Tuesday, August 18, 2015

Why I Foster

When I tell people I foster cats and kittens for an animal shelter, the first thing they usually say is "Oh, I could never foster.  I would never be able to give them up."   I will admit, sometimes it is hard.  I've cried more than once after returning a foster.

There are some things you can do to help with those feelings.


Start fostering with the correct attitude.  I go into it knowing that it is only temporary.  I constantly tell myself that if I keep one I'm am fostering then that is one less I can help in the future.  I only have limited time and resources.  I never want to have more cats than I can adequately care for.  You have to be realistic about your limits.

It's Not You.  It's Me.

Choose an animal to foster that you know you wouldn't want long term.  I love kittens.  I won't deny that but kittens grow into cats.  Then there is that awkward catten phase where kittens are essentially teenagers.  They have so much energy and so much to learn.  They are a lot of work and that's not something I want to do right now.

Put Your Positive Pants On

You have to trust the adoption process will find the purrfect family for your fosters.  I have to remind myself that I'm not the only one that can love these fur babies.  Shelters have adoption procedures in place for a reason.  I need to trust that my fosters will be going to a loving family that will offer them more than I can.

"'Tis better to have loved and lost than to have never have loved at all." - Alfred Lord Tennyson

The heartbreak I feel when returning my fosters doesn't even compare to all the joy that they bring into my life.  I love watching the kittens learn new things.  I love to see a shy kitten gain their confidence.  I love all the kitten cuddles and purrs.  I love the fact that not only am I helping the animals in my care, but I'm also creating space in the shelter so that they can help another animal.

If you've thought about fostering, I would recommend going for it.  Shelters all over the country are full and could use your help.  You can make a difference!


  1. Jenny - you're amazing. Well written and so very true!

  2. Yup, Yup, yup, well maybe not that catten thing.. cause I'm so into those too.. but I am also not in a position to take one on right now..

  3. Bless you for fostering. The mom would love to foster, but with the 3 of us, there's just not room here for her to do it.

  4. WE will foster if our rescue needs it. WE think your words are well said and worth sharing!!!

  5. I always said the same thing about not being able to give them up...but my feelings are changing. I would LOVE to foster if I had the room...one day! I so admire what you do.

  6. I have to remind myself that I'm not the only one that can love these fur babies.

    I have to remind myself of this all.the.time! It's why I read cat blogs