Are You Ready to Foster?
Are you able to get to a veterinarian quickly in an emergency?
Are you able to separate our animals from your own?
Foster cats and kittens should remain isolated from your resident pets. You can keep them in any enclosed area away from your animals for a minimum of 2 weeks or until they have been tested for Feline Leukemia Virus and Feline Immunodeficiency Virus, whichever period is longer.
Are your cats up to date on all vaccinations?
At a minimum, your cats should be up to date on their FVRCP vaccination. Preferably they have been vaccinated against Feline Leukemia and Rabies, also.
Are you willing to take the risk of exposing your animals to foster animals that may become ill?
No matter how careful you are, there is always a chance that your cats could become ill. Also, please be aware that ICRA is unable to cover any medical costs incurred by your resident pets as a result of exposure to your foster animals.
Are you emotionally prepared to handle the death of one of your foster animals?
This can be very difficult, but the sad truth is that it sometimes happens. In this event, ICRA should be contacted immediately.
Will you be able to bring the cat to the Adoption Site every weekend once the cat is ready for adoption?
It can be difficult to let go once you have become emotionally attached. Your weekly attendance in bringing a foster cat to and from the Adoption Site is vital to the success of the Adoption Program.
Do you feel comfortable explaining to friends that these animals are not yours to adopt out and that they must go through the regular adoption process with ICRA?
Will you be able to spend quality time with the cat?
On average it is best to spend at minimum 20 minutes a day with each foster cat. Socialization can be as important as feeding them and keeping them clean.
Are you willing to work with our vet care system?
Please understand that only vets on the approved ICRA list should be used in an effort to reduce our costs. And, all veterinary care must be pre-approved by an ICRA Foster Home Coordinator or Board Member to assure reimbursement to you.
You may need to give your foster cat or kittens medication(s). Are you prepared to do this?
We will train you and provide you with medications or reimburse you for medications received from the veterinarian (when preapproved by ICRA).
Can you commit to spending the entire foster period with the cat?
The foster period can last a couple of weeks or several months. If something unexpected happens and you need to have someone else care for your fosters we need to be informed and have a chance to talk to the sub-foster parents prior to any transfer.
Are you prepared to carry some of the financial expense?
ICRA cannot cover the expense of all the incidentals that are necessary to care for every cat that enters the program. ICRA will help in whatever way it can with its available resources.
Are you aware that there is a great deal of clean-up and even possible damage to your home when you take a foster cat?
Foster animals can ruin new drapes, carpeting, clothing… We recommend using a kitchen or bathroom to keep things manageable when you can’t personally supervise.
Can you commit to keeping all foster cats strictly indoors?
Fostered cats should never go outside for any reason.
Do you understand that all animals in the foster care program remain the property of ICRA?
We appreciate your helping us give our cats a chance but “your foster pet” is really “our cat”.