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Fostering a dog or cat is an incredibly rewarding experience. Fosters provide care, food, play, exercise, and socialization for an animal. They work hand-in-hand with Pet Haven volunteers to respond to the adopter. And yes, it can be difficult to say goodbye, but the success makes it worthwhile. Our fosters share their stories and photos with other volunteers and celebrate each animal’s new home together.
For folks considering fostering, please know that fostering can be a long-term commitment. While we hope that all animals in our care find their forever family as soon as possible this does not always happen. You must be prepared to care for your foster animal until it is permanently placed. We do not operate a shelter so our resources for a quick replacement are limited and we ask that you take this into consideration when applying to foster. Thank you!
As a result of COVID-19, our processes have changed. We now “virtually onboard” new fosters. This has made our process easier and we hope to be able to onboard more efficiently and open up to more fosters as a result.
Fostering is a wonderful, rewarding experience! Please make sure you can accommodate an animal with or without the COVID-19 restrictions. Even though the pandemic restrictions are lightening up, the future is filled with unknowns.
Pet Haven foster homes provide temporary homes for cats and dogs in need of care. Fosters offer safety and love and serve as strong advocates for the animals in their care. As a foster, you will get to know the specific needs of the animal and help make a great match!
Pet Haven provides:
Yes! Pet Haven operates as a team and there are many experienced volunteers ready to provide advice and assistance. Our Foster Coordinators offer personalized training to guide you through the process, ensuring you have the support needed when you welcome a new animal into your home. You’ve always got an army of volunteers to help you along the way. Please note that Pet Haven requires that fosters be 18 years old.
Foster Mentors are your go-to resource and support for any questions about fostering (vet care, supplies, behavior issues, adoption process.) Each foster is assigned a foster mentor when they begin fostering and if you have a question about your foster animal, you should reach out to your foster mentor. If it is a question that they can not answer, they will delegate that question to someone who has the answer.
Our animals are rescued from local and out-of-state shelter partners. We have volunteers who regularly visit these facilities and look for animals that need our help.
We also receive some of our animals from pet owners (both local and from Reservations) surrendering their animals who can no longer provide them care, but trust Pet Haven to find them great homes.
If you are interested in more information about your specific foster, we will do our best to tell you where he/she comes from, and his/her background story, if possible.
We work hard to make sure everyone is comfortable with a foster placement and the animal is a good match for your home environment. Pet Haven requires that your resident animals be up to date on their vaccinations and spayed/neutered. A new foster animal should have slow introductions over the course of several days to all members of your household (human and animal). You can speak with your Foster Mentor about how to best introduce your first foster into your home. Younger children should be introduced slowly to determine their compatibility with the new foster animal. It is recommended that an adult supervise all interactions between foster animals and young children. Children need to be taught the right way to treat an animal and what it means to respect an animal’s cues and need for space.
Pet Haven has a tremendous network of respite fosters as well as boarding facilities that provide backup care during time away. Communication is key, so we ask that fosters plan ahead to let their Coordinators know when they’ll be out of town. Respite or boarding care is provided at no cost to fosters.
You can provide criteria (i.e. age, size, gender) for what type of dog or cat you want to foster, and we will do our best to match you with an ideal foster animal. If we have several animals needing rescue, we may send you pictures and descriptions of each. In this case, you can choose your foster animal. We also post on our Pet Haven Fosters Needed Facebook page a list of the animals needing placement.
Pet Haven has many foster families who have been with us for years, and ideally, we would love for fosters to commit to 6 months. Pet Haven understands that you may need a short break between fosters, and that is OK. If you aren’t sure you want to be a full-time foster, consider respite fostering for short-term needs.
It is very hard to give an average time an animal is in foster care. Many puppies and kitties are adopted within a month or two, while some animals have been in foster care for years. Most of the time, our animals are adopted relatively quickly, but we cannot make any guarantee as to how long they will be in your home. We ask that you commit to the animal you are fostering until a forever family is found.
Fosters are invited to attend adoption events with their animal and are expected to transport their foster animal to/from veterinary appointments. Fosters are expected to stay in communication with other team members and respond to applicants, may conduct home visits, and must ensure that the foster animal receives exercise and socialization.
We do our best to eliminate the possibility of taking human or dog aggressive dogs. Still, some issues may arise. Possibilities include separation anxiety (i.e. crying or barking when left alone), marking (with urine), chewing, house training, litter box issues, barking, and dog aggression or fearful behavior. We have many ways of managing these problems until they are resolved and our experienced Foster Mentors and a Training Coordinator are on hand to answer questions and provide advice. We are always looking for fosters who have the skills to take in dogs and cats who may need more experienced care or behavioral support. If you have this experience please let our foster onboarding team know.
Pre-approval from the foster mentor is required for reimbursements. In most instances, we will have what you need for supplies or we can get it for you! If you choose to purchase your own supplies, you may deduct them on your taxes. For all medical needs/supplies/medications, you must contact the appropriate foster mentor or Vet Care Manager for approval. DO NOT take your foster animal to a vet without prior approval from our Vet Care Manager.
It is definitely a bittersweet moment when your foster animal finds its forever home. Knowing that you will open your home to a new foster animal in need helps make those goodbyes a little easier. Rest assured, there is always another animal waiting in the wings!
Yes, we do. You will need to first fill out a foster application and our Foster Coordinator will tell you more!
Dog Foster Manual
Cat Foster Manual
Questions? Contact our Foster Coordinators: firstname.lastname@example.org