When most people think of June their first thought is usually a month filled with warm summer days, family barbecues, and lots of beach trips! However, to the staff at an Animal Shelter, the biggest thought that is running through their minds is kittens, kittens, kittens! The month of June.... and pretty much all of the Spring and Summer season is what is known in the animal care world as "kitten season." Kitten season is generally described as the time of year when an astonishingly large amount of stray or orphaned kittens and a lot of pregnant cat moms find their way into an animal shelter whether it be by the local animal control picking them up or a kind samaritan bringing them in. During this time most shelters are scrambling to find every foster family and possible resource available to take these moms and kittens until they are big enough and healthy enough to come back and be put up for adoption. This process can take anywhere from one week to a couple of months!
National Adopt-A-Shelter-Cat Month kicks off every June in hopes of spreading shelter cat awareness and helping to find both help and homes for homeless cats and kittens. It also, again, marks the height of kitten season! Here are a few ways you can help shelter cats and kittens near you:
- Fostering- Shelters are always looking for families to foster their cats and kittens! It helps the shelter so that they can keep space available for other animals that are coming through their doors, but it's an even bigger help to the cats and kittens that are coming in! A lot of cats and kittens that enter a shelter environment are exposed to a plethora of different upper respiratory diseases. They also do not get as much one on one care that they so desperately need since a lot of times shelter staff are stretched taking care of hundreds of shelter animals at a time. Taking a mom and kittens home or even an orphaned group of kittens greatly reduces their chance of being infected and developing complications from URI. They are also able to get the extra one on one love and care that they thrive from so that they remain happy and healthy and can be put up for adoption sooner!
- Adopting- Whats better than bringing home a fun, furry, new bundle of joy? Adoption is one of the greatest things you can do for a homeless pet. It's actually one of the best things you could do for yourself as well! Animals provide an amazing amount of companionship and cats are full of different personalities so there's always bound to be one that matches what you are looking for! Did I also mention it's been said that having a pet can lower stress levels, lower blood pressure, and improves one's mood? Every year thousands of animals end up at a shelter waiting to find their perfect forever home. If you are interested in bringing home a new furry family member then always remember to stop by your local shelter!
- Donating- If you are unable to adopt or foster the next best thing you can do to help is donate! You can donate lots of helpful items such as blankets, heating pads, kitten formula, and other cat care items! A lot of shelters are non-profit, meaning they rely heavily on donations from the public. When there is a big influx of cats and kittens, supplies diminish fast! Donating items to a shelter will help to ensure that moms and kittens will get food, warmth, and all of their basic care to help them grow!
There are numerous ways to help your local shelter cats and kittens! Don't be afraid to stop by your local shelter to take a look around! You never know, you may just find your new best friend!
" Time spent with cats is never wasted." by Sigmund Freud
By Jessica Luther
Bonilla Pet Photography