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One of our most critical needs is homes for fostering, especially for dogs and puppies. When dogs or cats come to the Georgia SPCA, we often cannot physically accomodate all the animals in our facility. At other times, an animal will need to be kept away from other animals at the shelter (and your own pets, if you have them) for a number of days until we are certain the animal does not show signs of illness. Foster pet situations that come up frequently are: 1) upper respiratory infections, common in shelter animals, 2) pregnant dogs or cats or ones with newborns, and 3) kittens or puppies that are too small for adoption. Other foster situations include an illness or injury (such as heartworm) that may require medicine in addition to a somewhat longer recovery period, or moving a momma dog or cat to a new foster home when it is time to wean the little ones (this actually makes the weaning process easier on everyone involved). Animals might be brought in by individuals or other rescue groups and shelters, sometimes they are abandoned animals removed from a local animal control facility, and some come in as the result of a rescue operation.
We like to put newly arrived pets in foster care because they generally recover faster and better from the stress of their situation in a home environment, plus they are not as exposed to disease as they would be in the shelter. The length of time required in foster care is usually short, from a week to two months, depending on the animal and the situation.
The Georgia SPCA will supply food, cat litter for cats, medicine, and of course, veterinary care for any animals you foster. We can usually also supply you with things like crates, litter boxes, toys, etc., but what is available depends on what has been donated.
What is Required
A foster home will need to have an area where the animal can live during the fostering period. We encourage you to play with the pet and give it the attention and love it deserves. To join the foster pets program, you will need to meet with our Foster Care Coordinator to see what kind of animals you would be suited to foster and to answer any questions you might have. There's a short application to fill out, and at some point, a home check, as required by the Georgia Department of Agriculture. Foster Parents will receive periodic emails or phone calls to let everyone know what dogs and cats need fostering. You will be added to the list and, if you see an animal you would be interested in fostering, just reply to the email!
My Fostering Experience
"I have been fostering animals for the Georgia SPCA for the past two years. During that time, I have been able to make a difference in the lives of fifteen animals. By providing love and attention to needy (and deserving) animals, I have helped my community and the experience has been nothing but positive for me and my family."
I want to Help!
To sign up as a fostering volunteer, please complete the Foster Application (requires Adobe Acrobat) and email to foster@GeorgiaSPCA.org. If you have questions, please contact us, and make sure you select the category "Foster an Animal". Thank you.
We're trying out a new program, "Foster in a Shop" to see if we can increase adoptions of our longtime resident adult cats. We're approaching shops in the local area to see if they'd be willing to foster a cat and encourage adoption. Please share this with anyone you think might be interested. For more information, contact Gail at firstname.lastname@example.org