Thank you so much for fostering a pet for Palm Valley Animal Society! 

 

In the shelter it can be hard to get to know pets, but a foster caregiver can provide a window into their foster pet's personality, likes and dislikes and how they act in a home. Fosters have many more opportunities to take photos and video of the pet when they are relaxed and showing who they really are.

 

Your help with marketing your foster is crucial in finding their adoptive or rescue placement. We rely on our foster caregivers to help us put their foster pet's best foot forward in adoption listings on our website and on social media. Here are 5 things you can do to help your foster find their adopter:

  1. Write a quick biography or description of your sleepover animal’s best qualities (all positives, please!). Be creative. Need ideas? See guidance on writing biographies.

  2. Take good quality pictures of your foster pet. E-mail photos to foster@pvastx.org with the pets name and ID # and post them in our PVAS Volunteer and Foster Facebook group. For tips on getting great photos and video, click here.

  3. Create flyers for your foster pet. Include the foster team's email address, foster@pvastx.org, and your foster pet's name and ID #. Post the flyers everywhere! Local newspapers, community centers, pet-friendly establishments, and cafes and restaurants. Need ideas? Ask us! 

  4. Share your foster pet on your social media pages and tag us! @pvastx Use these hashtags: #pawjamaparty #pvastx #pvasfoster Our social channels are listed below.

  5. Is your foster pet ready for adoption? If you have a foster dog, ask us for an Adopt Me bandana or vest and take them all over town! Pet-friendly patios and stores, wine bars, breweries, and coffee shops are all great places to take your foster dog to give them exposure to potential adopters. Not sure if they're ready for adoption? Email foster@pvastx.org

Emotional connections are what drive us to act. As a foster caregiver, your most basic marketing goal is to create an emotional connection between potential adopters and your foster pet.

Comprehensive marketing materials can:
  • Give a cat an attractive profile on PVAS’s website, with 100s of views per day.

  • Give them a chance at being featured in our social media

  • Help them earn a feature in local media through our many partnerships.

 

Important Social Channels

 

Join this closed group to interact with other active PVAS fosters and volunteers. You can use this page to post videos and pictures of your foster pets, ask (non-emergency) foster-related questions, share information and ideas, and get to know one another.

Palm Valley Animal Society's Main Social Media Pages

Please follow our main social media accounts, where we post information on available pets, news, events and more. Liking, commenting and sharing our posts helps us spread the word, and there's always a chance your foster may be featured!

  • Instagram
  • Facebook
  • TikTok
  • Twitter
  • YouTube

Local Social Media Sites

In addition to posting information, photos and videos on your own social media accounts, the following are sites with a local focus where you may also want to share your foster pet. Please note that these sites are not affiliated with PVAS. 

Marketing Resources

6 Guidelines for marketing your foster pet

Marketing a foster pet (FREE online course)

The foster caregiver marketing guide

Using social media to help shelter pets shine (FREE online course)

How to get your foster pet adopted in 2 weeks 

Marketing tips for foster caregivers

View

 

Photos & Videos

Graphic depicting 5 tips for awesome pet photos

DESIGN

Share photos in our Facebook group, PVAS Volunteers & Fosters and email them to foster@pvastx.org. Submit well-lit and high-quality photos to get their profile started. As their personalities show themselves or you go on adventures, please feel free to share more!

  • Headshot: Smiley close up of their face looking at the camera.

  • Full Body: Overall body size and coat color and pattern.

  • Personality: Facial expressions, help a potential adopter imagine what life with this kitty would be like

  • Simple Pleasures: Playtime, snuggle time, hiking, swimming, and other endearing moments.

  • Compatibility: Moments with dogs, cats, and people (as appropriate for the pet).

Try these things if you need a little extra help getting their attention (Remember, every pet is different!):

  • Petting them may help them relax and you might even get a cute hand nuzzle!

  • Waving a wand toy or crinkling/jingling a toy

  • Enticing them by holding a treat bag in one hand (reward after!)

  • Making clicking, chirping sounds or use a high pitched voice

  • Tapping on a surface above or around them - they’ll often look that direction, so be ready to take a shot!

Share videos. Email them to foster@pvastx.org.  We aren't able to download videos that are posted to our Volunteer & Foster Facebook Group, so if you share one there, please email it to us as well.

Videos are a great way to share your foster's personality. When you shoot, remember:

  • Orientation: Turn the phone sideways and shoot horizontally for videos meant to upload to the pet's profile. Vertical video can be used on Instagram Reels and TikTok videos.

  • Time: Most full videos should have a max of 1 minute.

  • Light: Get outside to take advantage of the sun. When inside, get near a window or turn on lights to ensure they are brightly lit.

  • Personality: Show playing with toys or other pets, doing tricks, going for car rides, or anything else that will catch an adopter's attention.

  • Multiple Clips: Share multiple videos and stitch together.

  • Language: Be aware of appropriate human language.

 

Biographies

More information coming soon!

 

Here are some resources for writing pet biographies:​​

Bio Writing Toolkit

Getting Shelter Pets Noticed with Better Bios

Tips for Writing Pet Bios 

 
 

Foster Potential Adopter Meeting Guide

When you receive an inquiry for your foster pet from a potential adopter, you want to make sure it is potentially a good fit before scheduling a meet and greet so that everyone’s time can be used effectively and your foster pet is set up for success in their forever home.

 

The introductory stage is your best opportunity to help a potential adopter determine whether they are a good fit for your foster pet  and if they'd like to have a meet and greet. During the introductory stage, please also communicate your foster pet’s medical and/or behavior quirks, if applicable, so that the potential adopter can make an informed decision.

 

Every pet is an individual, so you should tailor your counseling to best suit each individual foster dog or cat, but we’ve provided you with a canned email below that you can use to reply to a potential adopter.

 

Please remember that we are here to help. If you are feeling overwhelmed with responding to potential adopters, need guidance or tips, or have any questions, please email the Foster Team.

 

Canned Introductory Email

 

Hi POTENTIAL ADOPTER’S NAME,

 

Thank you for reaching out about YOUR FOSTER’S NAME! I'm his/her foster parent. I can tell you all about him/her, answer your questions, and if it seems like a good fit, we can schedule a meet and greet for this cutie!

 

USE PARAGRAPH #1 TO LIST ALL THE GOOD QUALITIES ABOUT YOUR FOSTER!

Examples:

  • What is it about this pet that makes you fall in love with them?

  • Playful, cuddly, other wonderful qualities

  • Tell the story of how they came to PVAS

  • Explain your first impression of your foster pet

  • Does your foster have skills? Are they clicker trained, CGC/TOP dog trained, ?

  • Is your foster litter box or housetrained?

  • What does your foster pet love?

  • Tips and tricks specific to your foster pet

 

USE PARAGRAPH #2 TO EXPLAIN ANY OF YOUR FOSTER’S SPECIAL QUIRKS

Examples:

  • Be sure to stay clear of “stop signs”. This means try not to use language like “this pet cannot live in a home with other pets” or “this pet needs a lot of care”. Also, avoid using the word “aggressive” and instead express the behavior as discomfort, frustration, or agitation, for example. Please refer to the information below for describing behavioral needs:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

  • Include any pertinent medical information in this paragraph as well.

 

USE PARAGRAPH #3 TO DESCRIBE A DAY IN THE LIFE LIVING WITH YOUR FOSTER PET

  • Do they like to sit in the kitchen while you make dinner?

  • Are they a couch potato that watches TV with you?

  • Do they sleep with you?

  • Do they play with your kids? If so, consider sharing the ages of any kids in your household so that the potential adopter can compare.

  • Do they play with your pet(s)? If so, describe your pet (species, small or large, young or old, high energy or low energy) so that the potential adopted can compare.

  • Do they have any daily activities?

 

I’d like to learn a little more about your home set up and what a typical day will look like for you and your new pet. Please provide answers to the following questions when you reply. And please include any questions that you have for me about FOSTER PET’S NAME!

 

  • How many people and pets are in the home?

    • What are their ages?

    • Any children visiting or that the dog would need to meet?

  • How often do you have visitors?

  • What type of activities would you like to do with your pet (i.e. hiking, couch companion, patio restaurants)?

  • (If your foster requires a special home set-up) Do you live in a house, apartment, duplex, or condo?


Thank you again.

 

Best Wishes,

YOUR NAME

Additional Resources

HSUS's Adopters Welcome Manual

How to Properly Navigate Adoption Events (3 min. video)

Talking with Potential Adopters (56 min. video)

Talking Through Behaviors with Potential Adopters (33 min. video)

 

Pet Behavior

  • Separation Anxiety

     

  • Must be separated

     

  • Cannot live with other dogs/cats/pets

     

  • Cannot live with children

     

  • No typical apartments

     

  • Low-traffic home
    needed

     

  • Stranger Danger, Resource guarder, On-leash reactivity, Bubble dog, Handling sensitivities

Positive Language

  • [Pet’s Name] LOVES their people! They like to be around them a lot, as much as possible!”
     

  • [Pet’s Name] would love a room (or bathroom) to themselves away from your resident pets. It’s a lot of pressure to meet that many strangers!”
     

  • [Pet’s name] would love to be the only dog/cat/pet in your home so he can get all of your love!”
     

  • [Pet’s name]’s isn’t picky, but he/she asked us for adult humans, please! The miniature humans (kids) don’t quite make sense to him/her ;)”
     

  • “This dog is looking for a house or an apartment that has a door that opens directly to the outside. She/he finds elevators or enclosed stairwells to be scary.”
     

  • “This dog/cat is looking for a quiet, low traffic home.”

     

  • "This kitty is tends to get overstimulated by petting, so going slow and watching their body language is key."

  • “This dog plays the bubble game and likes to keep a ten foot bubble around themselves on walks so they can focus on their obedience skills without distractions! Such a good pup!” 

  • “This pup can become frustrated on leash and may pull when they see another dog on a walk.”