Adoption Information & Hours  |  239-573-2002



Women Holding White Dog

We really appreciate our fosters and rely on them to help us succeed in our mission. It takes a village to do what we do, and YOU are a very important part of that village!

The first step to becoming a foster for CCAS is to submit an application through our Give Pulse software. 

Once your application is approved, you will be able to view upcoming orientation sessions and select one to attend.

Volunteer Orientations are scheduled about once a week, with varying dates/times.

Once you have attended Volunteer Orientation, you can then attend Foster Orientation, which is required for all foster families.

Our foster program is crucial to the success of our animal shelter, and our foster families play a huge part in the caretaking of our animal residents!

Our foster program is very flexible! We will work with you individually, customizing our needs to match your abilities. Snowbirds are always welcome!

Please review the FAQs below for an in-depth look at our foster program.

For additional questions, please email the Volunteer/Event Coordinator at [email protected] .

The CCAS Foster Program & FAQ's

Every year shelters take in thousands of animals who have been displaced. Cape Coral Animal Shelter is no exception. Some of these animals need special care or extra attention in order to become their best selves and find their forever home.

This is why our foster families are so important! Becoming a part of our foster program means that you open your home to a shelter pet in need while they wait to find their forever family.

The Cape Coral Animal Shelter’s foster program was developed to give animals a chance for a better life by utilizing the many added benefits a temporary home environment can provide.

Our foster program allows puppies, kittens, injured and recovering animals, as well as those needing behavior modification to receive the additional enrichment, attention, compassion, and love needed to become cherished companions for their future adoptive families.

Whether permanent adoption isn’t an option, you would like to help a special needs pet, or you would simply like to invite an animal into your home for a short visit or long-term vacation, then becoming a foster for CCAS is for you!

Foster Family with Dogs and Cat

Click on the Foster FAQ below and it will expand with further detail.

  • Nursing mothers
  • Underage puppies/kittens
  • Behavior modification
  • Socialization
  • Shelter stress
  • Animals failing to thrive
  • Medical recovery
  • Medical quarantine
  • Cape Coral Animal Shelter provides its foster families with the core supplies that their foster animal will need.
  • In addition to all medical care, food and all basic care supplies will be provided as well as additional training and educational resources.
  • Most importantly, foster families will have the shelter’s full support during their foster experience.
  • Foster families are encouraged to openly communicate with the shelter’s Executive Director and Foster Coordinator to address any questions, concerns or issues that may arise.
  • Provide a loving, patient, safe environment.
  • Daily food, water & play/exercise.
  • Administer medication, if necessary.
  • Attend veterinary appointments at our clinic as scheduled.
  • Provide basic training & socialization.
  • Attend adoption events.
  • If possible, promote animal via social media.
  • Meet with potential adopters along with designated staff.
  • Comply with the foster program’s policies.
  • All veterinary care MUST be done through the CCAS Clinic. We are not able to pay for any veterinary care not authorized or performed at our clinic.
  • When animals feel safe and comfortable, they’re able to really show their true personalities.
  • Animals that are fostered find or regain their confidence, which in turn, allows them to be their happy, fun, affectionate selves.
  • In addition, the information gathered by the foster family about their animal often accelerates the adoption process by providing insight into the character and temperament of each animal as well as that animal’s specific needs.
  • Fostering not only helps the animal that is being fostered, but it also saves countless other animals by creating added space needed to bring more animals into the shelter.
  • Fostering also makes a difference in the lives of the foster families that choose this amazing volunteer opportunity. The foster experience will grow your love and compassion for all living things. 
  • You’ll learn so much from every single animal you foster and have the satisfaction of knowing that you’re changing the world one animal at a time.
  • Anyone can be a part of our foster program! Whether you are interested in teaching a dog what it means to be loved, or nursing a sick pet back to health, everyone has something they can offer to an animal in need.  How you contribute to the program is completely up to you.
  • Please note: All applications go through a background check.  We cannot accept any application from a person having a felony record (current or previous) and absolutely no Domestic Violence, Battery, or Animal Cruelty charges (current or previous) or anyone with a history of disobeying county or state animal ordinances.
  • We may do a home visit and will check references. Your pets must be up to date on vaccines and have current licenses.
  • Vaccines required to foster are as follows:


**Dogs:  Rabies and DVPP2 (Canine distemper, parvovirus, and adenovirus).    Bordetella is recommended.

**Cats:  Rabies and FVRCP (Feline distemper, calicivirus, and rhinotracheitis). 

**Ferrets:  Rabies

  • Once you are an approved foster, you will be on our email list. We will publish a list of animals available for foster weekly. 
  • When an animal needs a foster home that aligns with a specific situation you requested, we will contact you.
  • You are also welcome to reach out to us when you are willing and able to foster to see what animals are available. Sometimes we have residents that just need a break from the shelter environment!
  • That depends on the situation, which you will most likely know ahead of time.
  • Young animals usually stay in the foster home until they are old enough to be adopted (about 8 weeks old).
  • In the case of seniors or special needs animals, the time may vary.
  • We will do our best to pair you with a foster that fits your life situation.
  • We will help you evaluate your ability to care for foster animals in conjunction with your own pets.
  • We recommend that you provide an area in your home where your foster can be separated if necessary or just for a break from your pets.
  • Each situation is unique, so we will evaluate this based upon the home structure and the individual foster animals.
  • We recommend that dogs in the home that will be interacting with your foster come to the shelter with you for a meet and greet to be sure they will get along.
  • Ultimately, it comes down to the best interest of all the animals involved. For their protection, all personal pets of foster families must be current on vaccinations.
  • Yes! Our goal is to match you with an animal that you feel comfortable with and enjoy. We will contact you when that type of animal is available.
  • You can always let the coordinator know if you want to try something different!
  • This is usually determined by the coordinator and will be based on the animal’s best interests, your experience, housing and local animal ordinances.
  • Puppies and Kittens need to be fostered two or three at a time. Trust us, you WANT them to entertain each other at that age!
  • We’re a flexible team of animal welfare warriors! We’re able to temporarily transfer animals among different foster homes to help each other in these situations. 
  • Many of the animals that need fostering can easily be accommodated on a normal schedule. This is a factor we consider when looking at compatibility.
  • Most animals, once adopted, will reside with people that have working schedules, and becoming accustomed to these routines in a foster home can make that animal much more adoptable.
  • The financial cost to foster an animal through our program is minimal, usually only your own transportation costs.
  • All vet visits and medical care are the financial responsibility of CCAS and MUST be pre-authorized and performed at our clinic or our shelter.
  • Appointments for your foster will be pre-scheduled, and if there is an emergency, you will be given multiple contact numbers for staff who will direct you on how to proceed.
  • We will provide food, bedding, and toys if you need them. You supply the love!
  • We call that a “foster fail” and that’s perfectly ok with us, if we all agree it’s the right fit for you and your family.
  • We do ask that, as soon as you believe you may be wanting to keep your foster, let us know. At that point, we will determine a time frame (typically two weeks) for you to decide.  We will not schedule meet and greets during that time. 
  • It’s extremely awkward for the shelter and heartbreaking for potential adopters when a meet and greet is scheduled and at the last minute, a foster decides to adopt. Therefore, once a meet and greet is scheduled, we ask you go through with it.  
  • You will bring your foster to the shelter for “meet and greets” with potential adopters. Don’t worry, we will work with you to schedule times that work for you; however, you must have your own transportation.
  • If the “meet and greet” is successful, your foster will go home with the adopter that day. Please bring all medications and your foster’s belongings to the meet.
  • The most wonderful thing in the world—you have helped your foster find it’s forever, loving home!
  • Is it hard to let them go?  Yep.
  • But nothing is more satisfying, knowing you save this life and others by making room at the shelter. And then we help you find your next one to care for. 

Be an Adoption Ambassador and Promote your Foster!

Hit the Streets!

·         We’re fortunate to have so many pet-friendly restaurants & outside events in SWFL.  Try to take your foster animal to as many pet-friendly places as possible & don’t forget their “Adopt Me” scarves.

·         Have the shelter’s business cards with you to hand out to anyone that shows interest in your animal.  Think out of the box & be creative!

Work from Home!

·         Social media is an excellent way to promote your animal.

·         Cute pictures of your animal in the home setting along with information about your animal’s personality shared on your social media will reach so many people, especially if you ask your friends to please “share” your posts.

·         Rotate your pictures often and consider “photo shoots” with your animal as the star of anything trending.

·         Please include shelter contact information with every photo posted.