Organization: Longmont Humane Society
Investigator(s): Rhea Moriarty
Grant Amount: $7,300
Project Type: Phase 1
Project Status: Research Complete
Longmont Humane Society evaluated an expansion of their foster program to include foster caregivers trained to foster dogs who are shy, anxious or otherwise stressed in the kennel environment. A total of 33 dogs were sent to foster homes through this project. Of 33 dogs, 31 were successfully adopted (94% live release rate).
To expand the foster program to include specially trained foster caregivers for dogs that are shy, anxious, or otherwise stressed in the kennel environment; To place 30 dogs into foster care and find adoptive homes for them.
Dogs who exhibited anxiety, fear or signs of significant stress in the shelter were considered for the foster program. Longmont Humane Society (LHS) prepared written materials to train foster volunteers to meet the dogs' needs. LHS recruited foster caregivers and placed 33 dogs with them. To ensure successful foster placement, LHS continued supporting foster caregivers while the dogs were being fostered. Veterinary staff was called upon to assess whether a dog's behavior was due to a medical condition that may or may not benefit from pharmaceutical intervention.
43 families were trained to become foster caregivers for the 33 dogs selected in this study.
The expanded foster program is a viable alternative for dogs who do poorly in the shelter. By placing dogs with shy, fearful or kennel-stressed behaviors in foster care, those dogs were able to receive added support from trained foster caregivers, while Longmont Humane Society was able to free shelter space for other dogs. As an open-admission shelter seeking to save as many lives as possible, the expanded foster care program increased Longmont Humane Society's lifesaving capacity.