When is My Foster Pet Ready to go to an Adoption Event?
All animals up for adoption at an adoption event are spayed or neutered and deemed healthy enough to go to a home by a veterinarian. When you pick up your foster animal the Crew Member coordinator should go over the medical records for the animal and determine what medical appointments the foster animal still needs before he/she can go to a The Rescue Crew adoption event to help find a new home.
Before coming to an adoption event, all foster animals must have a basic wellness check with a veterinarian. If your foster animal has any medical issues beyond the wellness check, they will need to be treated and fully resolved before your foster animal comes to an adoption event. Medical issues could include treatment for kennel cough, dental surgery or spay/neuter surgery.
How Can I Help My Foster Pet Find a Great Home?
As you get to know your foster animal, we ask that you stay in constant contact with your Crew Member Coordinator so that he/she can update the foster animal’s biography online to reflect accurate information about the animal’s preferences and quirks. Some people write their own biography for their foster animals, which we encourage, though they may be edited. We also welcome any quality photos that you take of your foster animal in your home. Send the info about your foster animal and photos directly to your Coordinator at the rescuecrew.org email address, or you can also email firstname.lastname@example.org.
In addition, we have adorable “Adopt Me” bandannas that can increase the chances of your foster animal finding a home along with “Adopt Me” leash sleeves. Simply tie the bandanna around your animal’s neck before a walk and keep the leash sleeves on your foster animals leash, and everyone who sees him will know he’s looking for a home.
Please keep in mind that anyone who shows interest in adopting your foster animal will need to go through the adoption screening process and complete an adoption application and agreement, along with paying appropriate adoption fees, prior to being able to take the animal home.
Tips on Taking Good Animal Photographs.
Photographs can be the key to your foster dog’s adoption. Getting photos that are well-lit, in focus and that give the viewer a window into a pet’s personality can be tricky, but we have some ideas that can make this much easier for you.
Always Have Your Camera Handy Without a camera handy, you may not be able to capture those intimate moments that will help your pet make an emotional connection, like when your foster cat is finally comfortable enough to rest their head in your lap, or when your own dog and your foster dog curl up together on the couch. Here are some examples:
Take Multiple Photos One foster explains, “I am an awful photographer. This is easily combated by taking one million rapid fire photos at once. Odds are you’ll snap something to work with.” Whether you’re an ace photographer or not, taking multiple photos increases the chances of coming up with something good!
Take Photos With People and/or Other Animals Photographs taken with people and/or other animals are great because they not only feature the pet, they give information as well. A photo of two dogs together looking happy tells potential adopters, “This dog is good with (at least some) other dogs.” A photo of a cat and a small child implies that the cat is safe with children. Keep this in mind when creating marketing material for your foster pet.
Take Photos of Dogs Outdoors Studies have shown that photographs of dogs taken outside can help dogs get adopted more quickly. Outside, the options for nice-looking backgrounds are unlimited, and dogs’ stress levels may be lower, enabling you to get better photos.
Make Sure the Pet Is Looking Into the Camera The eyes are the window to the soul, so it follows that eye contact is helpful in establishing an emotional connection, even if it’s just from a photograph.
Use Photos to Showcase Personality We want potential adopters to get a feel for our foster pets’ personalities, so use photos in a way that does just that. Take photos that capture an aspect of a pet’s personality. When viewed together, one gets a more accurate picture of who they are. For example, from the photos below we might surmise that Louie enjoys care rides and probably outings, isn’t a huge fan of the bathtub but allows himself to be bathed by his human, and is affectionate and friendly.
More Photography Tips For more basic photography tips from Petfinder that can drastically improve the quality of your adoptable pet photos click here. For more advanced pet photography tips, click here.
A Good Biography.
The Rescue Crew lists our adoptable pets online, and for this every pet needs a biography (bio). As the foster, you are the person who most likely knows the pet the best, and are uniquely suited to writing or updating their biography.
Use the bio as a way to introduce some unique characteristics and help potential adopters get to know your foster pet better, but do not make it a complete summary. Always be honest, but highlight potential "obstacles" in a positive light, and go into more detail in person.
Write a short and sweet summary that includes some information on your foster pet’s behavior, likes and dislikes, and the best things about them – kind of like an author’s biography at the end of a book. Leave out negative details (Stop Signs) such as “no other pets,” “needs training,” etc., as these can deter even the perfect potential adopters and are best discussed one-on-one during a "meet and greet" with the prospective adopter, Your most basic aim is to create a positive emotional connection with the person reading the bio.
There are several different ways bios can be written. The traditional method is to paint a picture of your foster pet that gives potential adopters a rounded view. Another method is to tell a story about them in order for potential adopters to get deep insight into one aspect of their personality. In general, try to stay positive in your writing, but the gut-puncher may be a method to try in certain cases such as your longest-term resident or hardest-to-adopt pet.
What else makes a strong profile? The most important piece of the profile is the photo. A good face shot is important. For harder to photograph pets - particularly black pets - be sure to choose a setting with natural light and avoid flash. You can also put a bow-tie on them to help them stand out, or some other prop.
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