COULD YOU BE A FOSTERER?

As part of our dog re-homing process we need fosterers. Fosterers can live in any part of the UK,
in fact, the more we have across the entire country, the better!
If you are already a fosterer, or are thinking of becoming one, please read the guidance below.

Our Rescue Dogs
Our fosterers do a wonderful job, welcoming these sometimes traumatised dogs into their human
and doggy families, where they learn to trust once again and, sometimes to adapt to living in a house
for the very first time.
We don't expect our fosterers to be expert dog trainers, but we do ask that they read the
Rules for Humans below.

Rules for Humans
1. Even with the nicest natured dogs, NEVER leave children alone with them.
2. NEVER allow children to take dogs for walks on their own.
3. NEVER allow dogs off the lead unless you are 100% sure it is safe to do so (see
'Letting Dogs off the Lead' below).
4. NEVER chastise a dog when it returns to you even if he/she has been "naughty".
5. NEVER throw sticks or stones.
6. NEVER leave strange dogs together unattended.
7. NEVER leave dogs alone together with collars on.
8. NEVER give dogs chocolate, grapes, raisins, raw potatoes or onions.

Behaviour
If dogs are found to have any major behavioural problems, we will try to place them with a fosterer
who is also a behaviourist and trainer if one is available.
During the transition period spent in their foster home (ideally 2 to 3 weeks but may be longer)
all dogs will be given appropriate flower essences to help them settle.
Please remember that some of these dogs may have had a very poor start in life and it may take
them some time to settle into their new environment. Fosterers need a great deal of patience and
understanding when dealing with their foster dogs. Other family dogs can often be a very calming
influence especially with those dogs who have been rescued from puppy farms.

Veterinary Care
If veterinary treatment is required, whether for an emergency (where the dog has been injured
or is showing signs of serious illness), or a routine matter, Lorraine must be advised in all cases
on 07956 686 909. If she is not available, contact Jackie. For non-emergency cases, if you
provide a brief description of the symptoms, alternative suggestions for treatment may be
offered.IRR will cover all veterinary expenses will be covered as long as we are asked in advance
and consent is given.

Diet
The dogs need a good, healthy diet and as much fresh air and exercise as possible. This may have to
be built up slowly in certain cases for example, where a dog is severely malnourished. Fosterers
normally pay for food out of their own pockets but may contact IRR for assistance if this is difficult.

Letting Dogs off the Lead
When exercising IRR rescue dogs, we ask that our fosterers keep the dog on the lead at all times
when in public areas (unless you have a totally secure area in which to exercise them). The dog may
not have received any proper training and might not respond immediately to recall commands. They
may well be scared of their new surroundings. When exercising near busy roads, there is an increased
risk of them running into the road and being injured or worse still, causing a traffic accident.
There may be aspects of their temperament which are not fully known and the dog may exhibit
unexpected behaviour when coming into contact with other dogs. Do do not allow your dog to run
up to another dog that is on a lead. Many dogs are kept on leads because they may have behavioural
problems. Small children and even some adults can be frightened of an unleashed dog running up to
them no matter how friendly the dog might be.
NEVER use a flexi-lead, it only takes 1/4 sec for a dog and person to be pulled under the wheels of a
vehicle. A long line can be attached to the dog when you get to a safe area instead. You will have
more control and feel a lot safer.
Needless to say, all dogs should be wearing identity tags with fosterer's surname and contact
telephone numbers, both land-line and mobile, clearly visible.

Letting Go
Finally, the fosterers have to be brave and let their charges go, which is often the hardest part of the
job. It is also the most worthwhile, especially when they see their foster dog healthy and happy
with their forever families at our Annual Reunion, details of which can be found under the
Home Page Main Menu - Happy Endings.

PLEASE NOTE that fostering for IRR is not a fast track to adopting and by-passing the
normal waiting list unless, of course, because of special needs, there is nobody suitable
wishing to adopt that particular dog.

How to Apply
If you think you could help us by being a Fosterer, please download, complete and return
the application form via email. If you require more information, please contact
Jackie at irr.foster@yahoo.co.uk
or Tel: 01263 826 383.

It can take lots of time, effort and hard work to improve a rescue dog's behaviour initially
but it is worthwhile and very rewarding when you are able to see the change in them.





2013 Irish Retriever Rescue