For nearly four years, my home office has doubled as a sanctuary for over 100 rescue kittens. Prior becoming a kitten foster parent, I had heard of cat and dog fostering, but never put any serious thought into the idea. That all changed very quickly when there were foster kittens in my home office less than a month after deciding that fostering might be a good fit for me! I’m sharing my fostering journey in hopes inspiring others to consider kitten fostering (or dog fostering as they need help, too!).
First, I’ll share my inspiration for kitten fostering and how my journey to becoming a foster kitten parent began…
Inspiration to Foster Kittens
In 2015, I stumbled upon the 24/7 TinyKittens livestream. I quickly became hooked, checking in several times a day and leaving the livestream running in the background every evening. Watching foster kittens was an instant stress-reliever and they were just so adorable! It was also the first time I’d seen kittens grow from birth to around ten weeks old when they are old enough to be spayed and neutered, and adopted into homes.
While watching the adventures of all the TinyKittens families online, I was quite lonely on weekdays as I work from home. My youngest child had just started kindergarten so the house was very quiet during the day. I watched TinyKittens, looked around my lonely home office and thought, “I could do that!” After witnessing the 24/7 responsibilities required by a foster kitten parent for several months, I knew that this was the perfect solution for my loneliness and I’d also be helping kittens in need.
Becoming A Kitten Foster Parent
I stopped by a local rescue cat shelter here in Raleigh, Safe Haven For Cats, as an information-gathering step. My goal was to simply inquire about fostering kittens. By the time I left, I had completed the foster application and was already on the waitlist!
At Safe Haven, adult cats live at the shelter where they can be visited by potential adopters. As only spayed and neutered cats are adoptable, kittens must wait until they are over two pounds, the minimum weight for the surgery. Rather than use valuable shelter space while waiting several weeks to grow to that size, kitten foster parents step in to care for kittens in their homes until they reach their goal weight.
Just days after that inquiry visit, I received my first call that there was a litter of kittens in need of a home. Days later, on September 3, 2015, there were four 7-week old foster kittens living in my home office!
Do you foster kittens? How did you learn about fostering and get started? I’d love for you to share your experience in the comments below! If you have any questions about getting started with fostering kittens, please ask!