The COVID-19 crisis has undoubtedly affected the entire country in one way or another. Many people are not only dealing with the potential hazards the virus poses to our health, but issues like a potential decrease in income or even job loss.
However, human beings are not the only ones put at risk by the virus and its aftereffects. Dogs without homes in particular are suffering from issues presented by COVID-19. This is because a lot of animal shelters are being forced to close their doors to the public, to prevent the spread of the virus.
They’ve therefore had to shut down adoptions and canceled larger adoption events. These shelters still need to take on homeless dogs, but are understandably running out of space. The best way to deal with this issue is to place these dogs in temporary foster homes until they can be adopted out.
However, many animal rescues, like the Midwest Animal Rescue in Minnesota, do not have enough foster owners ready to take on their dogs.
That’s why Busch is offering a three-month supply of beer to the first 500 people who choose to foster a dog from the Midwest Animal Rescue. All you need to do is fill out an application to foster a dog with the rescue. After it is approved, you’ll receive an email confirmation, which you can send to Busch through Instagram, Twitter, or Facebook in order to receive a pre-paid debit card for $100 worth of beer.
The gesture is meant to spread awareness of the dogs that need to be fostered. Keep in mind that there is much more to gain from fostering a dog than three months of beer. In this time of social distancing, having a dog gives you constant companionship.
So you’re not only doing something genuinely good for a dog that needs it, but also helping yourself. With that being said, let’s look into what goes into fostering dogs and getting ready for the process.
Why Should I Foster A Dog?
Aside from the fact that animal shelters simply need more people available to foster dogs and the mental health benefits of having a dog nearby, there are plenty of other benefits to fostering a dog.
For a lot of people, fostering a dog is a good opportunity to see whether or not you’re ready for your first dog, or for a new dog to join the dog or dogs you already have. It’s not necessarily a bad thing if a “foster fail” occurs, and you end up adopting the dog you were fostering. This isn’t at all unusual, as lots of people fall in love with the dog they were fostering.
Why not just adopt a dog outright? There are many reasons. Lots of people aren’t sure if they’re ready for the permanent responsibility of a dog. Others aren’t sure if the dog they already own can be balanced with another dog for the long term.
Some people are intimidated by the idea of adopting a dog outright, especially if they’re used to buying purebred puppies from breeders. If you’ve never adopted an adult dog before, you may be worried about personality or behavioral issues.
This is a common misconception, leading to many people buying puppies from breeders when adoption would probably be a better idea. Right now, there are over 75 million pet dogs in the United States, more than any other country. Adopting a dog, or creating a path for a dog to be adopted through fostering, will help make that number more manageable.
How Can I Prepare My Home For A Foster Dog?
Different animal shelters have different requirements for fostering. Therefore, you’ll want to make sure that you’re complying with what the shelter you’re working with experts.
However, there are some general things that everyone should do before fostering a dog. This doesn’t just apply to your house, but everything the dog will come into contact with, like your yard and your vehicle.
When it comes to your car, keep in mind that though 6 million cars are sold each year, not every car is going to be dog-friendly. If the dog is loose in the car, it will not only make the car a lot messier through shedding and tracking in dirt, it could also move around in the car and distract you, perhaps causing a dangerous situation in the process. You’ll want to invest in a travel crate to make it easier to transport your dog.
Furthermore, if you’re one of the 10.4 million Americans with a pool in your back yard, you should have your pool gated off to keep the dog safe. In your house, make sure that you have your stairs blocked off in a similar sense, and take steps to ensure that nothing that could cause choking would be within reach of the dog.
What Kind Of Dog Should I Foster?
Chances are that the shelter you work with will match you with a dog, rather than you choosing the dog you foster. They will likely ask questions to ensure that they are matching you with a dog that will fit your lifestyle and what you can offer.
You should be honest about what you can give to a dog. If you live in a small house, for example, you probably shouldn’t foster a big dog. If you’re in a more rural area, a small dog that could potentially get hurt outside would not necessarily be a good match. The more open you are, the easier it will be for them to match you with a dog that will work with your lifestyle.
Fostering a dog is a wonderful thing to do, and now is the time to do it. You’ll have the time to devote to the dog you’re fostering, and you could definitely use the companionship now of all times!