Category: “Featured”

Foster Parents: Unsung Heroes of Adoption


What is a “foster family”? “Fostering” a dog means just the same thing as fostering a child – providing the care and love of permanent parents for a short time until we can find a permanent home for a dog in need. Not only is fostering a rewarding experience for the foster parents, it gives dogs the love and attention they need when their only current home is a shelter.  Fostering a dog ensures the safety, stability and training he or she may never have experienced.  Even better, it opens up a space in a shelter so more dogs can be saved.

Wondering if fostering a dog is right for you?  Read our answers to some of the most common questions, and make the choice to foster!

Why are foster volunteers so important?

Fostering is an important part of the socialization of dogs in rescues.  Dogs often come into rescues from a broken home with a history of abuse.  These dogs need to learn to trust people before they can be ready to be adopted, and your home is the perfect place for them to develop good social skills with people and other animals.

In other cases, puppies are too young to be adopted from the rescue, and therefore require foster homes for a few weeks before they are mature enough to be adopted.

Fostering is also crucial to the adoption process, since foster parents will have first-hand experience at understanding their foster dog’s needs.  This information is useful for the rescue because it helps to match the dog’s personality to the home best suited for it.  This is also how we get a lot of the information about the Labs we regularly feature for adoption.

How much of a time commitment is fostering?

Although the length of a foster stay is different for every dog, being a foster parent is a serious commitment during the time the dog is in your home.  Rescue dogs need consistent, stable relationships and may often require more time each day than a dog who has spent many years in your home.  Talk about expectations with the rescue group, and make sure you can commit the time before you apply.

What are the criteria for being a foster parent?

The criteria for foster dog parents are similar to those for adoptive dog parents, though they may be a bit more relaxed since the stay in your home will be short term.  HLR’s policies may be different than other rescues, but we’d be happy to discuss our criteria with you.

It’s important to note that rescue dogs may bring along some bad behavioral habits since they may not have had the experience of responsible training in their previous homes or situation.  Therefore, we appreciate foster parents who can work with dogs on their manners in order to impress their potential adopters.

Will being a foster cost money?

HLR will provide you with everything you need to take care of your foster dog.  We provide all medical care, monthly heartworm prevention and flea and tick medication, food and a crate.  You may need your own food and water bowls, and a few treats or toys if you want to entertain your furry house guest!

10 Reasons to Adopt a Big Black Dog

10 Reasons to Adopt a Big Black Dog

10. We cannot clash with your furniture or clothing (and some of you actually worry about that).

9. We cannot clash with any collar you might choose either! Ditto for the bandannas. Accessorize us!

8. Ease of vacuuming! You can quickly spot the areas of most urgent need.

7. We hide the dirt well (doesn’t mean we don’t need that bath after a messy play but your guests won’t be able to see it so quickly).

6. We make an excellent “backdrop” for a second lighter colored dog (if you choose to have one).

5. Availability! We are available now at every shelter or rescue you can imagine, in every age bracket with no long waiting lists or difficult search.

4. No annoying queries of “exactly what kind of dog is that anyhow?” People are content with “big black dog” and don’t ask anymore questions.

3. EXCELLENT night walk protection. The “bad guy” won’t see us till its too late!

2. Status symbol potential. Black pearls are the most costly you know……



~~Top 10 list courtesy of For more information, visit their website.~~