Dogs Trust Leeds searching for foster carers while building works get underway

Dogs Trust Leeds are searching for more foster carers as upcoming building works mean they will have less room for kennels.

Thursday, 1st July 2021, 11:58 am
Updated Thursday, 1st July 2021, 12:20 pm

The building work will involve refurbishment of the 20 rehoming kennels and the construction of six purpose built outdoor compounds, to allow the dogs off lead exercise and an area for meeting potential adopters.

The Dogs Trust Leeds team are hoping to minimise disruption for the dogs, while adding to their existing roster of foster carers.

They would like to hear from people who can come on board as ongoing, long-term foster carers - under the mantra of “fostering is for life, not just for building works.”

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Dogs Trust Leeds' Sue and Major.
Dogs Trust Leeds' Sue and Major.

Jason Howard, home from home coordinator at Dogs Trust Leeds, said: “We would love to bring on more foster carers who can give some of our canine residents a temporary, loving home, while they wait on their special someone to come forward and give them a permanent one.

"Our foster carers are dedicated volunteers who give up their time in the name of dog welfare, and we are so grateful to them for their commitment to the cause.

“While our rehoming centre teams care for dogs like they were their own pets, there really is no substitute for a nurturing home environment.

"Fostering is not only a valuable and rewarding experience for dogs and humans alike, but it also allows us to ensure there is kennel space free for more dogs that find themselves in need of our support."

Dogs Trust Leeds' Sue and Major.

James added: “Dogs that spend time on the Home From Home fostering programme usually find it easier to transition in permanent homes, as foster care prepares them for life as part of a family again.

"Potential foster carers should live within reasonable distance of the rehoming centre, have no other pets, no children under the age of 14 visiting the home, have a secure garden, access to their own car and be around most of the day to keep their foster dog company.”

One dog who is currently benefiting from life in a foster home is Major, an 11-year-old American bulldog, who is a real couch potato and loves his food.

When Major first arrived at Dogs Trust Leeds he was a little overweight, but has been doing very well on his doggy diet.

Major’s foster carer, Sue Buckley, who has fostered five dogs in the last year, said: “I decided to apply to be a foster carer after realising I was looking after various friends and family members' dogs and thought it would be great to do this for dogs who really needed help.

"Dogs like Major just need some extra love.

“I am very fortunate that my home has lots of space for dogs to potter around and I can spend a lot of time with the foster dogs in my care. My husband and I both grew up with dogs in our families and are used to all kinds of active breeds."

Sue added: "The best thing about fostering is the love you get from the dogs and seeing them happy.

"If I had any advice for anyone interested in becoming a foster carer it would be to prepare themselves to let the dog fully in to your home because they will take over.

"They’ll want to lay on the sofa and go in all the rooms.

“It’s a full-time job and a very big commitment but we wouldn’t have it any other way, and it is so worth it.”

Foster families will receive support and advice regarding the dog in their care and Dogs Trust Leeds will equip people with everything needed, such as food and bedding.

Any veterinary treatment is also covered.

If you are interested in becoming a foster carer, please contact Jason Howard at [email protected]

Dogs Trust Leeds will be holding information days every Sunday.

If you would like to take a tour of the centre, meet members of the team and see the dogs spending time with their carers,  go to www.dogstrust.org.uk/ourcentres to book a place.