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Foster Info

Fosters are the lifeline to our organization as we can only help as many dogs we have homes available for them to stay in!

Open your heart and your home to save a Shepherd today! 

Fostering is extremely rewarding!

If you are looking for a way to help homeless dogs in our community, fostering is a wonderful way to get involved. Fostering involves taking a dog into your home and caring for them until it finds an adoptive home. Foster dogs may be with you anywhere from a few days to a few months, and fostering a dog can be a rewarding way to get involved in our animal community. You’ll be saving the life of the dog you foster, as well as saving the life of the dog whose spot was opened by you taking in your foster. Reach out to us today and save the Shepherds!

While fostering is sometimes difficult, it is very rewarding to see unwanted dogs transform into healthy, loving family members. Being a foster is a very important job! Foster families are responsible for caring for the dogs, socializing them, offering them basic training, and helping them integrate into family life.

Just Sayin....

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What is fostering?

We can only rescue as many animals as we have room for. Not only do fosters maximize the number of dogs we can save, but they also help care for dogs that would unlikely survive in a shelter environment. Many shelter dogs would never make it to the adoption floor, but once in a foster home, they feel safe and thrive in their new environment.

  • Someone who isn’t in a position to adopt a dog right now but has the time to care for one.

  • A person who isn’t sure how a dog would get along with their current pet(s).

  • Someone who has never had the chance to have a pet but would really like to experience one.

  • A family who has some room in their home to welcome a rescue dog.

Who should foster?

What is a foster parent?

A foster parent provides a safe and loving environment for a dog until adoption. In addition to affection, foster families provide basic care such as food, water, and shelter. Macon County German Shepherd Rescue pays for all vetting and preventatives, and can provide crates, toys, and food when possible if needed. Foster parents are expected to teach basic house manners such as crate, leash, and house training. It is helpful if foster families can transport adoptable dogs to events but is not required.

We generally expect foster parents to care for a dog until adoption, which can take anywhere from 2 weeks to several months. Foster times may vary according to the age and traits of the dog. For example, puppies usually get adopted much quicker than adults. In some cases, the foster parent may decide to adopt the pet themselves, our Foster-to-Adopt program. If a foster family runs into a personal situation where they cannot foster until the pet is adopted, we will search for another foster home to take the foster dog.

How long will I foster?

What if I need help?

We value our foster families and make every effort to be available to help, especially for the first-time foster parent. That means we make sure you have a phone number and contact information for a foster coordinator to reach them, should you need their help along the way. We try to guide you along the way, so you shouldn’t ever feel alone.

Macon County German Shepherd Rescue covers the cost of all veterinary care. Some families choose to provide food, puppy pads, toys, treats, and other supplies, but we will provide supplies, if possible, when needed.

What does it cost?

Can I adopt my foster dog?

Yes, with our Foster-to-Adopt program! Foster families who wish to adopt go through the same screening process as adoption applicants. However, we do require foster parents to foster one dog before adopting their foster dog. It is normal for a new foster to fall in love with theirs and want to adopt the first one. Always remember, letting them go to their forever family opens up space in your home for another life to be saved!

  • Make sure your entire family is prepared to bring a foster dog into the home.

  • Your own dogs, if you have any, should not be aggressive towards other dogs and should have basic obedience training before bringing any new dogs into the home.

  • If you have a cat, make sure you introduce the dog slowly and properly to your cat and give your cat a safe, dog-free place to go to.

  • Be prepared to potty-train your foster dog if necessary.

  • If you have young children, be very selective about the dog you take in.

  • Our rescue is always willing to take the dog back if things do not work out, so do not feel pressured. We will work with you to make it an all-around great experience for you and the dog.

  • Take time to train your foster dog in basic cues and manners. This will make them a lot more adoptable.

  • Socialize your dog as much as you can, not just to people but to other dogs. A social dog is easier to place.

Ensuring a Good Fostering Experience...

What to do...

  • Complete the Foster Application.

  • We request that all our fosters be within 45 minutes of the Franklin area in order to be able to use our rescue vets, attend events, and be available to participate in meet-and-greets with approved adopters.

  • Approval to foster is similar to adoption approval. Your personal and veterinary references will be checked, and a home visit will be scheduled. All current pets in the home must be spayed/neutered and up to date on all of their vetting, which we will confirm with your vet as part of the approval process. Be sure your references are aware they will be called by us, and they have permission to speak with us.

  • Once approved, arrangements will be made for a foster dog that is suitable for your family situation and your experience level.

Fostering is sometimes challenging and can be emotional or frustrating. There is also nothing more rewarding. Many of our dogs are rescued from death’s door at a kill shelter, and the foster home is literally the dog’s only chance for life. Some of our dogs come in with life-threatening conditions, and the foster is the caregiver and comforter that gets to watch the dog heal, come back to life, and thrive. We do our best to match a foster home with a dog that will do well with their family and housing situation (i.e., kids, cats, no fence, etc.). The foster dog stays until they are healthy, completely vetted, and ready for their new family.


Fosters provide love, a comfortable place to heal, some socialization, and when the time comes, help the pup meet their new family. Fosters are also responsible for taking the dogs to scheduled vet and training appointments, taking photos and writing a bio for the dog for our Facebook page and website, contacting potential adopters with information (when possible), and taking the pup to local events (when available). The rescue will pay for all necessary medical care, food, and monthly preventatives. If needed, a crate will be provided. Fostering is an investment of time and energy. If you’re up for the challenge, apply below or contact us for more information.

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