Animal Shelter


Fostering is an incredibly rewarding experience that provides a loving and temporary home for our deserving companion animals. By opening your heart and home to an animal in need, you become a vital part of our mission to create a better world for the animals in our communities.

Thank you for your support!

Can I crash on your couch?

T Baby

“As I pulled into the driveway, my heart raced with anticipation. Today was the day I would bring home my first foster pet, a timid and gentle dog named Luna. The staff at the Hamilton Burlington SPCA had told me her story – she had been found abandoned, shivering in the cold rain, her body covered in scars and evidence of neglect. My heart ached for her, and I knew I wanted to be the one to help her heal and learn to trust again. The moment I saw Luna at the shelter, I felt an instant connection".

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- Shannon
Foster Parent

Why Fostering Matters

Becoming a foster parent for animals is a deeply rewarding journey filled with compassion, healing, and love. Your dedication leaves a lasting impact on their lives and yours. Every moment spent nurturing these vulnerable beings contributes to a future where all animals are valued and cared for. We urgently invite you to join our foster family team, providing vital support for animals in need.

Why is your role invaluable? Pets in foster care receive essential personal attention and affection, crucial for their well-being, particularly during their most vulnerable moments. Your home becomes their safe haven, where they can learn to trust, love, and recover, preparing them for their forever homes. By opening your heart and home, you're not just providing a place to rest; you're offering them a fresh start in life.

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Foster Families Currently


Animals Currently in Foster Care

The Critical Roles of Our Foster Homes

Urgent Care - Temporary Support During Critical Moments

At times, life takes unexpected turns. Our emergency shelter fosters step in during critical junctures, offering immediate warmth and care to these animals, helping them navigate through the storm to find clearer skies.

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Short Term Care - Be A Bridge To The Future

Some animals need a short term placement for a few days or a few weeks while they wait for their forever family. By becoming a short-term foster, you offer a loving and comfortable environment while our animals transition from being a shelter pet to an adopted one.

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Long Term Care - Provide Ongoing Support

Some animals need additional time to recover from trauma or illness, or to find their perfect forever family. By becoming a long-term foster, you offer a steady and nurturing environment, aiding in their healing journey until they're prepared for their permanent home.

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Palliative & End of Life - Offer Enduring Care

Share your heart in their final days. This compassionate commitment involves caring for terminally ill animals, ensuring they live their remaining days surrounded by love, comfort, and dignity. It's a profound act of kindness, honouring their lives by providing peace, comfort, and joy in their final chapter..

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Supporting From the Sidelines

Supporting a foster home means becoming part of a caring community. Whether through donations, supplies, or spending time with the animals, you contribute to their well-being, ensuring they receive the love and resources they need. Together, we strive for a world where every animal is cherished.

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Finding Your Perfect Fit

Each of these fostering roles requires a unique kind of hero. You don’t just give these animals a place to stay; you give them hope, love, and a second chance at life. Your compassion lights their path and guides them to a brighter future. We need your courage, your love, and your unwavering support to change their world, one animal at a time.

Step 1: Please fill out the online application
Apply Now
Step 2: Complete call with our volunteer services department
Step 3: Complete our online, species-specific training PAWdules
Step 4: If approved, choose your first foster!

Frequently Asked Questions

Absolutely - as long as your resident pet is good with other animals or can be separated if not, you are more than welcome to foster. Depending on the type of foster pet you have, we may ask that you keep your resident pet separate as they may need time to decompress or may not be great with other animals, however that is always something you can discuss with the foster department if needed.  

We do ask that if you have a resident pet, they must be up to date on all vaccines, be spayed or neutered, and in general good health.

When you pick up your foster pet, you will be provided with all the supplies needed to care for that pet. This includes everything from food, medications, towels, blanket, toys, etc.  

If you run out of any supplies during your foster placement, the foster department is more than happy to provide any extra supplies needed.

Ensuring all roommates are onboard for the responsibility of fostering is important. We recommend having a conversation with all those in the home before applying. Discussing the time and resources you can feasibly provide to a foster animal and that you meet the basic requirements. Such as transportation for pickups, drop offs and appointments at the shelter. We recommend having an alternative to public transit, as some of our animals cannot travel via this method.

If at any time you feel that your foster pet is showing signs of not doing well, you can call or email the foster department to discuss your concerns. The HBSPCA has a vet clinic on site, and we are able to provide any care to our foster pets during regular business hours.  

If the concern is after-hours, we have an emergency HBSPCA staff number you can contact, as well as an emergency care veterinary hospital that we work with to provide care if needed.

We try our best to make the application process as seamless as possible for anyone that wishes to become a foster parent with us! A general turn-around time from the start of your application to officially being approved as a foster parent with us is an average of 2 weeks, although this may change slightly from applicant to applicant.

The amount of time a foster pet stay in your care can vary greatly depending on the reason they are in foster care, their health, and their adoption interest. For example, if you are fostering a 6 week old puppy, they may be in your care for a minimum of 2-4 weeks, as they need to be at least 8 weeks old before we can spay or neuter them, and then put them up for adoption. If you are fostering a larger breed dog or a dog that is more timid, they may be on foster care for at least a month as they may not have that much adoption interest.  

When you are fostering with us, you can choose which shelter pet you would like to foster and see the expected duration for their foster placement.

Foster parents are more then welcome to adopt their foster pets. We do request that if interested in adopting, you let us know ASAP and note that the regular adoption process will have to be followed. (Fees, application & Interview)

Shelter pets are placed in foster care for a variety of reasons. Below are some of the reasons/circumstances we place a shelter pet on foster care:

- Cats or kittens that need a shelter break, as they may have little to no adoption interest.

- Dogs or puppies that need a shelter break, as they may have little to no adoption interest.

- Lack of space in the shelter – if we need to open up space for other animals, we may try to place sociable animals in foster care as well.

- Nursing mother cats, dog, and rabbits, and their babies.

- Active dogs that require a high-energy environment where they have the space to run around and go for walks.

- Cats, dogs, puppies or kittens requiring medical care in the form of pills, eye drops, dental care, etc.

- Puppies or kittens who are too young for spay/neuter surgery.

- Puppies or kittens that are orphaned and require bottle-feeding.

- Timid or stressed adult cats that require socialization or a quieter space to decompress.

- Dogs that require training and behaviour modification to help resolve any problem behaviours that may be a barrier for adoption.

Make a life-changing difference for our furry friends by fostering for the HBSPCA!

Join us today and experience the joy of fostering, making a profound impact on both the animals and your own life.