There are many reasons why opening your home to a foster pet enriches your life and saves the lives of shelter animals. Rescue organizations rely on fosters to provide homeless pets with a nourishing environment that they may otherwise not have a chance to receive due to limited shelter resources. Fostering is also a great way to learn if the lifestyle of a pet is right for you, or to help your community and local rescues. Becoming a great foster pet parent necessitates caring, compassion, and commitment.
While each individual shelter or rescue group may have their own unique set of requirements for fostership, here are a few steps to help you understand the world of fostering.
Fostering a pet requires responsibility, including an appropriate amount of space, security, patience, and traveling. Permission from a landlord is usually necessary if you live in an apartment or rental, or proof of ownership if you are a homeowner. Some programs will request fosters live within a certain distance to ensure efficient travel for orientations, events, and emergencies. Rescues may also perform home visits to guarantee your home is established as a secure environment for potential foster pets.
Volunteering as a foster includes both housing a pet and promoting the adoption process. Often times potential adopters will have direct contact with fosters or meet face-to-face at adoption events. Fosters know their pets best, and therefore play an active role in finding them forever homes. Social PR and ambassador work will be necessary to give your foster pet the life they deserve!
A common question is "How long will I have to foster a pet?". Foster periods generally last until a pet is adopted. Animals placed in foster care often come from backgrounds where they were homeless, abandoned, and do not take well to shelter environments. They may need specific medical care or rehabilitation. Each pet is an individual and will heal and adjust differently. The type of pet, breed, gender, or age may also influence the adoption process. The shelter or rescue group will work with you to match a pet that will best adapt and benefit from your home environment.
Many shelter and rescue foster programs provide all supplies such as food, bowls, leashes, collars, litters, and medications. Beds and toys may also be included, many of which are provided by donations. Healthcare treatment and costs are also usually provided by these organizations. Beyond working with your shelter or rescue, fosters benefit from a tight-knit community of volunteers and pet lovers. Sharing these experiences means that other fosters, trainers, groomers, and animal aficionados are willing to offer support. The costs of fostership are minimal when you strengthen relationships in your community and save the lives of animals in need.
Sometimes the first step appears the hardest of all! Whether you are referred to a foster program or still researching local rescues to partner with, keep in mind what kind of animal or specific breed you want to bring into your home. Here is a list of some shelters seeking fosters on the South Shore in MA, as well as specific rescues nearby:
Scituate Animal Shelter
Marshfield Animal Shelter
Massachusetts Humane Society
Great Dog Rescue New England
Last Hope K9 Rescue
Or visit https://www.petfinder.com/animal-shelters-and-rescues/search/?location=02066&shelter_name=
Remember to evaluate applications and have all necessary information ready for the organization you choose. We thank you for choosing to foster, encouraging our community, and spreading the love!
ZG pro team