Foster Frequently Asked Questions
Fostering for Red Paw Emergency Relief Team is a unique experience, and different than fostering for other organizations. Our animals are people’s pets, they are owned and loved and need a temporary foster home until their owners can recover from their home disaster. Red Paw’s goal is to reunite people and their pets within a 30-60 day timeframe. If you are interested in fostering for Red Paw, please review our Foster Process and complete our Foster Application today!
Q: Can I know prior to agreeing to foster, how long the pet will be with me?
A: We do ask during intake how long the owner thinks they will need foster care for. There are a variety of reasons why the owner may not know up front what the length of stay for their pet may be, including delay with insurance, landlord issues, financial hardship.
Q: Is the animal’s behavior evaluated prior to placement?
A: We ask the client during intake and during weekly check-ins about the animal’s personality, likes, dislikes, spay/neuter/vaccination history, and if they are housebroken. Please be aware, we can only go by what we are told by the owner during intake. Some animals react differently when they are away from home or away from their owners. If you’re fostering a Red Paw dog, we recommend arranging a meet and greet ahead of time with your dog before committing to fostering.
Q: What medical treatments do the animals have before coming into a foster home?
A: All animals are spayed/neutered, vaccinated, de-wormed, have topical flea/tick prevention applied, and are FIV/FeLV tested (feline only), prior to being placed in a Red Paw foster home. If the pet has suffered from smoke inhalation or sustained an injury in the disaster, you would be informed of any at home care required. Aside from an emergency, most animals should not require follow up veterinary care during their stay with you.
Q: Can the owner visit, call to check in, or pick up their pet from me once they are ready for the reunion?
A: No. For privacy purposes, we do not allow the owners to contact the foster or facility that their animal is placed in. Red Paw is the go between and we supply pictures and updates to the owner from the foster during our weekly check-ins.
Q: Do you do home checks for fosters?
A: No, there is a foster application that must be filled out where we ask for landlord info, personal references and vet info. Reference calls are made prior to approval.
Q: Do you provide food & supplies for the foster animal?
A: Yes, if you need food & supplies we can provide them for you.
Q: Do I need a vehicle to be a foster?
A: No. We have transport volunteers who can drop the animal off and pick it up for the reunion. The animal should not need to leave your home unless there is an emergency.
Q: What do I do if the animal I’m fostering has an emergency? Can I take it to my personal vet?
A: No. If there is an emergency you MUST call our Emergency Line and you will be directed to one of our partner hospitals.
Q: Can I take the foster to my personal groomer, doggie day care or vet if something comes up while the animal is in my care?
A: No. Please remember these are owned animals, and we cannot do anything with the animal without prior approval from the owner.
A comprehensive Foster Manual is provided to all Red Paw approved fosters.