What is Fostering?
Fostering is something that you can do to save lives! A foster home is a temporary living situation for dogs and cats in our program while they are awaiting placement in a permanent home. Foster families provide shelter, food, care, and love.
The number of animals we can save depends entirely on the number of people, who open their hearts and homes to foster them.
In some cases, a foster home is needed to help a dog or cat transition from the stress of living at the shelter. For some dogs and cats, they will need to stay in a foster home until they are adopted.
Being a pet foster family has rewards beyond the essential value of helping a pet in need find a new home. For some, it is a chance to have an animal companion without a lifetime commitment, or to try new companions for an existing pet. For others, it is the special challenge of helping an animal recover from an illness or injury, the trauma of losing a beloved owner or home, or to decompress.
Whether it’s short or long term, we have a foster pet for everyone!
Length of foster care varies based on each animal. Some foster animals may only need your hospitality for a week or two, while others may require up to three months of care. The length of time can depend on the animal’s age, medical issues, and the amount of effort placed into marketing the pet. Most foster animals stay in their foster homes until they are adopted out, so marketing your foster animal is an important factor in length of stay!
Interested in becoming a foster but want to know more?
Joyce Howard started her adventure with San Antonio Pets Alive! in 2016 by offering to feed kittens. Being a retired nurse and having a military background has given Joyce a tough skin and the ability to think ahead. She is not afraid of ringworm or upper respiratory diseases and is always willing to take in medical cases.
Joyce’s favorite thing about fostering is all the love she gets from the kittens, playing with them, and seeing them progress. “It is never a dull moment, there is always something new”, she says. Her advice to those thinking about fostering is, “You need to be committed. You have to be aware and prepared because animals could crash quickly and you can’t save them all.” However, she says all the hard work and time invested is worth it and taking care of an animal is always rewarding. We applaud Joyce’s determination, one she decides on something she goes full blast. Life saving can sometimes get challenging, but with fosters like Joyce on our side, anything is paw-sible.
When it comes to wet noses and wagging tails, Amy Bredemus is quite the expert. Amy started fostering for SAPA! in April of 2018, and since, has been a warrior for our most vulnerable puppies and dogs. Amy says the joy of serving others is what keeps her motivated. Not only is she a relentless lifesaver, Amy has also become a mentor to newer fosters.
According to Amy, a word of encouragement is the greatest gift you can give. “We all have a thought that is daunting and intimidating, but don’t isolate yourself. Make sure you are surrounding yourself with people who can uplift you,” says Amy.
Fostering comes with challenges, no doubt about it, but the beauty if lifesaving always prevails. Amy loves how saving a life can connect and bring people together through education, support, and purpose. “There have been times when I experienced loss, but the support of the community provided me with a safe space,” she says.
One of the dogs that lives in Amy’s heart forever is Beverly Leslie. This pup came from a hoarding situation, severely emaciated, neglected, and with a heart murmur, was struggling to stay alive. There wasn’t much hope left for Beverly Leslie, but though care, love, and medication, his needs were met and he flourished. Amy is a strong believer that making a connection with an animal is key to their recovery and that the medical part of it is only half of the equation. The puppies and dogs of San Antonio Pets Alive! are so grateful to have Amy Bredemus in our lifesaving corner!