View Full Version : Need Fostering advice

29th October 2008, 05:59 PM
I will be picking up a puppy mill foster this weekend, my 1st. I have a 3yr old Cav that has been with us since April, he is doing great. There are times when you can see the old insecurities creep in but not very often. I don't want to make any mistakes with either one when they are introduced. Can anyone offer any suggestions as what or what not to do so they get off on the right tract and my adopted does not retreat any.


29th October 2008, 06:21 PM
There is a whole list of tips on fostering or homing a rescue pinned at the top of this section. Also in the Library there's a thread on adding a second dog which has info on introductions.

Cathy T
29th October 2008, 11:36 PM
Good for you!! Please let us know how it goes.

Daisy's Mom
30th October 2008, 01:45 PM
Good luck and good on you for fostering another doggy!

As I'm sure Karlin's link will say, and what everything I have read says, is to introduce them on neutral territory, walk them together for a little while at least, so they become a "pack" moving forward together. The walking also drains a little of their excess energy. Then when they go into the house, it will not be one dog encroaching on another's territory, it will be two dogs going into a house together.

We did that will all 3 of the dogs we've fostered and it worked like a charm. I had Daisy outside on the leash walking and the other person brought the new dog up to us as if it were just a passing neighber. We let them sniff and investigate, and then start walking together. And Daisy (our own dog) can definitely be a little territorial with other dogs in her house so if this works with her, it is probably pretty effective for most dogs. She tends to charge and bowl over new dogs that come into HER house, and she never does this out of the house. Don't get me wrong, she does go crazy meeting new dogs anywhere, but not in the same way she does if they are in her house.

In terms of doggy insecurities, I can't comment too much because all of our fosters have been pretty well-adjusted, normal dogs.

30th October 2008, 02:20 PM
From my experience fostering before they arrive lift all toys, bones, food & food bowls and leave plenty of spare water dishes around and plenty of beds and gradually introduce the items under close supervision as you may not realise your own dogs or the foster resource guards items with dogs but not humans. Decide the area fosters will sleep ect and get it all set up and ready.
When dogs change their food quickly they almost always get runs so I give a really bland diet at first while starting to ad in the dried food. So chicken and rice and a bit of dry food and take at least 5 days before they are just on the dried food.
Put a collar & tag on the foster the minute they arrive and always walk on lead until you are sure they'll stay with you as if they run off that will be it and a lot of the strays that I have had always try make a dash for the door I guess they don't know why I am keeping them in when usually they are allowed roam - not in this house though :razz:
I let my dogs have a sniff of the fosters while I am holding the foster (and give the foster little rubs) keeping calm if you are tense your dog will sense this and then put them down (even the larger dogs :D) this has always worked for me (but have learnt this over time because of my dogs personalities your own dog may be different) like a lot of people find going for a walk first helps them as its neutral but as I've taken puppies that doesn't always be an option and found for my dogs just having a sniff first of their backside (and therefore not meeting head on face to face) has always worked.
Having a crate and/or puppy pen is a god send when you need to go out or just need a bit of down time. My fosters are not allowed free access upstairs but my dogs are, so when my dogs want some *normal* time they just stand at the sitting room door and I let them go up. So I think an area where your dog can go helps (again depends on your dogs personality)
Take it really slowly and never force either to interact. Do fun things like going for lots of short walks together this always helps mine become a bit more bonded as they have fun (walks are top of my dogs priorities in life!!!)
Our first foster was hard but we learnt so much (like no free access to upstairs and no leaving toys around at the start) now its nearly 20 fosters later and I remember each and every one and loved them all so much and taught me so many things...I'll warn ye it gets harder and harder to let them go though not easier :eek: I'm sure there is plenty more tips but those spring to mind for me...

5th November 2008, 07:22 PM
Thanks for all your advice on how to accept this foster. I did not see the top of the thread until after I had sent the request. It had a lot of great information. We received this little boy on last Sat, after a 5 day stay at the vet's. He had been taken with 6 others who had been living in a home with over 25 dogs, cats & birds. All definately needed help and no running water. He spayed and had 8 teeth removed. He is literally starving for food and affection. Just a sweet little boy of 14lbs & 4 1/2 yrs old and his backbone and ribs show through. Most of his hair was cut off I think due to mats, but it is very sparse and dull. Most likely due to his diet. He is very gentle and loves people, like a velcro dog. He has been no problem in his crate at night, but needs potty training and I don't think has walked on a leash. With a little work he will be a great dog for someone. I appreicate all of your help.

Jane, mom to Alex