Fostering Cats: Update #3 Noah and Meet Pixel!

Hey gang!

So something excited started this week with Noah! I started introducing him to the resident furballs! That’s right, finally seeing how Ms. Sassy (Precious) and Mr. Grumpy (Finn) takes to meeting a new feline friend.

Well, here’s how it went.

I moved my office from the spare room to my bedroom so that the spare room is now my foster room. I decided to take Noah into my room with me and leave his room open for my two to explore. This is called scent swapping. And if I’m going to be completely honest, neither cats really gave two shits about it.

Noah slept on my bed and my two took a couple sniffs around his room and went back to sleep in the livingroom.

That is until I opened the door to go on my lunch break and Precious decided to run into the room. Rather than freak both cats out by frantically trying to grab her, I just sat quietly and watched as she made her way around the room. She finally noticed Noah and there was some growling and some hissing but all in all I was really impressed. Both cats, although slight cranky, weren’t showing too much aggressive behavior. Their ears were front facing and curious, their body language was pretty relaxed.

It’s going to take a couple days for the hissing to stop, or maybe it won’t. I’m not sure. But I’m not overly concerned because each cat has their own place where they can retreat and hide if they want to. As long as their not lunging and attacking each other, I’m pretty happy.

We’re doing pretty slow face to face visits, but I’m pretty proud of my kitties. Precious may be acting like she’s a cobra, but she’s also rolling onto her back in plain view of Noah. My sassy girl secretly wants to be friends. On her terms. When she wants to.

At least both of them love the laser pointer and I can get them to stop hissing at each other for up to five minutes while they both play with it!

Win for Momma!

Nighttime is still a lock down time. Noah goes into the foster room and stays until morning which he is hating more and more. I feel bad, but I think all cats need a little bit of space and cool down time before we try again the next day. He whines quite a bit and looks sad when I shut the door, but he’s always happy to come out in the morning.

Noah also met some children this weekend! My nine year old niece, another nine year old and a five year old. And he did wonderful with them. This is fantastic because cats who are tolerant of children are much easier to adopt.


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Name: Pixel
Age: 6-7 Months
Intake Date: May 12, 2018

 

 

 

 

On Thursday, I was scrolling through Facebook and came across someones post about a cat they found outside their house. Immediately I noticed that the little kitten was full out in heat. I messaged my cousin and her and I took a trip to the ladies house to try to find the little kitten. We had no luck unfortunately. But I left a carrier and some wet food and let the woman know to message me if she found her.

On Saturday, the woman messaged me for my address. She had found the little kitten and her boyfriend was going to bring the cat over. So I got my bathroom all ready and waited. When he showed up, Pixel was angry. She was hissing, growling, lashing out. She wanted nothing to do with no one or nothing. So I pretty much left her alone.

Finally she warmed up to me, especially after I moved her to the laundry room.

She’s now through her five day hold with animal control and is officially a Fortunate Feline. She’s doing fantastic, eating well, and heading for her spa day next Friday. I’m looking forward to getting Noah fully integrated into the house so I can get her into the foster room so she’s not in my laundry room. This little one absolutely hates the sound of the washer and dryer and hides behind the water heater whenever they’re on.

As usual, if you guys have any questions about either cats or fostering in general, let me know 🙂

Until next time,

Bree

Fostering Cats|Update #2 Noah

Hey guys!

So I have had Noah for a little over a week now and he is absolutely fantastic. He’s always super lovey, wants all the attention and eats like crazy! He had a vet appointment on Wednesday and I’m happy to say that he has gained over a pound since he was first brought in! Which brings him right around the healthy weight range for his age and size.

So there was a couple times this week that I thought he was getting sick. I saw him excessively grooming himself (particularly in his genital area) which can be a sign of UTIs or other urinary issues, so I had the vet check him out for that. The vet said that everything looked alright. There was some crystals in his urine but that could of been because it was an older sample (I had managed to only get a sample from him at around midnight and it was noon the next day before the vet got it). They gave him some anti-inflammatory medication just in case he was having spasms.

He’s taking the pills like a champ! Hide them in the middle of a pile of treats and he eats it right up. Definitely a lot easier than trying to pry his mouth open.

I also noticed he was getting a little lethargic, he stopped running to the door whenever I opened it and stopped meowing, so I thought that maybe he’s not feeling well. But everything else is fine so he may just be a little bored. Stuck in a room for over a week straight can’t be too amusing. I left him out some toys to play with and I’m going to give him a run around with the laser pointer every night, so I’m positive that will help! The vet again didn’t find anything that could be wrong with him. He’s not showing any other signs of a kitty cold or anything, so he’s in good shape.

Noah is officially up for adoption after he’s done his medication! He’s done absolutely amazing during his 10 day quarantine. A few quirks I’ve noticed:

  • He’s a mean stoner. He cannot handle his cat nip at all so he’s banned from it.
  • He loves his paw being held and will let you just rub the top of his paw and knead your fingers. But try to cut his nails and you get the side eye and a warning growl.
  • He is the gentlest cat ever. If you hand feed him treats, he’ll pick it up with the very edge of his teeth to make sure he doesn’t hurt you.
  • The only wet food he likes is in a cheesy bacon sauce.

I’m so excited for him to find his permanent home. But I’m going to miss his sweet little face.

I’ve posted this on my social media’s, but ICYMI:

 

I’m having a hard time believing that this is the same cat. In just the 10 days he’s been with me, he’s gone from being scruffy, overly skinny and terrified cat that looked three times his age to this super friendly, soft, baby-faced cat that’s right around the perfect weight.

He loves being brushed, LOVES treats, and loves being told how handsome he is.

 

I hope you all enjoyed this update about Noah! I will be sure to update everyone soon on his adoption status. This little one isn’t going to be in care very long… I can feel it ❤

Until next time,

Bree

Fostering Cats|Meet my foster Noah!

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Name: Noah
Age: 1-2 Years
Breed: Domestic Short Hair
Intake Date: May 1, 2018
Favorite things(so far): Food, the laser pointer and being called handsome

 

 

 


On Monday, I was messaged by the rescue that I’m working with to let me know that a woman had trapped a cat in her baby barn that she had been feeding all winter. She wasn’t sure if he was a stray or someone’s missing pet, so she kept feeding him and posting about him on some Facebook pages that are for lost and found pets in my city. After way too long, she finally decided to get a rescue involved.

So this morning, the rescue went there and after some time, finally got him out and into a carrier so he could go to the vet.

He was tested for things like Feline Leukemia and Feline Immunodeficiency and tested negative for all! Which is extremely exciting because that means he got to come to be my foster.

Feline Leukemia and Feline Immunodeficiency are both extremely contagious, life threatening conditions in cats. Although they can live a very long and healthy life, if the virus becomes active, it can be extremely dangerous. Vaccinations are available for these diseases, but unfortunately, most outdoor cats don’t get vaccinated. Noah will be getting vaccinated soon, and since he tested negative, there is no risk to my two kitties who still need their boosters.

When he was brought here, Noah was a pretty upset little kitty. He had a long day of being poked and prodded at and just wanted to be left alone for a while.

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I tried to provide him with some wet food, which promptly made him gag. This is somewhat normal, as being upset and nervous can cause cats to get nauseated and they’ll gag at the smell of food. So I ditched that one and left him some kibble and treats out.

Now the lady who had been feeding him was giving him dog food. And as wonderful as it was that she was feeding him, dog food is not meant for cats. They do not have the same dietary needs whatsoever. Dogs require much less protein than cats and dogs also don’t require taurine, which is an essential amino acid in a cats diet. A lack of taurine can cause things like blindness and heart conditions. So definitely not the right food for them.

As the day went on, the more I got a little nervous that he wasn’t eating. The woman from the rescue ended up coming back so that she could treat Noah with revolution and then she went out and bought some more food so we could try a few to see which one he liked the best.

He was hanging out in the hideaway, so I left him a few pieces of kibbles and went back to work. A little while later, I heard crunching, and a few minutes after that, Noah stuck his head out of the hideaway and meowed at me. So I gave him some more, which he ate happily. He then bathed himself and went back to sleep.

When I was done work, I sat in front of the hideaway and just talked to him for a few seconds. And then… he came out to see me! He was rubbing himself all over me, purring and wanting all the attention. So he got a wipe down with some baby wipes, a nice brush, a run around with the laser pointer and then I had to leave because I had to have supper.

Noah is approximately one to two years old, but being outside for so long, he looks like a much older kitty. He’s skinny, has a scratch on his nose and is very dirty. I still need to try to take a baby wipe to his paws, because they’re stained with mud. But he is a gorgeous big alley cat and just a huge cuddle bug.


This past few days have been fantastic. He’s still spooking at some things.. particularly outside. I was holding him and letting him look out the window and he pretty much panicked. I’m not sure if cats can actually be traumatized but it was as if he was terrified that I would put him out again. According to one of the ladies at the rescue, someone had actually rescued him before but then put him back outside when they realized he wasn’t their cat. I spent 20 minutes feeding him treats and rubbing his little paw until he finally relaxed enough to fall asleep.

It’s going to be slow going to get him to trust everyone again, but I’m hoping I can have him trust me so he can eventually trust his forever human. This again goes to show that cats belong inside. As much as people may say ‘well, they’re wild animals’… we domesticated them, we have to help them. And although cats do still have their natural instincts, we still dulled them enough that they can’t survive with all the other dangers that humans have put out into the world.

I can’t wait to keep you all updated on Noah’s progress. Hopefully he will get adopted quickly, he deserves it.

 

If you have any questions about Noah or about fostering, ask away in the comments 🙂

Also, I’m switching these posts from Sunday to Saturday because Caturday! lol

Until next time,

Bree

Fostering Cats: Update #1 Bugsy

I was trying to figure out how to start this post, but I’ll just come right out with the amazing news:

Bugsy got adopted!

On Tuesday, his new forever human (also the lady that original found him and brought him to the rescue) came to pick him up! I was so happy, but guys…

I did not expect it to be so HARD! I knew I would be attached to all the cats, but Holy Hannah I thought I was going to start crying right there. Obviously I’m projecting, but I couldn’t help but think he looked almost betrayed. Like he was asking me why he had to leave. It was sad. I spent the night watching Kitten Lady videos to keep telling myself that the point of fostering is Good-bye.

I’m hoping it’ll get easier and I’m hoping that documenting this experience and all the cats will help me remember. I may have only had Bugsy for four days, but I definitely got attached to that little cutie. I know he’ll be happy in his forever home and he’s going back to see some of the cats he got attached to before he came into care. He’s going to rule his little roost.


One thing I wanted to touch on was a question that I got in the comments in the last post. I answered it there, but I’ll answer it here as well. When I said ‘foster failing’ that is in no way a bad thing. A foster fail is when the foster family adopts the cat in care. The term itself is more of an inside joke within rescues than anything else. But it’s not frowned upon. If you’re in the position to adopt, by all means, foster fail away. But I know with my situation, with my current senior kitty with so many medical problems, bringing another cat into the house permanently is not the best thing at all. So as much as I would of loved to keep Bugsy, his place is with his new human<3


So now that my first foster is off to live out the rest of his life in spoiled bliss, it was time to get ready for the next kitty that needed my help.

Cleanliness is unbelievably important when it comes to taking care of stray or abandoned animals. As much as I’m protecting my own cats, I have to protect each and every cat that stays with me.

With Bugsy, he was in care for so long and tested negative for anything that could pass from cat to cat so I didn’t have to sanitize AS much. Normally the best thing to use would be a solution of Bleach and hot water.

This time though, I just ended up using Lysol wipes. Everything was taken apart, the bedding was washed, the hideaway, litter box, litter scoop and feeding mat were all wiped down with Lysol wipes. The food and water dishes went into the dishwasher for a nice scrub, anything that could be cleaned was cleaned.

The floor was swept and washed to get rid of any lingering litter and cat nip and then my room was sanitized and ready to be put back together.

So now I’m ready for a new foster ❤

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So as of right now, the rescue is working on trapping a kitty in need who has been living under someones porch. I will keep you updated on when I get that little guy!

Again, if you have any questions about fostering or anything at all, please ask in the comments below 🙂

Until next time!

Bree

Fostering Cats: Why I decided to do it and meet my first foster: Bugsy!

If you follow me on Twitter, you have probably seen me post about getting ready to foster cats. I know the biggest question that I’ll probably get is why did I want to foster?

The biggest reason is because I live in a relatively small city. And in this city, there is something like 6 rescue organizations dedicated to rescuing cats. These rescues are always full. There just simply are not enough people willing to take cats into their homes until they get adopted and there are way too many cats being bred. This ends up with many perfectly healthy animals being put down. And I hate it.

I absolutely loathe the thought of an animal being put down because theres no room for it. Someone out there must have a place for these wonderful animals but just aren’t ready to adopt quite yet.

That’s where people like myself come in. As a foster, you provide a safe, warm place with lots of love for this animal that (usually) have never experienced it. Some of these cats have been abandoned, some were born on the street but all of them need somewhere to go until a forever home has been found.

My city also has a TNR program which is absolutely fantastic. TNR means Trap, Neuter, Return. They humanly trap feral cats, get them fixed and vaccinated, treat any medical conditions and release them back into their colony. There are also people who keep an eye on the colonies of feral cats. These people basically make sure that the cats have access to food and water at all times. All of these volunteers are absolutely amazing. I love knowing that there’s such caring people out there.

It’s been quite the lengthy process to get through to get ready to foster, but it’s really not that difficult to set up. The main thing I needed to do was have my own two cats vaccinated. I unfortunately never did it at their previous vet appointments, but I really should of. I also needed to get them prevention against fleas, ear mites and ticks.

After that it was basically just having a room ready that my fosters can call their own until they find their new home.

I am working with a wonderful rescue called Fortunate Felines. This is local, but I would highly recommend reaching out to a rescue in your city to see what you can do to help. I can almost guarantee that they’re in dire need of fosters. Spring is kitten season, and most shelters and rescues become absolutely swamped around this time of year.

I live in Eastern Canada. The winters are bitterly cold and the summers are unbearably hot. If I can make life more comfortable for even just a few animals, I’ll feel a little better. I always wanted to do something to help, but like any normal working class citizen, I don’t have the money to donate to shelters. I don’t have a vehicle and I don’t drive, so I’m not able to volunteer at shelters. The SPCA in my city is very far off the beaten track in the back of an industrial park, so I don’t even have the means to take public transit there.

This is when I figured out that fostering would be the best option for me. I don’t have money and I don’t have transportation but I do have time and patience to help cats or kittens in need. (I also have a spare room after I relocate my office, but that’s a personal choice. A laundry room or bathroom is perfectly fine to house a cat while they’re in quarantine.)

I already know that I’m going to run into two issues while I’m fostering. The first, and most concerning, is introducing my two cats properly and safely to the fosters. I’ve posted a lot about my two fur babies Precious and Finn.

Precious and Finn

And while they are sweet, loving and affectionate cats, they have only ever been around each other. Cats are notorious for being extremely territorial creatures, so it’s going to be interesting to see how they react to another cat. I will definitely be updating on that after the two weeks it’s going to take for Bugsy to settle in to his room.

The other concern I have is foster failing (when the foster adopts the animal). Now, I watch Kitten Lady (Hannah) on YouTube a lot and one thing she always says is the point of foster/rescue is good bye. I’m a temporary stop before the cats find their permanent loving homes. But I can see myself getting extremely attached to each and every cat that stays with me. So it’s going to be quite interesting.

A few things that I made sure to have before my first foster came into my home:

A hideaway – Since most cats like to hide when they’re scared, I wanted somewhere where they’ll feel safe, but they’re not trapped. The room I have for a foster room has no furniture that they can hide under. This is completely by design. I had a large plastic tote that I had bought for decorations but never actually ended up using, so I had my husband cut a hole in the side. This way, the cat can be in there safe and snug with a some blankets/towels, but if I need to get to him for any reason, I can just pop the top off the tote and reach him.

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Feliway – Feliway is something that is completely optional, but a lot of vets and rescues recommend it. The particular one that I got is called Feliway Friends. It is meant for multi-cat households. This is kind of like a Glade plugin. You plug the diffuser into an outlet and it releases a synthetic pheromone that is proven to help cats keep calm. (The explanation is that it mimics the pheromones cats release when they rub their faces on things, this pheromones indicates something as ‘home’)

Food/Water Dishes – So this was something I kind of bought by choice. The rescue essentially told me that I could use any plastic tupperware container I had lying around, but I wanted to buy some shallower dishes. Some cats really hate having things touch their whiskers and it can keep them from drinking/eating.

Cat nip/Toys – Again, this is completely optional, but I wanted to make sure to get some things so the cats weren’t bored. My wonderful sister agreed to make me a bunch of crochetted cat nip toys. These are in the shape of mice, rabbits, basically whatever she can turn a crochet square into. They’re pretty adorable.

I also bought some plastic springs on Amazon. My cats literally have no interest in them, but they’re very weird, so I don’t trust their opinion on what’s a good cat toy (LOL)

And cat nip! My cats absolutely adore cat nip, so I made sure to buy a pretty big container of it and I’m going to use that as an incentive to make my two cats like the fosters. Before you think I’m just drugging my cats to make them like eachother… I absolutely am. Think of it as having a drink socially, you usually end up making friends better that way. (Everything in moderation. Cat Nip is perfectly safe for cats and we don’t give more than a little bit every couple weeks)

I also bought a scratching post for pretty cheap on Amazon. This will at least help save my walls/bookshelf a little bit.

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Other than that I just saved some cardboard boxes. Cats love cardboard, so I’ll have a few lying around the room that they can choose from if they want to play/sleep.

Most of these things that I bought are completely optional. The rescue provides food, litter, litter box, scoop, medication, vet care, all the essentials that the cats need.


I’m sure at this point people are just scrolling through to see the pictures and bio for Bugsy, so I’m going to get right to it.

Bugsy is a very young cat that has been in care with the rescue since January 2018. He is considered semi-feral because he takes so long to warm up to humans. But this little guy has done so good for his first day here.

When he’s previous foster human dropped him off, he positioned himself with his butt to the carrier door and just wanted nothing to do with what was going on. I left him in the carrier and walked the lady out and then came back in the room. He was still butt to the door, but I talked to him calmly while I was setting up his litter box. He eventually turned around and sniffed my hand through the bars. His previous foster had told me not to try to pet him because he would attack me. So I cautiously opened the door, making sure I wasn’t boxing him in, and decided to let him go where he wanted to.

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This little kitty. I absolutely love him. He went into the hideaway, sniffed around and then walked back out. Then he checked out the rest of the room, took a couple bites of food and walked right over to me and let me pet him. Before long, he was laying in my lap and purring. He absolutely loves being pet and loved on.

So I went to leave him alone for a bit and got up to leave. That spooked him a little bit, but he was still okay. And then stupid me didn’t realize that Precious was outside the door when I opened it. So of course she spotted him and started spitting and hissing at him. Well that didn’t go over well. So back into the hideaway he ran. I was still able to pet him without him being aggressive or anything, so I figured that was still a win.

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After leaving him alone for a little while, I brought in a little bit of wet food and slowly convinced him to come out of the hideaway. Once he realized that the mean growly kitty wasn’t in his room, it was like nothing even happened.

His previous foster did SUCH an amazing job with him and I’m happy to report that he has someone interested in adopting him! I may not end up having him for very long, but I’ll take all the sweet cuddles and purrs while I can get them!

If you guys have any questions about Bugsy or fostering in general, leave a comment and I’ll answer it in the next post!

Until next time,

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