Kylie Glessing

Why did you get into fostering?
I feel that anyone who has the means has a moral obligation to help unwanted companion animals in whatever way they can, by donating time/money/supplies, by adopting rescued companion animals, or by fostering.  We had the room, so we fostered Brutus, a hart dog.  We were a "foster fail" in that Brutus became a permanent part of our family.  However, we still have room, so we are again fostering.  This time, it's Veto.

Which hart dogs have you fostered?
Brutus and Veto.

What has been the most rewarding aspect to fostering?
Coming home to three sets of big brown eyes, wet noses and frantically wagging tails-their unrelenting happiness is contagious. It's very rewarding to get to know a dog as a unique individual with his/her own wonderful personality and to see him/her learn how to fit into our family and household.  Dogs bring so much love and laughter with them, and just being with them is its own reward.

When individuals think it will be too much work or too emotionally taxing, what feedback do you have for them?
I think those people have to ask themselves what is important to them and what is worth doing.  I guess it really depends on how you define "work".  If you don't love it, it will probably seem like work.  For me, the most emotionally taxing part of volunteering with hart is knowing what many of these dogs have gone through before hart stepped up to take responsibility for them.  But opening your heart and home to foster a dog is not emotionally taxing-it's a great feeling to be of service to these amazing dogs.  They are the heroes, not us. People may struggle with the idea of "giving up" a foster dog to an adoptive family after they've become very attached to the dog.  I think that's pretty normal and not a reason to not foster.  Dogs have a way of worming their furry little selves right into our hearts, and our love for them is why we do what we do.  But finding the perfect home for your foster doesn't mean you will never see him/her again-hart is one very special organization in that they encourage adopters and foster families to keep in touch. 

If your foster dog could speak, what do you think he'd say to you? 
Knowing Veto, he'd say "Drop what you are doing and CUDDLE ME NOW!"  He's a bit pushy that way.  I think he'd also tell us to get a bigger couch because ours is simply not big enough to comfortably accommodate two people, three big dogs, and two cats.  I don't think he'd say "I love you," because to Veto (and, I suspect, to all the other foster dogs), that just goes without saying.