Fostering Guidelines for Cats

foster-catIntroduce your foster to his/her new environment slowly, particularly if other pets are present. It would be best for the first few days to secure your new foster alone in a closed room with food, water and a litter box. This gives your foster a chance to become accustom to the smells and noises in your home. Visit with you foster often and engage in interactive play. After several days, introduce other household pets one at a time, making sure any dogs are kept securely on a leash. Your dog (s) may be comfortable living with cats, but not this one.

If you have other cats in the household, you should have one more litter box than you have cats. Example, with two cats, you should have three litter boxes. Boxes should be kept clean and in a quiet area of the house. Show your foster where the litter box (s) are. Cats are generally very clean and will automatically go to the litter box if they are familiar with where they are. Some cats are particular about their boxes, some prefer covered boxes, some prefer no cover. It is good to offer both. If your foster soils outside the litter box, contact us immediately for suggestions. Do not automatically assume it is a behavioral issue.

All cats need to be brushed on a regular basis to limit hairballs. Generally once a week is fine for short haired cats. Long haired cats should be brushed once a day, particularly the belly, chin area and under the arms. If your foster has not been de-clawed, nails should be trimmed once a week. Let your foster adjust for 2-3 days before attempting to groom for the first time.

Not all cats enjoy being held. The first time you attempt to pick up your new foster, sit on the floor and make sure to support both front and back legs. If he/she jumps away, don’t force the issue, just try again every day, always sitting on the floor. Once the foster is comfortable with you, he/she may allow you to pick them up and cuddle.

INITIAL CAT CARE

Supplies:

U-CP will provide medical care, while the foster parent provides food, litter, toys, scratching posts, cat trees, blankets, etc.. Foster parents will most likely be required to go to Meet & Greets, during the weekend.

Medical Care:

The U-CP has special arrangements to work with specific local veterinarians, and visits to these clinics are arranged by the U-CP Coordinators.

Initial Check Up:

Each rescued cat receives an initial check-up with one of these veterinarians and is tested for FeLV. Prior to accepting a new foster cat into your foster home, be sure to know the health of the new foster cat to prevent spreading illness and disease from a new foster cat to another cat.

The U-CP strives to provide each foster parent with healthy cats that will not transfer any health problems on to family and personal pets. If a sick cat is given to a foster parent for special care, this cat should be kept in a separate room and environment from other foster cats and personal pets, depending on the specific situation. If this is not possible, inform the Coordinator.

Occasionally, viruses and other sicknesses do come undetected into a foster home. The U-CP will work with the foster to provide the best protection possible for the foster family and pets, such as instructions for cleaning the home after a sickness, but U-CP is not responsible for cleaning costs or for replacing carpet and furnishings.

Vaccinations:

Each cat receives vaccinations commensurate with its age. Adults typically receive a 3-in-1 and a 3 year rabies vaccinations while kittens receive a 3-in-1 and a 1 year rabies vaccination. Kittens who are too young for traditional shots will receive them intranasal. Some vets require foster cats to be fully vaccinated prior to being spayed/neutered.

Spay/Neuter:

The U-CP Coordinator must schedule the appointments. Foster parents cannot schedule these appointments on their own.