Best medicine #7: Foster homes

Published 3:21 pm Friday, July 16, 2010

After writing Somewhere, I decided to keep my theme on strays for one more week.

During the spring and early summer, we get inundated with kittens and puppies every year. &bsp;

Our spay and neuter programs, along with PoKitties has lessened the burden somewhat, still, the numbers remain too high for them to be handled at F.H.S., especially those that come in without their mommas.

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These animals need special care to help them get weaned and socialized.&bsp; How do we do it?&bsp; The answer is foster homes. &bsp;

The wonderful people who take on this task are the lifeblood of our facility during these times and help save many lives.

A few months ago, my good friend and supporter, Chuck Davis approached me, Lennie, how do Virginia and I go about fostering some kittens?&bsp; I laughed, Dont you have enough on your plate without taking something like this on?&bsp; Im serious Lennie, Virginia and I love kittens and this is a way to help.&bsp; Before giving Chuck the info on how to become a foster parent, I explained all the pros and cons entailed.&bsp; Elaine and I have fostered many kittens, I explained, some with their mommas and some without.&bsp; Theyre frail and theyre vulnerable and theyll need extra watching. Theyll start getting into everything and as they grow youll become attached.&bsp; Just when they start being playful and loving kittens, theyll have to be brought back for they cannot get too attached to you.&bsp; But if you understand what its all about, I cant express the joy and pride youll feel as you learn your fosters have been placed in a forever home.&bsp; Chuck was unwavering, so we went to the shelter, filled out the forms and they went on the waiting list for kittens.

A month later, Chuck and Virginia were called because there was a momma Calico and five kittens who needed fostering. True to their word, they went down to F.H.S., received what was needed and took Asia and her five kittens home. &bsp;

Every morning at breakfast, Chuck would relate to me the goings-on at his household.&bsp; Id just smile knowingly and give him advice where it was needed.&bsp; I listened as his tales went from worrisome and daunting to playful and joyful.&bsp; I was informed that it would be the last time theyd be fostering kittens.&bsp; Its not what you think, Chuck and Virginia adopted Asia and two of her kittens, Tora and Chisai.&bsp; Now, each morning I hear new tales as the two kittens grow and Asia dutifully keeps an eye on them.&bsp; I dont have enough pages to tell each tale, but I can attest to how lovingly they are delivered. Chuck is deeply involved with the Red Cross, Habitat for Humanity, Kiwanis and V.F.W.&bsp; The one thing that was missing is that he had a home without pets.&bsp; Well, Asia, Tora and Chisai were pets without a home, if thats not the best medicine for all concerned, I dont know what is.

Thanks for listening.