1402 Emil St Madison 53713 (4, 40, and 47 Madison Metro bus routes)

Social Services

[expand title=”Pet Boarding”]

WisCARES runs a short-term boarding and foster program to provide cats and dogs with a temporary place to stay when their families need access to social services.
Our boarding program is intended to allow human family members gain access to the following services:

  • Emergency shelter
  • Inpatient health services
  • Inpatient mental health services
  • Treatment programs
  • Other similar short-term situations that result in a lack of stable shelter

Our boarding and foster program does not:

  • Provide emergency, less-than-24-hours turnaround boarding services. We will do our best to help you, but expect for our boarding and foster program to take some time to access. Please give us as much advance warning as possible!
  • Cover more typical boarding needs (such as going out of town). Feel free to contact us if you are unsure if you situation applies.

We currently have (2) programs:

[expandsub1 title= “Short-Term Boarding” trigclass=”arrowright”]

Short-term boarding provides up to fourteen days of stay in a kennel type environment. Here’s how it usually goes:

  1. We ask that you come in to our clinic to talk through the program and do paperwork. If you are a current PLUS client, you will only need to apply to the boarding program. If you are not a current client, we will need to do intake as well, including qualification.
  2. After you and one of our staff have decided that short-term boarding in a good fit for you and your pet,one of two things will happen:
    1. Either we will find you boarding with one of our partner organizations, and we will transport your pet to and from WisCARES’ Culmen location and the facility.
    2. Or, if we are unable to place your pet with our partners due to limited space, you will be asked to find a boarding facility in Dane County that has space and is willing to take your pet. We can assist with giving you names of places we’ve worked with previously, but we ask that you do the calling. You will be asked to bring your pet to the boarding facility and pick them up on the agreed upon date.
  3. Boarding facilities often require proof of updated vaccinations–we may be able to take care of that at WisCARES, dependent on our scheduling, or we may be able to assist you in securing that from an outside facility.[/expandsub1]


[expandsub2 title= “Foster Program (Long-Term Boarding)” trigclass=”arrowright”]

Our Foster Program allows for up to 90 days for your pet in a volunteer home environment. Here’s how our foster program goes:

  1. We ask that you come in to our clinic to talk through the program and do paperwork. If you are a current PLUS client, you will only need to apply to the boarding program. If you are not a current client, we will need to do intake as well, including qualification.
  2. Once you and our staff have decided that foster is a good fit for you and your pet, we will look into finding a foster situation for your pet.
    1. Foster placement is not guaranteed, as it is dependent on our having foster homes, and on the compatibility of your pet with our open foster homes. (Interested in becoming a foster? Contact us and we’ll get you an application–we are always in need of foster homes!)
  3. Your pet may go into short-term boarding while we prepare your foster, or may be able to go directly to the foster situation. WisCARES will do all transport to and from your foster facility. For the comfort and privacy of both our client and our foster homes, both parties will be kept confidential.
  4. If you would like to visit with your pet while in foster, please let us know! We are happy to arrange a meet-up at our clinic, as long as we are given enough time to arrange it. [/expandsub2]


[expand title=”Required Medical Paperwork”]

Animals in our boarding and foster program must be up to date on the following:

  • Dogs:
    • Rabies Vaccine
    • Distemper Vaccine
    • Bordetella Vaccine
    • Flea/Tick Preventatives
  • Cats:
    • Rabies Vaccine
    • FVRCP Vaccine
    • FeLV/FIV Test Results
    • Flea/Tick Preventatives

If you have no record of these required items, WisCARES is able to provide these required items free of charge for animals entering the boarding and foster program.


Important Note: ALL animals must undergo an exam and medical history with a WisCARES veterinarian prior to boarding. Please note that severe medical concerns or behavioral concerns may prohibit placement of an animal in our boarding program if safety to the pet or caretakers are a concern.

If you are a veterinary clinic, boarding facility, or an individual and are interested in working with us to provide placements for animals in our boarding or foster program, please contact us at wiscares@gmail.com for further information!


[expand title=”Social Services”]

Sometimes pet owners need a little bit more help with housing or living without housing as a pet owner. We have a flexible group of volunteers and social service providers who can help strategize in these situations. We understand that each situation is unique and have helped people out with the following types of concerns:
  • Landlord education
  • Linking with existing resources in the Madison area (food pantries, etc.)
  • Navigating emotional support animal and service dog questions relating to FHA and ADA laws
  • Navigating veterinary health care outside of what the WisCARES program is able to provide
  • [expandsub1 title=”Animal surrender” trigclass=”arrowright”]

    WisCARES’ primary goal is to ensure that pets can remain with their owners; we do not, by any means, ordinarily function as a pet rescue center. However, we do understand that there are extraordinary circumstances in which a pet owner may decide that it is in their family’s best interest for the animal to be re-homed. In these situations, we can help you navigate this process as much as we possibly can! [/expandsub1]


[expand title=”Pet Food Pantry”]

Our pet food pantry may be accessed whenever we are open, at our clinic, 1402 Emil St, Madison, WI, 53713. This service is for PLUS clients only

Available Items vary with donations but typically include:

  • Cat Food (Wet & Dry)
  • Dog Food (Dry)
  • Cat Litter
  • Cat Carriers
  • Dog Leashes, Collars, & Harnesses
  • Jackets & Boots (Dogs)
  • Musher’s Secret (to protect paws from pavement, salt, and ice)
  • Non-prescription Flea & Tick Control (Prescription Items Require Attendance at a Walk-in Clinic and a veterinarian to write a prescription)