Fostering a Shelter Animal
What Kind of Animals Need Foster Care?
Foster homes are primarily needed for animals that are not yet ready for adoption.
This typically means:
- Infant kittens that just need time to grow up and receive their vaccines so that they will be healthy and ready to adopt.
- Pregnant or nursing mother cats with babies.
- Adult dogs and cats that need medical care to recover from an illness or surgery.
- Dogs that need some training or improved social skills before being adopted.
- Fearful dogs that cannot cope in the stressfull kennel environment.
Sometimes the shelter becomes so full that they need foster care for highly adoptable animals that just need a place to crash while waiting to meet their match.
What Do Foster Homes Do?
Foster parents provide basic care for the animal while it is in their care. This includes:
- Food, shelter, loving attention and basic training (like housetraining or litterbox training).
- Some fostered animals need transportation to the shelter periodically for vaccines, medical check-ups or spay/neuter surgery. Some need to be kept on strict special diets, or need daily medications.
- The shelter depends on foster homes to provide kittens with the most socialization possible, as friendly outgoing kittens are the most adoptable!
- They depend on dog fosters to provide basic housetraining, leash training and basic house manners.
- Many foster homes help advertize and promote their fostered pets, including answering phone calls or emails about them and meeting with potential adopters. Others prefer not to do this at all.
What's Next? How do I Become a Foster Home?