You decided to embark on becoming a foster cat owner. Congratulations! This is a fulfilling experience for yourself as well as your potential foster pet.
People who love animals, especially cats and dogs, may consider becoming a foster pet owner at some point. However, it is not as simple as picking out the dog or cat from the shelter and taking it home with you for the weekend. There is a lot that goes on behind the scenes of becoming a foster pet owner.
In this blog, we will teach you what it means to be a foster pet, some of the requirements you can expect, as well as the benefits to be had when you fulfill this role.
What is a Foster Pet Owner?
What does it mean to be a foster pet owner? When you take on the role of foster pet owner, you are essentially responsible for a pet for a specified amount of time. This pet will live with you and you will treat it as if it was your own.
The length of time that you will foster a pet depends on several factors. You will typically foster a pet through an adoption organization or potentially a Humane Society. The organization will give the guidelines in terms of how long you can expect your foster period to last.
Do You Get Paid to Foster a Pet?
If you are going to take in a foster pet, you might wonder if you were going to get paid to do so. However, the truth is that there is a very rare chance that you will get paid to take in a foster cat or dog.
You can essentially see yourself as a volunteer for a Humane Society or adoption center. While you will likely not be paid to foster a pet, know that you are not responsible for the costs of care for the cat or dog. The organization is responsible for the supplies and financial aspect of care for the pet.
When Do You Know that You’re Ready for a Foster Pet?
Taking on a foster pet requires commitment in your full attention. While fostering a cat or dog is a temporary situation, you still want to make sure that you have the time allotment to give the foster pet the care that it needs.
When do you know that you are ready to become a foster pet? Some people decide they are ready to take on a foster pet when they want the enjoyment of a cat or dog but on a short-term basis. It gives them short-term emotional connection and support, as well as a companion for a specified amount of time.
You may also be interested in a pet that you can care for if your spouse is deployed. It can also be a viable option for an elderly person who wishes to remain active but doesn’t want to take on the full responsibility of a pet for a long period of time.
Meanwhile, fostering a pet can also be advantageous for young children who are learning how to properly take care of pets.
What are the Benefits of Fostering a Pet?
If you have not fostered a pet before, you might be wondering about the benefits that come along with it. Fostering a pet comes with many other benefits that you would expect if you were to adopt or cat a dog permanently. Below are several examples:
Giving the Pet a Calm Environment
When it comes to the specific benefits for the foster pet, one of the best reasons to consider fostering is giving the cat or dog a common environment. Cats and dogs are not much different from people, in the sense that they enjoy a home, safe, and cozy place to spend their days and nights.
This is especially true if you were dealing with a foster pet with a lot of anxiety or a senior. If your household is calm, this will be a great environment for a foster parent.
Help the Pet Find a Permanent Home
It’s no secret that there are many unwanted cats and dogs in the United States. Coming in the millions, it is virtually impossible to find every cat and dog a loving home.
However, if you choose to foster a pet, you will help the dog or cat find a permanent home. You essentially act as a liaison between a permanent home and an adoption center. You are the safe haven until a permanent home is found.
Aiding in the Removal of Poor or Dangerous Living Conditions
Not only is it true that there are many unwanted companion pets, but there are also cats and dogs living in bad to deplorable conditions. This is when you might find yourself helping out a Humane Society. If animals are seized and the shelter is full, this can be a problem.
However, this is an ideal situation for a foster pet odor. You can help the Humane Society by taking in a cat or dog until there is room in the shelter or he or she is adopted permanently.
Foster Pets Give You Company
A dog or cat can be a perfect companion. This is especially true if you live alone or simply want some extra company.
A foster pet will provide the company that you’re seeking. Best of all, you were giving that foster pet company as well!
Provides You with an Affordable Way to Have a Pet
Pets can be incredibly expensive. Once you factor in the cost of food, monthly medication, and vet visits, some people may find owning a dog or cat unaffordable.
This is where foster parenting a dog or cat is advantageous. The Humane Society or pet adoption center is responsible for the cost of care for your pet. You simply give them love and attention, which is entirely free to you!
Fostering Pets is a Flexible Experience
Perhaps you work a demanding job or you travel a lot. If you need flexibility in your life but you also want to enjoy a pet, fostering is the perfect solution. You can foster a pet for a short weekend and get the benefits of pet ownership without a full-time commitment.
How Do You Become a Foster Pet Owner?
Now that you see the advantages of becoming a foster pet owner, you might wonder how you start the process in the first place. Each Humane Society or pet adoption center will have its own process and guidelines, but below are some general expectations that you will run into.
You Must Live in the Same State
Relatively close proximity to the adoption center is typically required. Most adoption centers or humane societies will require you to live in the same state.
Current Pets Must be Spayed and Neutered
Many people wonder if they are eligible to foster a pet if they already have pets of their own. In many cases, the answer is yes. However, you will want to check with the adoption center on the specific pet in question. Some dogs and cats do not get along well with others.
However, there are normally stipulations that come along with fostering, and this involves spaying and neutering. If you have a cat or dog, he or she must be spayed to be able to foster.
Current Pets Must be Up-to-Date on Vaccines
In addition to spay and neuter requirements, your cat or a dog must also be up-to-date on vaccines. This will include vaccines such as rabies and distemper.
You Must Have Landlord Approval
If you rent your home or apartment, you may still be eligible to foster a dog or cat. This will depend on the shelter that you were working with.
However, if you are thinking of fostering a shelter pet as a renter, you will have to have written approval from your landlord to move forward. You may also need to adhere to size requirements, as some landlords only allow dogs in a specific dog or breed category.
You Must Supply References
Just like a job application, you will need to supply references to adopt or foster pet. You will need people to back you up and make a case that you are suitable and welfare to take on a foster pet.
You Must Allow a Home Visit
Another part of the foster process is the home visit. The shelter may want to come to your home to determine if it’s a good fit for the foster dog or cat. They may be interested in aspects such as the size of your home or yard.
You Must Provide Vet Contact Information
Lastly, mostly every shelter will require that you supply current veterinarian contact information. They will ask where your current pet goes to the vet and the phone number. You may also be supplied with an emergency number and address in the event that the pet needs urgent medical care.
If you have questions about becoming a foster pet owner, we can supply you with suggestions on who to contact in our local area. As always, we are here for you with any veterinary needs for your foster or permanent pet!