Foster Care

Become a Foster Care Family

We always try to Foster kittens out/away from the Shelter. We are always looking for Foster Care Volunteers. It is usually a 5 to 8 week period. We provide food, litter and medical care. We also take care of the adoptions. All you need is a separate area from your own animals and some TLC. We would prefer that you live in the Quincy area. In case of medical emergency, we like to have people who live nearby and could transport the animal to either the Shelter or one of the area vets used by QAS. If you are interested. please let us know.

To inquire about fostering a cat, please email the Cat Foster Manager
To inquire about fostering a dog, please email the Dog Foster Manager

Foster Care Volunteer Application:
Word .DOC format or Adobe .PDF format

Foster Care Agreement:
Word .DOC format or Adobe .PDF format

The Quincy Animal Shelter is always looking for Foster Care Volunteers. Some of our animals need to be in Foster Care for anywhere from a few days to a few weeks, depending on the animal's needs. If you would like to foster an animal, even on a very limited basis, please let us know. We will need the following information...

What pets do you currently have?

What type of animals would you be willing to foster...
  • Tame Kitten(s)alone
  • Feral Kitten(s) alone
  • Tame Kitten(s) with mother
  • Feral Kitten(s) with mother
  • Sick Kitten
  • Sick Adult Cat
  • Nervous adult cat
  • Dog - small
  • Dog - medium
  • Dog - large

Some of the reasons that Foster Care is required include:
  • Providing an appropriate environment for kittens and puppies.
  • Caring for new mothers and their litters.
  • Training and socializing animals to improve their chances for adoption.
  • Eliminating "kennel stress." Some animals cannot thrive in kennel situations and can actually become sick from the stress.
  • Preventing disease in very young or medically vulnerable animals.
  • Monitoring health and administering care more often than shelter Volunteers can reasonably perform.

Foster Care Guidelines  

This set of guidelines is intended to give you a realistic perspective on fostering animals. This program can be a rewarding experience. It also represents a commitment of time and energy.

If you feel qualified, after a careful review of the information below, please call or visit the Quincy Animal Shelter to complete a Foster Care Volunteer Application (which can also be downloaded in Word .DOC format or in Adobe .PDF format). These forms and procedures are necessary to ensure the health and welfare of the animals in our charge. Thank you for your gracious understanding and assistance.

Foster animals remain the property of the Quincy Animal Shelter and may not be taken by any other party. If you hear of a prospective permanent home for an animal in your care or you wish to adopt one yourself: (1) the prospective adopter must fill out our standard Adoption Application and schedule an interview with an Adoption Counselor, and (2) upon approval, the adopter must pay the applicable adoption fee.


Basic Care - The shelter will provide you with food, litter, linens and any other appropriate supplies along with veterinary care and any necessary medications. The foster care volunteer will provide a safe and comfortable place to live along with lots of love. They must also be willing and diligent in the administration of medical treatments when necessary.

Very young animals can generally be weaned onto solid food starting at 4 weeks for puppies and 6 weeks for kittens. If for any reason a diet change is necessary, the diet should be changed by mixing the foods, gradually decreasing the quantity of the initial food while increasing the the quantity of the new food over a period of a few days.


Space Requirements - Depending on their age, kittens require different amounts of space in which to run, sleep, and eat. When they are very young, just a few weeks old, this may amount to a small box, a blanket to sleep on, and a playpen-sized space in which to crawl around. Kittens should always be raised indoors. You need to provide an appropriate amount of space for each animal you agree to foster.

As they get older, a fenced yard is ideal for puppies to run and play; however, this arrangement requires close supervision. All indoor areas are fine, given that you have space which can be soiled. Baby gates are recommended to keep puppies away from inappropriate areas.


Sleeping Arrangements - Much of your foster animals' lives will be spent in a sleeping area. It is important to keep this area clean and protect it from drafts. Sometimes it is enough to drape their cage, kennel, or playpen with a blanket. Puppies and kittens can easily get too hot or too cold. This results in the animal being more susceptible to illness.


Beware of Puppies and Kittens! - Puppies and kittens are not always neat and have been known to be downright destructive. Their job is to run, play, and grow. Our job is to make sure they stay healthy and happy. You should have space to set aside and an understanding that items may be soiled, chewed on, clawed, pawed, or even broken.


Medical Care - The Quincy Animal Shelter will provide access to medical personnel and any required medication. Please contact us IMMEDIATELY if you have any concerns about the health of your foster animal.

Stools are usually firm in healthy animals. Runny stools may indicate a multitude of things; please contact us IMMEDIATELY if your foster animal has loose stools.

Foster animals should at least initially be separated from personal pets in your home to prevent the possible spread of illness. This procedure protects both the foster animal and your pets.

Miscellaneous Guidelines - Contact the Shelter Directors whenever you have a question, concern, or progress report. Keep your eyes and ears open to any problems and successes the animal may be having.

Do not use chemicals (including bleach or flea and tick preventatives) on or around the animals. The Shelter will provide flea preventative for your foster animal(s).

Children must always be supervised when caring for a foster animal. As parent or guardian, you have the ultimate responsibility for the fostering of the animal.

Our volunteer foster parents are critical to our success. There is nothing as rewarding or as bittersweet as watching a successful foster animal move on to its permanent home. It takes a special kind of person to be a foster parent. If you are up for the challenge and the reward, please call our Foster Care Coordinator at 617-376-1349. Be sure to leave a message if you don't reach us immediately.

THANK YOU!