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not so much a question as a plea

I used to work for the local animal shelter, and this time of year is the worst. Kittens come in regularly without their mothers, sometimes only hours or days old.

If you are able, please look into fostering litters of kittens from your local animal shelter. It's a few weeks of your time (between 1wk and 8 wks usually) and it's easy. Most shelters will provide you with everything you need, but whatever you can afford to provide is appreciated.

To explain why fostering is so important: Kittens who are brought to an animal shelter are exposed to every illness there, upper respiratory infections and more. While I worked at the shelter I saw how high the mortality rate of kittens is. In a litter of five, it was common to lose two or three of them, sometimes all. Those with moms are better off because they nurse and get antibodies just like humans. Those without stand little to no chance. Please look into it and save a few.

Answer Question

Asked by BisketLiss at 1:52 PM on Apr. 8, 2009 in Pets

Level 18 (4,943 Credits)
Answers (10)
  • Oh, I know. I am a huge cat lover and my kids are constantly wanting new kitties. Our two male cats are not only grown, but not fun to play with. They are fairly self sufficient as well. I have tried to talk him into letting us have one more, but maybe he will when move out to the country in the summer. (dad that is)

    Answer by momofsaee at 3:24 PM on Apr. 8, 2009

  • I'm also a huge cat lover and I definately WOULD foster if I could. I have 2 extremely snotty spoiled kitties that can hardly manage to get along with each other and I'd be fearful of what they'd do to a baby kitty. I also have 2 large dogs who wouldn't hurt a flea but given their size, they may accidentally kick them or step on them. I've fostered some animals in the past for short periods of time and love the idea!

    Answer by ReneeK3 at 4:55 PM on Apr. 8, 2009

  • I am so glad i read this. I absolutly will. I love animals and have cared for many litters. I would love to do that!!!

    Answer by muzikgrl477 at 9:28 PM on Apr. 8, 2009

  • I, too, will look into this. Thank you. I would love it!

    Answer by m-avi at 9:47 PM on Apr. 8, 2009

  • Would love too.... but can't. I have a huge dog who loves to chase cats. Plus AND THIS IS THE BAD PART, our local animal shelter will not allow fostering. Can you believe that?? I've offered to foster puppies because my big ole dog loves puppies, he tries to adopt them all, but they said no. I was furious that they would rather put them to sleep than allow the community to help. I hate that we have to have a kill shelter, and ours seems bad compared to other cities I've lived in.

    Answer by PaceMyself at 9:58 PM on Apr. 8, 2009

  • But what happens to the kittens after the foster period? Are they usually adopted? Shame on owners of pets who won't spay or neuter unless they are planning on caring for entire litters and adopting them out themselves.

    Answer by lifeasinoit at 10:31 AM on Apr. 9, 2009

  • Yes, in most cases they are returned to the shelter at 8wks (or more if possible) and adopted out from there. Sometimes they can be adopted from the homes of those who fostered them. Some remain at the shelter longer (we had kittens who had grown up at the shelter..)

    And yes, I agree with you, shame on those who do not spay/neuter their pets for contributing to the overpopulation at shelters.

    Answer by BisketLiss at 2:11 PM on Apr. 9, 2009

  • Can anyone foster kittens?What do you have to go through to be chosen?

    Answer by fryshannon34 at 7:58 PM on Apr. 11, 2009

  • We have the same problem here right now. The economy is causing people to lose their homes and leave their animals behind or they can't pay to feed them any longer and are dropping them off at the shelter or even worse on the side of the road. Its so sad. Thanks for your post and reminding people that these animals need our help.

    Answer by Anonymous at 2:19 AM on Apr. 12, 2009

  • If your shelter will allow it (not all shelters bother with the foster programs) you may or may not have to file an application, usually a simple sheet with contact information and basic stuff, and once you're okayed to take a litter, they'll call you when they have them. The best way to find out what you'll have to do is look up your local animal shelter, or call the ASPCA, they may also be in need of help with the care of an animal.

    If you cannot afford to feed yourself, it's not a good idea to try to feed extra mouths, but if you have the room, and the funds, please consider it an option.

    Before you bring any animals home from a shelter, try to make sure they've been checked for fleas, ticks, etc, and have been given necessary vaccines (kittens are usually exempt from this, as well as puppies, because they have to be a certain weight/age before they receive the vaccines.) Also have your own animals checked!

    Answer by BisketLiss at 7:34 PM on Apr. 12, 2009

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