentricities of the breed. Right now I'm not actively rescuing (home rental contract does not allow it) but am supporting rescue by grooming and transporting... as well as offering new owner training classes for free.

    Its difficult to let a dog go after spending months rehabilitating it physically and emotionally as well as training it. I always held out for a forever home that was better than my own.

    Some I kept in touch with, some did not seem to like the contact.

    I've never kept a fostered dog, but have been sorely tempted. Rescued dogs (especially neglected ones) are so appreciative of attention and love.

    I usually had them 6 to 8 weeks... mostly to allow for rehabilitation. We've tried to keep a list of potential homes so we can fit the right dog with the right home.

    Yes, I had young children when I started working rescue. Because this is a purebred rescue, we simply did not deal with dogs with biting issues.

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  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    My very first foster dog was a nippy "cockapoo" so it was relatively easy to let him go (to an adult wonderful forever home) It's always a little difficult letting a foster dog go, especially when they've become quite attached to me. I feel a little guilty, like I'm letting them down. But I know there are others out there who need me.

    Whether or not an adoptive family and foster family keep in touch is generally left up to the adoptive family. The rescue should keep in touch however, and usually will forward updates if you request.

    Every foster dog I've taken in (after the first nippy one) was a dog I was prepared to keep forever. I waitedfor a home that was better than mine -- otherwise I might as well keep him myself. Just when I was ready to "give up" BINGO -- perfect home would come along. Happened every time. I had one dog of my own and space for one foster (my limit). I kept none of my fosters.

    The amount of time a dog stays in foster care depends upon alot of factors: How much time does the dog need to heal? How much training does the dog need? Small dogs find their homes more quickly than large dogs. Senior dogs will take a little longer to place. "Easily adoptable" dogs (young, heatthy, etc.) are equally difficult to place -- everyone wants to adopt them and you get bozos crawling out of the woodwork. The longest I had a dog in my foster care was a pit/boxer mix and that was for 3 1/2 months. This was in Hawaii, however -- if only I could bring all the homeless goofy mutts and Chi mixes from the mainland to Hawaii, I could place them all in wonderful homes there.

    When I began fostering I had younger children. When I had problems with nippy dogs with the first rescue I volunteered with, they would tell me to take the dog to the pound. Of course I couldn't do that -- I just made it work.

    Most rescues will take into consideration the fact that you have small children, and place foster dogs with you accordingly.

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  • anne b
    Lv 7
    1 decade ago

    What a great way to help out! Thank you for considering this-I understand that Border Collies are a breed that is in desperate need of foster homes (at least in my area).

    To answer your questions:

    -It is rather hard to keep a dog for a few months-they have a tendency to integrate into the pack and you barely realize they are foster dogs.

    -I always make sure I get pictures and emails periodically from the adoptive parents. I also send small xmas presents to my former fosters and their new pack members. This works really well, as I am also on call for that adoptive parent for the rest of the dog's life, as the foster mom. If for any reason the dog needed to be returned, they would always return it to me.

    -The only foster I have taken in and kept was my first foster. Everyone in the group laughed at me and said "You got your foster failure out of the way!" Now I make sure I concentrate on finding the very best home for my fosters so I can save more.

    -The longest foster I have had is my current one, Oscar. He has been with me about four months now, and he is a dream dog, he is so perfect. I have no idea why he hasn't been snapped up. I do a monthly resuce event in my area, and I do everything I can to generate applications; in addition, I bring my dogs and my fosters to meet people. It is a great way to get fosters used to meeting new people and going new places, and someone usually falls in love.

    -I do not have any children, but I do have five dogs of my own, three of which are not even the breed I foster. I have the additional challenge of making sure my pack stays friendly and social with each other, and I have not had any issues with this. We don't allow aggression of any kind in our pack.

    -My rescue group leader is very in tune with who can foster what kind of dogs, and she makes sure she places accordingly. If a foster home doesn't work out, the dog is moved, and another dog is put in that home instead.

    I would imagine that rescue groups in general would be so happy to get more volunteers that they would make accomodations with any of the foster homes gladly. My group has a large following that doesn't even foster-they do transport and work shows, which is a great help as well.

    Good luck in your future endeavor-I am sure you will find it immensely rewarding!

    Source(s): dog rescue volunteer
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  • Karen
    Lv 4
    1 decade ago

    It is very difficult in the beginning to keep a dog knowing it will be leaving eventually. I try to keep in mind that I am doing what is best for the dog. Just keep it in your mind that it's temporary, kinda like you're babysitting.

    Yes, I keep in touch with a few of my fosters. It's nice to see how they are doing.

    I have four dogs and none of them were from fosters that were kept. I began fostering after I had all my dogs already so I know keeping another one is out of the question and that makes it easier for me. LOL

    I feel I have been lucky so far. the longest I have had a foster is approximately 6 months. I foster bully breeds (Pitbulls, American bulldogs, etc) and it's difficult to weed out the good homes from those who just want a tough looking dog. I have had two of them come back to me after adopting to what we thought would be their forever home. That's a sad situation, to see these poor dogs bounced back and forth.

    My group does not rehome dogs that we feel would not be good with children. All of our dogs are carefully screened before considering them adoptable.

    Good luck with your endeavors. Being a foster "parent" is a wonderful feeling. It's hard to let them go, but so worth it!

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  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    I can't foster any more but not because I don't want to. We are up to 5 dogs. There can't be a 6th. That's the deal. I can do as much volunteer work as I want but I am not allowed to bring home #6 even for a night. My Fiance and I have an agreement - He frees me up to volunteer and that's more than fair.

    We kept our last 2 fosters and that made dogs number 3 and 4. Dog number #5 is my Katrina dog. He's special and honestly, I don't know that we ever thought we'd place him.

    I am in touch with several of my foster families. One of them we visit and they visit us.

    On a related note, I'm in touch with people all across the country who I've adopted dogs to. These were not my personal foster dogs, these were the ones I work with on adoptions.

    So even though I can't foster myself, I spend time convincing others to do it and I spend most of my time doing adoptions, collecting volunteers and doing dog intake and awareness and fundraising - mainly adoptions though.

    Rescue work feeds my soul. It's my one thing that I do in my life that I feel makes a difference. My "normal" job is fine but I do it so I can do rescue work.

    It's one of the hardest jobs you'll ever have but it's also one of the most rewarding. I just can't imagine not doing it.

    I'll let some of the others tell you how long etc etc.

    Thanks for even considering this. It's not easy, but once you start, it's an addiction.

    Source(s): Owned by 5 dogs and rescue volunteer.
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