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10 Reasons to Foster an Animal

Foster volunteers are made up of animal lovers who are aware of the devastating and growing problem of animal over population and the inhumane treatment of animals.

Foster homes are always urgently needed. Lives can't be saved without them. All you need to provide is a place for the animal to go, and love. The rescue will supply the rest. And what you get back is immeasurable, unconditional love and joy from saving a life. An estimated 8 million dogs and cats enter animal shelters in the U.S. each year, and approximately 4 million (or 11,000) each day are euthanized.

1. You increase that animal chance of being adopted. By fostering you are a link between the animal and potential homes. You can spread the word about what a good dog or cat he or she is, how they interact with people and other animals. By living with you, he has the chance to learn behavior that will make him/her more appealing to other families. When you foster a dog, you have the ability to transform him/her to a dog someone would be honored to live with.... Most dog and cat trainers for the movies and TV are adopted shelter dogs.

2. Your own pet will learn more social skills. Rescue groups provide immeasurable support and some even offer invaluable training.

3. It’s a good way to see if you are ready for an additional pet. It’s not always clear whether a second or third pet would fit in with your family. Sometimes an additional pet is a disaster. Other times it couldn’t be better. With fostering, you have a chance to see whether or not another pet is right for your family. Maybe providing temporary care is better for you.

4. You help the rescue learn about the animal's personality. It’s hard to know much about a dog or cat when it is living in a shelter environment with 15 other dogs and cats. Placing animals in foster homes help rescues learn if the pet likes children, beg at the table, chase cats, bark when crated, know basic commands, or have high or low energy. The possibilities of what a foster family will learn about an animals are unlimited.

5. You are saving an animal's life. Many rescues are full to their limits and cannot take in more animals until additional foster homes open up. By fostering, the rescue can save money on her boarding fees and use it to save another homeless animal.

6. Many animal shelters and rescue groups can’t function without foster homes.

7. You might end up with a new family member. Many foster families realize the animal they are fostering is a perfect fit for their family. This is a happy ending for both the animal and humans involved. If you don’t foster, then you will never know what you are missing. You might never meet that special pet that could add joy to your life.

8. The animal gets to live with your family rather than at a shelter. Animals get stressed from shelter conditions. Shelters are noisy with limited one-on-one interaction. The animals don’t get enough exercise, training, or socialization. With time, many dogs/cats develop psychological issues as pent-up energy, frustration, aggression, or boredom builds.

9. Any volunteering makes a person feel good. Fostering an animal is a way to give back to your community. If you love animals, there is nothing more rewarding than helping a homeless cat or dog.

10. It’s a way to help if you don’t have enough money to donate. If you simply don’t have the money to donate to animal shelters and rescues, you can donate your time by fostering. It is just as valuable!

Fosters play a very important part of rescue. Rescue groups can only pull or accept an animal in need into their rescue if they have somewhere for them to stay while they are preparing and networking them for their new families. Fosters are usually short term as they try to place them into their forever homes as soon as possible.

Want to try being a foster for the Little Rock Animal Village? Click here to visit our Fostering webpage. Or you can download our Foster Application and either fax it to the number on the form or e-mail it to: For more information, call Skip at LRAV: (501) 376-3067.

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