It is SUMMER. And unfortunately, in many places, summer means new kittens… Most of whom don’t have loving homes. (Do you know that cats are seasonal breeders? That means they come into heat & only get pregnant in the spring and fall.) I have taken in foster cats for four years now, because I love kittens. I know how to work with kittens (there is nothing I don’t know about cats from growing up with our farm colonies) and because the need is great.
The kill numbers for rescue cats are very high. 80% of cats killed in shelters are kittens… Because of the extra care they need, they are automatically thought of as a lost cause.
This year, with the emphasis on Samson becoming a Cat Model Superstar, I had two worries. That Samson would be upset that I was spending more time with the baby kittens, and that it would interfere with Samson’s training. I didn’t have to worry though; Samson has loved the kittens! He is the great uncle who grooms them and plays with them. One of the little foster kittens that I got, Stan Lee, is the exact same color as Samson, but short haired. Stan Lee followed Samson around, mimicking everything he did and sleeping by his side. It was too adorable for words.
When I take in foster kittens, I fall in love with each of them. My instinct is to keep them all. However, my mind knows that I cannot keep all of them. I have already made that commitment to Elvis, Buffy and Samson. The dogs really don’t like having more than three cats. I have to know my limits. But that doesn’t mean that I can’t take kittens out of those tiny cells they are in at the rescue and love them. I teach them manners, teach them how to be with dogs (and people if they are feral kittens), how to break bad habits and not to be fearful.
“What greater gift than the love of a cat?” ~Charles Dickens
This year is the first year I have had kittens die. I lost 2 grey tabby kittens and I didn’t take it well. I was devastated. It was pointed out to me that these kittens died having known kindness, love and care. Many kittens die alone without ever having known a human cared. I believe the best compliment you can pay a pet that passes on is to go out and get another animal to love in their honor. I went back to Pima Animal Care Center and took home 4 more fosters.
I also have to find loving homes for these cats that I have given a loving start. I myself ALWAYS adopt rescue cats, and all of my cats have come from shelters, with the exception of the farm cats I have taken for house cats. I highly recommend rescue cats. They have a lot of love to give. Plus, being hybrid mutts, they are actually stronger genetically than purebreds. The foster kittens at PACC are some of the most beautiful cats I have ever seen. Princess Leia (a current foster), Samson and Buffy are proof of this.
Here are some reasons to adopt a rescue cat (Or more specifically, a foster cat from me):
- Cats make your life better health wise. $3.86 Billion is the yearly estimated savings in health care costs because of pet ownership in the United States. There is a decrease in illness & doctor visits if you own a pet (Heady, 2002).
- The simple act of petting a cat reduces cortisol levels, increases Serotonin & triggers release of endorphins. What this means in layman’s terms is that you are more relaxed, happier and calmer.
- Cats can absorb negative emotional energy from their environment.
- Unlike dogs, (especially big dogs) cats can come as siblings and keep each other company.
- Cats, like dogs, love you no matter what. They don’t care what clothes you have on, what your hair looks like, if you have holes in your socks or watch movies on Cable TV all day. It is a type of acceptance that isn’t found in normal hours.
- Cats are the original Zen Masters. “I have met many Zen Masters, all of them cats.” ~Eckhart Toll
- Cats make great mentors and role models.
- For children, cats teach responsibility, caring and love.
- A hybrid cat (i.e. A stray or grade cat) has a stronger pool of DNA than a line bred cat that will have sub-lethal traits surface.
- Cats make great yoga instructors. They are flexible, graceful and limber.
- Cats have perfected listening to humans and they make you feel heard.
- Cats are not quitters. They are persistent in making your happier.
- A rescue cat’s purr heals just as easily as a purebred cat’s does. (A cats purring range of 25-40 cycles per second (Hz) is a frequency known to increase bone density, relief pain and heal tendons & muscles. ~Von Muggenthaler).
- Cats improve sleep and cure insomnia.
- Cats are immaculate, keeping themselves neat, clean and tidy so you don’t have to pick up after them.
~Cats are like potato chips, you cant have just one~
So if you ever feel called to adopt a rescue cat, you can contact me here.