Register as a Foster Carer for pets

  • If you are a foster carer, under Victorian law you must register all animals over 3 months of age living at your premises with your local council, even if the animal is only with you temporarily.
  • If you foster cats and dogs and live in Baw Baw Shire, you can now apply to Council to become a registered foster carer, through the Voluntarily Enrolled Foster Carer (VEFC) scheme.
  • Benefits of being a registered foster carer include getting a reduced registration fee of $10 for each dog or cat you foster during the first 12 months the pet is in your care. Foster Carer registration is free in Baw Baw Shire, and valid for 1 year.
  • Depending on how many animals you have, you may also need to apply for an excess animal permit.

What is a Foster Carer for pets?

Pet foster care is temporarily looking after one or more stray, abandoned or unwanted dogs or cats (usually on behalf of an animal shelter) while a permanent home is being found for the pet.

Maximum number of pets you can foster

In addition to your own pets, at any given time you must not provide foster care for more than:

  • 5 adult equivalent dogs, or
  • 5 adult equivalent cats, or
  • a combination of 5 adult equivalent dogs and cats.

An adult equivalent is:

  • a dog or cat 16 weeks or older; or
  • a litter of puppies/kittens between 8 and 16 weeks of age; or
  • a mother and her litter up to the age of 8 weeks.

If you wish to care for more than 5 foster animals, you will need to register your premises as a domestic animal business shelter. 

Benefits of being a registered pet foster carer

  • A reduced registration rate of $10 for each dog or cat fostered during the first 12 months the dog/cat is in your care.
  • The ability to use pet shops as a means of providing additional community exposure to dogs 6 months of age or older, and cats 8 weeks of age or older.

Do I need to register myself on the Pet Exchange Register?

No, we will do this and provide you with relevant information once approved.

Next steps

We will review your application and if it’s approved you will receive a registered foster carer certificate to prove that you are eligible for the above benefits.