ML Foster Deb talks to us about her experience fostering Much Love puppies
Why did you start fostering for MLAR?
My oldest child was in middle school. That’s around the time the Santa Monica schools begin asking students to accumulate community service hours. I wanted my kids to do something they believed in and loved, so immediately thought of our rescue dogs. I heard about a local group who needed fosters; while working with them, they introduced me to Much Love Animal Rescue. The people I met at ML were knowledgeable, friendly, and willing to place dogs with me that would match my lifestyle and mesh with my two rescue dogs, too. Most importantly, ML gets the job done by placing the animals in good, stable homes and doing that quickly. Generally, my fosters average three weeks with me before finding their forever home.
Both my kids helped with the foster puppies: feeding, walking, bringing them outside for bathroom breaks, and most importantly, playing with them. Now that they are in college, I find fostering to be a great “empty nest” filler. The kids love coming home to a puppy, too.
What do you like best about fostering?
My specialty is puppies. What could be better than a chunky baby waddling through the house? They are so cute, so much fun, so eager to learn about the world. I love introducing the puppies to a warm home, a safe comfy bed, a safe outdoor place to play. They just thrive! I love delivering a well behaved, happy puppy to new owners. They, in turn, are so grateful to have a well adjusted puppy come into their homes. And house training a puppy is not that difficult.
The flip side of this question, what do I like the least, should be answered, too. I dislike when a favorite puppy goes to a new home. It hurts so badly to give up the puppy that you know would make a great companion for yourself. I’ve cried many a tear over several good-byes! When that happens, I ask Much Love to find another, quick. The sad truth is that the shelters are full of amazing dogs and puppies. The more we can get out and into stable foster homes, the better their chances of being matched with their perfect human.
I don’t teach tricks. Fostering puppies means I’m busy with house training and socialization. When they get to their new home, they are usually house trained, happy, and ready for their new person to teach them tricks!
Who is a better cuddler, your foster animal or your significant other?
That is not even fair! My significant other makes it possible for me to be home to care for these wonderful dogs. He wins, hands down, the cuddle prize! However, I do notice that my puppies adore my husband. I do all the work, then he comes home to an adoring group of doggies!
What was your biggest apprehension about fostering and has that come true, if not, what happened? (really 3 questions but who’s counting?!)
I was terrified of fostering puppies. What if I wasn’t caring for them properly and they got sick? Or worse? Just like a new mom, I did not think I was up to the task. But just like the mom who has her second child, it gets easier with each one! I am happy to say that my puppies thrive! They grow like crazy and are happy, silly, playful bundles of puppy breath!