Kittens! Who doesn’t love adorable fluffy kittens?
Their playful and firey like charm makes them irresistible, and let’s not get started on their giant like eyes and paws they have yet to grow into.
With that said, July 10, of every year marks National Kitten Day, a day intended to remind us that while kittens are well equipped to find their way into our hearts, many don’t find homes. Often kittens are either abandoned on the road, left wild and feral, or forgotten at a shelter.
National Kitten Day was founded by Colleen Paige, pet and family lifestyle expert, author and animal advocate. Paige wanted a day to highlight the fight kittens face in shelters and to encourage safe adoption. In light of the recent restrictions the pandemic has sprung on the world, more people are spending longer hours at home making it the perfect or should we say ‘purr-fect’ time to gain a companion which would make a difference in a kitten’s life.
Instead of purchasing a kitten from the pet store this year, adopt from a shelter.
How to get started:
- Call your local shelter or animal welfare organization and complete necessary forms and background checks.
- Some organizations may provide financial support for foster parents, while others may not be offering support at this time due to COVID-19.
- Involve the whole family in the fostering conversation. Will kids be responsible for feeding the new ‘roommate’? How will your family tolerate future adoption? Do your current pets tolerate other animals OK? The new pet is a big change for everyone, so allow everyone to weigh in, and suggest how they would like to help care for the pet.
- Adjusting to a new environment can be a daunting task for new pets. Many animals can jump onto high surfaces or squeeze into the smallest of spaces. To protect foster pets in a new environment and to safeguard your belongings, it’s recommended to animal-proof your entire house. Pay attention to any small or dangerous objects, such as pins, needles, paper clips, nails, staples, thread, string, rubber bands, caustic/toxic chemicals, mothballs, plants, and any other potentialy dangerous items.
- Make sure your pet is up-to-date on vaccinations. Many infectious diseases for pets are preventable through vaccinations, including Canine Influenza, Leptospirosis (which can be transmitted to people) and Lyme.
- Pets at varying ages have different nutrient requirements, so consider assessing your pet’s food and adjust accordingly.
- It is recommended to professionally groom your pet every four to six weeks. While that may not be possible at the moment, between salon appointments, use at-home grooming tools such as a cat or dog-specific toothbrush and specially formulated toothpaste, a nice rubber brush to help de-shed and invigorate the skin and coat, ear cleaner and cotton balls to gently cleanse the ears, and wipes for cleaning around the face, mouth and eyes.
If you’re interested in learning more, visit PetSmart Charities.