Our Foster Carers play a vital role in helping us to find forever homes for the dogs in our care. For dogs who are either unsuited to, or who find the kennel environment overwhelming, a ‘home from home’ is sometimes just what they need.
We are extremely grateful to the dedicated individuals who selflessly give their time, while opening up their homes, and their hearts, to provide pooches with TLC.
So, we just wanted to highlight just a few of these incredible people and get an insight into why it is that they choose to foster.
First of all, we’d like you to meet Sonia and Barry Bates.
They’ve been fostering dogs from us since March 2018 and have had 5 dogs in total— their 5th being Pepper, an Australian Terrier (pictured) who is currently available for rehoming
When asking Sonia and Barry about why they decided to begin fostering, they said:
“We’re both over 80 now and we love having a dog around. However, we don’t want to have the long-term commitment of a dog when the time comes that we’re no longer able to look after them. By fostering dogs, we’re able to help dogs who need a bit of love and stability, even if just for a short while. You never know what the future holds, so this way it works quite nicely.”
Check out Pepper’s profile here to see if you may be able to offer her a place to call forever.
Next, we’d like you to meet Bekah and Josh.
This couple are some of our longest standing foster carers and have been welcoming dogs into their home when we first started the scheme.
Bekah and Josh have cared for 8 dogs thus far and are always keen to take on dogs of any shape, size, age, or breed. They’ve cared for lively puppies in need of toilet training, elderly pooches in need of extra TLC and dogs with medical needs, who need consistent monitoring.
In other words, they are some exceptionally kind and caring people, and we feel super grateful to have them on board.
Hear about their fostering journey:
“We started fostering almost 6 years ago. We love dogs but weren’t able to commit to our own yet, so we looked online and found out about fostering with Dogs Trust! We love being able to foster a variety of dogs– we’ve had breeds we haven’t even heard of before! We like to research and learn about their general personalities and the history behind the breed, and after living with them and getting to know them, we’ve fallen in love with every single one.
It's always different meeting a new foster dog for the first time, sometimes they are very excited and sometimes they’re more cautious and shy. We love watching them come out of their shell as they start to relax with us. It’s amazing how they adapt to a new routine so quickly, and you can see them begin to trust you.
We’ve had them all for different lengths of time, ranging from 3 weeks to 4 months. We had Leia (a Vizsla) for 4 months, and she had the biggest transformation while she was with us. She was 10 years old and at first, she was quite lazy and loved to sunbathe all day, but after about a month she started to become really playful! She’d grab a toy and prance around the room, her little stumpy tail wagging away. That was when we new she was starting to settle and was happy.
The most common question we get asked is 'How do you do it? I would get too attached'. And you do get attached to them, and it can be hard when it’s time to say goodbye. But the joy of seeing them grow and learn and knowing that we have played a part in them finding a loving forever home, definitely outweighs the hard parts of saying goodbye. It’s all about your mindset – we are a temporary stop on their journey to finding a forever home.
It’s just such a rewarding experience. From the moment we meet the dogs, to watching them settle in and getting to know them, to finally saying goodbye as they head off for their forever home. We love fostering and we think it’s something we’ll continue to do for a long time."
And last but not least, we’d like you to meet Christine Williams.
She and her husband John have been fostering for just over a year and had their first foster dog, Prince (an elderly Pomeranian) in June 2021.
They’ve already taken on quite a lot through their first year as carers and looked after Prince while he was on palliative care. They were there to provide a comforting space for him, making him feel as ‘at home’ as possible, even through to the end when they were by his side while he was peacefully sent off to sleep.
Happy to take on any breed, shape, or size, their second dog was Bonnie (pictured), a Staffie cross aged 8. Bonnie was a sensitive lady when she first came into our care, but Christine and John supported her with some confidence building through the love and care they offered her, ultimately aiding in the success of Bonnie recently finding her forever home.
“After years of having our own dogs, we decided that because we are older now, not to have anymore. We chose to foster as we missed having a dog around. It is very rewarding to see how the dogs progress from the day they come to you. Obviously, they’re frightened, and everything is new… but to see how they flourish over the days is great! When they go to their forever home it is hard to see them go, but you know they will be well looked after. A small break, then onto a new adventure with another dog.”
If you think you’d like to give fostering a go, then we’d love to hear from you.
We are currently looking for carers who are happy to take on larger breeds, dogs with medical needs and dogs who may require some additional training.
We currently have a few dogs in our care who would benefit from living in a temporary home before they find their lifetime abode. Check out Basils and Sully’s profiles:
Visit Basil's profile
Visit Sully's profile
Please contact our Home from Home team via email: [email protected]
Or for more information about our fostering scheme, follow this link: https://www.dogstrust.org.uk/rehoming/fostering/