Tips for Caring for Your Foster Dog (Part 3 – Adult and Senior Stages)

November 15, 2022
Fostering an older aged dog gives them a chance to live a happy and fulfilling life while waiting for a forever home rather than waiting in a shelter. The challenge that comes along with fostering dogs in this age range is that they have been raised in certain conditions and already have a personality established. In this situation, you want to do what is best for them and what will make the transition go smoothly for them and you. Read our tips below to help make your fostering experience paw-some!

Create Their Personal Space

One of the biggest tips to keep in mind when fostering is to give the dog its own space. This includes from when you first bring them home up until they get to their new home. They will be coming into a whole new environment and if you have children or other animals around, they may need extra space and time to feel comfortable. Make sure you have scrumptious treats on hand to help ease the transition experience for your adult foster.

Keep a Consistent Routine

Developing a consistent routine will help your adult foster dog in the long run. Dogs are habitual creatures and feeling safe and comfortable in the world around them will keep them happier in their environment. It may take some time for your dog to get used to a normalized routine but establishing one will give them structure and confidence. Your foster dog may not have had any routine in the past or may have been conditioned to not expect a solid routine, so this will help them adjust while staying with you and prepare them for their future forever home.

Provide Plenty of Exercise

Adult dogs, especially bigger breeds, require at least two hours of exercise per day. Always be sure to provide them with plenty of exercise, physically and mentally, to keep them happy and healthy. Apart from keeping your foster healthy, this will also help curb destructive or aggressive behaviors.

Work on Socialization

Coming from a shelter, dogs have had some socialization but not always in a home setting. They may need patience and time working on socialization whether it be with strange people or other animals. Of course, always take it slow and don’t force it, but work with them to feel comfortable in these situations so that they can easily get along with others in the future.

Fostering Senior Dogs

Fostering a senior dog may come with a few extra responsibilities such as more health checkups, more vitamins, and certain types of dog supplies. In their older age, you will want to find an age-appropriate food that encourages overall health. Their joints may not function as well as a younger dog and therefore providing joint supplements and joint-promoting beds can help them live a more comfortable life. Senior dogs still need plenty of exercise, but they may require it at a slower pace and in smaller time frames. This completely depends on the specific dog and should be adjusted according to the dog's needs.

Fostering at any age is fun and fulfilling. It is always hard to let them go when it's time for them to go to their forever home, but giving them a happy life in the meantime is what makes it all worthwhile!

Read our other blogs for dog fostering at all ages: Part 1 (puppy fostering) and Part 2 (adolescent fostering).