It’s National Foster Care Month! Many of our furry patients are former fosters, or foster fails. Fostering fills a crucial gap for animals that need growth, healing, training, and/or socialization before they can be put up for adoption. If you’re an animal lover, you may want to consider fostering. Of course, this isn’t going to be right for everyone. A vet lists some things for you to consider before moving forward below.
You don’t need a formal education to foster pets. However, it’s best to have had some experience with animals, and a good basic understanding about their behavior and care needs. Most likely, you’ll go through some training and onboarding. A home visit may also be required. Talk to your local shelters to find out more about what the requirements are.
You don’t have to have a huge home to foster animals. However, you do need to have enough space for your furry wards. If you have children and/or other pets, you’ll need to be able to keep your foster charges in separate rooms or areas.
Finances are another thing to consider. Some shelters will provide all or some of the pet’s food and supplies, but they don’t all have the resources for that. You may have some out-of-pocket costs. Things like food, supplies, bedding, toys, treats, and medical care can add up quickly, so be sure you have that wiggle room in your budget.
It can be very rewarding to see a pet you’ve cared for going off to their forever home, but it can also be bittersweet. Understandably, many people have a hard time saying goodbye to pets they have grown fond of. Hence the term ‘foster fails.’ Foster fails are what happens when people get so attached to their fosters that they adopt them themselves. This isn’t a bad thing, as of course the entire point is to find that pet a loving home, though it does defeat the purpose.
There’s usually no set date when a pet will be adopted or ready to be brought to the shelter for adoption. With young animals, this may happen when they’re old enough to stay in the shelter overnight. Or, it may be dependent on healing, growth, socialization, or even available space. Consider your schedule, flexibility, and upcoming plans.
As your animal clinic, we’re dedicated to offering great care. Call us anytime!