How to Foster a Pet

Animal rescue shelters rely on fosterers to provide temporary homes for animals in their care.

Fostering can help an animal recover from abuse, illness, injury or neglect. A fosterer commits to caring for the pet in their home for as little as a few days or maybe weeks or even months.

Providing a foster home, frees up a space in a shelter that can be used by another animal that is at risk.


  • Google search your local registered charities
  • Fill in their application form and email it to charity directly
  • Criteria to foster may differ from rescue to rescue. Check what they require before applying. Most need you to be aged 18+ You need to live near the shelter for return visits to meet prospective adopters or for visits to the vet
  • You will need to be willing to continue training with the support of the shelter staff
  • You may need to only live with older children or adults. Some pets need to be the only pet in the foster home, some do better if other pets are around
  • You should be able to spend a lot of time at home and ideally have experience with the breed you are applying for.
  • You will be given support and costs are usually covered
  • Your experience fostering a pet will give the rescue a better understanding of the pet’s needs and give you satisfaction that you have made a huge difference. When the pet you are caring for finds a forever home, you go back on the waiting list for your next pet to care for.

If you are unable to adopt or foster, there are other ways you can help. Please contact your local rescue shelters to enquire about volunteering. There could be roles available in animal care, admin or fundraising. Most shelters also look for sponsors to donate regularly to pets that have been with them a long time or that are better suited to life in the shelter.
Please reach out to your local shelter, anything thing you can do to help will be gratefully appreciated.