Our post homing support team deal with any queries that we get after the adoption of one of our dogs. There’s always a member of the team on call to deal with any urgent requests for help, even at weekends. Instructions for Post-Homing Support (PHS) are normally received centrally by email or phone call and fielded out amongst the team members.
Most often, when receiving a request for help, the dog in question is not known to volunteers, so the first step is to research the dog’s history. Common problems include dog-to-dog reactivity, a reluctance to walk or freezing on walks, resource guarding or separation-related problems.
Sessions with the adopter or foster carer are typically carried out remotely, using video calling where possible, to make it more personal. Depending on the issue, the first call is commonly a fact-finding exercise and includes some management strategies to reduce any risk of harm. A behaviour modification or training plan is devised using the expertise and experience of the PHS volunteer and communicated to the adopter/foster carer in subsequent sessions, with tweaks along the way where necessary.
Success is therefore very much dependent on the carer’s dedication. There’s no limit on the number or frequency of sessions – some require just a couple of sessions to get them ‘back on track’, others require a little more ‘hand-holding’. It is hugely beneficial that Forever Hounds Trust provide behavioural support for the lifetime of the dog.