Fospice Program

Fospice – The Gift of a Lifetime

Dogs & Cats Forever’s Fospice Program is designed to provide care in a home setting for geriatric shelter pets, as well as for the chronically or terminally ill. Most of these dogs and cats are former house pets which, because of their conditions, are deemed unadoptable by many.


Meridian’s story is what inspired this program. Meridian was a gorgeous tortoiseshell calico cat who came to the shelter with a near fatal infection in her uterus. Thankfully, she survived and was eventually spayed & placed up for adoption. About 1 1/2 years down the road, a nice family was finally interested in adopting her. We had her checked out by the vet prior to going home, only to find that she had a large mammary mass. The vet said that it would most likely come back even if removed. Unfortunately, the news affected her ability to go to that home she had been waiting for all this time. Our dedicated volunteer, Andrea, took her home following her procedure. A cat that was more on the aloof side at the shelter, Meridian’s personality blossomed in a home environment. She explored, took a bite out of every cat food bowl available, stood in Andrea’s lap and let her hold her. Six weeks after the initial procedure, she stopped eating and had trouble standing on her back legs. She went to the vet, barely able to walk, and unfortunately it was discovered that the cancer had likely spread to her spinal cord/brain. Thanks to our volunteer, Meridian got to feel at home for her last few weeks of life. Our hope is that Meridian’s story will inspire others to open up their hearts and their homes for a short time to animals who deserve nothing but love and peace towards the end. 

Often, the animals in need of Fospice care spend their last few days, months, or years waiting for a home that never comes. The benefits of the Fospice Program for these animals in terms of comfort, stress reduction, and happiness is immeasurable. Moreover, the overwhelming majority of people who provide fospice care benefit as well – simply because they realize the importance of the gift in which they are giving to these dogs and cats.

Obviously, these pets do not know that their time is limited – but what they do know is that they are happy every day that they are with you in your loving home. Please consider selecting an animal from our Fospice Program. Your short-term commitment will not only enrich the life of a deserving animal, but will also enrich your life, too.

Requirements to be a Fospice parent:

  • You must be at least 25 years of age.
  • You must be able drive a car and be willing to transport the animal in case of an emergency either to a designated vet or back to the shelter.
  • You must provide basic supplies such as food, cat litter and treats for the animal.
  • You must be able to spend quality time with the animal.
  • Your home environment should fit the needs of the animal.

What the shelter will provide:

  • The shelter will provide medication, medical supplies, prescription food if necessary, and arrange & pay for vet visits.

As a fospice parent, your role is to provide a quiet, loving environment for your pet’s final days. Volunteers are not the legal guardian of the animal, so it is ultimately up to the rescue organization to decide when it is time to say “goodbye.” This will be determined based on the animal’s quality of life in conjunction with the opinion of a veterinarian.

Eligible Fospice Pets

Click on a photo to learn more.

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