It's a sight that will warm your heart- a litter of new puppies chasing each other around the floor at the Humane Society of Northeast Georgia. But what makes this sight even better is knowing that it probably won't be long until each of them find their forever home.
HSNEGA announced around Christmas time that they were looking for people to participate in their foster program, and many volunteers stepped forward. But since then HSNEGA has continued to see growth in their program.
According to Kathleen Garrand, Foster Coordinator for HSNEGA, over half of the dogs who have been taken out for a foster program have ended up getting adopted. Garrand said that part of the reason for this number is that fostering a pet helps them to get more exposure in the community.
"This [the kennel] isn't the best environment to see an animal, they're not themselves- they're stressed, they're tired," said Garrand. "When you get them out in the public they're a completely different animal- they relax."
The foster program at HSNEGA features a couple of different options for people to temporarily adopt pets.
One option is a sleepover, where a dog can be temporarily adopted for two days. Those interested have only one requirement- a home inspection required by the Department of Agriculture. Better yet- a sleepover requires no sort of payment; the Humane Society provides food, a bed and anything else the pet might need.
Beginning in March, the Humane Society will offer another option- a field trip. Those willing to take a pet on a field trip are only required to keep them for a day, and are welcome to take them anywhere local to spend time with them. The goal of a field trip is to get the animal out of the shelter for a while, since according to Garrand, spending too much time in a shelter isn't good for them.
Just as the foster program at HSNEGA has led to several success stories, according to HSNEGA Marketing Coordinator Dominique Bartolo, it has also led to saving the life of one dog, named Molly.
"The foster decided to continue to foster her [Molly] every weekend for some sleepover's because she realized how much different Molly was at her house," said Bartolo.
Over time the foster noticed changes in Molly's health, which led to the discovery of Molly's problems with her thyroid.
"It would have taken us probably a little bit longer to figure that out if it wasn't for her foster," said Bartolo.
Those interested in fostering a pet can contact the Humane Society of Northeast Georgia for more information. Their website is here.