On Sunday, April 29, Home for Good Dog Rescue reached their 1,000th adoption milestone; something its founders could never have imagined 21 months earlier when they started their non-profit organization. For a volunteer-based dog rescue, averaging more than 45 dog adoptions per month, this achievement is nothing short of a miracle. The organization’s continued success, however, is dependent upon its volunteer fosters.
Home for Good specializes in rescuing dogs from high-kill shelters and placing them in suitable “forever homes.” By doing this, Home for Good is saving the dogs' lives and giving them a second chance at life. The link from the shelter to the dog’s “forever home” is the foster home; where the foster parent or foster family unselfishly provides their time and a warm, loving home environment until the dog is adopted. The foster home provides the dog an opportunity to recover from the stress of being in a shelter.
If you love dogs, why not donate your time by fostering a dog? To continue to save lives, Home for Good desperately needs more individuals and families willing to foster.
If you are interested in finding out more about becoming a foster to a deserving dog or know someone who is, please contact us. Make new friends by fostering; it’s a great way to meet new people who care about dogs. What could possibly be more gratifying than to save a life?
According to Laura Decotiis, a Home for Good foster, “Fostering is critical in saving lives. At Home for Good, we don't have a shelter. We simply rely on the foster families to welcome the dogs into their homes and prepare them for their forever home. As a foster mom to many of the dogs, my philosophy is to have the mindset that the foster pup or dog is someone else's pet. It is my job to provide a loving environment and to let them go to the right home. Every Friday, I look forward to picking up my foster dog. I have been fostering for Home for Good Dog rescue for more than a year. The experience has made me a better person, dog owner and volunteer. As a foster, I have found that each dog has different needs and I have to be responsive. As a result of this, I have learned how to deal with all types of canine personalities.”
As the Rios Family, of Westfield, have come to realize, fostering a dog is a wonderful, life-affirming project for the entire family. Donna, a Home for Good foster explains, “My family has been fostering dogs since Home for Good began. My daughter, Sophia, is a volunteer and she begged us to let her foster. It's now something that the whole family looks forward to. People always ask me how we can give up the foster dogs to their adopted family and I tell them that by fostering, we get to love the dogs for a few days and then my family is actually happy for the dogs when they find their forever homes. And most importantly, that allows us to foster again and save more dogs. It makes us all feel like we are doing a little something to help reduce the number of dogs that are unnecessarily killed in shelters every day.”
Fostering is fun and rewarding. With fostering, you’ll never be bored. There is always something to do with your foster dog from playing fetch to spending quiet time together. Getting a shelter dog ready for adoption by giving your love, time, and friendship is such a rewarding feeling.
“I never thought that wanting to pet a few dogs would have unleashed my passion for helping dogs,” said Home for Good Trustee and foster Gale Mellusi. “I find such great joy in seeing the progression of the dogs and seeing the joy they bring to families. I have been lucky enough to get periodic pictures from my foster pups. People say, "I don’t know how you give them up." I tell them that if I keep them, then I can’t help save another one. Of course I shed a few tears when they leave, but there's always another [dog] waiting to lick them away!”
While a foster’s hardest role is saying goodbye to their little friends, it’s the memories, as well as the smiles and happiness seen on the faces of the dogs and their new family members in the “Happy Tales” photos, that keeps them going.
For more information on fostering or volunteering, including junior volunteering (16 and older), contact Susan Strell at 908-598-8212.