New foster mom

Barbara McCarthyBarbara McCarthy Member Posts: 456
I just arranged to foster a pregnant cat and/or newborn kittens for the first time. I\'m nervous about bringing them into the house with my own cats. Mine are inside pets who\'ve not been vaccinated for anything but rabies - all tested neg for FIV, etc. I don\'t plan to let them play with the fosters but how can I make sure they are protected? Hand sanitizer? Keep the fosters in a separate room? I do have a separate attached apartment...could germs stay on my clothes? Help from experienced foster parents would be very helpful!

Comments

  • Donna LenzDonna Lenz BethelMember Posts: 4,600 ✭✭✭
    edited 26 July, 2008
    Hi Pancake, This will be an awesome experience for you! Keep the family in a seperate room from your own kittys. Just be sure to wash your hands good after you pet them. Unless they are sick we've never had a problem with anyone. Fostering is so much fun
  • Nancy GrijalvaNancy Grijalva Member Posts: 1
    edited 26 July, 2008
    That is great! Fostering is fun & rewarding . I do like to see the other kitties come through, and leave healthy & happier. You must be sure the mom-cat has been combo tested, and usual isolation time should be 7-14 days in a separate room, with no contact, lots of hand washing, and a towel stuffed under the door. If you have a separate apt., that is even better, since this is a total isolation period. With young kittens, they will do OK with just their mom, and don't need to socialize with your cats until they are older (your cats may really not like kittens running around), and there are lots of dangers for kittens in your home - electrical cords plugged in, miniblind cords, etc.
  • DONNA KELLY-BIRCHDONNA KELLY-BIRCH kenoshaMember Posts: 1,018
    edited 28 July, 2008
    I don\'t mix fosters with resident cats or other fosters until they are tested for leukemia. We usually don\'t test them until they are ready for adoption, so my cats don\'t get to meet alot of the fosters who get adopted right away. All my fosters are either in a cage or in a room with the door shut. Even in a cage they can touch the resident cats, so I am careful on who gets put in a floor cage and who gets a shut room or an upper cage. If your resident cats are vaccinated and healthy, there isn\'t too much risk of mixing them once the fosters are tested and have shots. I did have a foster supposedly die of leukemia after she was tested and adopted, so I guess there are always risks. Only one of my cats really likes the fosters, so he wold be the one I would worry about the most. Please give fostering a try. It is fun and very rewarding. We are always available for advice if you need it.
  • DONNA KELLY-BIRCHDONNA KELLY-BIRCH kenoshaMember Posts: 1,018
    edited 28 July, 2008
    P.S. Your cats need to be vaccinated for distemper first if they haven\'t been. Distemper is a killer, and every shelter has at least some that die of it every year.
  • Barbara McCarthyBarbara McCarthy Member Posts: 456
    edited 28 July, 2008
    Thank you Morgan (aarrrr) Sukie and Quincy for the good advice. I never thought about putting a towel under the door. We get our foster momma cat today! She\'s \"very\" pregnant, so there should be babies soon. Mom can\'t wait! I think the new family will live downstairs in the \"mother-in-law\" suite. Since we aren\'t vaccinated Mom wants no chance of any germs. So we probably will never meet the new tenants. :-k Wonder if we\'ll know they\'re down there? |$||$|Baby kittens|$||$|
  • Ashley NollenAshley Nollen RichmondMember Posts: 333
    edited 28 July, 2008
    I just want to second what QUINCY said. You really need to go get your cats the distemper vaccine. Distemper can be carried on your clothes from the pound or from the fosters to your cats. And distemper normally kills cats. The rescue group I work with has lost puppies to it before. Distemper really sucks. PlLEASE make sure your kitties are current on their distemper shots!
  • Vanessa CurryVanessa Curry MesaMember Posts: 2,385 ✭✭
    edited 31 July, 2008
    Pancake, Our pparents often volunteer to socialize kitties at our local shelter. They spent every Sunday there. A few months ago they must have brought something home to us. I got sick all of a sudden. 14 years old and never a sick day in my life! One problem right after another for 2 months - UTI, laryngitis, eye/ear infection. None of the other cats got sick (there are 5 of us). Mom and dad washed up really good after coming back from the shelter, and used sanitizer on their hands. Plus, they changed clothes right away and washed them. What the figured out....it was their shoes!!! They left them on the rug and I love to lay on shoes and rub all over them. I had to get something that way! Remember the shoes!!!
  • Barbara McCarthyBarbara McCarthy Member Posts: 456
    edited 31 July, 2008
    Yikes, Senna! I hope you\'re better now. Mom called the vet and found that all but 2 of us have in fact been vaccinated for distemper, fiv, bordatella, etc. Everything but FIP. So those two, plus myself and one other who were due for boosters in August, all went to the vets for shots and checkups yesterday. We have been M.A.D. at mom ever since. :( Then the new houseguest arrived! She is living in the bathroom downstairs. Mom put comforters and towels all over the floor. Mom says she\'s sweet, about 1 year old, just a kitten really. She has a tiny little face and shoulders and then it looks like she\'s swallowed a balloon. She\'s drinking huge amounts of water. She has fleas; the rescue lady gave her a pill(?) that she said would kill the fleas but not hurt the babies. We\'ve never heard of this- we\'re inside cats, and do use Advantage, but have hardly ever had any flea issues. This little momcat has flea \"dirt\" around her nipples. Mom is worried that when the babies are born, if this pill doesn\'t work, they\'ll become flea infested. Any ideas, friends? I don\'t think we\'ll ever meet the fosters. Little Mama seems very cozy in her own little bathroom \"apartment\". We think she\'ll stay there with the door closed at least until she has the kittens and can be vaccinated. Then she can have the run of the rest of the suite downstairs. Mom is being kind of OCD. :)) She washes with hand sanitizer and takes off her clothes and takes a shower before she will play with us...:? Thanks for the advise about the shoes! They\'ll be wiped down and left outside the bathroom door from now on. Mom is still nervous about bringing germs into our home....but this little girl is SO affectionate, purrs, cheekrubs, headbonks. She was a little dirty when she arrived, but has been perfect about using her littler box since she got here...they didn\'t tell us anything about her but she must have been someone\'s pet. She was rescued from local animal control. I hope this goes well, she and her babies deserve a chance.
  • DONNA KELLY-BIRCHDONNA KELLY-BIRCH kenoshaMember Posts: 1,018
    edited 31 July, 2008
    Congrats on the new foster!! The pill she was given for fleas is called Capstar and it works by getting into the bloodstream. Then when a flea bites, it gets the medicine and dies. Capstar is just a temporary solution though. It only kills the adults but not eggs or larvae. The Mama should be given a topical treatment too. We use Revolution which is safe for pregnant and nursing cats. Ask your rescue about this. We hope everything goes well with the birth and rearing. If you have any questions, please ask.
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