The goal of the foster care program is to care for animals that are not currently adoptable until they become adoptable. This includes:

  • Kittens and puppies under 2 months of age
  • Kittens and puppies requiring socialization
  • Nursing cats and dogs with young
  • Cats or kittens that are ill or injured
  • Adult animals who need a break
  • Animals that are ill or injured
  • Pets in the Safe Housing Program


Time Commitment:

Many people want to know how long they will have the animal in question. Many times we cannot provide a definitive answer, but here are some guidelines:

Foster Situation
Weeks Involved
Daily Hours of Care
Weaned Kittens 1 – 5 Weeks 3 Daily Hours
URI/Lack of Space 2 – 3 Weeks 1-2+ Daily Hours
Mom with Kittens 2 – 8 Weeks 3 Daily Hours
Weaned Puppies 1-4 Weeks 3 – 6 Daily Hours
Medical / Injury 1 – 2 Weeks 1 – 3 Daily Hours
Orphaned Puppies 6 – 8 Weeks 8 Daily Hours
Behavior Cases 1 – 2 Weeks 3 Daily Hours
Mom with Puppies 2 – 8 Weeks 3 Daily Hours


Usually these animals come in periodically for reevaluation by staff and are either returned to the shelter or made available for adoption from the foster home when they are deemed adoptable.

If at any time you can no longer keep the animals in your home, please call the shelter to arrange to return them. If you can take them back at some point let us know (leaving on a weekend trip) otherwise we will find another foster home for them.


Responsibilities as a Foster Volunteer

Keep your foster animals safe and comfortable. Treat them as if they were your own pets. Fresh food and water every day, clean litter boxes for cats, daily walks or exercise for dogs, etc…Cats and kittens are not allowed to roam free outside!

Monitor their health and behavior. Please keep us apprised of the situation with your foster animals. If they are ill or injured, let us know how they are recuperating. If they become ill, please let us know so we can begin treatment.

Note: Do not seek medical care on your own for your foster animals! If care is needed, call Heartland to arrange this. We can usually get vet assistance at a reduced rate or for free. We cannot reimburse you if you seek care on your own!

Socialize! Spend time with them; all animals need daily companionship, some more than others.

Financial help. Heartland has supplies for you to use but, as most of our supplies are donated, anything you can buy for your animals is a donation

to us. Keep track of what you spend for a tax deduction.


So, Why Foster?

You can have temporary pets without the commitment.

Baby Animals…need we say more?

Children can experience the miracle of birth without adding to pet-overpopulation.

Make a difference; help us expand our walls and save lives!


Foster Care Application

October, 2020: Thank you for your interest in fostering for us. The foster application is closed until further notice.


Important contact information

Call (541)757-9000  or email