You provide the love & shelter, we provide the rest!
Our foster homes are the core of our organization. Without them, we would not be able to rescue the pets that we do. Fostering is a very rewarding experience, though it can be tough- it may be hard to let certain ones go, even though you know that by letting them go, you save the life of another. Foster homes are responsible for caring for the pet they are fostering and meeting with potential adopters for that particular pet. The Foster home is also responsible for getting their pet to and from our vet in Arlington Heights for any care they may need, as well as attending as many adoption events as possible.
In exchange for caring for one of our adoptable pets, Young At Heart Pet Rescue pays 100% of all medical bills related to that particular pet, provides any and all necessary items needed for that pet, such as food, bowls, toys, bed, crate or litter box. We strive to find our foster homes pets that work well with their situation, i.e. dog-friendly, kid-friendly, etc. Often, because our pets are older, the transition is easy and there are few issues. However, since most of the pets we rescue are from pounds, we won’t always know their background or their situations- that’s where the foster homes really help us out! Foster homes help us figure out the best home for each pet.
Maybe your foster pet needs someone who is home a lot, or needs another dog to play with, or needs a home where he/she is the only pet. Our foster homes give us the feedback necessary to help us place each pet as carefully as we can so that both our adopters and our pets are happy. You do not need to currently have a pet, nor do you need to have a lot of pet experience- we’ll walk you through everything!
What Young at Heart Provides for Foster Homes
- All food for the foster dog.
- All authorized veterinary care for the foster dog.
- Obedience Training opportunities for you and your foster dog at no cost.
- Support and aid for any questions or behavior problems you might encounter with your foster dog.
- Loan of a crate or baby gate for the foster dog.
- Loan of a litter box for the foster cat. Cat litter can be provided as well.
- The knowledge that you are giving a senior pet another chance to find a loving, safe home!
- Foster homes must be located in Northern Illinois, preferably in one of the following counties: Cook, DuPage, Lake, Kane, or McHenry. It is easier for everyone if foster homes are close to Adoption Day or Meet-N-Greet locations, as well as our main veterinary hospital in Arlington Heights. All of our foster homes are licensed by the Illinois Department of Agriculture, and must pay an initial $25 licensing fee. Young at Heart pays the annual licensing fee for those families who continue to foster after the first year.
- If you do not own your home, you need your landlord’s written permission to have a foster pet in your home and we will need to speak with them via telephone to confirm. You are also responsible for any pet security deposit required.
- Dog foster homes should have a securely fenced yard area for the dog’s safety and your convenience. A kennel run is usually not acceptable. If you do not have a fenced area, you are still be eligible to foster dogs; this will be decided on a case-by-case basis. Please note that the Invisible Fence alone cannot be used for foster dogs. Cat foster homes must have secure, well-cared for screens for the cat’s safety and containment. A doggy door is not acceptable for cat foster homes.
- The foster’s home environment must be appropriate for the foster dog or cat. We consider the foster’s own pets, and any children in the home.
- Fosters need to be understanding and patient enough to commit to fostering a dog or cat until it is placed in a permanent home. While the typical placement time for a Young at Heart dog or cat is about six to eight weeks, sometimes pets are adopted out in much less time. Other cases, where medical and behavioral issues are present, much more time. We do look for short-term foster situations once in a while, but our most urgent need is for long-term foster homes.
- As a foster, you will have the full support of other experienced foster-volunteers. Fosters need to stay in contact with our Foster Coordinator, provide updates on their pet’s progress, and ask for any help they may need.We know that foster pets can sometimes test your patience, especially at first while you are learning about their needs and they are learning about their foster home. Living with a foster pet in a home environment, however, and learning as much as possible about its personality and temperament, is the best way to help find a good, permanent home for a rescued senior pet.
- Fosters must be willing to take their foster pet to the geographically nearest Adoption Day, currently the first Saturday of each month for dogs, and every Saturday for cats. During the summer, we often have additional special adoption events. If you are not able to drive the pet to and from the event, we will try to arrange transport. Fosters must be able to allow reasonable access to the pet for meetings with Potential Adopters.
Fostering a Young at Heart pet is a lot of fun!
It is a great way to get to know other Rescue volunteers and fosters. It can also be the learning experience of your life, and the saving grace for a senior pet’s life. If you want to try fostering a dog or cat, please e-mail us at firstname.lastname@example.org, and start the foster home application process today! If you’d like to get a head start, you can fill out the application here! Get a head start and fill out the Foster Application and attach it to your email or fax it to 847-890-6404.