There are a lot of people at Emerald City Pet Rescue who work passionately for the sake of our beautiful, wonderful animals. These people are not just the staff and volunteers, but also our amazing foster families. There are so many reasons we are grateful for our foster families. One very important thing our foster families do is provide homes for animals who for whatever reason, take a little longer to find their forever home. It can be discouraging for an animal to watch all their friends find homes while they remain. Even though ECPR animals get lots of love and cuddles from staff and volunteers, it is just not the same as having people to call your own. Curling up on the couch next to a person friend, the joy of undivided cuddles and frolicking in the freedom of a home environment all add to the quality of an animal’s life. Fosters provide these opportunities for our animals.
Foster families also teach us important information about our animals that we may not otherwise find out. We all know how our animals act at the rescue, but sometimes different parts of their personality come out in the home environment. Maybe Fluff-Fluff acts aggressive when strangers come to visit, or Little Strawberry is scared of the doorbell, or maybe Albert makes a squeaky sound when he needs to use the bathroom. All this information is very helpful to Emerald City Pet Rescue. This way, adopters learn these things about their pets before they go home. We also learn more about how to choose the right home for the animals. In the case of Fluff-Fluff, we know he would thrive in an environment where his people are more of the homebody types who don’t have a lot of visitors over. For Little Strawberry, we can work with the adopters on a plan to help her get over her fear of strange noises. And Albert will be a much easier dog to potty train with his idiosyncratic squeaking. Although Fluff-Fluff, Little Strawberry and Albert are made up examples, it is true that fosters are constantly providing us with an array of useful information about our animals. The more we know about our animals, the better we can set them up to succeed and thrive for the rest of their life.
Another important thing that fosters do for ECPR is empty a kennel for another dog in need. With limited space, we can only take so many animals into our facility. Even if we want to take all the needy animals in the world into our facility, we physically cannot, especially since it is so important to us to provide quality care to each ECPR animal. But with a space being opened by a foster’s generosity, we can take in at least one more animal in need.
On Saturday, two of our dogs living with foster families came for a visit! Usually the dogs who get fostered are dogs that have had a more difficult time finding a home. This means that they have spent more time at ECPR then the average dog which means the staff had more time to grow attached to the animal. So of course, staff was very excited to see our two visitors!
First our pal Mazie came for a visit. This sweet little lady is an older gal who adores good friends and cuddles. Little Mazie is quite endearing. She is a stout pooch who has a delightful waddle to her walk. Her flowy white fur is thinning and her skin is covered with a galaxy of age sots. Her signs of aging only serve to make her all the more beautiful. She has a unique beauty which is enhanced by her cute personality. Mazie is confident and doesn’t put up with nonsense. When she finds a person she likes, she doesn’t let anything get in her way of being near her person. She is very loyal and loving. As you can see by the photo, Mazie also has a winning smile. What is not visible in this picture is Mazie’s pretty cloth flower. Mazie always wears a cloth flower on her collar. The flower obviously represents her heart, which is as lovely as a flower.
Our second foster visitor was Madonna! This scruffy girl is about as cute as they come. Her scruffy yet elegant appearance could easily inspire a children’s book series about a spunky pooch going on adventures. But like most living creatures, Madonna’s personality is complicated. She is sweet, loving and kind, but she also has fears and anxieties that sometimes influence her actions. Her foster mom is very tuned into what Madonna needs and is providing a wonderful environment for Madonna. Madonna is getting an opportunity to grow and overcome many of her fears. It made me so happy to see her on Saturday and to see how much she loved her foster mom. After seeing Madonna with her foster mom, I know Madonna will succeed in her home when she finds her forever family. It may take longer for her to warm up, but when she does, she will be the best friend a person can imagine.
All the animals I have met at Emerald City Pet Rescue are so wonderful. They all have good and loving hearts. They want love, positive attention, and to feel safe. Some of our animals only need to spend a week or less at the ECPR facility before charming their future adopters and finding a forever home. Other animals take much longer to find their forever home. This could be because of age or health reasons, behavioral issues, or just plain bad luck. There have been plenty of time where I have wondered with bafflement why one of our animals is still here.
Our foster families provide such a wonderful opportunity for our animals to get a taste of home before they truly find their forever home. Sometimes, the foster homes are just great sanctuaries for our older dogs or cats. Often times, people want to adopt puppies or kittens, so the older guys may need a little extra time to find that perfect someone excited to invite an elderly animal into their home permanently. The foster home can give an animal with health issues a place to recover before the next step of finding their forever home. Sometimes, the time spent with a foster gives a dog or cat the tools or individualized training an animal needs to overcome behavioral issues setting them back. A lot of times the ‘behavioral issues’ the animal is experiencing is nothing more than a bout of shyness. A foster home can give that animal the extra boost of confidence they need to enter their next meet and greet with excitement instead of fear. Sometimes, finding a foster home is just that first turn in luck a dog or cat needs as they continue on their journey in finding a forever home.
Animals in foster homes get new adventures, more opportunities to socialize and the joy of experiencing a home environment. All of our animals deserve to take as much time as they need to find their forever home. Fosters help us accomplish this. At Emerald City Pet Rescue, we really appreciate everything our fosters do for us and our animals!