Thank you for your interest in joining our team of foster caregivers! We want this experience to be a positive and rewarding one for you. You will be giving your foster pet(s) a chance to adapt to a normal, warm and loving foster home environment while waiting for a permanent one. Fostering is a terrific opportunity to play a part in helping unwanted animals become prepared for permanent, loving homes. The time you spend with your foster animal greatly increases their chances for a happy life as a companion animal.
Please know that if not for caring people like you, many of these dogs and cats would be euthanized in shelters or die as strays on the street where they are susceptible to many unhealthy and unsafe conditions. While there are many positive reasons to open your home to a homeless animal, there are numerous practical factors to be considered as well. Prior to making this commitment, please consider the following:
Are you at least 18 years of age?
Due to insurance issues and safety concerns only people over 18 can participate in this program. Children can help with the foster animal’s care, but adults must be the primary caregivers.
Are you able to spend quality time with the foster(s)?
Socialization can be as important as feeding and cleanliness.
Are you able to drive to Appalachian SPCA Adoption Events frequently?
You may also need to transport the animal back and forth to the vet for vaccinations, de-wormer, exams and/or surgeries etc.
Are you able to work with harsh cleaning chemicals such as bleach?
Between sets of foster animals, you should thoroughly clean the foster area with a disinfecting chemical.
Are you aware that there is a great deal of clean-up and even possible damage to your home when you take a foster animal home?
Foster animals have ruined carpeting, drapes, clothing and other valuable items. Preparing your home and the area the animal will stay in can prevent most accidents, but not all of them!
Are you able to monitor the health of the foster animal(s)?
You will need to pay attention to signs of illness or worsening symptoms and call the Appalachian SPCA if you are concerned. The Appalachian SPCA will help you decide if you should bring the pet in to see the veterinarian.
Are you emotionally prepared for the potential loss of neonates?
Despite your best efforts, please understand that not all bottle babies will survive.
Are you able to separate the foster animals from your own?
Foster animals may need to be isolated from your own companion animals. A separate room or enclosed area with no carpet will work best (like the bathroom or laundry room).
Are you emotionally prepared to return the animal(s) to the Appalachian SPCA after the foster period is up?
It can be very difficult to let go once you have become emotionally attached to a foster. Be prepared for tears and heartache when the day comes that you must bring the animal back to the Appalachian SPCA.
Can you place your trust in the Appalachian SPCA to decide what is best for the animal(s)?
Please remember that the Appalachian SPCA is always ready to offer any support possible.
Do you feel comfortable explaining to friends that these animal(s) are not yours to adopt out and they MUST go through the regular adoption process at the Appalachian SPCA?
If you are interested in helping find homes for your foster animal(s), keep in mind that your foster will not be available until they are spayed or neutered, vaccinated and de-wormed. Refer them to the Appalachian SPCA Adoption Coordinator.