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You may have to go into hospital for treatment or into a nursing or residential home for a short time. Pets aren't allowed in some of these places. If there's no one else to look after your pets, you may need to have them fostered. Some nursing homes will allow you to bring your pet, so it is always worth asking.
Fostering involves someone else temporarily taking care of your pet, usually in their own home or in a care centre. Many organisations will try to match the fosterer’s home circumstances with your own so that your pet finds it easier to adjust to the change.
Some fostering organisations will keep you up to date about how your pet is while you are in hospital and may send you photographs.
Most fostering services are provided by small charities that are run by teams of volunteers. They receive very little or no funding, other than from charitable donations. Despite this, many fostering services are provided free of charge to pet owners. You may be asked to pay for or supply your pet’s food, and to be prepared to pay for any vet’s bills.
There are several national organisations and charities that may be able to help you, depending upon your circumstances and where in the UK you live. Your vet may be able to tell you about local fostering services in your area. You may find that some fostering services are listed in your local paper or have websites that you can find by using an internet search engine. The organisations listed on the who can help| page may also be able to help.
Content last reviewed: 1 December 2011
Next planned review: 2013
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