We could all use something positive these days. We recently came across a video that was possibly the cutest thing we’ve ever seen. Applesauce is arguably the sweetest kitten in the world. Cole and Marmalade shared her touching story and a collection of videos that will put a smile on your face that will last all day long. Applesauce is a kitten that was turned into a Pasco County, Florida rescue shelter. The kitten was a special needs animal that required neonatal care because of his young age and some medical issues he was experiencing. Upon receipt of the kitten it was apparent that he had a condition called Cerebellar Hypoplasia, also referred to as CH. He was wobbly on his feet and suffered from a condition that occurs when the brain does not properly develop. It can affect balance, coordination, and fine motor skills. Most rescues are not equipped to deal with the specialized are that these animals need, so Gina, a staff member at the Animal Services of Pasco County placed a call to a caregiver she knew well.
Dani the Cat Lady
Dani the Cat Lady is an animal advocate who runs a non-profit organization called The Runaways Animal Rescue. It just so happens that neonatal care along with special needs is her area of expertise. The kitten was just one week old when he arrived at the shelter and she was in dire need of the care that Dani could give him. The shelter reached out to her just before Thanksgiving. Dani agreed to the arrangement and picked up the kitten from the shelter. From the car ride home, she knew that he was a sweetheart and she chose the name Applesauce for him. The wobbly kitty couldn’t even crawl, but he could roll around. He was active.
Dani the Cat Lady had taken on a monumental task s kittens this age must have specialized care around the clock. This meant that wherever Dani went she would need to take Applesauce with her. He had to be bottle-fed to ensure that he got the nutrition that he required. The kitten began to thrive. He became stronger and grew larger. Any signs of CH faded away and his development took on the characteristics of a normal healthy kitten. He has made friends with the other residents of the care home. He has also become a star on social media with the cute pictures and videos that Dani has uploaded. The shenanigans that he and his buddies pull can be viewed on Dani’s official website. The once weak and wobbly kitten suspected of having CH is almost ready to be adopted by a loving family into his new forever home. We’re all thankful for people like Dani, who offer their knowledge and love to help innocent animals grow and develop while overcoming some pretty tough obstacles.
The need for specialty cat rescues
This heartwarming story shows how big the need is for people like Dani the Cat Lady who is willing to give of their time to help vulnerable animals to have the chance for a normal and healthy life with a loving family. She has helped him over the hump and through the most critical stages of his life. There are many specialty cat rescues, but not nearly enough to cover the needs. Neonatal care requires around-the-clock dedication with regular bottle feedings and caring for any special needs that can arise as a result of being separated from the mother at a young age.
There are other types of specialty rescues.
The Purebred Cat Rescue is a nonprofit organization that specializes in purebred cats. Volunteers in the organization provide foster care for purebred cats of all ages to help prepare them for adoption into their forever homes. They offer foster-care for purebred cats, adoption services for families who are looking for a purebred cat, and rehoming services for people who either cannot or do not want to continue to care for their purebred cats. This organization survives on private donation and the adoption fees charged with 95 percent going to help the cats at the rescue and the rest going for administrative. Donating to this rescue or volunteering can help to save purebred cats in need of a home.
Tips for becoming a pet foster parent
Petfinder offers a few tips for anyone considering fostering dogs or cats. They point out the importance of being able to separate the foster pets from your own. They recommend separation in a different room initially. Your home should be pet-proofed to avoid accidents and harm to the pet or your home. Consider your ability to help a pet who needs to take medication or have intense monitoring. In emergencies, you may need to transport a foster pet to the shelter or vet if an emergency arises. Foster pet parents must also be willing to return the pet after the fostering time is up. Can you avoid emotional attachment that would crush your soul to let the animal go, while still providing love and care? Most fostered pets are put up for adoption and will go to qualified owners. They’re not your forever pets, but you can be instrumental in preparing them for life with a new family. You will need to submit to a home inspection of the licensing staff to ensure that you and your home meet their criteria as an acceptable home for pets in need of foster care. Some shelters provide food and supplies for the care of the foster pet. There are a few exceptions where they ask the foster parent to provide these resources. You will need food, water, a place to sleep, a comfortable environment, and toys for the animal. Each shelter sets its own requirement for foster homes.
The need for pet foster parents is high. This can be one of the most positive and rewarding things that you do. If you’re interested in helping vulnerable animals by giving them a plate to stay until they find their forever homes, you can check with your local animal rescue shelters for more information on how to become a pet foster home.