Pets Add Life (PAL) is a campaign dedicated to increasing animal adoption by highlighting the many ways pets enhance our lives. Once a year they ask bloggers to get in on the act.
Last year I wrote about the benefits of living in a multi-pet home. This year I’m writing about the benefits of being a foster pet parent. It’s something I know about first hand as the former Foster Mom of 20+ cats and kittens. There’s nothing like the feeling of an adopter thanking you for looking after their baby for them. Talk about gratifying.
Don’t think you’re the foster parent type? If you’re a jet-setter, fence-sitter, or just have ADHD, you might be surprised to learn you’d make the perfect foster parent! At the end of this post you’ll find a list of groups looking for foster parents along with one special kitty from NYC.
Jet-setter: If your travel schedule precludes you from having your own pet, you need not live in a furry-free zone. Fostering could be exactly what you’ve been waiting for! Many foster programs are flexible and don’t expect you to foster 24/7.
Fence-sitter: Thinking about adopting but afraid to take the plunge? Fostering is the best way to see what it’s like to be a pet parent (too bad it’s not as easy to test-drive 2-legged parenting!).
Kitten addict: Can’t stop dreaming about fluffy cute kitties? Fostering is the perfect way to get your kitten fix without ending up with a house overflowing with cats!
Fatalist: Don’t think fostering one cat or kitten will make a difference? Well guess what? Every time you foster, you help save two animals. You make your foster pet more adoptable and free up a cage so another life can be saved!
Commitment phobic: Want to enjoy the benefits of having a cat or dog without the commitment? Fostering could be the answer you’ve been waiting for!
Wanna-be do-gooder: Have the best intentions of volunteering but don’t have the time? Give back without giving up your weekend or weeknights. Fostering is the perfect way to volunteer and you don’t even have to leave your home!
Indecisive: Want to adopt but afraid of making an on-the-spot decision? Take kitty for a test-drive. Being out of a caged environment will allow kitty to show his/her real temperament. This can be particularly helpful when there are other animals in the home. Foster-to-adopt, it’s like lease-to-own!
Octogenarian: Do you have an older friend or family member who loves animals but doesn’t want to get into a long-term commitment? What could be better than setting up two seniors (just like Max and Bob).
ADHD: Do you have a short attention span? Well as a foster parent you’ll get tired of the same in dog or cat day in and day out. You’ll experience a range of pets from high-energy kittens to shy seniors and naughty adolescents. They say variety is the spice of life!
Exchange student or migrant worker: Not going to be in town for long? If you meet the requirements your short stay can mean a big break from a cage for a lucky kitty or pup!
Broke artist (or just broke): Want a pet but can’t afford it? Ta-da! Most foster programs are all-expenses paid! Just be responsible and shower your foster kid with love and food, vet bills and litter are taken care of! Who says there’s no such thing as a free lunch!
Below you can find a list of a few groups currently looking for foster pet parents. If you don’t see a place near you don’t worry – a quick Google search will point you in the right direction!
***UPDATE: I’M HAPPY TO ANNOUNCE SNOWBALL FOUND A GREAT HOME***
But first, I’m hoping one of readers in the New York City area has it in their heart and home to foster this sweet scared kitty Snowball. My friend Lisa visits vet offices for her job and sees rescue animals all the time. But she cannot get this boy out of her mind, and so I told her I’d post him on my blog today.
He’s petrified and literally sits there with his eyes closed. He’s in need of a patient foster Mom or Dad who can work to gain his trust and socialize him. It’s the only chance he has at every being adopted. Snowball is on Long Island but transportation to a foster home in the area can be provided. Email Lisa if you can help (Lakitty12@nyc.rr.com).
Australia: Cat Rescue in Sydney, Jenny – firstname.lastname@example.org
Arizona- Phoenix: Lost our home pet foundation, Jodi@lostourhome.org, 602-445-7387
Colorado – Rifle: Greta’s Kingdom email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org
Georgia – Marietta:Good Mews Animal Foundation, email@example.com, 770-499-2287 Illinois – Chicago: Chicago Cat Rescue, Cindy@chicagocatrescue.org, 773.203.0215
Michigan – Howell: Last Chance Rescue, firstname.lastname@example.org, (810) 220-9394
Michigan – Swartz Creek: PAWS Animal Rescue, email@example.com, 810-635-9649
Missouri – St. Louis: Tenth Life Cat Rescue, firstname.lastname@example.org, 314-808-2454
New York – New York: Anjellicle Cats Rescue, email@example.com
New York – New York:City Critters, firstname.lastname@example.org 212-252-3183
Pennsylvania – Scranton NEPA Animal Adoption Network
Texas – Euless (DW Area): Trinity GAP Club, email@example.com
Virginia -Fairfax: Fancy Cats Org, firstname.lastname@example.org, (703) 961-1056
Virginia – Tysons, Reston, Leesburg & Seven Corners: Lost Dog and Cat Rescue Foundation, cat coordinator email@example.com
Virginia – NOVA, DC, (and Maryland): Homeward Trails Animal Rescue, firstname.lastname@example.orgemail@example.com
Virginia – Arlington: NOVA SPCA, firstname.lastname@example.org, 703-799-9390
West Virginia – Grafton: PURR WV, email@example.com
The organizations above have been suggested to be through the I HAVE CAT Facebook page. As with any organization or charity, be sure to do your homework!
Not all foster programs are run in the same manner, so make sure to ask and check around to find the program that’s the right fit for you. References and a home check will likely be required. Some programs may only need Monday-Friday fostering while others need it 7 days a week.This post is sponsored by the Pets Add Life campaign and the American Pet Products Association. I am being compensated for helping spread the word about the benefits and joys of pet ownership. All opinions are those of I HAVE CAT.