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To Foster or Not to Foster? That is the Question...

I ran across PetsForPatriots today and found myself browsingtheir foster home section. For a couple of years after losing my bestest friend ever, my husband and I couldn't even think about getting another dog. We did, however, adopt a cat and the adoption process was, well, interesting. And my son is, well, independent. I love him with all my heart and I'd do anything for him but, he's not a dog. And there is a difference.

Lately, I've been dropping hints to my husband (Hi, Honey) that I'm ready to start looking for a dog. The hints haven't exactly been subtle, and they haven't gone unnoticed. Nor have they been met with the response I had hoped.

Yes, we've both enjoyed the fact that we can pick up and take off at a moment's notice without having to worry about our four-legged child. The cat is a piece of cake. Leave lots of food, water and a clean litter box, go enjoy a nice weekend on a beach, and no worries. Can't do that with a dog. Plus, the pain from our loss is still deep and the thought of having to go through that all over again one day is something to consider. However, the many benefits of dog companionship far outweigh the negatives. At least for me.

So, I thought that being a foster parent to dogs is a great idea for military families in my situation. It's temporary, but you get the companionship that dogs are so good at offering and you give a dog a good home until he's placed with a family. You can pick and choose your window so that when it's time to PCS or travel, you don't foster. Life would be less complicated as a foster parent.

Or would it?

On first blush, I thought this may scratch the itch. I could give -- and get -- love and joy from a precious pet (and get them out of a cage). I could offer a great home to a needy pup. But the more I think about it, the more I think that I would fall in love with my foster child from the first second I see him and it would kill me to let him go. Visions of having to give the stray kitten I found as a child to the neighbor's daughter haunt me to this day...

I'm mulling this over. Anyone have experience fostering pets? I'd love to hear some feedback.

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