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What’s a pet foster parent?
By being a pet foster parent, you provide a temporary home for an animal prior to adoption. Fostering animals is a wonderful and personal way to contribute to saving pets.
Why do animals need foster care?
There are several possible reasons:
• Newborn animals that need to be nursed or bottle-fed usually need foster care.
• Some pets need temporary housing until their owner is able to take them back.
• Some animals need time to recover from an illness or injury before adoption.
• Some pets may just need a little socialization before finding their forever home.
Providing foster care for a few days, weeks, or months can be a lifesaving gift for an animal.
Would I be a good pet foster parent?
If you want to do something to help the animals, fostering can be a ﬂexible, fun, and rewarding volunteer job. Here’s why:
• It’s more ﬂexible than volunteer jobs that require you to show up at a speciﬁc time for a certain number of hours.
• It’s a great way to enjoy a pet if you are not in a position to make that lifetime commitment right now.
• If you are thinking of adding a dog or cat to your household but you’re not sure, fostering can help you make that decision.
Taking animals into your home, loving them, and then letting them go requires a special kind of person. Your role as a foster parent is to prepare the animal for adoption into a loving home. It is important that all family members understand how important your help is to that animal and that this is a temporary situation.
How much time will it take?
The speciﬁc needs of the animal will determine how much time is involved. Newborn orphaned puppies and kittens, for instance, must be fed every few hours. A frightened animal who needs socialization or training will also require some extra time. You can discuss your availability with us to determine what kinds of animals you’ll be best suited to foster.
What skills are needed?
It’s best to have some knowledge about companion animal behavior and health. Depending on the animal, training may be a requirement.
Some of the animals most in need of foster care are those that require a little extra help or some training. Shy cats often need time to learn to trust and the quiet of a home environment. Dogs often beneﬁt from a little obedience training, so if you familiarize yourself with some basic training techniques, you can be a big help in preparing your foster dog for a new home.
Just by getting to know the animal, you’ll help us learn more about the pet’s personality prior to adoption.
What else is required?
Speciﬁc requirements will vary depending upon the animal you are fostering. For example, some animals will need fenced yards, medications, or isolation from your personal pets.
How much notice will I get?
This will depend on the immediate need. In a crisis situation we would need someone within a few hours. This does not mean you must always be available. You can decline to foster an animal at any time.
What about food and medical care?
Chance Shelter will provide all food, supplies, and medical expenses for the animal.
What about my own pets?
You’ll want to consider how the animals in your household will adjust to having a foster pet. Some animals do very well with a temporary friend and can help socialize the foster animal. Other pets have a harder time with new animals being added to or leaving the family. You’re the best judge of your pet’s personality.
For the safety of your pets and the foster animal, your pets must be up-to-date on vaccinations. In most cases, the foster pet will need to be isolated from your own pets, either temporarily or throughout the foster period.
What about when it’s time to say good-bye?
Giving up an animal you’ve fostered, even to a wonderful new home, can be difﬁcult emotionally. Fostering is tremendously rewarding whether you are part of saving a life, helping an animal ﬁnd a loving home, or caring for an elderly persons pet while they are in the hospital. Letting go of that pet allows you to help another in need.
How do I give fostering a try?
When you are ready, fill out our online foster form. A foster coordinator will get back to you. In most cases a home visit is required before you can take a foster pet home.