Fostering is all the fun and companionship of having a new pet at home without the long-term commitment or cost of pet ownership! Foster care is a temporary arrangement in which a shelter pet is cared for in a volunteer’s home prior to adoption.
All types of pets benefit from foster care, including pets that are orphaned, pregnant or nursing, under-socialized, require medical care, or would simply rather hang out at your house than in one of our kennels while waiting to be adopted!
Roice-Hurst provides supplies, vet care, and training to foster families and will match you with an appropriate pet within our shelters or on our waiting lists. A typical foster stay lasts from a couple of days to a couple of months, depending on the pet and its circumstances, until the animal finds an adoptive family. From a litter of purring kittens to a goofy adult dog, setting up a pet for a life of love with its new family is a uniquely rewarding experience.
Foster care not only provides a much more comfortable environment for the pet you take home – it also opens a kennel for another pet in need in our community. 
All foster volunteers must abide by the volunteer code of conduct, comply with the foster care agreement and contract, adhere to zoning and animal control ordinances, and be 18 years or older.
Ready to take home your first foster pet? Please fill out a Foster Application below. Our Foster Coordinator will review your application and send you a welcome email with the next steps, including a list of pets who are ready to move into foster care for you to choose from! In the meantime, please watch our Foster Orientation and read through our Foster Manual to learn how our foster program works. 
Questions? Contact our Foster Coordinator at
Foster Orientation Video:

Frequently Asked Questions

I don’t see a pet that I want to foster in Roice-Hurst’s shelter. Do you have any more I can choose from?

Yes! Check our Foster Trello board at, where we post every pet needing foster care, including pets at Mesa County Animal Services and pets on our waiting lists. If the pet you would like to foster is at Animal Services or on our waiting list, we will bring them in.

If you’re looking for a specific breed or type of dog, please be aware that we rarely receive purebred dogs or very small dogs. The majority of the dogs in our shelter are lovable, medium/large mixed breeds and often have unknown histories as some were found roaming as strays – and they would all love to find safety and comfort in your home!

Why can’t I foster directly through Mesa County Animal Services instead of through Roice-Hurst?

Mesa County Animal Services is a government-run agency, and their priorities are to reunite lost pets with their owners and handle animal law enforcement issues to keep the community safe. Roice-Hurst is a private non-profit organization and our primary role is to provide pet resources and adoption services, which includes having a structured, robust foster program. Mesa County Animal Services does not have a foster program and our organizations work together to maximize our resources and impact.

As pets move into foster care and kennels open up at Roice-Hurst, we will work closely with Mesa County Animal Services to transfer in their adoptable pets, helping Animal Services have spots available for stray dogs and court holds.

How long does a typical foster stay last?

Depending on the type of pet and their circumstances, a typical foster stay ranges from a couple of days to a couple of months. For example, a small breed dog will likely find an adoptive family within a day or two, while a litter of newborn kittens won’t be adoptable for at least two months while they grow up.

How does the adoption process work?

You will receive an adoption packet for your foster pet, complete with detailed instructions on how to process an adoption. Potential adopters will see your pet on our website and submit an adoption application, which will be reviewed by shelter staff and forwarded to you via email. Please respond to adoption applications in the order they are received and set up a showing with the potential adopter, either at your home, Roice-Hurst, or at a public park (adult dogs only). After thoroughly telling the potential adopter about your foster pet and allowing them to meet, simply follow the instructions in the adoption packet and send your foster pet with their brand new family!

If your foster pet is not yet spayed or neutered, the pet will go into their new home as a “foster-to-adopt” pet, meaning the adopter will simply foster the pet through Roice-Hurst until we have the pet spayed or neutered. After the surgery, we will finalize the adoption. If this is the case with your foster pet, we’ll send you with foster-to-adopt paperwork and instructions instead of an adoption packet.

Do I need to get a home check in order to foster?

Due to Covid, we have been given an exemption by the State of Colorado allowing us to forego in-person home checks. Instead, you will fill out a self-checklist along with your initial foster paperwork, helping you correct any potential dangers in your home.

What happens if I can’t keep my foster pet any longer or need to take a break?

If you can no longer foster your pet, please notify Roice-Hurst with as much notice as possible so that we can line up another foster home or save an open kennel for the pet to return to the shelter. If you have a friend or family member interested in taking over the care of your foster pet in their home, please have them sign up as a foster at

How can I help get my foster pet adopted?

You are encouraged to promote your foster pet to your network of friends, family, neighbors, and coworkers! When you pick up your first foster pet, we will hook you up with a Mesa County Foster Challenge yard sign! We invite you to share photos and information about your foster pet across your own social media channels using the hashtag #MesaCountyFostersPets.

To update your foster pet’s photos on Roice-Hurst’s website or to have them featured on Roice-Hurst and/or Mesa County’s social media pages, please send photos, videos, and information to and/or share to the Roice-Hurst Fosters Facebook group at


Foster Application

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