Foster a Pet




The animals pictured below are all currently in need of foster homes, please contact the shelter for more information about their particular needs to see if your family might be a good fit for them!

For more information, please contact or call  847-961-5541


These are our dogs that are in the most URGENT need of foster care!



Why foster for AHS?
There are so many reasons that we encourage everyone to foster. Fostering not only gives the animal you take into your home a second chance at life but it saves the life of another animal we can then pull from animal control before they are euthanized. So, if you foster a litter of five puppies for example, you are essentially saving 10 lives!! Fostering a dog/cat is a fun and rewarding experience that the whole family can participate in and receive unconditional love in return. AHS covers the cost of all of the medical needs, food, bowls, playpens, litter boxes, cages ect while you are fostering so there is little to no cost to the foster home. We have dogs and cats available for Short Term & Long term fostering.
See below for more information and pictures of animals available for both.
So what exactly is fostering and how do you get started?

9 pit pups_big3
Foster homes are essential to Animal House Shelter. We need people to take dogs/puppies, cats/kittens into their homes to foster for various reasons. You do need to fill out the foster application. Foster Application. Our foster home coordinator will contact you as soon as we receive the application to discuss what type of foster animal may work well in your family. Please ensure that before applying all family members are in agreement with fostering a pet in need. All foster applicants must be 21 years of age or older and be able to pick up foster pets at AHS. All foster homes must be open to a “home check” and willing to apply for a IDOA Foster Home License (This is required by IL state law – there is a $25 fee payable to Illinois Department of Agriculture and you receive your license).
At any given time, we may need foster homes for cats and dogs recovering from medical conditions (e.g., a broken leg, heartworm treatments) who just need a few weeks in a loving home to mend. There may be adult dogs or cats that have stopped eating due to the stress of a shelter environment and need the security of a home situation to get back on her feet. The dog may have a minor behavior problem (jumping up, mouthiness) that a foster family can work on to make the animal more appealing to adopters. Or the shelter may simply have a space crunch and want to find a short-term housing alternative for some of the animals.
kittensWe need short term foster homes (typically 4-6 weeks) to provide a healthy, germ free environment and lots of tender, loving care to kittens and puppies or pregnant dogs or cats. When the animal receives three vaccines, all dewormings and is neutered, it can be returned to the shelter for placement. If you do decide to adopt your fostered animal you will be required to follow normal adoption procedures along with paying the posted adoption donation. With puppies/kittens, AHS needs to know if a foster home would like to adopt the animal 10 days before the date of adoption.
ireland7_bigWe need long term foster homes for adult dogs and cats that are seniors or are just getting passed up by adoptions for reasons unknown. Some might need help with training, medical issue, rehabilitation from surgery, behavior and/or socialization. Some are shy, scared and/or stressed in the shelter environment and need a quiet place to reside while they wait for their forever home.
In a long term foster home, it is up to the family/individual as to how long they/you will foster the dog or cat. Ideally, the dog or cat would reside in the foster home until they are adopted. This could be anywhere from a week to several months. AHS covers the cost of any approved veterinarian visits, medications, food and an appropriate sized crate.
For every dog or cat that is placed in foster, the foster home is not only making a huge difference for that particular animal but also opens up valuable space for AHS to take in another dog or cat from animal control before they are euthanized.
daisy4_bigRequirements of fostering a long term dog or cat would include bringing the dog or cat to AHS for potential adoption visits. We will do our best to accommodate and schedule the most convenient day and time for both the foster family and a potential adoptive family to meet the dog or cat at the shelter.
We do ask that you be understanding and flexible with the schedule to facilitate a potential adoption for your dog or cat. The foster family will also have the option to adopt their foster dog or cat at any time through our normal adoption process.
AHS could not exist without foster homes. Fostering, whether short term or long term, is a selfless, compassionate and generous commitment and we at AHS recognize that. Foster families/individuals are a necessary means to our rescued dogs and cats in finding forever homes and making the transition more compassionate and comfortable for them. The Long Term foster program is designed to help our long term residents with that transition.

You can make a huge difference in the life of a homeless pet by becoming a foster home!

Young puppies are not able to be housed at the shelter itself because they are vulnerable to becoming ill. Because of this, Animal House Shelter is only able to save as many puppies as we have foster homes available to take them.
By becoming a foster parent, you will be literally saving the lives of puppies that we could not have taken in without you!

Can you help us save lives?

Right now Animal House Shelter is in DESPERATE need of foster homes that are willing to take multiple puppies and litters of puppies. AT LEAST 20 TIMES A DAY Animal House Shelter receives emails with pictures just like this one and unless we have foster homes open, these sad little sweethearts have to stay in the cold, dark, dirty pound OR WORSE!! Would you consider being their light at the end of the tunnel? We will provide you with ALL of the supplies that you need to take care of them, you just need to give them love! The sizes of the litters vary and can be anywhere from 2 to 12 puppies (though we do typically split the larger litters into 2 smaller groups if needed). The only requirement is that if you have another dog or dogs you have the ability to keep them separate from your foster pups (for health reasons) Please give us a call at 847-961-5541 for more information. You can sign up RIGHT NOW by clicking on the picture above to fill out our foster application!

cage bankAnimal House Shelter provides you with a playpen or kennel, food, bowls, newspaper.
You will need to be able to get the puppy(s) back to the shelter on specified dates for booster vaccines and take him/her to his/her neutering appointment at a specified date. We of course pay for the neutering and any other vet appointments that Animal House Shelter has agreed to.
If you have any questions, you can email us at
Click on the link to fill out the foster application Foster Application
Puppies absolutely have to be kept away from other pets in the household and can not be taken out of the home except for going to the vet until they have had all of their vaccines.


Every week Animal House Shelter has an average of 5 adult cats abandoned at our shelter or returned from homes years after their adoption from our shelter. Some of these poor kitties are left in boxes on our front walk, some are thrown from cars in the street in front of our shelter and others are simply returned to us without a moment’s hesitation or concern for the well-being of what should be considered a member of the family. These precious, loving creatures come to us scared and confused and they often become quickly depressed. They do not adapt well to shelter life because they are used to the comforts of a home and they often become gravely ill because their immune systems are not equipped to handle a shelter environment. They stop eating, stop caring about living, and waste away in spite of all of our efforts to care for them. There is a bright side to this sad story, however, and that is the miracle of a FOSTER HOME! By offering one of these kitties a place to stay while we vaccinate them and booster those vaccinations you will be giving them a precious advantage that can truly mean the difference between life and death. Please call us right away at 847-961-5541 for more information or click on the link below to fill out our foster application. We hope you call soon, there are many cats already waiting for your call.

Online Foster Application


These are our cats that are in the most URGENT need of foster care!



And lots of kittens and puppies!


The foster care program allows AHS to rescue more animals than shelter space normally allows by placing selected animals in qualified temporary or longer term homes.

Becoming a foster parent is one of the most rewarding experiences in animal rescue.  Seeing those cute, loving eyes that find wonderful adoptive families makes it worth every second.  Here are some answers to common questions people have about fostering.

Who can become a foster parent?

Anyone! Even if you work full-time, you can still foster (depending on the needs of each individual animal(s). All you need is a desire to help animals in need.

What types of animals are available for fostering?

  • Pregnant/nursing dogs and cats
  • Lots of litters of orphaned puppies and kittens until they can be spayed/neutered (per state law, litters of animals must be kept together until they are 8 weeks of age)
  • Animals needing extra socialization
  • Dogs and cats that have medical or surgical needs
  • Dogs or cats that have had longer stays in the shelter


How long will I foster the animal?

This depends on each individual animal(s). Most kittens/puppies are spayed/neutered at approximately 10-12 weeks of age so they will need to continue in foster care until they have been altered, vaccinated and ready for adoption.

What supplies will I need to foster an animal(s)?

This depends on each individual foster animal(s). You will need to have a safe space in your home where you can keep the foster animals separate from your own pets for the duration of their care. We will supply you with food/medications and most other necessary items to care for the animal(s).

What if I have pets?

Again, you will need to have a safe space in your home where you can keep the foster animals separate from your own pets for the duration of their care. We recommend that you keep your pets current on all core vaccinations, preventatives, etc. We strongly recommend that you consult with your veterinarian regarding their health prior to bringing a new animal into your home.

What if the animal(s) need medical care?

AHS will pay for any approved medical care that is necessary for the animal(s). Most medical care will be done here at the shelter, but at times it may be necessary for you to bring the animals to one of our veterinarians for care (Crystal Lake and Algonquin areas). Most vaccinations, dewormings, etc will be done here at the shelter on specific schedules, so you will have to be able to bring them to the shelter for those scheduled appointments.

What if I have an afterhours emergency?

Don’t worry. There is a list of home contact numbers given to every foster home. The people on the list are all very experienced foster homes themselves and will be more than happy to answer any questions you have.

How do I become a foster parent?

Here are a few things you need to do:

  1. Please fill out a foster application to become an official AHS foster parent and receive email postings of animals available for foster care.
  2. (all foster homes must have an approved application which must include references, a copy of a current drivers license and credit card, a signed foster agreement, prior to picking up their first foster animal)
  3. Sign the Foster Parent Waiver of liability


Unfortunately we do not allow you to test drive the animal(s). Being homeless is very stressful for the animals and we take pride in knowing that the animals in our care are as stress free as possible.

Bouncing back and forth from one environment to another is very confusing for the animals and adds unnecessary stress.

If you are looking to adopt a new pet, please feel free to visit the shelter anytime. In some cases, it may take one or many visits to ensure you have chosen the appropriate match for the new pet, yourself and your family.

If you have any further questions regarding fostering, please feel free to give us a call anytime or email us at

We look forward to meeting you soon!