Join Our Network of Foster Homes

SAAV’s shelter program is made possible only because people in our community open their homes to animals affected by domestic abuse. We ask our fosters to make a commitment to sheltering an animal affected by domestic abuse for a period of up to 90 days. The foster period is sometimes shorter than 90 days, but will not be longer than 90 days. Once approved as a SAAV Foster Parent, we will contact you if we are in need of a foster home, but you are never obligated to take an animal into your home when we ask for help. Our goal is to have an extensive network of potential foster homes available so that we do not burn out our volunteers.

We also ask our foster parents to become part of our overall mission to raise community awareness about the link between domestic abuse and animal cruelty. To aid in that goal, we ask our fosters to attend a SAAV  Foster Orientation session before they become foster parents. We hold orientation sessions several times a year, in which volunteers from SAAV, and staff from Domestic Abuse Intervention Services and the Dane County Humane Society, speak about domestic abuse and animal cruelty. We want our fosters and other volunteers to learn about domestic abuse, so that they can have a greater understanding of the many complexities that domestic abuse victims face when trying to flee an abuser. 

To become a foster parent, please complete our combined SAAV / DCHS Foster Application (link below in pink), and email it to us at, or, by mail, PO Box 5152, Madison, WI 53705.  SAAV foster parents must be screened and approved by both DCHS and SAAV.  Once approved, SAAV foster parents must attend two orientation sessions before fostering a SAAV animal: (1) a session through DCHS relating to general information for the fostering of animals; and (2) a separate session through SAAV, which focuses on domestic abuse, the link with animal cruelty, and issues unique to the fostering of SAAV animals.  These orientation sessions are scheduled by DCHS and SAAV at varying times throughout the year.

Download SAAV / DCHS Foster Application here

Join Our Network of Community Educators

If fostering is not for you, you can still join our mission.  We are always in need of volunteers to assist with grant writing and fundraising, to help staff booths at community events, or to provide us with innovative ideas to raise community awareness.  Complete the General Volunteer Application on our Home page, and email it to us at, or, by mail, PO Box 5152, Madison, WI 53705.

Download  General Volunteer Application here

Invest In Our Mission

SAAV is an all-volunteer 501(c)(3) organization. We are financially supported through grants and donations from the community. Please consider investing in our mission, by making a tax deductible donation. Click the Donate button on our Home page, or mail your donation to PO Box 5152, Madison, WI 53705.

Start A Shelter Program In Your Community

SAAV is the product of a grassroots effort of two law students and made possible through the dedication of other folks interested in making a difference in their community. Our program is a community collaboration with our local domestic abuse and animal abuse organizations, who have come together to share in our mission. Our shelter services are limited to Dane County, Wisconsin, because we simply do not have the resources to serve a greater geographic area. To truly serve domestic abuse victims with animals, it is necessary to have shelter programs available in  all communities, in Wisconsin and nationally. We are pleased to provide information and advice to any individuals or organizations interested in creating a shelter program or other resources for domestic abuse victims and their animals.  Please email us at for more information.

Help Domestic Abuse Victims, By Helping Their Animals.

Don't have time or money to donate right now? There is still so much good you can do, by speaking up for domestic abuse victims, supporting legislation aimed at domestic abuse and/or animal cruelty, and generally talking with others about the link between domestic abuse, animal cruelty and other forms of family violence. Family violence is part of a cycle of abuse, where power and control are used to terrorize, punish, and dominate the weak. We ask you to speak for those who cannot speak for themselves.

To stay updated about news and events regarding domestic abuse and animal cruelty, please consider joining us on Facebook.