Are you the kind of person who seeks out the dog at the party? Are you concerned that there may not be a dog at your family’s holiday get together this year and you’ll have to socialize with people? Become a holiday foster parent for a local shelter and BYOD (bring your own dog!)
Several shelters around the country seek fosters for the holidays, and it’s a win-win-win situation for all involved!
Holiday foster parents get to bring a furry friend to their holiday gathering, the dogs get a break from the shelter, and the caring staff get to spend more time with their families! This is a great idea if you don’t think you can take on a long-term foster, but can give a pup a happy holiday!
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Meet my new pal for the week! Beau beau is sweet, beautiful, and quite intelligent! Also totally up for adoption!! Can't wait to get to know this guy better! #thanksgivingfoster #rac #richmondanimalcareandcontrol #rvathanksgivingfoster #raccthanksgiving #raccthanksgivingfoster
Holiday fostering also exposes these pets to potential adopters. You may not get a family member to the shelter, but when they get to meet an adorable adoptable face-to-face, it may open their minds and their hearts to the possibility of adding a pet to the family!
Holiday fostering isn’t new this year – Richmond Animal Care and Control began holiday fostering several years ago and have seen a lot of success with the program. The first year, about 35 pets were taken out for Thanksgiving, and around half were adopted by new friends they met that day! Since then other shelters have adopted similar programs, asking locals who may not be able to adopt or long-term foster to get their pets out of the kennels for just a little while. The pets get a nice meal, a day out, and a lot more exposure than they’d get in their kennels!
Even if you plan to spend the holidays alone on your couch, consider inviting a friend from the shelter over to watch the parade or share a little meal! Check the list below or with your local shelters to see if you can share your holiday with a friend! Shelters who participate in holiday fostering programs start seeking volunteers a few weeks before Thanksgiving, and again before Christmas – so be sure to check in before their cutoff dates.
Some people insist that taking a dog out of the shelter temporarily confuses them – but staff take good care to make sure that the pets eligible for these programs aren’t likely to suffer stress, and will appreciate the break. The benefits for these pups far outweigh the unlikely cons.
These are just a few of the shelters who we’ve heard are seeking holiday fosters – but there are more out there! Call your local shelters! If you know of any that are not on this list, let us know on Facebook so we can add it here and spread the word!
(This list is from 2018 – check with these shelters to see if they’re continuing this program for 2019!)
Lifeline Animal Project
Gateway Pet Guardians
The Animal Foundation
Bernalillo County Animal Care
Albert’s Dog Lounge
Also be sure to check out some of our helpful holiday tips for dogs to help make the most of your time with your foster!
Featured Photo: @magic_dragon95/Instagram
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