Fostering for a new leash for life rescue

We are a small foster based rescue in Hampshire, helping unwanted dogs mainly in and around Europe; and also occasionally in the UK, to find better lives. Most of our dogs arrive via the Channel tunnel on a dog transport van also known as the "Happy Bus".

We are a team of volunteers who care passionately about saving and improving the lives of unwanted dogs and finding them a loving, forever home here in the UK.

With the help of of our Rescuer friends abroad, we rescue dogs from kill shelters, dogs that have been dumped on the street or dogs that are living a life of suffering in Romania, Macedonia, Bosnia, Greece and Spain. Once rescued, we place our dogs with local foster carers in their home country so we can ensure they under go any veterinarian treatment needed and so they can be prepared for travel to the their new lives. Our fosterers abroad are able to begin the process of assessing and socialising them, make sure they are fit, healthy, vaccinated and have a passport ready to travel to the UK.

Some of the dogs cope very well with the journey, others find the experience very distressing and although we often get an update mid-journey it is not until arrival, when we see the dog come off the transport that we can assess how well they have coped. Those that find the journey very distressing can often arrive extremely scared and overwhelmed which is why sometimes it is necessary to change fosterers of some dogs so that the more experienced fosterers take the scared dogs. This is because our more experienced fosterers have the knowledge needed to cope with the challenges of the first few days or weeks of a scared dog, the behaviours they may display and the best ways of keeping the dog safe.

We are always looking for additional fosters to open their doors and their hearts to our newly arrived dogs, to give them a nice soft bed, give them some good food, socialisation and assess their needs for any future adopter.

Many of our dogs will not have had the luxury of living in a home so as well as enduring a long journey; meeting new people they have never met; they are then taken to a home that is full of strange smells and noises; usually with a garden with more strange smells, the smell of flowers, other animal scents, and things like grass to roll on and mud to dig in; where they need to learn where to go to alleviate themselves outside and learn distraction techniques so you know they are asking; start to learn boundaries and commands; have to wear a collar and get used to what a lead is.

We need fosterers that have the time and patience to help our dogs adjust to living indoors in a home in their time, and to be able to commit to seeing the dogs journey through to adoption. This could be anything from a few days to a few weeks depending on the dog, how quickly and well it adjusts to family life and on the right family applying when the time comes for a foster dog to go up for adoption.

Sometimes we need foster spaces for dogs that may have been returned or who need to be moved foster because they are not fitting in with resident dogs or other animals; or children. Sometimes we have dogs that have arrived with health issues that may need a foster who can support them with vet visits or treatment plans. and there are always emergencies! Dog Free Foster spaces are especially helpful.

Fostering a dog for A New Leash for Life can be hard work at times but is is very rewarding; seeing your foster dog settle; seeing it gain confidence and learn to trust and then seeing it go off to it's forever home; gives you such joy. To know that you have helped your foster dog to learn the skills needed to move to a forever home; capture a family's heart and give them a chance to have a fulfilled life as a much loved happy dog is heart warming.

Requirements to be a fosterer for A New Leash for Life

  • Some experience of dogs

  • A Secure garden with minimum 6ft fencing (Unless for small pups)

  • Ability to collect your foster dog from a meeting point

  • For someone in the household to be around the majority of the time.

  • To provide a safe environment, food and care for your dog whilst it is in foster

  • You will need a collar with i.d. tag, slip lead and a crate to safely transport your dog home.

  • Ability to transport your foster dog to a Vet if needed

  • If you have resident dogs or cats- the means to separate dogs or cats in an emergency

  • Committed to see your foster through to adoption

  • To be able to facilitate meets either at home or locally with any potential adopters

  • Access to Facebook is required for posting updates, seeing posts requesting fosters, new arrivals posts and information about eta's of transport etc.

Types of fosterers we need

We welcome new fosterers to our team and are very grateful to those of you who are willing to support us and our dogs.

We prefer fosterers to be able to see their dog through to adoption which could be up to a few weeks/ couple of months however, we also welcome fosterers that are happy to help at weekends, short term or for emergencies,

All welcome as long as assessed as suitable.

  • Those with resident dogs

  • Those who can help in times of emergency.

  • Dog Free / Pet free Foster homes

  • Short term/ weekend fosterers

  • Help with Transporting

  • Previous rescue experienced fosterers

  • Longer term fosters with experience of dealing with traumatised dogs or those requiring training, boundaries, anxiety etc.

What you need to do to apply

Please read the information on our website about our rescue and the guidelines for fosterers (see below).

If you would like to proceed and can offer support by fostering then please complete a Fosterers Questionnaire and if suitable and you meet the requirements a member of the team will contact you to discuss your offer of fostering further. You will be asked to submit a home check video of your house and garden paying attention to boundaries and the safety of the environment for a foster dog.

**Please only apply if you are committed and available to foster immediately**