Every year, a common term used in the animal welfare world is Kitten Season. This term is used to describe the time of year (March through September) when shelters are inundated with cats, kittens, pregnant cats, neonatal kittens, nursing moms with their kittens, etc. It never feels like the cat/kitten
calls stop and we are always bombarded with more cats and kittens then we have space for. Not to mention, most of these cats and kittens that come to us are either sick or injured. This means they cannot be housed in our general cat population, for the safety and health of all cats involved.
So what do we do with cats and kittens that we don’t have the space to house? We rely heavily on our foster coordinator and her team of fosters to house the cats and kittens for us! Foster Coordinator Katie Love has managed the foster program for the last year and a half. Foster coordinating is a job that requires you to always be on call. Whether that be networking to find the best foster home possible for a new batch of kittens coming in or answering calls late at night about potentially sick kittens that need medical treatment. Of course, running the foster department is a team effort and other staff work to collaborate with Katie to make sure all of the cats and kittens coming in are taken care of.
When a kitten comes in needing foster, there are a number of steps that need to be taken. Our medical team needs to evaluate the health of the kitten. Age and gender needs to also be identified. This helps us provide the best information we can for fosters who may be taking the kitten on. A picture of the kitten is then posted, with a description of its needs. This includes how long the foster should expect to have the kitten (which can vary between 2-6 weeks). Fosters then will claim the kitten they wish to foster.
Coordinating that kitten’s care doesn’t just stop there. Our coordinator is then responsible for getting that kitten into the shelter for its routine vaccines and eventually to be fixed and available for adoption. This year alone we have had over 200 cats and kittens in foster care. Friendship APL provides all the supplies necessary to care for these animals. This includes wet and dry food, litter, toys, crates, blankets, towels etc. We would not be able to save the amount of cats and kittens we do, without having our Foster Program, our Foster Coordinator, and all of the amazing fosters that house these cats and kittens for us!
Below are a few of the many cats and kittens that have been on a foster journey this year. Some have found homes, some are still in foster and some have been adopted by their fosters! All of them are worth celebrating! If you are interested in fostering, please submit an application by going to our “Foster” tab.