Since announcing our No Kill initiative in 2015, we rely on foster homes more than ever. Here at Humane Society of Southwest Missouri (HSSWMO), we take a range of dogs and cats including young, sick, injured, or under-socialized animals. Volunteer foster families give us the ability to keep taking in these animals.
This extra care that foster families provide is so crucial, whether it is an orphaned kitten needing bottle fed, or a dog that just needs help overcoming some fear. At this time, our Foster Care Program is reserved for animals in the shelter. We will not place outside-owned animals into our program.
Frequently Asked Questions
Can I foster if I have a full-time job? Absolutely! Many animals may be adopted to families who work outside of the home and most foster animals can easily be adjusted to this type of schedule. This could even help make the animal more adoptable since they will already be on this type of schedule.
What will it cost me to foster? Here at HSSWMO, we provide all needed supplies including food, crate (as needed), leash, bowls, etc. With a medical team on staff, we also provide all medical care needed for the animal during the foster process, including vaccinations, vet visits, and prescription medications. We only ask the foster to provide transportation to and from the shelter and to adoption events if needed.
Can I choose what I want to foster? Yes, we want you to have the best match possible when bringing a new animal into your home, even on a temporary basis. You can select a specific category of animals when you fill out your foster application. It can be anything from bottle kittens only, a mom dog with a litter of puppies, or even an adult dog or cat who may just need extra love. We certainly want you to be comfortable with your decision, and you can meet the animal prior to making your decision.
How long will I have the foster animal in my home? An animal's length of stay in foster care is on a case-by-case basis and on average is 2-4 weeks. However, some special cases can require a foster of several months. We will always provide an estimated foster timeline prior to you taking the animal home, and you can specify the time commitment you are comfortable with when filling out the Foster Application.
Do my current pets have to be separated from my fosters? We always want to keep the best interest of all animals involved as our top priority. We handle this question per foster animal since each situation is unique. However, most foster animals will need a separate area to stay and be isolated from your pets due to health reasons.
All current pets in the home must be up-to-date on vaccinations prior to fostering. This can be verified with a phone call to your vet or by providing a copy of your animal’s vet records.
We require all landlords or property management companies to approve the foster animal being at the residence. Any pet fee required is the responsibility of the foster. This can be confirmed with a phone call to the landlord or with a written statement from the landlord.
Once you fill out the application, you will be contacted via phone or email by our Foster Coordinator. Please allow some time for this; you will be contacted once your application is approved and when we have a pet in need that fits your home and preferences. If you submit your application and you haven’t been called or emailed yet, feel free to call the shelter and inquire about the status of your application. If you have questions about our Foster Program please call (417) 833-2526 ext. 215 or email us at Foster@hsswmo.org