Volunteers needed to foster pets

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A pet fostering charity is seeking local volunteers willing to care for pets whose owners are facing financial or other hardship.

Pet Fostering Service Scotland (PFSS) provides a unique service to support pet owners who are in an emergency situation such as ill health, temporary homelessness or domestic abuse.

If a pet owner is unable to afford boarding fees or arrange any other care for their animals, then PFSS will try to help and runs a network of approved volunteers to provide foster care for pets until they can be reunited with their owners. The charity does not operate a boarding kennels but relies solely on volunteers who are approved through an assessment process that includes a home visit.

The charity is currently looking for animal lovers in the Forfar and Kirriemuir areas who are willing to open their homes on a short-term basis.

A spokeswoman for the organisation said: “Unfortunately, each year, we have to turn away about 120 fostering requests due to having no available foster home.

“We are looking for animal lovers with time to spend with a foster pet and experience of caring for animals. The majority of our fostering requests are for cats and dogs. This is a hugely rewarding role and offers the chance to make a significant difference in local pet and pet owners’ lives.”

Founded in 1985, the charity was set up after a Channel 4 series featured the benefits of pet ownership for older people, prompting a huge response from owners who were worried about what would happen to their pets if they were unable to care for them because of their own illness.

Concerns were mainly about the cost of commercial boarding fees, or having to give up their pets.

The service still gives priority to older owners, although each case is dealt with on its merits.

Anyone interested in becoming a volunteer can contact the charity on 0844 811 9909 (option 5 then 1) e-mailing volunteering@pfss.org.uk or obtain an online application pack from www.pfss.org.uk