The new program enables animals still under the care of the OHS, to be cared for by families willing to foster them first—during the treatment period—prior to adopting them. As with all adoptions, people must be matched with animals, and meet all standard adoption criteria.
"It's much better for animals to recuperate from illness or surgery within a home environment, rather than in our crowded shelter," says Bruce Roney, Executive Director, Ottawa Humane Society. "They get better faster, so they can be adopted sooner. By accelerating the adoption process, we can create a positive outcome for more animals, and meet the demands on our resources and facility more efficiently."
The Dugan family was the first to take advantage of the Foster Me First program. They fostered Oliver, a six-month-old Boston Terrier. When Oliver recovered from his illness, the Dugans finalized the adoption as his forever family. "We came to the Ottawa Humane Society as soon as we saw Oliver available on the Web site. We all met him, including our dogs, and everyone got along right away," says Catherine Dugan. "We talked about adopting a dog two months ago and decided now was the time. We helped him get well with the OHS and now he'll get ongoing vet checks as part of our regular animal care routine."
The OHS covers care costs, makes all medical decisions and maintains ownership of the animal while it is being fostered. Participating families bring their foster animal into the OHS for care until it is well, and then the final adoption can occur.
Descriptions and pictures of animals available for the Foster Me First program are featured on the adoption page of the OHS Web page www.ottawahumane.ca and on the adoptions bulletin board in the OHS lobby at 101 Champagne. Ave. South, Ottawa. For more information on Foster-Me-First, call 613-726-3166 ext. 258.
Catherine and James Dugan, with Oliver, their Foster Me First Boston Terrier