Why foster “failures” are a wonderful thing


Petfinder’s senior producer, Jane Harrell, recently “failed” her own foster dog, Fiona. Fi’s now a happy member of Jane’s family.

I love fostering. I find it super rewarding and do it often. I love knowing that my home can be opened up to an animal who needs me. I love knowing that I can get that animal ready for a loving family. I love that I can help. I frequently hear “How can you do that? I would want to keep all of them”. The truth is, there are many that I do want to keep. And, let’s be honest, I have dogs, so, obviously, I do keep some of them. But, there are many that I am totally OK with sending over to their forever homes. And, through fostering, I have met some wonderful people who have adopted dogs from me.

So, whenever I hear about someone else fostering, I get very excited for them! After all, fostering has enriched my life so much and I feel so happy for anyone else who gets to experience such a wonderful thing!

Which brings me to a friend of mine who has asked to remain anonymous.  Recently, we were made aware of a dog who had been chained in a basement and starved. The dog was taken to a local shelter and my wonderful, selfless, awesome friend offered to take her home so that she could heal and get well in a loving home environment. Not only was she severely underweight, she needed medical care for some open wounds that came from laying on concrete all day and all night.

Kirstyn has experienced a few foster failures.

The original arrangement was to take the dog for a week or so. A week became 2 weeks, 2 weeks became a month. Eventually, it became obvious. The dog wasn’t going anywhere. Obvious to everyone except for the foster. Yes, she admitted that she loved the dog, yes, she admitted that she would be super bummed when she was adopted. Then, she started admitting to thinking about keeping her. Then, yesterday, she filled out the paperwork to keep her. Yep, the foster now has a home.

Some people call this “Foster Failing”. I call this foster success. After all, isn’t the goal to find the foster dog a loving home? The dog is now in the most loving hoe she could ever ask for! To me, that’s a success story if I have ever heard one!!!!