Cat & Small Animal Fostering
Cat & Small Animal Fostering
Would you like a pet but are not in a position to give long term commitment? Do you have spare time that you could devote to a homeless animal? Blue Cross is looking for kind hearted committed people who can offer short term care to cats and small animals in their own homes.
What you will be doing
- Caring for a Blue Cross cat or small animal in your home
- You will be providing all the care they need – feeding, exercising, socialising, giving medication and grooming
- Reporting back your observations of the animal in your home to assist behavioural assessment
- Depending on your skills and facilities this may involve caring for sick or injured animals, caring for nursing mothers and litters or offering a break to an animal that is not coping with life in one of our rehoming centres.
What we are looking for
- Minimum age 18 years
- Experience of handling and caring for cats or small animals
- Ideally you need to live within 45 minutes of the centre
- If living in shared or rented accommodation, relevant permissions need to be obtained
- If you have other pets, you must have a separate room, ideally with a double door system (For cats)
- The room must be quiet and un-cluttered – Any holes or wires must be filled or covered
- Experience of and access to a computer (for email and internet)
- Able to work as part of a team and be a good communicator
- An appropriate level of physical fitness
- Be able to drive and have suitable transport
- Secure outdoor space (For outdoor rabbits or guinea pigs)
- Willingness to learn and follow Blue Cross procedures
- Competent, flexible and self-motivated
- Be available on Wednesday afternoons if the animal needs to see our vet
- Be able to bring the animal to the centre to meet potential new owners at short notice
If you already own cats or rabbits
If you already own cats you must keep them away from the cats that you are fostering, cats are quite solitary and we are not always able to rule out any medical conditions. Ideally your own cats should be vaccinated and we may ask to see evidence of this.
If you already own rabbits and are looking to foster rabbits again you must have separate accommodation, and they must be vaccinated, we will require to see proof, this also must include the new vaccine VHD2.
Caring for sick, injured or very young animals on a one to one basis in your own home, especially where round the clock nursing is involved, can lead to the development of high levels of emotional attachment to the animals in your care. For this role you need to be able to provide the high levels of care possibly required whilst maintaining a level of emotional detachment as these care provisions will be short term and the animals will inevitably leave your care.
Benefits to you
- You’ll be helping pets to have happy, healthy lives
- Gain practical skills and experience
- Develop skills and enhance your CV for a career in animal welfare
- Join a great team of like-minded people
- Knowledge that you are feeding back valuable observations to help the animal find a permanent home
- Cages and pet care equipment
- All food, bedding, litter, toys, etc
Training and Support
To enable you to meet the role’s requirements, there will be a combination of home study and personal training courses. This combined approach will provide you with information on The Blue Cross, policies and procedures and Health and Safety requirements, together with training for all activities undertaken.
The nature of this role requires an ongoing commitment that will vary according to the type and number of animals in your care, but will typically be a minimum of 1-2 hours per day. However, the time commitment necessary could be much higher if, for example, you take kittens needing hand rearing. You will need to be available at times appropriate to meeting the pet’s needs. Some of the animals that go into foster homes cannot be left for long periods at a time. This role is not always suited to someone that works full time.
Holiday arrangements will be accommodated.
Any questions please do not hesitate to speak to the Volunteer Co-ordinator by calling 0300 777 1560 or email TivertonVolunteering@bluecross.org.uk