May 2nd
Why is fostering important? 

Here at the Humane Society of Kitchener Waterloo & Stratford Perth, we believe fostering helps provide our animals with a safe and loving place to stay before they move to their forever home. We typically have fosters for animals awaiting surgery, healing after surgery, for animals needing more extensive care (bottle babies) or time to grow (mom and kittens).

What is fostering

Fostering a pet means temporarily caring for a pet who is not yours. Most commonly, people foster cats, dogs, and sometimes small pets like rabbits, mice and guinea pigs from their local animal shelter or a rescue group — taking care of them for a short period of time until the pet is adopted.  

Fosters can care for pets recovering from medical procedures or illnesses to give them a comfortable and safe place to heal. You can also be a foster providing a temporary home for a pet while their owners get back on their feet after hospitalization, eviction, leaving domestic violence, rehab, or another temporary crisis.

Why should I foster?

Families take in a pet who would otherwise be in the shelter, thereby freeing up much-needed space for another pet who has no other safe place to go. We do everything in our power to make an animal’s stay in our centres as comfortable as possible, but we all know it doesn’t beat being in a home with people caring for us around the clock. A foster home greatly decreases a pet’s stress and anxiety, and having a family to care for them 24/7 ensures their overall happiness. Fostering is better for the pet and the community and greatly increases a shelter’s capacity.

Fostering also keeps families together. It ensures that pets are not permanently separated from their families. Instead, they are cared for in a foster home until they can be reunited.

A recent study showed that when pets go into foster care, they get to practise forming bonds with people, which helps them bond with their adoptive family. In fact, as per Maddie’s Fund Foster Caregiver Market Research 2017, 44% of pets fostered are even adopted by their foster families!

Do I have to pay to foster a pet?

Nope! Fostering is not just fun, rewarding, and essential — it is also completely free! 

The Humane Society of Kitchener Waterloo & Stratford Perth covers the cost of food, supplies, and veterinary care and provides training and support. However, for small animals, we do ask our fosters to provide fresh greens. Apart from that, fosters just have to provide a safe and loving temporary home for the pet.

How long will I be expected to foster?

The length of stay can be a couple of days to weeks depending on the animal’s needs. For animals requiring medical attention and care, it may be a few months in foster care. It all depends on the animal.

Can I adopt my foster pet?

Absolutely! Some places call this ‘foster failure’ — we endearingly call this a ‘foster success.’

Can I foster even if I have other pets at home? How about if I work full time out of the home?

Yes! Most of our fosters have pets of their own, and many fosters work outside of the home. Reach out to us to discuss finding a foster pet who might be the right fit for your household.

Which pets are available for fostering?

Most animals coming into our centres are eligible to go into a foster home. You can see the available pets here on our website.