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While it’s an unfortunate truth, winter is one of the worst times to be an adoptable dog. Many “Christmas puppies” given as gifts during the holiday season end up in shelters or abandoned when they become too time-consuming, noisy, or otherwise bothersome by doing things that dogs do. Four to six months after the holidays, shelters face another boom of intakes as those once tiny puppies become larger, more destructive, and sometimes more frustrating. But for those of us who aren’t bothered by our canine friends, no matter the season, fostering or adopting can be one of the best ways to fight this yearly problem.
Overrun shelter begs for help
Dorchester Paws, a shelter in Summerville, S.C., put out a plea for fosters on social media. The shelter has become so overcrowded that there is no room for new animals. “With the anticipated influx coming in, there is no kennel available as Dorchester Paws is already operating in pop up crates which are lining the hallway,” the shelter said in a release. “We are desperate for help.” In an urgent attempt to clear the shelter, Dorchester Paws is offering name-your-own-price adoptions until December 31. Doggie foster parents only have to pay a minimum of $5 for a fully vetted, microchipped, vaccinated, and spayed/neutered dog. The shelter asks that anyone interested in fostering visits the shelter or emails email@example.com.
Helping during the holiday season
Fostering pets is rewarding, but time-consuming and sometimes emotionally draining. Don’t sign up to be a foster unless you know you can commit. Unsure if you can take on the challenge? Consider volunteering on a weekly basis with your local shelter or rescue instead. You can test the waters by dealing with all the downsides of having a dog — poop scooping, bathing, walking — and then go home without a dog at the end of the day! Don’t have the time or energy? Most shelters also have a wish list on their Web site. It doesn’t have to be any kind of big gift — most shelters need the essentials, like paper towels!
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