Foster Programs

How does the foster program work?

Foster families are critical for shelter pets with special needs. Cats, dogs, and sometimes small animals come into WHS and need extra care in a temporary foster home to help them become healthy, happy, and ready for adoption.  WHS determines which shelter pets qualify for foster care, and the health and behavior of all potential foster pets are evaluated prior to foster placement.  Once you have become a foster parent with WHS, you'll have access to a list of shelter pets that need extra TLC.  The list will describe the pet, their needs, and their estimated length of care.  You sign up for the foster pet that matches your comfort level and availability.  WHS will coordinate with you to pick up the foster pet and some supplies (food, medication, caging for small animals).  You take your new foster pet home, care for him/her, and bring the pet into WHS for regular checkups.  When it's time, we'll schedule your foster pet's return to WHS for adoption..  Then, when you're ready, you can start all over again with a new foster pet!

Who can become a foster parent?

  • You must be 18 years or older.  
  • If renting, you must have landlord approval.  
  • You must be able to travel to WHS for veterinary appointments weekdays 8am-4pm. 
  • You must have the ability to keep foster pets separated from your own pets.
  • You will need to provide a few supplies (i.e dishes, litter, bedding).
  • You must have a little time and an open heart to provide your foster pet with care, kindness, and compassion.

What kind of animals need foster care?

There's a wide variety of animals that need foster care for a number of reasons.  You may select the species and type of need that best fits your comfort level and availability.

  • All species - cats, dogs, and even small animals like rabbits, hamsters, and guinea pigs
  • Age -  too young for adoption so they need time in a foster home to become old enough to find their forever home.
  • Medical - ill and injured animals who need time and care to recover
  • Behavior - shy/nervous animals who need helping learning confidence, and other animals needing help with manners

How do I get started?

  1. Read through our foster requirements
  2. Attend our online orientation
  3. Fill out a foster application (link provided upon completion of orientation)
  4. Foster!

Click here to get started!

If you have any questions, please contact Tania Huycke-Phillips, Foster Specialist, at or (920) 469-3110 x104.

Whether you foster one or two at a time or a whole litter, you are making a difference to a pet who will someday become someone's furry family member!

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