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What is a Foster Home?

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Becoming a foster parent is a wonderful and personal way to contribute to saving the lives of homeless animals. Foster parents provide a temporary home for rescue animals who are waiting for adoption. Temporary could mean from a day to several months. Foster homes provide the love and attention and in some cases training that make the animals more adoptable. Fostering provides a flexible way to volunteer that does not require a scheduled number of hours and itʼs a great way to enjoy animals in your home if you are not in a position to make a lifelong commitment to adopt.

Foster homes play a crucial role in rehabilitating rescued animals and in helping abused and neglected animals learn how to love and trust again. By teaching or re-teaching an animal how to live in a home setting, foster homes help increase the odds for a smooth and successful transition into a permanent adoptive home. In the case of orphaned baby animals, foster homes provide surrogate parenting and round-the-clock care for tiny animals that are too young to survive on their own. By providing orphaned animals with plenty of nutrition, love, and stimulation during their first eight weeks of life, foster homes help ensure their health and survival as adults. What do foster homes do? Foster homes save lives.

Some people are reluctant to foster animals because they are concerned that it is unfair to take in an animal, establish a bond, and then allow the animal to be adopted into another home. Isnʼt that a second abandonment? Not at all. Being in a foster home can be a lifesaving bridge for an abandoned or frightened pet. It gives the animal a chance to get used to life in a house and an opportunity to learn that people can be kind, food is available, and there is a warm, secure place to sleep. Foster care can help prepare a pet for a new life in a permanent home.

Taking animals into our home, loving them, and then letting them go requires a special kind of person. Your role as a foster parent is to prepare the animal for adoption into a forever home. Giving up an animals youʼve fostered, even to a wonderful new home, can be difficult emotionally. Parting with animals you’ve nurtured and loved requires a very special kind of person. Foster parents should remind themselves that moving an animal into an adoptive home makes room for one more animal to be saved.

FOSTER HOME POLICIES

Charlieʼs Angels Animal Rescue will not knowingly place any foster animal in the following situations:

  • With individuals with a history of animal abuse, neglect, or abandonment
  • Where personal animals are not up to date on all required vaccinations and donʼt have regular vet visits
  • In homes where it would be used as an attack guard dog
  • To be turned over to a person who has not been screened for foster home approval
  • To a residence where pets are not allowed
  • To an individual who is not considered an adult
  • To a home where the animal is going to be chained
  • To a home where all family members are not in favor of the foster home situation
  • Charlieʼs Angels prefers a fenced yard for our foster homes, but fences are not mandated in all cases. However, in specific situations, certain dogs may require a fenced yard. Charlieʼs Angels does not prohibit the use of invisible fences but discourages their use when the owner is not at home.

All foster homes must provide proper care for their foster animals including the following:

  • Proper diet and fresh water
  • Safe, comfortable shelter from the elements and potential dangers
  • Routine vaccinations are done by our staff at Safe Haven. You’ll be advised if you have to bring your foster to us for additional shots.
  • Proper identification on pets and complying with local animal laws
  • Adequate training and supervision including house training and crate training
  • Daily exercise and companionship

In addition, foster homes must provide the following for animals in their care:

  • Keep accurate records of vaccinations, spay/neuter, medications, vet appointments, intake form, etc.
  • Complete monthly Foster Sheet and send to Foster Coordinator
  • Help with transports to needed appointments
  • Assess pets for behaviors and prepare report as requested
  • Dispense prescribed medications/treatments
  • Immediately notify the Foster Coordinator of medical visits needed for foster animals and of emergency care obtained without prior approval of the Foster Home Team
  • Obtain appointment care and notify Foster Home Coordinator of follow-up appointment as soon as possible
  • Use a crate when transporting a foster pet
  • Notify the Foster Coordinator immediately if it appears the foster pet is not acceptable to the foster home situation

Foster parents cannot do the following:

  • Adopt a foster pet that has already been chosen for rescue
  • Use their own vet or any medical needs
  • Walk foster pet without a collar and leash at all times
  • Leave pet unattended outside
  • Let foster pet go to anyone else without expressed permission and approval from the Foster Committee
  • Stop giving prescribed medications without vet consent

What are the requirements for being a foster parent?

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Itʼs best to have some knowledge of companion animal behavior and health. The general requirements are that the foster love animals and have the time and resources to provide a foster animal with adequate care. Other requirements will vary depending upon the specific needs of a given foster animal. Some animals, for example, will need fenced yards, extra time commitments (as in the case with orphaned newborns), etc. Some of the animals most in need of foster care are those that require a little extra help or training or recovering from surgery or an illness. Shy cats often need time to learn to trust and a quiet home environment. Dogs often benefit from a little obedience training. Being familiar with some basic training and socialization techniques can be a big help in preparing a foster animal for a new home.

Other than attending foster training, all foster parents are asked to make themselves available for a scheduled, informal home visit. This is to ensure that the home is suitable and safe environment for fostering, both for the foster family and the animals being fostered.

Foster parents are encouraged to purchased food and supplies when they can in order to help CAAR keep costs as low as possible. However, if a foster is unable to provide these, CAAR will provide needed food and supplies including crates as required. CAAR provides all the medical attention needed by our animals. The foster will be asked to provide transportation to and from services for their animals whenever possible.

Charlie’s Angels does not foster to adopt.

Medical Situations

03Medical Situations – We work with several approved veterinarians in the area who provide services to us at reduced rates. If your foster has a medical situation, we ask that you use a CAAR approved vet, even if you have an established relationship with your own vet.  Fosters never pay for medical expenses but we do ask that you transport your foster animal.

In the case of an emergency, contact Kim Smith, President at 704-506-9551 or Bethany Nelson-McCarver, Kennel Manager at 917-993-3304.

“Failed” Fosters

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It happens. Sometimes, a foster animal is such a perfect match that they become permanent members of the family. If that should happen and you decide you want to adopt your foster, and if the animal is available for adoption, you would pay the standard adoption fee. 

The exception to this would be if you have a short term foster who has been designated for transport. These are animals who have been promised to one of our rescue partners in another state and are not available for a local adoption. If you have any questions about whether your foster animal is considered a “transport” animal, let us know immediately.

Follow Up

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Two weeks after the foster is placed, two members of the foster home team will return to the foster home to verify the placement has been successful. If corrections need to be made, time can be allowed for this and the foster home team can return at an appropriate time to review the circumstances. If circumstances warrant, the pet can be removed immediately. The follow up form should be completed for all follow up visits.

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