Pet fostering is not the most preferred choice when it comes to pet ownership. But whatever fears, opinions or questions you may have, allow us to present some of the most compelling reasons why you absolutely should consider fostering a pet.
Reasons You Should Foster a Pet
- Fostering helps your community. Rescue homes and animal shelters work very hard to save pets from life on the streets, but these establishments quickly become overpopulated. Volunteering to take a needy pet in, helps shoulder the responsibility and will encourage others to do that same by supporting animal protection in their communities.
- You are saving a life, and making room for more animals to have a safe place to live. Tragically, over-crowding can lead to animals being euthanized, simply because there are few other alternatives. In many cases the “unwanted” pets that are having trouble finding a home are more likely to be put down if a foster parent does not offer to give them a place. Not only does fostering save a life, but it keeps space at the shelters open for other in-coming pets.
- Fostering increase a animal’s chances of getting adopted. Just knowing that a shelter animal is receiving love and care from a stable home, helps prospective adopting parents feel more inclined towards a pet. It shows that when they are out of the shelter, life at home will be easy to adjust to, and they may have fewer behavioral problems to work through because they are being socialized well.
- Fostering is only a temporary commitment. By opening up your home to a domestic pet in need, you are not signing your life away. It is not a long-term agreement where you are with the animal from birth to death. That means, were something dramatic to change in your life, you would be able to have the creature re-homed efficiently to another foster parent.
- You can decide the terms of fostering (i.e. what kind of pet, how long of a commitment, etc.). You can choose whether you want to help newborn kitties or an aging dog. Whether you sign on for 2 weeks of volunteer help, or you agree to house a pet until their adoptive owner should come along, you get to decide on the length of your involvement with the pet. This provides you freedom, while giving you the chance to help in any way your schedule permits.
- You gain skills as a stand-in pet owner. By devoting time to a temporary pet, you learn a lot about caring for animals in general. In a short amount of time, you are able to see if you prefer cats or dogs, you learn about daily routines, boundaries, training, and how to handle disobedience. Working with animals is an educational experience, and will give you insight into how you function as a pet-owner.
- Your own pet will have improved social skills. If you have pets already, bringing in a foster cat or dog will help your own furry friend learn how to be more easily adaptable. It will also improve how the foster pet socializes, even if the adjustment is tricky at first.
- It is inexpensive! The rescue homes usually agree to cover any medical and veterinary bills that the foster cat or dog will incur, and all toys, beds, food, and tools etc. are considered a donation to the shelter home and are tax deductible. With these provisions, there is hardly any financial loss!
- Fostering benefits you emotionally. As the old saying goes, it is always better to give than to receive, and the same is true in pet-fostering. When someone is not financially able to give monetary gifts to a shelter, providing a lonely animal with a safe home is a great alternative. Supporting the community, and helping provide a place for an abandoned pet, does something psychologically to a person. It increases feelings of worth and purpose to our lives, and brings satisfaction that comes from doing the right thing. People who are also emotionally recovering from a loss or working through something in their own lives would be able to heal while investing in and bonding with another creature. Both parties benefit, as trust and comradery is established through the fostering process.