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KGARL Foster Home FAQ’s

An important component of KGARL’s adoption program is our foster homes. We need caring, responsible adults to join our foster home team by opening their homes and their hearts to our dogs and cats.

Here are some common questions people ask about being a foster parent:

Why Should I Foster A Dog or Cat?

As a foster parent, you will be able to love, care for, and enjoy knowing different dogs and cats. And you will be doing a wonderful thing - giving these deserving animals a chance at a new, loving life.

What Will I Need To Do As A Foster Parent?

Foster homes are responsible for the daily care of the foster cat or dog, including feeding, exercising, socializing, grooming, reinforcing basic obedience commands, observing and evaluating general behavior and temperament, and of course providing love and security. KGARL will pay for any supplies that you need and all approved medical care.

Understand that all the animals are rescue animals and their behavior can be unpredictable. Be prepared for some adjustment problems in the beginning. It can be stressful for both you and the pet to be in a new situation. Be patient. If the going gets tough we will help out with advice and encouragement.

Will The Animal Be Healthy?

All of our animals are vet checked, spayed or neutered (or soon will be), current on all vaccinations, tested for worms and parasites and treated as needed, and dogs are tested for heartworm and are on preventative.  Even all of this testing does not guarantee a healthy animal, that is why KGARL requires that all animals in your home are up to date on their vaccinations.

We will tell you if an animal has a known health problem and, together, we will evaluate whether or not an animal with medical needs is a good choice for you.

Will I Get To Choose which Dog or Cat To Foster?

KGARL will take your needs and requests into consideration when choosing a foster for you to place a foster animal. You can ask for a specific animal, or an animal who fits your lifestyle. If you live in an apartment, you can ask for or an older animal who is low energy or a dog in medical recovery who needs to be kept quiet. If you are an active family, you can ask for a dog who needs lots of walks and plenty of exercise. If someone in your family is comfortable working with dogs, they can help with some basic obedience or teach him some tricks. Once we are aware of your preferences, we can work with you to find the best fit for your home, and for KGARL.

What If I Already Have A Pet?

In most cases, it`s fine if you already have a cat and/or dog, as long as your pet and the foster pet are both healthy and well behaved around other animals.  Prior to arranging any foster home the potential foster pet will be evaluated in order to ensure it will be a fit for the whole family.

How Long Does An Animal Stay in Foster Care?

The foster stay varies with each cat and dog. Animals with special needs may need to stay in foster care for a period of months. Some may stay only a few days. It really depends on the individual pet's situation. As of February, 2015, we are specifically looking for short-term foster homes for the cats that will be housed at the Petco in Dahlgren.

Do I Have To Be Home With The Animal All Day?

No. Many foster family members are employed outside the home and still provide a quality environment for the cat or dog. We do require that any time you are unable to directly supervise the foster animal, he must be confined to a small, secure area, preferably a training crate. This results in a safe secure place for the animal and also protects your home and possessions.

What Will It Cost To Foster An Animal?

KGARL pays for any necessary medical treatment the foster pet may require while under your care. If your foster animal does need medical care, you will be asked to transport it to one of our veterinarians. KGARL will provide food, a crate/carrier and other supplies as needed.

Do I Need A Fenced Yard In Order To Foster A Dog?

A fenced yard is preferred, but not necessary. Foster pets must NEVER be allowed to run free. If your yard is surrounded by a secure fence, the dog may be exercised there off leash. Outside the yard the dog must be on leash at ALL times.

What If I Am Having Problems?

Volunteers are available for telephone consultations. Being a foster home is extremely rewarding. However, you should keep in mind that not all rescue animals are housebroken or may have had little socialization or obedience training. We find that when given a chance these animals not only improve, they flourish in their foster care.

What If I Want To Travel?

If you are fostering and want to go away for a weekend or take a vacation, the foster pet can be returned to the Foster Coordinator’s care while you are away. Just arrange it in advance, as soon as you know, and we’ll reserve a spot.

Will I Become Attached To My Foster Pet?

Yes, of course. But, when you meet the new family who’s ready to provide a permanent loving home, you will feel more than satisfied to see him move on to his new life.

I’d Like To Foster. What Do I Do Next?

Filling out an application is the first step in our application process. Once your application is received, the application process begins.  We will review your application, check your references, check with your vet (if there are other animals in the household), speak to a landlord (if you rent), and arrange for a home visit, or we will accept digital photos of your home (inside and out) and yard, at our discretion.

If you are approved as a KGARL foster home, we will contact you when a potential KGARL pet needs foster care. We will talk with you about the breed, age, temperament and any other known aspects of the pet in question. The foster home always has the final decision as to whether or not to foster a KGARL pet.

Volunteers are always available to answer your questions. Please call 888-542-7582 or email adoptions@kgarl.org for assistance.

Apply to become a KGARL Foster Home today!