It’s this relationship with the community that sustains our work, and helps us save lives together.
Our ability to save animals is directly related to the number of foster homes we have available. To be a foster means that you enter into a contractual relationship with us — you house and care for the animal throughout his/her stay in the program and you commit to bring the animal to showings. In return, we work to find a forever home for the animal and provide everything else that the animal needs.
What a foster provides:
- A safe, loving temporary home for an animal
- Transport to and from agreed upon adoption showings
What Friends For Life provides:
Everything else the animal needs!
- Wellness care (vaccinations, any emergency treatment, etc.)
- Behavior training
- Adoption promotion/marketing
Foster Application Form
If you have room in your heart and home to help an animal already in the Friends For Life program by providing a foster home, please fill out the below form.
This form is only to apply to be a foster; we will work with you to place a currently adoptable Friends For Life animal with you while they look for their forever home.
“A little over two years ago, when I started my foster journey, I was concerned about how Friends For Life could trust me and wondered whether I would succeed as a foster. I wondered how Friends For Life would be able to support me when I had questions or challenges fostering.
I had very little experience with cats before I started my foster journey. ( Yes, I was one of those dogs only people!) But I knew I wanted to help, so I started fostering. I quickly learned that each cat has a different personality and I wanted to be better for them. I started my Behavior Volunteer journey and YOU taught me to be better!
I kept fostering. It broke my heart when they got adopted and had to leave. It made me question, again, whether this was the right journey for me.
Two years and 12 cats later, I still question whether I should be doing this, I still fear the tearful goodbyes. This morning, I woke up to see my latest foster cat, Koby, sleeping on my husband, not a care or fear in the world; I knew right then that this is why I do what I do.
I may not change the world, but at least for this one animal, I will make their world beautiful.
I really want to thank everyone at Friends For Life for giving me and the animals the platform to have such a beautiful foster and volunteer journey. None of the most joyful parts of my life are possible without Friends For Life – not the fostering, not the learning journey, not the amazing friends I have made (both people and animals).”
– Joann S., Friends For Life Foster × Behavior Volunteer
Have questions? We’ve got answers! Still have questions? Reach out to us.
What is fostering?
Fostering means an animal stays with you on a temporary basis. The animal continues to belong to Friends For Life, so you do not adopt it. You’re like a waystation on the road from one place to their forever home. And for that, they will always hold a special place in their heart for you.
Fostering includes bringing the animal to some adoption show hours or events (you never have to stay with them – we do that), helping with transport to the vet (when/if possible – if not, we have transport volunteers who can help), and generally giving them a safe, loving place to be while they seek that forever home.
What animals need fostering?
Puppies, kittens, dogs and cats! We need fosters for nursing kittens and puppies, senior animals, animals recovering from injuries and medical issues, and healthy animals just needing temporary ‘digs.’
We work with you to decide what type, species, size and age you would like to care for and we’ll be sure you never end up with an animal you can’t handle or that isn’t a good fit for your life. The opportunities are limited only by what you have training and desire to do.
What does it cost?
Short answer: nothing.
While any foster may donate any portion they feel inclined (hey, we’ll never turn down help…) Friends For Life pays ALL costs for food, milk, supplies, toys, bedding, wellness/vet care… you name it related to the animal. You supply the love!
Okay. But I’ve been burned by fostering with other groups before. What does it really cost? Am I going to get stuck with a dog/cat that destroys my house?
We want to be sure, just like with adoptions, that the animals in our program are in a safe place, with minimal anxiety. If your foster animal exhibits signs of distress while in your care, please talk to us (we are super communicative with our fosters, so don’t worry about us not getting back to you).
We want to keep you as a foster. If your experience is less than stellar, you won’t be back to help us with another animal. But ultimately our decisions always focus on what is best for the animal. Being in a place that causes them anxiety (most of the time, that won’t be your fault), doesn’t put them in a good place to find their forever home. And we won’t put them through that.
What do I get?
You get the unconditional love of an animal who needs you in order to stay alive. You get to be a life-changing force for good.
Does it really matter if I do this?
Yes. More than you can imagine.
Friends For Life gets almost 100 requests for help with animals each day. The unvarnished truth is this: the number we can save from staying in abusive situations or dying in other shelters is directly dependent on how many foster homes we have.
Where do I start?
Let’s make sure you are in the right place, first. If you found an animal or are surrendering an animal and are willing to foster it, go here to be directed to the correct resources.
If you have room in your heart and home to help an animal already in the Friends For Life program by providing a foster home, please fill out our foster care application form.