Second Chance: Fostering A Pet

This may be new news to some, but in addition to a shelter, Second Chance also offers a very versatile foster care program.

Being a foster care provider is at once challenging and extremely rewarding. The challenge comes from bringing a new pet into your home and working through the adjustment period. The reward is in knowing you are giving the pet a chance to heal and trust so that they can be more quickly placed into what will become their forever homes.

Storm

Storm

Read on to learn more…

Foster pets have varying needs that led them to be placed in foster care, such as illnesses that require special care and diet, as well as behavioral issues or lack of socialization, all of which are best transformed through a secure home environment. Additionally, puppies and kittens too young to be in a shelter and nursing mothers and their litters also do best in foster care.

The process of becoming a foster care provider involves two painless yet important steps: 1) completing a foster care application; and 2) having a “home visit” to assess what kind of pet would be best in your home environment and lifestyle. For example, an extremely timid and elderly dog should not beplaced in a home with energetic children engaged in forming a rock band.

Fostering a pet in need of shelter, love, and guidance requires some extra time and space in your home and heart, but it is one of the most rewarding ways to help homeless animal. Furthermore, you get the great pleasure of having a loving pet in your home – without a long-term commitment.

Fostering provides a stepping stone for animals in search of permanent homes and helps set the stage for successful adoptions. Pets which have been at a shelter too long benefit from a break, which does wonders to its self-esteem, attitude, and connection to people.

Many worry about the emotional attachment involved in fostering, about whether they will be able to let the pet go when it is time to return it to the shelter or be sent to its new adoptive home. Second Chance counsels people in that situation to help them focus on how they have helped the animal and how other foster pets will be needing similar assistance.

If I don’t find a home soon, I am an example of a cat which might benefit from a foster home.

My name is Storm. I was just one-year-old when I arrived here, but I  have been waiting for my new family for six months now. I am a bit shy and get overlooked because of my more outgoing cat friends at Second Chance. Although I am very sweet and good with cats and dogs, my truly awesome personality takes some time to unfold around new people.

Before it is decided whether I get to go to foster care, there needs to be more foster homes in our area. So please contact the Second Chance Shelter today, at 970-626-2273, to learn more about becoming a foster home for homeless pets in our region.

Whisper

Whisper

And for those just ready to commit to a lifetime of puppy love and adoration, my little friend Whisper may be what you are seeking.

Whisper is another puppy mill rescue, saved by Second Chance. At only seven-months-old, she was considered “too old for purchase” (the cut off is four months). Well of course the rest of us know better and this Maltese Chi (apparently a “new designer breed”) weighing in at only six pounds is deserving of a beautiful life.

Whisper is shy from being under socialized, but is responding very well to all the loving human interaction she is receiving here at the Shelter. This quiet and kind little girl will make a loving and loyal companion for the lucky adopter.

Editor’s note: It’s no secret. The Telluride region is dog heaven. Well, pet heaven. Unless you are one of our furry friends who gets caught in the maw of neglect and abuse. Then heaven is on hold until Second Chance Humane Society comes to the rescue. Second Chance is the region’s nonprofit dedicated to saving animals’ lives and promoting responsible pet parenting and human-animal bond. In her weekly blog, executive director Kelly Goodin profiles at least one, generally two of the many animals now living at the no-kill shelter, Angel Ridge Shelter, a dog and a cat, hoping to find them loving permanent homes. The column is sponsored by Ted Hoff of Cottonwood Ranch & Kennel, who from time to time exercises his skills as a dog whisperer, partnering with Kelly and her staff to help train a particularly challenging animal.

Ted Hoff & Mae

Ted Hoff &  Magnificent Mae

By the by, there is no better place to park your pup or get your pup (or adult dog) trained than Cottonwood whenever you head out of town (for locals) or are heading to town and staying somewhere that does not allow pets. Consider joining Ted’s Very Important Dog (VID) Club for added benies. (Details on Ted’s website.)

Second Chance Humane Society Animal Resource Center and Thrift Shop are both located in Ridgway, but service San Miguel, Ouray & Montrose Counties. Call the SCHS Helpline at 626-2273 to report a lost pet, learn about adopting a homeless pet, or about the SCHS Spay/Neuter, Volunteer, Feral Cat, or other Programs. View the shelter pets and services online: www.adoptmountainpets.org

Vetting the Vet: Dr. Michelle Dally, DVM, J.D. is Medical Director of Second Chance Humane Society. She also has a private practice, Dally Veterinary Medicine, 333 S. Elizabeth Street, Ridgway, Colorado. Her service area is  San Miguel Mesas, Placerville, Ridgway, Ouray, and Montrose. For more on Dr. Dally, go here.

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Kelly Goodin

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