How to get started fostering a dog
Watkins-Farrington said that in most cases, you will be required to volunteer at the shelter for a period of time and you will fill out an application. Volunteering allows the staff to get to know you and see what your skill level is in caring for dogs. You will also be required to take one or more trainings to prepare you to foster a dog. Watkins-Farrington said she needed to volunteer at least four hours a month at the shelter for a few months to be put on the foster list. You can expect to be checked out for any animal abuse charges as well. Don’t be insulted; it’s for the protection of the animals.
If you want to foster puppies, as opposed to older dogs, you will need more in-depth training. “It can be more challenging to work with puppies. For example, you can’t let their feet touch the (uncovered) floor, for fear of the Parvovirus. You have to be fastidious,” she said. Parvovirus can be deadly to puppies by creating a severe disruption in their digestive tract and lymphatic system.
How the dog fostering system works
Once you are on the fostering list, you may be offered to take in one or two dogs and care for them in your home. Watkins-Farrington said you will be able to care for the dog for a couple of days to a few weeks, depending on the next step, which is transportation to a home, rescue group, or a no-kill non-profit shelter.