PCTC Rescue

The Potomac Cairn Terrier Club is a breed club that aims to be of service to members, fanciers, humane societies, and the general public, so far as Cairn Terriers are concerned. The PCTC Rescue Committee fosters, rehabilitates, and places Cairn terriers who are in need of new homes.

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

ONE Crate and ONE Hour

Foreword by Veronica Hudak-Moe

My initial reason for joining PCTC was to become a foster home. The turning point in my decision to become a foster home came after reading a post that was made to the Cairn-List by Lynda Hammel. Lynda’s message was a response to a call for help to foster or adopt a 17-year-old Cairn in need named "Buck".

Before I read this post, I didn't think that I would be able to foster. It was not that I thought I'd get "too attached." Rather, it was that I already had two Cairns of my own, one of which was not friendly with other dogs (except for her beloved housemate), and our home didn't really have the space, etc. However, Lynda's message addressed most of my doubts and made me realize that I could foster if I really wanted. I’d like to share this message with the hope that it might inspire others to foster.

Original post date: July 12, 1999
Posted to CairnList@yahoogroups.com
Subject: 17 year old Cairn needs help

I sure feel sorry for this little guy. The lack of foster homes is a problem my rescue co-chairperson and I fight daily in this area. I find that many are willing to help with rescue but only a handful feel that they can foster, even one dog a year, for a few weeks. Some of the reasons for not being able to foster are very valid. I am not trying to point fingers or fault anyone. I am only expressing my frustration with the lack of foster homes.

What does it really take to foster? Well the desire to save a life is the first step. Then basically all the home needs is a crate and an extra hour a day. I know that we all want to spoil and give undivided attention to our Cairns. So many people say -- I don't have the time or space, or my dogs won't accept another dog at my home, I am over my limit, etc. Well, the alternative is that if there is no room then the dog will be put down. Faced with that option living in a crate for a few weeks is a wonderful choice.

I try to do the best by each Cairn that I foster. But truthfully some days the rescue Cairn is fed and given two 20-minute walks -- period. The rest of the time he is crated. Well, you might say that is awful -- simply awful. And I agree that it is not wonderful. But should I say that I just don't have the time and do nothing? Something is definitely better than nothing in this case.

And what about being over the limit of dogs allowed in my area? Well, I am definitely at my limit of dogs that I can own but I do not count the foster dog in my personal number count. He is just a temporary visitor in a holding pattern until his new home is found. I find that if I (along with my dogs) am a "good neighbor" then no one is really counting -- and -- the rewards are great! How many opportunities do we have to do something for another creature and expect nothing in return?

REACH OUT, become a foster home.

-Lynda Hammel