Foster a shelter pet!
Fostering — temporarily open your home to an animal in need — offers the one-on-one attention and loving comfort that only a home setting can offer, which is precisely what some animals need.
Apply now to become a San Diego Humane Society Foster home, then train for the specific teams you wish to support!
What are the requirements of becoming a foster pet-parent?
- The main volunteer contact for the family must be at least 18 years old (have this person complete the application).
- Reliable transportation for transporting animal(s) to vet appointments or evacuating them in case of an emergency.
- A schedule that allows you to meet the needs of foster animals in your care - there are many options!
Do you train me how to care for my foster pet?
We do! All training is virtual and accessible in your volunteer record! Additional hands on training is provided for bottle feeding assignments.
Can I adopt my foster animals?
YES! Foster volunteers often fall in love with a pet they are fostering and it is indeed acceptable to adopt your foster pet if you have found that perfect match for your family.
Is it difficult to say goodbye?
Yes, it can be. Fosters definitely need the ability to say goodbye, but rest assured our Foster team will help you through it. Please remember that fostering is a temporary situation and letting go of one foster pet enables you to help another in need. Although each adoption saves a life, a great foster parent can save many lives by socializing and rehabilitating pets that need a little extra time and care.
Is there a set time commitment?
The length of foster assignments varies based on the needs of the animal. You will receive an approximate duration before you commit to an animal. Some of our youngest foster animals need around-the-clock care, including feedings every 2-3 hours, while other foster animals can be left at home for up to 10 hours at a time. We will match you with a foster assignment that works with your schedule, availability and interests.
Where do I pick up my foster animals?
You will be given options of animals from a variety of locations. You will pick up animals from the San Diego Humane Society campus where the animal is located. We have campuses in San Diego, Oceanside and Escondido, so you can select animals at the locations that are most convenient for you.
Will I need to provide food or supplies?
San Diego Humane Society is proud to provide the training and support you will need to care for your foster animals. Supplies are a shared responsibility of San Diego Humane Society and the foster home; specific needs will be discussed for each foster case. If you would like to prepare your own foster kit, or donate to the Foster Care supply, please visit our Amazon Wish List for a list of frequently needed supplies.
What do other fosters have to say?
"Being a first time foster mom to two kittens so small (9 days old) was daunting at first, but within a day their need for me outweighed my reservations over what I was capable of. I can't believe I've had them for a week already! I'm so looking forward to getting them all set for their future homes." —San Diego Humane Society Foster Volunteer
How else can I help?
Interested in rehabilitating wildlife in your home? Click here to learn more!