Rescuing cats is a noble effort, especially considering that there are around 58 million stray cats in the US, based on a 2018 estimate. By fostering cats, especially kittens, who are often at risk of dying in the streets due to road accidents or inadequate nutrition, you’ll give them a better chance at life.
But establishing a cat shelter isn’t easy, and if you go into it recklessly, you’ll unknowingly be putting the cats at risk. Before any big decisions, educate yourself first on what you need to consider.
You will need a lot of space
You will need a house with at least 2 rooms dedicated to the cats. Even if you’re resolute about fostering only a few cats at a time, you still need an extra room because any new cat coming into the house will need to be quarantined for at least 2 weeks before they can be mixed in with the other cats in your shelter. This is because newly-rescued cats may come with a slew of problems like fleas, ear mites, or a contagious disease.
Besides needing 2 rooms, you also have to consider the size of the rooms. Cats require food bowls, litter boxes, a water source, and enough space to play. If you’re living in a tiny house, then fostering cats might not be a wise endeavor for you at the moment.
Concerns about the mess, odor, and waste
A single kitten might not be too much trouble, but if you have ten of them running around, then you should know that you will be generating a lot of waste. Depending on its size, a single cat will use up about 7-10 pounds of litter a month. If you plan to care for multiple cats at a time, you can only imagine the smell and the amount of cat litter you’ll be throwing away each day. It may not be wise to start a cat shelter in an apartment with poor ventilation, as the smell could waft into the hallway and bother your neighbors. You can contact a junk removal Fort Myers company for discarding litter and other waste.
Veterinary services are not cheap
Not every cat you end up rescuing is going to turn out fine. Some may have broken bones, eye infections, or life-threatening conditions that require expensive surgeries and treatment. You’ll also need to pay for spaying/neutering, vaccinations, and other tests. If you want to commit to cat rescue, cases like these are ones you need to prepare for.
These are only three of the endless challenges that may come your way if you ever decide to be a cat shelter. Thoroughly doing your research will not only make your job just a little bit easier down the line, but it will also be better for the cats. By knowing how to care for them and make their transition a bit easier and less stressful, they can be on their way to getting adopted by a loving family.