Having foster kittens around is hard work, but it is so rewarding and very fun! It is something that will keep you up at night and steal time out of your day. But, you won’t regret a second of it!
As a foster parent, you will be loving, raising, and caring for the kittens so that they can grow up and find their forever homes.
Want to start fostering kittens? Here are ten important tips to help you start off on the right foot!
1. Have a Space for Them
When you start to foster kittens, it is important that you have enough space for them. This will greatly depend on how many you plan to foster at one time.
If you only want to take care of one kitten at a time. Something as small as a bathroom or a large walk-in closet would suffice. If you want to foster multiple kittens or full litters, you will need a designated foster room in your home.
This room should be designated just for foster kittens and should be off-limits to other pets or most family members.
2. Have Entertainment
Kittens are very high energy and they need to be entertained. You may start to foster very young kittens, but as they get bigger, they will have much more energy to spare.
You will want to be well equipped with cat toys, scratch posts, and all kinds of entertainment. This will help the kittens have a more fulfilled life as they are living with you!
Be prepared to invest in heavy-duty toys to stand against a herd of rowdy kittens!
3. Clean After Them Daily
Kittens are very messy. And I do mean very messy! You will need to clean up after them on a daily basis if not multiple times a day. This is often due to accidents, spills, or just day-to-day build-up of grime.
You should clean the litter boxes as well as their food and water bowls every day. Any soiled toys and blankets should be put away to wash, and any accidents should be cleaned up immediately.
Clean up accidents thoroughly to avoid leaving a scent that may cause them to go potty there again.
4. Educate Yourself
Raising kittens is hard work and may sometimes require you to do things that you didn’t expect.
Because these furry little kittens are your responsibility, it is important that you treat them as such. Educate yourself on the possible emergencies that could come up, as well as basic day-to-day tasks that you may need to do.
If you are fostering very young orphans, you will need to learn about kitten formulas, feeding times, how to bathe the kittens, and how to help them go potty. These are all very important details that you will want to familiarize yourself with ahead of time.
If you are working with your local animal shelter, you can ask them any questions that you may have.
5. Be Prepared
This tip goes hand in hand with educating yourself. If you are going to be fostering kittens, you will want to be prepared by having food as well as basic medical equipment. Have plenty of blankets and litter boxes stored away, too.
Talk to your local animal shelter about any other important items that you may need, such as medication and other types of medical equipment. Depending on the kittens that you foster, you may need to prepare with different items.
6. Introduce Them to Your Pets
A very important thing that you need to do when fostering kittens is allowing your pets to slowly meet them.
This should be a gentle process where both parties feel safe and secure. Never throw animals into a scary situation where they are confronted with another animal.
This step is important because it will help to dissipate any aggression that your pets or the kittens may feel towards each other. It will also help socialize the kittens so they are able to be around other people and animals.
Even if they never interact with one another, it is good for them to at least meet the other animals in the house.
7. Create a Routine
Kittens are needy little creatures, and fostering kittens is no joke. You will need to create a routine so that you can stay on top of all of the kitten-related tasks.
Having a routine is important because it ensures that the kittens are taken care of on a regular basis. It will also help you balance your own lifestyle tasks and needs.
Routines are generally good for any kind of animal as it gives them stability. The kittens will quickly catch on to your routine and be ready to play their part each day.
8. Spend Time with Them
Possibly the most important part of fostering kittens is spending time with them. They need love and affection to grow up and be happy! This is especially important as it makes them more adoptable. People want loving cats, and kittens that are well-loved will likely become very loving adult cats.
9. Don’t Get Too Attached
Another important thing to remember is to not get too attached. You have to keep in mind that these are fosters. They aren’t your pets, and they won’t be around for long.
Love them and bond with them, but keep in mind that you are just their foster parent. You are there to prepare them to go to their forever home.
10. Don’t Forget About Your Own Fur Babies
Something that is very easy to do when fostering kittens is to forget about your own pets! You can get so busy and wrapped up in the kittens that you forget to show your own fur babies love as well.
Make sure to add your pets to your schedule and give them love too.
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