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About Fostering

At Berkeley East Bay Humane Society (BEBHS) they have a training session or two, then start you off with older kittens that just need some growing up and maybe fattening up time.  I now clearly and conspicuously state that I am posting in my individual capacity and that the views posted are mine alone and do not represent the views of BEBHS.

http://www.berkeleyhumane.org/volunteer/fostercare

Eventually, I got younger and younger kittens, dealing with bottles, and have had as young as a day old.  They get kittens from other shelters, from people putting them in overnight shelter drop boxes, and whatever, and phone around to see who is available to foster.  I leave the kittens with moms for others to foster as there is just so much my cats will put up with, and containing an adult cat is harder.

The shelter supplies everything: towels, litter boxes, food dishes, food, medicines, vet care, toys, scale, etc.  I have some things of my own that I prefer: a litter box with a cover, for those who like to throw sand (or leave the litter box before they have achieved separation).  I prefer grain-based litter because it doesn’t scratch our floors, so I buy it.

When the kittens are at least 8 weeks old and 2 pounds, they go in for spay/neuter.

BEBHS lost its shelter in a bad fire in 2010.  They have the outdoor dog pens, but not many long-term indoor pens, so after surgery, the kittens go back to fostering, which I think is nicer.  The animals are listed in Petfinder.com, with photos, descriptions, whatever.  Since I now do YouTube videos, those are also available.  In 2012 they tried having a kitten nursery, with paid 24-hour staff, but are back to volunteer fosterers now.

On weekends, BEBHS has adoption events.  We bring the kittens in, they interview potential adopters, and maybe we get the kittens back and maybe they’ve found forever homes.  The interview is to make sure the adopters know what they’re getting into, that they own their place or their lease permits pets, and that they can pay. Still, BEBHS sometimes get lied to.  Sometimes it just doesn’t work out.

Sometimes I have friends, or friends of friends, who adopt one of mine and I can see them grow up.  Sometimes the adopters send emails to BEBHS with photos. Sometimes I meet them at BEBHS, although less now that BEBHS doesn’t run a public veterinary office.

I’ve developed some skills at tiny and sick kittens, so I get a lot of those.  There are many people who foster once, adopt the one(s) they foster, and don’t foster again.  I view my house a kitten boarding school, where they graduate (I hope, as opposed to fail).

Well, now I’m also fostering for CatTownOakland.org.  They don’t do ringworm quarantine of fosterers, perhaps because their cats don’t go back into a group situation.  It’s a low-key, low budget operation, and more likely to have older kittens and adult cats.

Thoughts on blogging.  I’m glad I tried Askimet for spam snagging.  People (or bots) make random comments, and if they are approved, flood the comment space with spam, ads, or links to weird stuff.  I do check the ones Askimet flags to see if they’re real.  The spam ones compliment you in a very generic way, say nothing specific about the blogs, and offer great wealth and many “hits”.  I simply turned off comments and response videos in YouTube.

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