It’s been several months since Fred was adopted – three-plus months, to be more precise. My first foster, Cindy, was adopted five years ago yesterday and since her, I’ve welcomed eight more fosters. Their stays have ranged from six weeks to 17 months, but I always try to give myself, and Lucy, a few months between fosters. At best, Lucy tolerates the fosters (except Violet – she adored that dog) and so every time I foster, it comes with mixed emotions. Personally, I seem to need fosters. Fostering puts me in a good place mentally. But Lucy just doesn’t enjoy it. Again, she tolerates the fosters, but she doesn’t enjoy them. And as she gets older, it becomes harder and harder for me to continuing imposing other dogs on her.
She really, really likes being an only dog.
Which begs the question – will I foster again? I just don’t know. Selfishly, I hope so. But it really isn’t fair to Lucy. I am currently dogsitting and knew well in advance that I would be dogsitting this week, so I’ve had to say no for a while to fostering. But once I’m done dogsitting? Again, I simply don’t know. Fostering has been a huge part of my life and identity for five-plus years and I’m not sure I can definitively say “no.” But it also doesn’t feel right to say “yes” when Lucy is pretty unhappy sharing her space and toys and is getting progressively unhappier with each foster.
So, Lucy and I will continue to take it day by day. If what seems to be the “right” foster comes across, I may say yes. But Lucy is my number one priority and I don’t want her to be miserable because of my selfish choices.