Becoming a Foster

Hundreds of dogs and cats end up in our local county shelters every month.  The job of a 'rescue' is to remove these animals from these chaotic and under-funded environments.  But where do these animals go after they've been rescued?  Often into the same kennel filled environment that they were just rescued from.  This is why foster home environments are so very important to rescues across Arizona.

The goal of any rescue is to place the dog or cat into a forever home, and fostering is a big part of the journey toward that goal.  Fosters are able to provide the comfort and affection that many animals need to build up their confidence.  A foster is able to spend quality time with their foster pet and get to know the unique personality of each animal, which is an important step in finding a rescued animal a forever family that is a good match.

How much does it cost?

Many rescues will continue to pay vet bills for your foster pet over the course of their stay with you.  Big Hearts Animal Rescue covers vet bills for all of its foster animals.  We also provide our foster families with any other essentials that you might need to get through the day-to-day.  For cats this includes litter, litter boxes, scoops, and litter traps.  For dogs this can include crates, bedding, and soap for the occasional bath :)

How long do I have a foster pet?

As a Big Hearts foster, we look to you to judge your foster pet's personality and tell us what characteristics would make for the perfect forever family.  You are the best judge of their strengths and their fears.  Finding the right forever home for your foster might take a little time; however, we don't want attachment to you to hinder their adoption in any way, so we are always open to moving foster animals into the most productive environment for adoption.

Additionally, we see fostering as a great way to have the benefit of a companion animal for those whose circumstances do not allow for permanent adoption.  This is true for our amazing winter visitors who are only in town for a few months out of the year.

Also, if you are considering adopting, being a foster is a great way to find out if you want to become a permanent forever home.  You will be able to experience the responsibilities of a pet-parent without having to make the commitment.

Won't it be heartbreaking to give them up when they are adopted?

Saying goodbye, or 'see-ya-later', to your foster animal can be sad.  You must consider that you've played a valuable role in their life, and when one foster animal leaves, it opens up space for you to make the same impact in another homeless animal's life.

Fostering a rescued cat or dog is a great way to contribute to your local rescue, and provide the shelter and safety that every shelter pet deserves.

We encourage you to email (or contact us on Facebook) if you are interested in joining our mission to save dogs and cats in need.

Kelly Richardsonfoster, take action