We look for families to foster pets that need special training and/or health care, or for animals that are too young. We get many cats that are under eight weeks in the summer. We look for foster homes to care for them until they reach eight weeks of age. After this time, they must come back and we will vet them and put them up for adoption. If you find a home for the pet that is okay, but the new owners will still need to pay the adoption fee.

Common Questions

What is Fostering?

Foster “parents” are volunteers who take pets into their homes and care for them until they are ready for adoption. It’s a great way to volunteer from home.

Why do You Need Foster Homes?

In the spring, numerous litters of kitten are born in a short period of time. We don’t have enough space to take in high numbers of cats at once, so we like to put them into foster homes and bring them back in over a period of time so we can properly prepare them for adoption. While some volunteers end up adopting their foster pets, please note that the foster program is not for people who want to “try out” an animal prior to adoption. It is intended to provide one-on-one attention in a home environment for animals, in order to best prepare them for adoption.

What Would I be Expected to do as a Foster Parent?

We’d like you to provide a clean, nurturing indoor home for the pet, bring the animal to our Veterinarian for vaccinations and other routine treatment, and give medication as needed. We teach the inexperienced! You’ll bring the foster back to us when it is ready to be adopted. For kittens, this is typically eight weeks of age.

Can I Handle Them?

Absolutely! Socialization of kittens is important, that is what attracts a potential family to a pet. Playing, holding, and cuddling is key to help the pet to learn to enjoy being around people.

Other FAQs

Would I be responsible for finding the animal a permanent home?

No. We will complete the adoption at the Shelter.

Can I, or a friend, adopt the foster animal?

Yes, but ask that you go through the adoption process we have established at the Shelter.

What if I need to go out of town?

If you can make arrangements for your foster animal to be cared for by a responsible pet sitter or other caregiver, that’s fine. Otherwise, we will be responsible for providing temporary housing for your foster animal(s) while you are away.

What if I already have pets of my own?

Yes, you may foster animals if you have companion animals of your own. Foster animals will need to stay separated from your animals to reduce the risk of disease transmission. We provide medication and veterinary care for foster animals, but not for your own animals should they become ill. Routine vaccinations and simple precautions are usually all that are needed to keep everyone safe.

How long would I keep the animal?

There are many variables when fostering, but in general we ask for a three to five week commitment. If you are only willing or able to foster for only a couple of weeks, this program probably isn’t for you. We understand that circumstances can change and you can return an animal at any time if it becomes necessary.

Would I be responsible for my foster animal's vet expenses?

No. We will provide veterinary care and medications, as approved by our Veterinarian.

Would I be responsible for my foster animal's food and litter?

We can also loan litter boxes, food/water bowls, cat bed, and cage if we have them available. In most cases we can provide some litter and food.

How do I become a foster "parent"?

You can apply to be a foster “parent” by filling out the foster application on our web site.

Christy Peterson
Animal Shelter Director



(517) 546-2154

We are closed weekdays from 1:00 p.m. – 1:30 p.m. for lunch

Animal Viewing Hours

Mon – Fri
11:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m.
1:30 p.m. – 5:00 p.m.

11:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m.
Closed County Holidays

Office Hours

Mon – Fri
8:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m.
1:30 p.m. – 5:00 p.m.

Closed County Holidays


418 S. Highlander Way
Howell, MI 48843

Non-Emergency Complaints

(517) 546-9111


(517) 546-0232