The day Ashley, our Rescue Coordinator, and Alana, our Volunteer Coordinator, met and talked with Shawn and (a very pregnant) Jaclyn about fostering was one of those moments when after chatting with them we practically high fived each other! We knew instantly they were going to be incredible volunteers and fosters and we felt really lucky they wanted to give their time to TRD. These guys have been incredibly supportive of our rescue work. They foster just about any dog we need to place, they consistently come to our adoption events to help out, they support our fundraisers and they are always willing to lend a hand with anything else we need. The best part is, besides being awesome advocates for rescue and rock solid fosters/volunteers, they are just really fun to hang out with. Shawn and Jaclyn are down to earth, kind, funny and they come with a super cute 9 month old baby too! Seth, a dog lover already, hangs out with us at adoption events, sometimes sleeping, but most of the time smiling and looking adorable.
Shawn grew up in Sloatsbrug, NY (45 min outside NYC) and Jackie grew up in Milton, WA (45 min south of Seattle). They are both Navy helicopter pilots and have lived in Annapolis, MD, Pensacola, FL, Milton, FL, and Chesapeake, VA, prior to moving to San Diego. Shawn and Jaclyn both grew up with dogs and now have 2 dogs of their own. Shawn’s first dog in childhood was named Rocket (he’s admittedly a NASA nerd) and the first dog he and Jackie adopted, a black lab in 2008, they named Apollo (yes, after the Apollo missions). They then adopted their hound mix, Hunter—or should we say Apollo adopted Hunter. Hunter’s foster family with the Humane Society in Pensacola said Shawn and Jackie had to adopt him after seeing how the dogs immediately played and bonded so well- instant bros. After adopting Hunter and seeing the foster experience firsthand, they knew it was something they had to eventually become involved with. They started fostering with K-Nine Justice League in Norfolk, VA and were hooked.
As of today, their 23rd foster just recently found her forever home!! Another tidbit that adds to their awesome factor? Shawn and Jaclyn have a “foster wall” where pictures of every foster they’ve had adorn their wall so they can be reminded of all the dog love that happens in their house. We asked the Hochs their thoughts on rescue and pet overpopulation and they said, “it seems that rescues (especially foster-based organizations) are still such a foreign idea to most people. The number of people we’ve spoken with that are shocked and surprised when we explain what we do is staggering. We appreciate the opportunity to educate people about rescue. For us, our view on fostering/rescuing, especially when people ask us how we let the dogs go when they get adopted, is that our ability to get one dog out of the shelter opens up a spot that will save an incalculable number of lives. Dog overpopulation will never go away until laws are passed to shut down puppy mills, people who do not properly care for their animals are held accountable, and the public is truly educated about the issues including spaying and neutering.” They continue to claim that they will never “foster fail” (adopting a foster) to ensure the spot for a dog in need stays open. Although they have admitted coming very close to foster failing with their foster, Finn.
Shawn and Jaclyn look forward to continuing volunteering and fostering with TRD to help make a difference in all the lives we save. They are true advocates for rescue, are amazing volunteers/fosters, and are wonderful people with hearts of gold. We could not be happier to have them in the TRD family. Thank you Shawn and Jaclyn for all you do!