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To improve the lives of the animals in our care, be timely and compassionate in our responses, educate the public through community outreach and, provide for the health and safety of the citizens and animals of Ventura County.

How to Foster

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Fosters play a vital role in all we do for the animals and pet owners in our community. Our foster families help to save thousands of lives each year. Simply put, FOSTERS SAVE LIVES!

Take a look at our dogs most in need of foster here. This does not include all dogs available for foster. (cat page coming soon)

FOSTERS are required to:

·         Submit an online application form which includes a liability waiver.
·         After you submit your application you will recieve an email with a link to the foster orientation video and the Volunteer orientation video. All incoming fosters are required to watch the entire foster and volunteer orientation videos. You DO NOT have to become an on-site volunteer to become a foster.
·         After watching the videos Adult Dog or Adult Cat fosters will sign up for a 'Matchmaking Appointment' with the Foster Care Coordinator to choose your first foster animal. Kitten fosters will sign up for an additional 'Underaged Kitten Training' with the Foster Care Coordinator. These appointments can be made through links you will recieve in your welcome email after submitting your application.
·         Treat animals under their care with kindness and compassion, following all guidelines for handling set forth in the foster orientation training.
·         Represent themselves and VCAS in a professional manner and treat clients, staff, and other volunteers with respect.

Age Restrictions:
Foster care providers must be over 18 years of age

Foster Application

You must complete our Foster Application prior to being able to watch the orientation video or attend a Foster Matchmaking Appointment. After submitting the application, you will receive an email within one week with a link to the orientation video and appointment scheduling.

Foster Orientation

Completing the general foster orientation AND volunteer orientation videos is mandatory before you can foster for VCAS. Orientation will cover the goals and policies of the organization, as well as explaining foster and volunteer opportunities.
Our foster and volunteer orientations are online classes, so you can complete your orientation on your own schedule! After you complete your application you will receive an email containing the next steps to becoming a foster for Ventura County Animal Services!
If you also with to become an on-site volunteer please complete a Volunteer Application.

Frequently Asked Questions about Fostering

How long is the commitment when I take a foster (how long do I keep my foster)?

Fostering is more flexible than you might think! The timelines might differ depending on the type of animal you are interested in fostering.

Adult dogs: From 1 day to several months. Fosters can take dogs for single day fieldtrips or weekend sleepovers which can be very beneficial for long term or stressed out dogs. Fosters can also choose to foster dogs longer term, from a couple of weeks, or even months. Some fosters choose to foster dogs until they get adopted. The length of time you foster an animal is completely up to you!

Adult cats: From 1 week to several months. Some of our frightened or sick cats may just need a week or two in a foster home to heal, and feel safe. Other cats who have a very hard time living in a kennel might need a foster who can keep them until they find an adoptive family.

Kittens: From 1 to 8 weeks. Kittens only need to stay in foster homes until they are large and healthy enough to be spayed or neutered. This can be anywhere from 1 to 8 weeks depending on the age of the kitten(s).

How do animals get adopted when they are in foster homes?

Our foster parents are in charge of marketing/promoting their animals for adoption. Fosters can also bring their foster animals to adoption events and they will be posted on the VCAS website.

Are there any ongoing requirements for fosters?

NO! you can foster animals as often or as seldom as you want. Our program is very flexible, which allows you to help out even if you have limited time or space.

I’m having problems with the foster application or online orientation video

If you are having problems accessing the application or watching the video (which is sent AFTER you fill out the application) please email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. for assistance.

I have pets at home, can I still foster?

Absolutely! There are some rules and guidelines that you will need to follow regarding your foster animal, but having other pets in your home does not disqualify you from becoming a

Foster Homes Needed! Sign Up Now