San Diego Humane Society has a record number of dogs in care and is launching a new incentive to encourage the community to help out. Photo of "Hercules" courtesy of San Diego Humane Society.

During what is typically referred to as the “slow season” for adult shelter dogs, San Diego Humane Society has a record number of dogs in care and is launching a new incentive to encourage the community to help out.

San Diego Humane Society is offering a $100 gift card to volunteers who foster a dog weighing 50 pounds or more for two weeks.

The new incentive was created to get 50 dogs into foster homes and comes after the organization set a record on March 24, with 620 dogs in care, breaking its previous record of 606 dogs on Dec. 20, 2022.

While the organization is working tirelessly to place dogs in foster homes, even more fosters are needed to care for the high number of dogs in care.

Large dogs are more difficult to place in foster homes, which is why the incentive focuses on this specific population.

Any length of stay at a shelter can be stressful for pets — especially dogs.

“We are piloting this new approach because we want dogs in our care to have an easier transition in foster care while they wait for their future family,” said Dr. Gary Weitzman, president and CEO of San Diego Humane Society. “We’ll be there to support fosters every step of the way, through staff support, medical care, and behavior assistance. All we ask is for our community to provide the temporary home, love and care. We’ll help with the rest.”

To qualify for the $100 gift card, foster volunteers must sign up in advance at

Nina Thompson said Saturday that there still are gift cards available, and the organization may give away more than the 50 original gift cards. She said some foster families have declined to accept the gift cards in order for more dogs to be placed in care.

The ideal foster for this incentive has the ability to separate the foster dog from other pets in their home.

Many of the dogs San Diego Humane Society is looking to place into foster homes would prefer to be the only dog in the home. Society officials say the benefits of fostering include:

  *   Temporarily opening your heart and home to a pet offers the one-on-one attention and loving comfort that shelter animals need.
  *   Every pet in a foster home opens up space in the shelter for another animal urgently needing care.
  *   While in a foster home, we learn characteristics and preferences of the animal that will help find a better match for the pet when speaking to potential adopters.

More News

The Coronado News is a 24-hour news website and direct-mail free newspaper to all residents and businesses of Coronado as we cover city government, schools, businesses, entertainment and the Navy.