Fostering with Adopt Me
Adopt Me does not have a physical shelter, we rely on dedicated volunteers to take a dog into their homes while the rescue finds them a forever home. We also believe that having dogs in a home setting instead of a shelter helps them come out of their shells, learn to trust, and prepare for what living with a loving family is really like.
Fostering means you commit to having the dog in your home until they are adopted, or for a predetermined amount of time. During this time you give your foster dog love, patience, attention, basic training, socialization, food and care. For a better idea of what fostering is like, check out what our current foster families have to say about their experience. We can only save as many dogs as we have foster homes, so please, help us save more animals today!
How long will I have a foster pet?
Unfortunately, we can't know how long a particular pet will take to find a perfect home. It can be anywhere from days to months, but we do everything we can to help publicize your pet. If you can only commit to a specific period of time, we may still be able to work with you. Transitioning homes can be stressful for our pets, so please do your best to commit to keep them until they go to their forever home.
How do I know what dog I will foster?
You can pick which dog you are interested in fostering. When you volunteer to foster, you join our internal Facebook group where we post photos and details about the dogs that need homes each week. It's a great way for new dog owners to discover what kinds of dogs best fit with their lifestyle.
Who is responsible for purchasing supplies and food for a foster dog?
You are financially responsible for all supplies and food, however all purchases are tax deductible as donations to the rescue. So keep those receipts!
What happens if my foster dog is sick?
All vetting is paid for by the rescue. If you are worried about your foster dog's health, contact your fostering representative to make sure vetting is necessary before going to urgent care. For non-emergent vet care, we partner with Spay Me Veterinary Clinic. Know that our foster dogs sometimes come to us with flea, tick and mosquito borne illnesses already. This is common in the Southern states where many of our dogs come from. These are generally not contagious to other pets and are treatable.
Who is responsible for finding an adopter for my foster pet?
Both the foster parent and the volunteer team have a role. We post your dog on Petfinder and process adoption applications. We rely on you for pictures and details about your dog's personality. Anything you can do to help advocate for your foster dog is greatly appreciated - social media posts, updates about them as they settle in, and making sure your pet can attend PetSmart adoption events, for example. We also appreciate if you are able to set up meet and greets and home visits with potential adopters, but we help with these too.
Are the dogs potty trained? Crate trained? Can I be sure they will get along with my cat and dog?
When we take dogs in from a shelter, a previous owner, or a foster in North Carolina, we know as much as they tell us so sometimes we don't know all these answers. We ask fosters to be prepared for a dog that is still learning manners and being socialized. We recommend crating foster dogs to prevent any potty accidents or unwanted chewing, since even well behaved dogs show this behavior during a stressful life transition. We also ask for gradual, brief and supervised introductions to other pets and kids for the first week or two until you get to know the behavior of your foster dog. We have several very talented trainers among our volunteers and they can help you through basic training of your foster dog.
What do I do if it doesn't work out with my foster dog?
We count on our fosters to foster a dog until they have a home, even if it's challenging and even though it's an uncertain length of time. If it's just not working, especially if other pets or family members are at risk, we will do everything we can to help and/or re-home your foster pet. Know that re-homing is stressful for our dogs, so we try to use it as a last resort. Let us know immediately if you are having trouble with your foster dog so we can help you through it or start finding a new home quickly.
I'm a first time foster or dog owner, how do I prepare for a foster dog?
If you are a first time foster or first time dog owner, let us know and we can do our best to find you a dog that is more accustomed to living in a home. We recommend having a crate because we can't be sure that pets are house trained or going to be well behaved when you're not home. After being surrendered by their owner, or transported from a shelter far away, or just being in a new situation with new people can be very stressful for the dogs so often, even the best behaved of dogs are a challenge for the first few days while they settle in. So be patient, be ready for surprises, and use your support system! Our community of foster volunteers is incredibly helpful and supportive and can help you with any of your concerns. Fostering isn't always easy, but it is always rewarding and makes a huge difference for the pet you take in.
How do I foster if I work full time, live far away, rent, have other pets, or don't have a yard?
We have excellent foster parents that have worked around all of these. Just ask!