April 1, 2020

Pet Fostering Increases with Pandemic

Some Americans who are spending nearly all their time at home and feeling helpless during the COVID-19 pandemic have turned to fostering pets both as a way to handle the isolation and to give a little back to shelter animals.

Media reports including The New York Times and US News and World Report indicate that even as shelters are forced to close at this time, they’re fielding requests from the public to take in dogs and other animals.

“In the Atlanta area and elsewhere, a surge in demand has hit shelters and groups seeking to foster dogs and other animals, many of which have been forced to close to the public and are operating with curtailed staffs due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic,” reported US News and World Report on March 24. 

A representative for Best Friends Animal Society, which has a shelter in Atlanta, said typically the site sees about 10 pets placed in foster care per week; it found foster homes for 62 dogs and cats in the week of March 16 to March 20.

The New York Times reported on March 19 that when Animal Care Centers in the city sought to fill 200 slots in its fostering program, two thousand people applied.

The CDC said “At this time, there is no evidence that companion animals, including pets, can spread COVID-19 or that they might be a source of infection in the United States.”

The Humane Society of the United States encourages fostering as one of many ways to help out animals during this time.

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