What is a foster?
A foster is a person who has the strength to give a special animal a temporary spot in their home where they can feel loved and safe to help them thrive and become adoptable. Foster families provide animals TLC and one-on-one attention before they are adopted.
Fostering is a wonderful experience for you and your family; you can feel good knowing you have helped save a shelter animal’s life. Also, you’ve created space in the shelter to accommodate other homeless animals. Foster animals provide companionship and purpose. Your act of kindness is repaid in rewards that are beyond words.
Who can foster and what skills are needed?
We accept fosters with various skill levels. Anyone over 18 years old can foster. As long as you can provide care, shelter and love, you can be an animal foster parent. Foster is ideal for people who are unable to commit to an animal of their own for various reasons. The most important skill you will need are LOVE and COMPASSION! We have shelter staff to assist you with any questions you may have.
Why do animals need foster care? There are several possible reasons:
- Newborn and baby animals, particularly kittens, that are too young to be adopted or need specialized care that is best provided in a home.
- Bottle Babies: Puppies or kittens without mothers, that need around the clock feeding, warmth and love.
- Pregnant and/or nursing mothers: Need safe, quiet, loving environment to raise their babies.
- Older Babies: Puppies or kittens, with or without mothers, need monitored and socialized as they grow; but eat on their own now, so they don’t require around the clock feeding by hand.
- Some animals are frightened or need a little extra care in a quiet home.
- Some animals need time to recover from an illness or injury before adoption.
- Occassionally, an animal is in need of a hospice home, as they are medically unadoptable, but still are in need of a home and LOVE.
Whatever the reason, these animals need some extra LOVE and CARE before they can be adopted.
What about food and medical care? Newberg Animal Shelter provides all the supplies, food, and medical treatments that your foster pet needs. If the foster animal(s) need medicine, you will be shown how to administer and store it. Foster parents are allowed to provide supplies if they want, which are considered tax-deductible donations, however, this is not required. The only thing we ask that you provide is transportation to and from the shelter and/or veterinarian, and of course your time and LOVE.
How much time will it require?
The specific needs of each animal will determine how much time is involved. Our staff can help you determine what kind of animal(s) you’ll be suited to foster.
What about my home and pets?
We suggest foster parents have an area already selected where the pet(s) will eat and sleep. This can be a guest room or the laundry room, even a large bathroom can be used to slowly introduce an animal to your home. Allowing your new foster too much room to roam is not usually the best scenario. A secure, secluded location allows the animals to get acquainted to the new surrounding a little at a time. If you have pets at home, make sure to keep them separate from your fosters at first. If you have your own pet(s), they should be up-to-date on vaccinations and well socialized.
How do I become a foster parent? Start by filling out a volunteer application on our volunteer page. We will contact you to attend a mandatory Volunteer Orientation. Then, we will contact you as soon as we have a pet in need of fostering.