Foster animals may be too young for adoption, underweight, recovering from surgery, or need extra TLC or training. Foster care allows them to grow and recover in a nurturing home environment away from the busy shelter.
Since joining the Home’s Foster Care Program earlier this year, Tijana has fostered 10 dogs and puppies. Her passion for helping animals began when she was a child.
“Growing up in the former Yugoslavia, there were no animal shelters, and as such, there were lots of stray dogs. From a very early age, I was sneaking food out of the house, feeding the stray dogs and caring for them as if they were my own,” said Tijana.
“It has always been my dream to help dogs and give stray or abandoned dogs a second chance in life. We are so lucky in Australia, where there are lots of animal shelters that take care of dogs and cats in need.”
For Tijana, making a difference to the lives of vulnerable dogs and puppies is an important and rewarding role.
“The overarching goal is to give the animal a second chance in life. This is underpinned by care, love and devotion for that animal.
Dogs that come into foster care have often had a difficult life, and it is my responsibility to help them discover a new side to life – and that is happiness.
“A good example is Charlie, the mum of my foster puppies. She was a broken dog when she first came to us. She was fearful, suspicious and lacked confidence. Seeing her transform into a happy dog brings me lots of joy and satisfaction,” said Tijana.
Foster care not only changes the lives of animals, but also the carers.
It brings out the best of you. You learn so much along the way, you re-discover the art of patience and unconditional love,” said Tijana.