Pick Me, Pick Me!
Hopefully a few of you have given fostering a try since my last articles.
I want to share my most recent foster experience and explain how easy it was for me to find the right one for my home.
I have to admit. I became a foster failure again. I kept one of the remaining kittens I had in October. But we were a house without a permanent cat so having just one did not discourage fostering again.. But it does make you think about the first foster kitten of the season.
Will Ceily (named after Whoopi Goldberg’s character in The Color Purple) torment a kitten? She is only 8 months old and loves to play. Or jealous perhaps? I also have 3 dogs and do not foster older cats as they are too fearful of them.
Off I went to the Montreal SPCA to meet Andra Dumitrescu last Thursday who is a leader in the Foster program. See last year’s blog on Andra D
I have taken many kittens from Andra and trust her to help me make the right choice now that my home situation has changed a bit.
It’s imperative you talk with experienced shelter personnel like this. They know the background of the animal, the animal’s present health condition and what is expected of you as a temporary home.. Of course each organization is different, with foster based rescues having only so many animals at a time versus a shelter like the SPCA which gets hundreds of animals dumped there.
Never answer the call of someone ranting about taking the dog by 5 or he dies in a shelter. I really dislike that form of guilt on a new foster or even an experienced one. This week on FB someone posted about “mass slaughter taking place tomorrow morning unless you come forward to help “with pictures of all the dogs scheduled for euthanasia the next morning. This was at 8 p.m.! What did this accomplish other than making people upset all night feeling helpless?
I was allowed to see the cats Andra had in the “rhino ward “and talk about each one. Normally I would take two or three young kittens. Had I wanted a puppy or a dog, it would have been the same. She would have walked me though who she thought would be a fit for my home.
Ceily is up to date on her shots so the thought of getting very sick from another kitten was not worrisome to me. She almost died from rhino last August and I know there are many strains she could get again. But I also know she is extremely healthy so her immune system would be capable of fighting it. And the cure for rhino is antibiotics and time, of which I have access to both.
So a single kitten would be my choice. It came down to two that Andra pointed out to me. A very teeny kitten with an eye infection. Or a 4 month old with slight rhino. I chose 4 month old Theodore as I felt he was old enough to handle himself with Ceily’s playfulness yet still needed to be watched, medicated and babied.
Never at any point in our meeting did Andra sway my decision. Had I said I don’t think any of these are for me she would have been fine with it. She would have called when others came in. That‘s how fostering should be and the way you are treated at the SPCA Foster program and qualified rescues here in Montreal.
The following was posted on Rosie Animal Adoption’s FB page this week;
“Went to the animal services to pick up dogs and saw Miko who was in quarantine -they did not know what was wrong with him. Left with him – I listened to my heart! He has Parvo. Around 8 – 10 weeks old
12 lbs – he looks a lot smaller than that……
He is in quarantine at Pierrefonds Animal Hospital but needs a foster in the next 2 days. He had a weak parvo – already eating this morning. He is doing extremely well.
Can anyone foster him?
Pls Google Parvo as we want you to know exactly what you are dealing with. Parvo is contagious to other dogs who are not vaccinated and do not have a good history of vaccinations.
(He has since found a foster)
Could you be more up front than this? It’s just perfect.
Imagine if an unreliable “rescue” had asked you to take this dog directly into your home before even seeing a vet because he was going to “be murdered in the pound? “You could have spread parvo to others or even had a dead puppy by morning.
Theodore’s meds and food were given to me. I declined the offer of bowls, toys and litter as I don’t mind supplying those, but Andra made certain to ask again.
My commitment is to get him through twelve days of treatment and bring him back to see a vet for follow up and a booster shot. If all is well, he will remain there and be put up for adoption.
He is doing just fine. He plays hard all day and sleeps on my head all night. He has a slight sneeze left but that’s the extent of his illness. Ceily is happy to have a little buddy and I now know how to introduce and manage fosters with her in the future. Had it not worked out for any reason, I was secure enough to know that he could go right back without any bad blood between Andra and myself.
I know it’s going to be a long summer. Kittens are sprouting everywhere and moving day is approaching.
If you can find it in your heart, please, please think about fostering a cat or dog from a local rescue
Please read the first three articles on fostering if you are thinking about opening your home but not sure where to begin.
TPK “In rescuing animals, I lost my mind, but found my soul.” ~anonymous