In this post we return to our series on the Fostering of dogs and puppies. As many of you know, I have fostered two dogs through this program since the beginning of the year. One sweet little terrier-mix went to a home on the other side of town and the other, well, let’s just say he didn’t go too far! More on that in my next post. The mantra of National Dog Week has always been, “Responsible Dog Ownership,” with a goal to give every dog the kind of loving home they truly deserve. I hope that some of you reading will give Fostering serious consideration. Please feel free to contact me with any questions: firstname.lastname@example.org.
The following is Part One of my interview with Lynne Fowler of Oodles of Doodles Rescue Collective.
Please tell us a little about yourself. I am a teacher of social studies in an inner city alternative high school. I taught at the high school for 10 years and moved to the Alt School 3 years ago. I am a mom to 18 year old twin boys who are in college, are Eagle Scouts and New Firefighters. I am a wife of 20 years and doggie mom to 4 Doodles and several fosters and unadoptable Forever Fosters.
Why did you become involved in the fostering and rescue of dogs? After my beautiful black Standard poodle, Magic, was killed by tainted dog food in December of 2006, I wanted another pooch and thought it would take a long time to find one so I put out feelers for a white poodle and was contacted within a week to take a Labradoodle from a hoarding situation in Philadelphia. I had no idea what a Labradoodle was in 2006 but fell in love with the “breed” and soon had a second doodle from the same rescuer.
Hooked on how much time, patience and love it took to get my rescued doodles to love and trust, I started posting and blogging about rescuing dogs on a couple social forums. Tainted dog food, what’s really in dog foods, the plight of beautiful full breed dogs waiting for families in kill shelters and issues with bringing home a rescued dog were favorite topics. I began a feature on a couple Doodle Social Forums called “Rescued Doodles” where we discussed these and many other issues and then added a listing called “Doodles in Need,” where we listed doodles looking for homes in shelters around the United States and Canada. I had befriended a couple gals and we became friends and very involved with this listing service. It soon became apparent that the listings were too large to be within another website, so we decided to move it to its own site. The website, http://doodlerescuecollective.com was born on Jan 19, 2009. When I purchased the website and url’s, I had no idea what was involved to running a website but quickly learned what it took to make one successful. Today, the website has 5000 members and is placed very high in a google search for people looking to adopt or learn about doodles of all mixes.
As a rescue, we began to pull dogs from shelters and find homes for them in June of 2009 but after in less than a year, the partnership dissolved and I reorganized, with the help of some wonderful people, under the name Oodles Of Doodles Rescue Collective, in May of 2010. We incorporated in the state of NJ in Nov 2010 and achieved 501(c)(3) Non-Profit status after one year of incorporation. (My ex-rescue partner has made allegations against me but none are true. The proof to her deception can be found at:
As a rescue, to date, we have rescued or helped to rescue over 400 dogs. The majority were from Southern Kill Shelters that we tagged, pulled, vetted, transported, fostered and found wonderful homes.
What is the mission of Oodles of Doodles Rescue Collective? http://www.doodlerescuecollective.com/page/mission Oodles of Doodles, Inc Rescue Collective is a not-for-profit rescue devoted to rescue, foster and finding loving permanent homes for Oodle Dogs: Poodle-mixes, Doodles: Labradoodles, Goldendoodles, Cockapoos, Schnoodles and Fuzzy Terriers from shelters, other rescues and rehome situations.
Who are your officers or major volunteers? How large is your group? Kelly Allen, Gail Reese, Dennis Fowler, Sharon Parlatti, Adrienne Shapiro, Lisa Elmo are the main decision makers and of course, myself. There are a few others I rely on as a sounding board, trustees, if you will.
From where do your dogs to be fostered originate (regional areas)? Most of our dogs come from Southern Kill Shelters, Owner Surrenders and Rehomes. We pull from as far South as South Carolina and as far West as Missouri.
What are the circumstances surrounding most of these unhomed pups and dogs? Many are strays, some surrendered, some rehomes
How do they get from one region to here? We are approved to transport from several volunteer transport groups and will use a paid transport when needed. We also have a retired gentleman who drives between our VA partners and us.
How long does a foster dog typically stay with its foster family? The average stay is a few weeks to a few months. I have a few unadoptables at my home as they are fearful, abused and biters. I work with them, love them and if they need to stay forever, they will.
What are typical costs to the foster family? What happens if a dog needs medical attention during the Foster period? There shouldn’t be any costs to the foster except for maybe food. The rescue covers all vetting, grooming and costs. I will even send food via PetFlow if needed. Fosters submit receipts or oftentimes they will call me from the vet or groomer and I pay over the phone with the rescue credit card.
What is the typical adoption fee? How is this established? Why is there a fee? Our adoption fees are based on the age, breed and vetting needed. Puppies generally are $250 up to $425 is the highest we ever charge. Sometimes we have helped to rehome a dog and have asked for a bit higher as one had extensive therapy dog training and another had extensive behavior training. The extra went to cover the charges to the trainer. But generally, $250 to 425 is what we ask.
There is an adoption fee to help offset costs and enable us to save the next one. However, there are many times when the adoption donation can never cover costs. I had a HW+ Pomeranian who came from SC awhile ago and not only did I not know she was HW+ when I tagged her, but her papers said she was already spayed and she was not. Her heartworm treatment and spay cost the rescue over $1500. Another was a dog with a broken leg that had healed incorrectly. The surgery to fix her leg was $3200.
All our dogs, except for young puppies, are fully vetted before going home. They are spayed or neutered, given all their shots, a Health Certificate is required for transport and grooming. Puppies are wormed and go through their 3 rounds of puppy shots. Puppies who cannot be spayed or neutered will be adopted on a S/N Contract and a deposit that is returned when the family sends us the certificate showing the pup was fixed. We follow up to ensure this is done as we do not want to have more unwanted dogs in the world.
Thank you Lynne. We will pick up on this last item in Part Two of our interview…