FAQ

Questions & Answers

TOP 5 QUESTIONS

Paws It Forward is run by a Board of Directors. They commit to volunteering countless hours of personal time and resources to saving dogs in need. They work on saving animals not only in Kelowna but, anywhere a suffering animal needs help. Their motto is that they will rescue all dogs in need of a loving home no matter where they are from, what size they are or breed they may be. If you would like to know more about our Board of Directors, please visit our About Us page. 

Paws It Forward is located in Kelowna British Columbia, Canada. We do not have a facility or public shelter where our dogs are kept, we are a foster home-based rescue, which means that each dog is fostered within the private home of one of our volunteer fosters.

Our animals come from all over and from various different environments and situations. Whether we are re-homing due to an ill owner, separations, homelessness, abuse, or neglect. We are there to help make the animals life a happy and fulfilled one. Animals know no borders – neither do we.

Adult dogs (9 months +) $350.00
Puppies (8 months and younger) $450.00

Included for adults:
Updated Vaccines (DHPPv, Bordetella, Rabies)
Spay or Neuter procedure with after care pain medication
Pernament Identification (Microchip or Tattoo)

Included for puppies:
Puppies begin their vaccines between 8-18 weeks old.
 
Your puppy will receive their first set of vaccines.
 
(In total a puppy needs 3 sets of vaccines. The second set needs to include Bordetella and the third set needs to include Rabies. The second and third sets of vaccines are the responsibility of the adopter and will need to be given to the puppy from their vet. The adopter covers this cost.
However, sometimes they will have two, or all three sets of vaccines depending on their age at the time of adoption and vaccine schedule. This means you may only be responsible for one, two, or no puppy vaccines.)
 
Parasite control (Deworming, Flea, Tick)
Spay or Neuter procedure with after care pain medication before 8 months old
Permanent Identification (Microchip or Tattoo)
 
Why we have adoption fees
Our adoption fees do not cover our expenses.
Many dogs require expensive surgeries, treatments, and procedures – this does not include supplies and food.
 
Vet Care Expenses:
2019 $102,642
2018 $97,187
2017 $64,095
Adoption Fees:
2019 $30,230
2018 $32,289
 
We fundraise and accept donations to cover costs. Please consider making a donation so that we can continue to rescue and rehome the many dogs who come our way.

We rely solely on the kindness and generosity of the public and neighboring businesses. We do not receive government funding.

We hold as many fundraisers as we can throughout the year to cover our expenses.  Our financial records are made available upon request to ensure trust and openness, two qualities we believe to be very important.

Some of our supporters choose to make regular monthly pledges. Donating $5 or even $10 a month is a wonderful way to help. 

We have no paid positions, no public facility and very minimal overhead costs.  This allows us to put your donations towards what matters most – the dogs!

Without this support, we would be unable to help so many animals.

Please visit our donation page if you wish to make a contribution.

ADOPTION

Having every interested person coming to the home of our volunteer foster homes to meet a dog is just not feasible.

We require all interested adopters to complete our adoption application and start the process first. Only those who seem like a good match will be invited to visit with the dog.

Occasionally our dogs are taken to special Adoption Events. In this case you can meet them prior to submitting an application. 

Adopting a dog should be a well-thought-out decision by all members of the household. Is it the right time? Do you understand the years of emotional and financial commitment?

Our best suggestion is to really think hard about what qualities in a dog are important to you, which may help you figure out what breed, age, size, activity level and temperament will work for your family.

Here are some other things to consider:

How will the dog fit into my family/lifestyle? Please take time to thoroughly read the dog’s bio/profile.

I have children; what should I take into consideration? If you are looking for a dog that will be good with children, it will be noted in the dog’s bio. Please remember that young children need to be taught how to interact positively with dogs of all types and sizes BEFORE you bring one into your home. We can provide you with some links and tips on this crucial topic.

Am I willing to commit to obedience classes with my dog? Please do – we advise even experienced dog parents to take their new dog to classes. It helps both of you establish a solid relationship in a positive, public environment.

Our dogs’ profiles are listed online on our website, adopt a pet, and our Facebook page. We do not have a public shelter or facility, as we are 100% foster-based – all of our foster dogs are in private homes with our dedicated volunteer fosters.

In order to be considered as an adopter you must:

  • Be an adult, 18 years* or older, in a stable single or family situation;
  • Have the knowledge and signed consent of your landlord, if you rent; 
  • Be able to demonstrate that you’re willing to spend the time and money necessary to provide training, annual and emergency medical treatment, and proper care for the lifetime of a dog.

Step 1
When you have found an animal you are interested in adopting, you need to complete an application on our website. The application asks you questions about your family’s situation, lifestyle and expectations. This questionnaire helps us see if your lifestyle and expectations are a good match with the dog you are applying for.

Step 2
Once we have read through the application and we feel like it may be a match, an adoption coordinator will have a conversation with you to find out a little more about your lifestyle and what you are looking for in a companion animal. We will also provide advice about care and behavior training at this time, as well as detailed information about the companion you are interested in. This conversation is a good opportunity for us to get a sense of whether the animal is a good match for you and to ensure that both yourself and the animal will be happy together. This conversation may take place over the phone or through e-mail.

Step 3
If the adoption coordinator feels that you are a good match for the animal, we will introduce you to the animal. Dogs can be taken for walks in order to allow the potential adopter to see how they are on a leash and for the adoption coordinator to observe the potential adopter’s handling of the dog. The meet and greet will involve all members of the potential adopter’s household, as well as any currently owned dogs if applying for a second dog. It is important that everyone in the household is a good match for the animal, as well as any other current animals living in the home, to ensure that the adoption goes as smoothly as possible for everyone. Please note: Paws It Forward only holds “Meet & Greets” by appointment only.

Step 4
If everything goes well at the meet and greet and both you and the adoption coordinator feel that the animal is a good match for your home, we will begin a trial adoption for seven days. A ‘trial adoption’ is your opportunity to introduce your new addition to your life style. Before starting the adoption trial you will need to complete a contract of adoption and pay the fee that applies to your dog. If during these 7 days we discover that it is not a match, we will refund the fee and place the dog back into our program.

After 7 days, if it is a great match, we finalize the adoption. Congratulations!

All medical records are released after the trial adoption*

*Medical records for puppies under 8 months are released after their spay or neuter procedure.


Each potential adopter must undergo 4 stages of screening:

  1. Interview with adoption coordinator
  2. Meet and Greet
  3. Home Visit
  4. Reference check
Adult dogs (9 months +) $350.00
Puppies (8 months and younger) $450.00
Included for adults:
Updated Vaccines (DHPPv, Bordetella, Rabies)
Spay or Neuter procedure with after care pain medication
Pernament Identification (Microchip or Tattoo)
Included for puppies:
Puppies begin their vaccines between 8-18 weeks old.
 
Your puppy will receive their first set of vaccines.
 
(In total a puppy needs 3 sets of vaccines. The second set needs to include Bordetella and the third set needs to include Rabies. The second and third sets of vaccines are the responsibility of the adopter and will need to be given to the puppy from their vet. The adopter covers this cost.
However, sometimes they will have two, or all three sets of vaccines depending on their age at the time of adoption and vaccine schedule. This means you may only be responsible for one, two, or no puppy vaccines.)
 
Parasite control (Deworming, Flea, Tick)
Spay or Neuter procedure with after care pain medication before 8 months old
Permanent Identification (Microchip or Tattoo)
 
Why we have adoption fees
Our adoption fees do not cover our expenses.
Many dogs require expensive surgeries, treatments, and procedures – this does not include supplies and food.
 
Vet Care Expenses:
2019 $102,642
2018 $97,187
2017 $64,095
Adoption Fees:
2019 $30,230
2018 $32,289
 
We fundraise and accept donations to cover costs. Please consider making a donation so that we can continue to rescue and rehome the many dogs who come our way.

You may pay by cash, cheque, or e-transfer

E-transfers can be sent to [pawsitforward@hotmail.com] for both adoption fees and additional donations.
Cheques are to be made out to: Paws It Forward

The reason for the adoption fee is two-fold:
 
First, it helps to defer some of our costs associated with the vetting of that particular dog. Most dogs cost us well over the amount of the fee.
Second, it is an important financial investment in the dog by you, the adopter. Often we take in dogs that require thousands of dollars in veterinary care, and only receive a small portion of that back at the time of adoption. There is no profit through adoption fees.

No. All fees must be paid in full on the day of adoption. Because any dog can require unexpected veterinary care, it is important that adopters are able to pay for these expenses as they happen. We do encourage our adopters to consider pet insurance, as the monthly premium can be eased into a budget more easily than a sudden expense. Sadly, and without prejudice, if a family/individual can’t afford the adoption fee, they very likely cannot afford the ongoing care of the dog.

The time it takes varies. We are all un paid volunteers, who all have full-time jobs outside of rescue, and we appreciate your patience. We do respect the time that you have taken to apply for one of our foster dogs, and we try to process things as quickly as possible. Sometimes we receive several applications on the same dog and numerous applications/inquiries come in everyday, especially when we post information on new dogs. On average, we try to maintain a 7-14 day window. We only contact applicants who are suitable to the dog.  If you would like an update, please do not hesitate to reach out.

No, there is no guarantee that you will be able to adopt a specific dog. We typically process only one application at a time for each dog. Not every application is the right fit and we will move onto the next most appropriate application for that dog.

Once an application is determined to be ‘not a match’ for the dog you applied for, we will try to offer other dogs that are more suited or keep your application on file.

Please understand that:
  1. the adoption process is the same for everyone (we have had celebrities, family members and friends apply and everyone goes through the same screening process); and
  2. it is not our intention to frustrate you or cause unnecessary delays during the adoption process.
Screening is the only way we have to ensure that our rescued dogs are placed in the loving, dedicated homes that they deserve. We are looking for people who will not abandon their dog because of a move, a new baby or just because they “no longer have time”.
 
After all, these are some of the most common reasons dogs end up in shelters and pounds in the first place. All reputable rescues strive to place each dog into its forever home as opposed to giving him/her to the first person who expresses interest.
 
Please note that there are sometimes several people/families interested in the same dog, though we typically process only one application for each dog at a time. It is never a case of “the first application is the best application” or “First come, First Serve”; we try very hard to match the right home with it’s most suitable dog, and vice versa. Again, please understand that our number one responsibility is the best possible placement for each dog. Your patience while we work through this very important process is definitely appreciated!

The number one priority is to ensure the safety of every dog in our care. The second priority is to ensure all adoptions are permanent. There are many preventable reasons that dogs are surrendered, re-homed or lost. New eyes can often see potential dangers for the dog or inconvenience for the family. Home visits are not a judgement of decorating or housekeeping – they are for safety of the dog and of the family’s belongings, in order to ensure that a happy, forever match is made.

The Adoption Coordinator reviews all reports associated with each phase of the application process and will match those with the needs of the dog for whom you’ve applied. The approval or denial of any application is not the responsibility of the foster home or the person conducting the home visit, but will be reviewed and finalized by the Board of Directors.

Absolutely not. While you may think this is the “right” thing for both the dog and the person, it is not a decision that can be made for someone else without their knowledge and input. Every family member must be present during the screening process , and fully aware of the decision to add a new member to the family.

Many of us have our own specific breed preferences, which dictate the type of dog we prefer. We have rescued a few purebreds, including some breeds that are extremely rare. We are also happy to say that there is a rescue out there for almost every breed of dog. These are called “breed specific” rescues, and they can be found on PetFinder, adopt a pet,  or by doing a quick Google search. Most times finding a specific breed in rescue is a waiting game, but we take in dogs of all breeds, ages and sizes. We encourage potential adopters to get to know each dog through their biographies rather than their appearances.

Certainly it is easier to walk into a store or go to a breeder  and buy a puppy, but it is exactly this “instant gratification” mentality that has contributed to the hundreds of thousands of homeless (and subsequently euthanized) pets in Canada today. Adopting a dog is a lifetime commitment and not something to be done on a whim.

We consider invisible fencing as “no fence present” and do not recommend its use. Please be aware that there are a number of risks to dogs with this type of fencing. For example, dogs who get outside of the fence can be fearful of coming back over the fence line, and of course, it does not protect your dog from animals/people coming into your yard. We also do not promote the use of any collar/tool that uses shock, inflicts pains or causes fear as a training method.

Absolutely not. There are families who adopt from us who live on country properties, in suburban areas, and in condominiums / apartments who do not have fenced yards. Of course there are always certain dogs that must have a fenced yard, but we will specify this in the dog’s bio. Please read carefully before applying!

We have many great resources, so don’t be afraid to ask! We would be happy to provide you with handouts and fact sheets or direct you to a trainer who can help. Please contact us with any issues or concerns.

Yes – it is a legal requirement of our adoption contract. If, after extensive training, education and communication with us, an adopted dog does not work out in your home or you are suddenly unable to care for the dog, he/she must be returned to us.

At the time of adoption, you will be asked to sign a clause stating that you will return the dog to us – should you be unable to keep or care for the dog.

FOSTERING

It should cost you $0.

We cover all veterinary expenses for the dogs in our rescue. We ask all our foster families to  provide plenty of love, patience, care, a warm bed, and basic training to help socialize the dog, to increase their chances of being adopted. We provide food, treats, toys, leashes, collars, kennels, etc! 

Every week, we see lists of dogs who have no time left in high-kill shelters, abandoned, dogs freezing in Manitoba, etc.. but we MUST have a foster spot for each dog before committing to him/her.

Foster care is the backbone of our rescue. Without foster homes, we are unable to rescue dogs.

Our foster families provide the love, care and shelter for our rescues by opening their hearts and homes to care for these dogs until approved permanent homes are be found. We’re limited to how many dogs we can rescue without available foster homes.

Being a foster family for Paws It Forward is certainly a commitment. We know it’s not for everyone but it IS important to consider all the facts if this is something you truly want to do. Being a foster parent may not always be easy, but it is a very rewarding experience – even life changing! Just ask any of our current foster families.

As a foster family, you play an important role  – you are the one who will give that deserving dog a second chance. Without our foster families, these dogs have little to no possibility of finding their forever homes.

You’ll receive in-depth information and training on fostering, dog behavior, training basics, and administrative procedures (which are minimal but important). We mentor our foster homes, and are always available for questions and emergencies.

We are privileged to have a great community of volunteers to support you with advice and concerns. Often we do not know the background of our dogs. We try our best to obtain as much information as possible to share with our foster families. Many may not be housebroken or have been mistreated, while other foster dogs are perfectly fine without any issues to work through. Your commitment, patience and compassion to these dogs will increase their chances of finding new forever homes.

We are also sensitive to the fact that being a foster can also be a tearful time for our foster families when the dog in their care has found a permanent home through our adoption program. You’ll feel a close attachment to your foster dog, that’s natural. Yes, there will be tears but remember this – it was YOU who gave your fostered dog a second chance for a new life!

This is a gift that not everyone can give. As a foster family, providing care and your love to help our rescues on to their next phase of life is a special gift you give to yourself, the rescued dog and his/her new adoptive family.

We ask our foster families to help with information about the personality, likes/dislikes, habits and training level to help our volunteer write detailed profiles for each one in our care.

Once you apply to become a foster home, we will hold onto your application until we set a date for the information session. You will then be sent a invite to attend. These meetings happen ever 2-3 months.

Complete the Online Foster Application Form
  • One of our volunteers will contact you when a information session is booked.
  • Once you have attended the meeting and have been approved, we will help match you with the most suitable dog. We will guide you as to what we believe is a good fit for your experience, lifestyle and, of course, the dog’s needs.
  • Our Volunteer Team is available at all times if you have any questions or concerns.

CHARITY INFO

Yes, Our charity number is #837539030 RR 0001

We can not issue receipts for donations under $10 or for your adoption fee payment. Any donations made above the adoption fee and over $10 does qualify for a tax receipt.

Additional information is available on the following CRA web pages:

Gifts and Income Tax
http://www.cra-arc.gc.ca/E/pub/tg/p113/p113-e.html#P240_32321

Gifts of Services
http://www.cra-arc.gc.ca/chrts-gvng/chrts/plcy/cpc/cpc-017-eng.html

Gifts in Kind to Charity and Others
http://www.cra-arc.gc.ca/E/pub/tp/it297r2/it297r2-e.html

Summary Policy (Property donated to a charity auction)
http://www.cra-arc.gc.ca/chrts-gvng/chrts/plcy/csp/csp-a15-eng.html

Gifts and Official Donation Receipts
http://www.cra-arc.gc.ca/E/pub/tp/it110r3/it110r3-e.html

Donations of Gift Certificates
http://www.cra-arc.gc.ca/chrts-gvng/chrts/prtng/gfts/crtfct-eng.html

Official donation receipts – Whether gifts out of inventory qualify as charitable donations http://www.cra-arc.gc.ca/chrts-gvng/chrts/plcy/cpc/cpc-018-eng.html

Visual Artists and Writers
http://www.cra-arc.gc.ca/E/pub/tp/it504r2-consolid/it504r2-consolid-e.html#P117_15192

Questions and answers (FAQ)
http://www.cra-arc.gc.ca/chrts-gvng/dnrs/fq-eng.html

Please notify us if any of these links are no longer valid

Once you make your donation, e-mails us at;

pawsitforward@hotmail.com

We will confirm the donation and make arrangements to deliver the receipt.

Tax receipts are issued for any monetary donation over $10.00.


Reg # 837539030 RR 0001

GENERAL Q & A


No. We are a non-profit organization run entirely by volunteers.

You are welcome to submit a surrender request form. This does not mean we can take your dog into our program, but, we can review the information to see if we have an appropriate foster home and resources available. We take in many surrendered dogs each year, however without a facility there simply isn’t enough foster homes to help them all. We do not have any paid staff so we also need a volunteer board member to commit to the time needed to bring your dog into our program.
 
See also Courtesy Post
 
 

A dog cull is where dogs are rounded up and shot to control over-population. This is common practice in Canada.

We regularly take in local owner surrenders, abandoned dogs, and help the shelters around our area.  At any given time about half of the dogs in our program are local dogs. The other half come to us through rescue initiatives both within Canada and internationally. We don’t believe the value of a life is determined by geographic location. We are doing as much as we possibly can to help as many dogs as we possibly can.  The sad reality is that we cannot save them all (though we intend to keep trying to!).

Our account number is #2504692939

 This includes but is not limited to soft drinks, juice, water, wine, coolers, spirits, etc. More information on all these containers can be found here. Keep in mind that beverage containers purchased outside of BC, beverage containers damaged to the point of being unidentifiable, or beverage containers without labels are not eligible.

 

The Express system requires customers use clear or transparent bags for containers – we recommend using bags approximately 36 inches tall, 30 inches wide and around 72 liters in capacity.
 
Transparent recycling bags or clear trash bags are available for purchase at almost any grocery store, drug store, or hardware store. Brands like Glad, Western Family, Life, Safeway, No Name, and HDX all work with the Express system.
 

Consumers can drop off a maximum of six bags of refundable beverage containers per visit. Find a return it location near you.

Yes! You can print out up to 6 extra bag labels while you are at the Express kiosk and take them home with you to tag your bags as they fill up.

You can also stop at any of the following stores and ask for a return it label: 

🐾 Total Pet Kelowna – Harvey Ave⁠
🐾 Purple Seahorse – Willow Park Shopping Centre⁠
🐾 Bone & Biscuit – Cooper Road Plaza⁠

Doing this allows you to skip the kiosk and simply drop off your bags at your depot’s Express window!