Fostering a dog or cat is one of the most selfless and gratifying aspects of animal rescue.
If you have a temporary room for a sweet furry friend in your home, please consider joining FOHA's foster team.
Almost all animals at FOHA are eligible for short term and long term fostering. Fostering can be as short as an overnight stay, a long weekend, a few weeks or until the animal is adopted. It's totally up to you and your schedule.
What to Expect as a Foster Family
Foster families will:
- Provide food as well as shelter and lots of love for their cat, kitten, dog, or puppy.
- Make animals available either in-home or at an agreed-upon location to meet potential adopters.
- Promote their foster animal for adoption by posting updated photos and stories to our social media accounts and our website (assistance provided as needed). You are their #1 adoption advocate!!
- Take foster to vet appointments as needed — kittens, puppies, and medical fosters may require multiple vet visits.
- Help with training and socializing their foster pet (primarily dog/puppy foster).
- Dog Foster — bring their foster to an adoption event and/or the shelter once a month.
- Cover medical expenses, including monthly flea, tick, and heartworm preventatives, and prescription food as required.
- Assist with vacation coverage as needed.
- Provide training support so you can work on basic manners training with your dog (or cat).
Foster a litter of kittens, possibly with their mom. Kittens cannot stay at the shelter so all kittens we save from local shelters must go immediately to a foster home. Kittens are not eligible for adoption until the second round of vaccinations have been completed. You should expect to have the kittens for up to 3 months.
Foster a puppy or two, or possibly a litter of puppies with their mom. Puppies under 6 months old cannot stay at the shelter so all puppies we save from local shelters must go immediately to a foster home. Puppies are eligible for adoption at 8 weeks old, so you should expect to have a puppy foster for up to 4 months
Short-term fostering can range from an overnight stay to a week or two to multiple months. Short-term foster situations:
- Mental break - give our animals a quick break from the shelter and allow them to decompress, sleep, and recharge. These quick breaks also give us useful information for potential adopters.
- Quarantine — If our intake quarantine areas are full, foster homes help us save animals that we might not otherwise be able to help.
- Vacation coverage — When a foster family goes on vacation, other short-term foster families often step up to take care of a foster dog or cat.
- Medical — We may need a foster for animals recovering from treatable medical conditions such as surgery or dogs with heartworm.
Long-Term Dog and Cat Fostering
Long-term foster homes are for dogs and cats that cannot be best served in the shelter environment. This is a very pressing and consistent need. Animals will remain in their foster home until they are adopted (duration will vary). Long-term foster situations include:
- All animals in our shelter, but especially
- Animals showing shelter stress
- Older animals
- Animals with chronic medical conditions
- Animals that may need rehabilitation, making a foster home more ideal for the animal’s physical or emotional well-being
- Shy, fearful, or not adapting to shelter environment or communal cattery
- Puppies under the age of 1 year old (sometimes litters with mom dog as well)