Finding good homes for your
rescued cats will be one of your organization's greatest challenges if you
choose to go that route. Advertising will bring foster home volunteers,
but due diligence requires you to screen, interview, obtain references,
monitor and do home visits repeatedly. Always follow up on foster homes at
regular intervals. REALLY GET TO KNOW YOUR FOSTER HOMES AND STAY IN
You will need
to be direct and specific regarding your expectations - what the
responsibilities of the foster home are and what your rescue will take
responsibility for and who makes basic decisions. You should read our section on
fostering and our
Foster FAQ and quarantine to better understand the
issues, and you should
have a foster application and
foster contract that your can offer at booths you
sponsor, at your rescue, on your website and at your veterinarian's office.
We assume you're already checking with friends,
family, and your vet for possible foster home options. Below are some
suggested means to find foster homes. We anticipate more creative and original ideas coming forth with the networking of
rescue groups through Purebred Cat Breed Rescue. Be sure and share your
success stories as well as your problems
You will definitely need a digital camera to most effectively advertise your cats on the internet.
"A picture is worth a thousand words" certainly applies. Do bathe and groom the cats prior to taking pictures,
cleaning eyes and generally making them look their best... or at least show a "before" and "after"
picture if you showing them in worse shape makes sense.
Do not neglect Facebook.
A page on facebook can help a great deal if you post those pictures of
adoptable cats there and it costs nothing except your effort to make the
page and upload pictures and provide information. Then post animals that need
help, adoptions, happy tails, stories, requests for donations and fosters,
and even funny pictures. Tell your fans how much I appreciate them all the time, because
you can't do what you need to do without them. You can keep albums of every
comes into the rescue, and then transfer those photos to an "Adopted" album, to keep track.
Facebook is also an excellent place to promote events and
for fundraisers, and to recruit help for those as well. Promote your
rescue website and your petfinder page on your Facebook page, too. Do
also include a "like button" on your website!
You can post a request for foster homes
on cat rescue email lists - be sure to specify your catchment
area and location as well as what is expected of a foster home
for your group. In addition, you can ask your vet if he knows of
any possibilities and, with permission, put up a flyer at your
vet's office, and at other local vet offices.
Also, you can offer to accept a "foster with option to adopt" - some
adopters are concerned about how their animals or family will react,
this gives them a "trial period" and in the meantime provides a foster
If you have cats in your program when a local cat
show is scheduled, you can arrange with the show manager to get a table or booth for your rescue.
The show manager may allow you to set up a booth with cages. Make sure the cages are where the cats
can be easily viewed. If there isn't going to be someone there to staff
the booth at all times, place a sign on each cage giving the name, age,
breed, and something interesting about each cat. It always helps to
leave note, so the people interested in adopting can find someone to
help them. For example, "If your interested in adopting one of our
kitties see Susan Smith at the announcer's table". If you don't have any
cats currently in your program, still set up a table with photos,
promotional information, and a sign up list for people that are
interested in a rescued purebred or in fostering.
You also might want to include a sign-up sheet for people who are
interested in fostering cats for your organization. If this is a
direction your group is considering, remember to be brutally honest with
your potential foster homes, especially if they already have cats.