Volunteer FAQ’s:                                     foster a dog

Our Puppy Raising and Foster a Dog Programs are the heart & soul of PurposeFULL Paws! Getting our dogs off to a good start with love, training and proper care makes them wonderful Service and Assistance Dogs! Below are a few important things you should know as well as possible answers to your questions about these volunteer positions. Please read through these before filling out the application.

  • Are Puppy Raiser and Foster Homes required to have a fenced yard?Open or Close
    For safety reasons, PurposeFULL Paws puppies are required to be a leash at all times unless they are inside an area with a physical fence. Puppies need time to release excess energy by running around and playing therefore we highly recommend and prefer that our puppy raisers and foster homes have a fenced yard. We will also allow large sized kennel runs that meet our requirements. Puppy raisers must agree to follow the PurposeFULL Paws procedure manual for supervision and leash requirements at all times.
  • Can we puppy raise or foster if we have other animals?Open or Close
    Socialization is great for our puppies and foster dogs! Additional pets in the home can be extremely helpful in raising and training our dogs. All pets in the home must be social with people and other dogs, well behaved and current on vaccinations. We prefer other dogs in the home be spayed or neutered but we will consider volunteer situations on a case by case basis. PurposeFULL Paws will evaluate additional pets at our initial home visit.
  • What type of training am I responsible for with the puppy?Open or Close
    The most important part of training that volunteers will do is socializing and exposing the puppy to many different environments, sounds and situations. Volunteers must set aside time for daily training on their own as well as attending obedience classes that are offered through PurposeFULL Paws two times a month until they are ready for advanced training. PurposeFULL Paws will provide the training classes free of charge. You can watch our calendar schedule online for classes that will fit your schedule.
  • What is the preparation process to become a Puppy Raiser or Foster Home?Open or Close
    Each volunteer is required to attend our Puppy Raiser Certification Course. This course is one day a week for 5 weeks. At this training, a manual will be provided to each volunteer household. We welcome any younger co-volunteers (accompanied by the primary volunteer) to attend and learn the process! Our staff will always be available via phone or email to answer any questions. We will also schedule a meeting in person to answer questions and offer follow-up assistance if needed.
  • If I need to go out of town, who will care for the dog?Open or Close
    Service dogs need to be comfortable with traveling and staying in different environments. In most situations, both dogs and puppies should accompany the volunteer when they go out of town. If a volunteer is unable to travel with their dog, PurposeFULL Paws will make arrangements with a foster home during this time.
  • Where do PurposeFULL Paws dogs go in public?Open or Close
    Service dogs need to be comfortable with many different activities of everyday life. It is important that our volunteers expose their puppies and dogs to a wide variety of experiences by taking them to their work place, shopping centers, doctors’ appointments, and additional public places. PurposeFULL Paws puppies and dogs will be identified in public as “Service Dogs in Training” by wearing a special vest that we provide to each volunteer. PurposeFull Paws puppies/dogs are not allowed to visit designated public dog parks.
  • What do you do with the dogs that are unable to be placed as Service or Assistance dogs?Open or Close
    Both puppies and foster dogs can be released from our program at any point in time during their training if they do not meet our temperament and genetic health standard to be a Service Dog. If the dog is not suitable to be placed as a working dog in a different field, they will be placed as a pet/companion dog. PurposeFULL Paws will allow the volunteer the first opportunity to adopt without an adoption fee. Any other home that would like to adopt a dog out of our program will have to fill out an application and be approved by PurposeFULL Paws. There will be an adoption fee for anyone other than the current volunteer prior to placement of any of our dogs.


PurposeFULL Paws will not discriminate against any volunteer who applies to our program, but reserves the right to make the determination of who is eligible for raising/training our Service and Assistance Dogs. This determination will be based on the volunteer’s current circumstances at the time of application. Each Volunteer application will be carefully evaluated and PurposeFULL Paws will contact those on the volunteer list as puppies and dogs come available.


Thank you so much for your interest in our Puppy Raiser & Foster a Dog Programs!!!!!!

Volunteer Application

Please fill the following application if you would like to be considered for our Puppy Raisers and Foster Families Program.

  • Before getting started we encourage you to read our F.A.Q. (Frequently Asked Questions) above by clicking HERE:
  • General Info

  • Members of Household

  • Name Age Relationship Occupation  

  • Current and Past Animal History

  • Breed Age Sex Spayed/Neutered Indoor/Outdoor