Free Dogs Trust foster care service for frontline workers

Image courtesy of Dogs Trust.

By Eoin Meegan

f you’re a frontline worker who’s worried about who will take care of your dog while you’re taking care of the rest of us, then help is at hand from those wonderful people at Dogs Trust.
Dogs Trust have set up a new service which anyone who is listed on the government’s website as an essential worker, and who may not have time to look after their favourite friend, can avail of. All you need do is register online and Dogs Trust will match your dog up with a suitable foster home.
This service is free and only available to frontline workers.
Ciara Byrne of Dog’s Trust says: “Over the last few weeks I’ve watched in admiration as our frontline workers have stretched themselves to the limit. Working longer hours to keep us safe, looking after us in hospitals, and ensuring we have food and supplies to keep us going. If you’re one of our fantastic frontline workers, thank you so much for all that you do. Looking after your dog shouldn’t be an additional worry for you.”
That is why Dogs Trust has launched a free Dogs Trust Frontline Foster Care Service, offering essential workers temporary foster care for their canine friends.
This is how it works: a member of the Dogs Trust team (wearing PPE) will collect your dog from your home, ensure their belongings have been cleaned and disinfected following specific hygiene protocols, just as a precaution, and then place them with one of their approved foster families until you’re ready to take them home again.
Your dog will become part of the pre-existing fostering programme which Dogs Trust runs. In this programme, all applicants wanting to become fosterers must first attend a talk and fill out an application form, and then a member of Dogs Trust visits their home to make sure everything is in order.
During this time of restrictions, interviews are conducted by phone and applicants are required to send in photos of their homes and the space where your pet will be temporarily living. Dogs Trust take great care to ensure a very high standard of foster homes, and they will endeavour to match your description of your dog, and his/her needs and usual lifestyle to those people they already have on their foster family list.
The service is for those who require their dogs to be fostered for a period of two weeks or more, and unfortunately due to the current restrictions, you will be unable to visit your pet when it’s with the foster family. However, Dogs Trust take down all your dog’s requirements, e.g. dietary needs, the kinds of walks they like, if they sleep indoors or outdoors, and so on, and do all in their power to ensure your dog is placed in an environment that is conducive to their needs and what they are used to. Further, they maintain weekly contact with all the fosterers and insist on being kept up to date with the wellbeing of the animals, so you can be at ease that your pet is given the best possible care.
So, let Dogs Trust look after your best friend during this crisis, having the peace of mind that they are in safe and loving hands, leaving you free to get on with the amazing work you’re doing. This service will be available throughout the whole Covid-19 crisis. Unfortunately, it is not available to people in Northern Ireland, only in the Republic.

To take part, if you are an essential worker, and to get your free Dogs Trust Frontline Foster Care Card, just go to and complete the online form. Dogs Trust is a charity receiving no government funding and depends on the kindness of animal lovers to fund their work.