On this National Pet Day, I want to acknowledge and thank all of you pet foster parents in Ocean and Monmouth Counties.

There are many pet rescue organizations who rely on fosters.  I think in many ways fosters are the unsung heroes in the efforts to prevent euthanasia.  When a foster takes a dog or cat, that provides the rescue group the space to take in a new animal.  That creature might not have survived if left out on the street, kept in an abusive home, or brought to a shelter where it might have been put down after a while.

I got to see, first-hand, how vitally important fosters are.  I saw Taylor on Petfinder, and arranged to have a "meet and greet" with her.  When that went well, the foster mom brought her to my house so we could see how she would like the yard, how she would manage the stairs, etc.  Talking with the foster mother gave me a chance to learn more about Taylor.  She shared the joyful and funny stories, and prepared me for the challenges, like how she pulls when walking on a leash.

My good friend Amy has just become a foster for a litter of kittens.  She's had pets all her adult life and decided this year she wanted to help save some cat lives by opening her home to the little cuties shown in the photo.  She's also taking care of the mother cat and hoping to find permanent loving homes for both the adult and the baby felines.  A bonus, she says, of being a foster is that she gets to look at and play with adorable kittens!  (If you'd like more information, contact www.JerseyCats.org.)

She says fostering can be great for people who love animals but can't make a long-term commitment.  Some more helpful facts about fostering can be found in this article from Petfinder.com.   https://www.petfinder.com/animal-shelters-and-rescues/fostering-dogs/what-is-dog-fostering/

Have you ever or might you consider fostering animals?