#AdorableAdoptables & Shelter Stories,  Cats,  Shelter Cats

Cat Fostering Forum

If you love cats, sharing makes us purrrr :-)

This week’s Shelter Volunteer Adventures is a little different. We’re turning this post into a cat fostering forum. If you have ever wondered about fostering a cat and have ANY question about what’s involved, leave your question in the comments. I will also reply to questions at our Facebook page and Google + page if your prefer.

One month ago today I brought home a cat from the New Rochelle Humane Society to foster and it’s been the best month of her short life (I hope). And it was all an accident or meant to be if you believe in that kind of thing. I’d prepared a safe room, brought a carrier to the shelter but the cat I thought I wanted to foster was suddenly adopted and my second choice was another cat rescued from a hoarder and frankly I wasn’t in love with her. If you’re serious about fostering, it’s best not to be head over heels unless you are prepared to have a failed foster. I designed a foster program in 1997 when I founded the Annex Cat Rescue and didn’t personally foster for many years. My last successful foster was just before Odin arrived and never left but these things all work out in the end.

What an incredible month! The tiny, gray cat with one eye and stubby legs known as Vicky whom I now call Nou Nou has come a long way. She’s completely transformed and 100% adoptable and adorable. I’d blogged about first seeing her in June with three siblings and mentioned they are still in cages waiting for their lucky break…

foster cat-new rochelle humane society

BUT then I consulted my original notes again. I’d I just glanced at them once after I’d brought her home. I could have sworn she had three siblings about six-months old but upon closer examination of my messy handwritten notes I discovered new details.

June 4, 2014: 15 cats from second hoarder. Intake 2/6. Crate #1 No spay/neuter. 1) #14452A-20245-one year-gray FSH (female short hair) missing left eye. some discharge. 2) #14454A-20247- one year gray FSH. slow blink. litter mate? 3) #14453A-20246 dk. gray and white kitten 6.mo MSH. Crate on floor. Opened door. Only #2 responded with a slow blink and bold enough to come out and play.

Crate #2 litter mates both gray FSH 14449A 20242 + 144551A 20244. Moved to cages in D room. What happened to #14450?

That’s five cats, four females about a year old and one younger male kitten. It was a crazy time with a sudden intake of over 80 cats and not enough cages. If that’s the case Nou Nou is older than I thought and the male, Pablo is not related. And what happened to her third sister? I got really curious and dug into my photo files and found this image I’d completely forgotten about from the first time I met her in June.

Nou Nou foster cat She’s so tiny even now, it would have been easy to mistake her for a kitten. I’ve posted this image of her and aha, he’s way in the back but does look smaller. My foster experience continues and I’ll be blogging more about it.

3 hoarder rescue cats

All I know for sure is two of her gray siblings and Pablo are waiting in their cages and haven’t seen the light of day since they were rescued in June. They are fearful and have not progressed much BUT so was Nou Nou. If she can change, so can they can they. They just need a chance with a patient foster home. Only Pablo is listed on the shelter website. Please share his Petfinder profile. and ask me anything.

A short video of Nou Nou playing princess and just playing. It kills me that her siblings can’t enjoy these simple pleasures. Maybe one day.


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  • meowmeowmans

    We are so thankful that you were there for Nou Nou. You are surely right … this has been the best month of her life so far.

    We have been foster failures twice — the first time with Angel Maggie, and the second time with Zoe and Grace. Oh well. šŸ™‚

  • Cathy Keisha

    My Aunt Karen does a lot of fostering down in FL. She says a sucessful foster makes 2 kitties happy. The foster who finds a forever home and the one who gets pulled from Death Row as her next foster.

  • Nerissa's Life

    Worked. EXCELLENT.

    When I commented before I wrote about how Andy was almost, kind of a failed foster.

    Peeps weren’t plannin’ on keepin’ Anderson ’cause we already had a full house. The plan was to befriend him and then take him to the no-kill shelter. But once they got him inside, he needed some work. He lived upstairs, all by himself, for two whole weeks! Too afraid to come down. He was in need of some TLC.

    But then my Auntie Blossom died and Andy was doin’ so well and he started workin’ and wormin’ his way into the peeps’ hearts more and more so now… Now I have a new brother.


  • Skeeter and Izzy

    We so purr and pray that all the remaining fur kids get the opportunity to foster and find homes. All cats can improve in some way and just being away from the shelter environment can make a baby bloom. I don’t think that you can really judge a cat in the shelter/Petsmart environment especially the ones over 6 months or so. I feel so sorry for them because I know that they are frightened and stressed and sometimes depressed too and behind all of that there is a wonderful little soul that needs love and care and a home and they are often deemed unsuitable because they don’t interact. It is sad. We hope that Nou Nou turns into a failed foster!!!!!!
    Skeeter and Izzy and the Feral Gang + Twig & Peanut & Romeo >^..^<

  • Tamago

    I’m sure it’s been the best month in Nou Nou’s life!
    We technically fostered Niko because it was shelter policy to keep him in foster status until he was neutered. Of course it’s a different situation as he was adopted on the first day in our mind..

  • Annabelle

    Nou Nou you have come a long way. I am always amazed at how adaptable cats are to their surroundings. They are much more accepting and maybe it’s because they stay in that “now” moment.

  • maggie

    We fostered twice.
    Mickey Mouser had to have a lot of medical tests and wait a long time before there was room at PAWS for him. By then, he was our kitten, so I guess that was a failed foster… but a very happy outcome for him and for us!
    Last year we had Sweetie Pie who needed socialization and was at the feral-born older-kitten transitional stage. We had her for a month and we were very happy she was adopted into a good home – without having to adjust to shelter life.
    We were told not to allow our cats to come into contact with the foster, it was tricky at times!

  • da tabbies o trout towne

    nou nou …awesum videe oh !! we gived it 984 paws up for actshun actshun actshun !!! ā™„ā™„ā™„ā™„ā™„

    de food serviss gurl haza questshunz…we bee prette sure itza dumb questshunz but then we iz knot de sharpest tax in de pac…

    question: I realize no two cats accept change in the same way, but when starting out as a new foster; is it best to “stay home”
    for several days at the onset ( say take vacation time for a week or two ) so the cats become used to the household routine and the foster parent; then gradually work into being gone from the home. Ideally it would be nice to be home all day with them or even work on a parttime basis, but I cant do that at this stage. Thanx !

    • Layla Morgan Wilde (Cat Wisdom 101)

      That’s a great question. While it fostering is ideal for those who work at home, most don’t. Having a few days or even a weekend to spend more time is helpful at the onset but not necessary. Keep in mind shelter cats has a minimal routine in a shelter, fed twice a day, litter cleaned and if lucky, some attention, a bit of play or a brushing.

  • Summer

    My human only tried fostering once, when a rescue she was volunteering for let her take Boodie home. They called for her once, when a potential adopter showed interest, but then she never heard from them again. So she is still here, 13 years later! After all this time, my human wonders if Boodie did not have a paw in this…

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