Your Ultimate Foster Dog Shopping List
Your foster dog needs love — but they also need stuff.
Your pet wants you to read our newsletter. (Then give them a treat.)
After the pandemic adoption trend, shelters are overpopulated as even longtime owners are forced to surrender their pets because of inflation. Right now, volunteering as a foster parent is one of the most helpful things you do can do. As a foster, you can provide a safe place for dogs who are on their way to their permanent home and relieve the stress on the shelter staff. But before you sign up, you know know: Getting into the foster game requires a little prep work — and a little prep shopping.
Ahead of your foster journey, stock up on the necessary tools to help you and your new friend succeed. Let’s get the obvious ones out of the way: You’ll definitely need dog food, but you should always continue to feed them whatever the rescue, shelter or past owner was feeding the dog. And hey, throw in some fun stuff, too. They’ll love being with you all the more if you don’t just give the pups what they need but give the pups what they want.
One helpful bonus for foster families: all your unreimbursed purchases for fostering from qualifying organizations can be written off as a tax deduction. Below, everything you’ll need to set yourself and your foster pup up for success.
Btw, our editors (and their pets) picked out these products. They’re always in stock at the time we publish, but there’s a chance they’ll sell out. If you do buy through our links, we may earn a commission. (We’ve got a lot of toys to buy over here, you know?)
That’s right, you can write off all those puppy toys (and pee pads).
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Courtney E. Smith
Courtney is a freelance writer and podcaster whose work has appeared in Esquire, Pitchfork, Eater, and more. Her prior work includes working as an editor and music critic for Refinery29 and CBS Radio. And she's the author of the essay collection Record Collecting for Girls. She lives in Dallas, Texas with her rescue dog, Casey, where they volunteer together with the SPCA's foster program.