Since you have decided to open your home to a foster pet, there are couple of things you need to consider before bringing your fluffy friend to your house. Animal shelters rely on foster pet parents’ support because they are aware of how much care these pets need. So, here are some things you should have in mind when deciding to bring a foster pet into your family.
As you know, not all breeds require same type of treatmant. For that reason, it is advisable for you to do some research about the breed you are fostering so that you can give it proper care. See what type of habits the breed you are taking in has, check whether your budget allows you to care for another pet and do the maths to see whether you will have the time for it. Also, if it’s not your own home, check with your landlord if he/she allows more pets in your home than those you already have (just to make sure).
It is really important to see whether the new pet fits into your family dynamics. There have been cases where a foster dog/cat fits well with the fosters but not with their other pets. So, it would be smart to bring the pet for a trial-run. Have it at your home for a couple of days, just to see whether all pets function in harmony.
When you are bringing a foster pet in, make sure it immediately feels at home by giving it its own space. Stock up on pet supplies that it may need, give it its own corner so it doesn’t feel rejected. Also, have in mind its temperament, personality and needs.
Whether your foster pet is still a puppy or not, you need to think about its safety. Your home is an unknown space for your new pet, so it will need a lot of adapting. For that reason, make sure your puppy-proof your home and yard/balcony so you make sure your pet doesn’t get hurt. Sure, all pets are different – while some will spend the whole day roaming through the house, others will spend the day lounging in bed. Those that are used to street living conditions may even be thieves or escape artists. Be ready that a foster pet will want to chew on anything, eat anything and won’t be stopped if it set his mind on something. So, to prevent your pet from getting hurt in the new environment, running away or get poisoned by chewing on anything and everything carelessly, introduce safety measures that will match both your home and your pet’s temperament. Things to pay attention to:
- Pay attention to the smallest of details such as rubber bands, paper clips, nails, moth balls, toxic chemicals, pins, needles, nails or other potentially dangerous objects
- Pets love chewing on cords around the house so make sure you hide them – block/hide all stereo, TV, phone cords (and all others) as these can be very dangerous. Make sure long curtains are out of reach too, as pets find them particularly interesting
- Get down at an animal’s eye-level. Make sure there aren’t any dangerous items, cracks in the floor, walls, loose teals and similar.
Also, you need to protect your current family pets as they too need some adjusting to a new friend. Maybe you should include the family vet in the foster preparations – he will know how to handle potential and real situations. Check your existing pets’ health as it is really important for it to be able to withstand the stress of introducing a new pal into your community. Your current family pets need to be protected against any potential illness that the foster dog may carry; it’s advisable to have your vet give your pets all necessary vitamins, vaccines and meds to prevent any potential harm.
Your family should be given instructions how to behave around the foster pet. Everybody should know that fostering a pet from the street is not that easy a task. Those pets are usually frustrated with street living conditions, often they are scared or angry with anybody who even approaches them. So, it is best to introduce the pet slowly into its own area, somewhere safe and calm where there aren’t places to hide.
As your task as a foster family is to prepare this dog for family life, it is really important for the whole family to work together towards enabling this pet to live a normal family life. Go to a pet store and buy all necessary suplies that will make your new family member happy!