Connecting homeless dogs with people who want to foster!

Checklists

Piper2

Piper, photo by Erin O’Sullivan

Foster Parent Checklist: Questions to ask yourself before beginning to foster a dog

  • Where will my foster dog sleep?
  • What will I do with my foster dog when I am away – Crate? Free in the apartment? Baby-gated area?
  • Are my roommates/partners on board with me fostering a dog? What kind of help, if any, will they provide?
  • What kind of foster dog(s) works best with my lifestyle – Energy level? Size? High-need dogs (puppies, senior dogs, dogs with special needs)? Age?
  • Does my landlord or superintendent have any regulations regarding dogs in the building?
  • Do my roommates or I have any dog-related allergies?
  • How does my current dog(s)/pet(s) get along with other dogs?
  • What kind of financial support can I provide for my foster dog (e.g., toys, food)?

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Fostering Inventory: Questions to ask the rescue organization about your foster dog & the fostering process*

  • Does he have any medical concerns, or need medication?
  • Neutered (or spayed, if the dog is female)? If not, when will he be?
  • Up to date on vaccinations? Been tested for diseases like heartworm?
  • Do I need to keep him separated from my own pets or other fosters for a period of time (re: kennel cough, mange, etc…)?
  • Behavioral issues, concerns?
  • Do you know how he does when left alone? Is he crate trained?
  • Is he house trained?
  • What kind of food does he eat and what is his eating routine – kibble, wet food, brand (if known)?
  • How long will I be expected to foster this dog? If it’s until a suitable home is found, how long do you expect that to take?
  • What happens if I can no longer care for the dog?
  • What if I leave town for one night or a few days?
  • Who pays for medical bills if they arise? Does that include treatments for my pets if they catch something from my foster dog?
  • Is my foster dog allowed to go to the dog park? Have doggy play dates?
  • What should I do if there’s a medical emergency?
  • Who is responsible for communicating with potential adopters, screening them and introducing the dog to them?
  • Will I be required to bring him to adoption events and, if so, where/when?
  • Will you provide food, litter, supplies (such as: collar, leash, wee wee pads), medications, etc., or will I be expected to do so?
  • If I have a problem, whom can I contact?
  • What is the application process like in order to adopt my foster dog?
  • Can I adopt my foster dog if I so desire?

*NOTE: In some cases, the rescue group may not know the answer to all of these questions. However, it’s always good to know as much as you can about your foster dog before he comes into your home. Advocate for yourself and your foster dog each step of they way.

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