It's probably not coincidence that Mother's Day coincides with the height of spring, when new life is everywhere - flowers in bloom, birds nesting, and kittens being born. The rumor that cats make lousy mothers still circulates, but over the past years FFGW has its share of dedicated feline mothers, proving that rumor false as they demonstrate a love for not only their own babies, but also for other young lives in need.
And then there was Callie. Callie suffered heartbreak that no mom should - her whole litter died as they were very small and caught a virus. Because she was nursing, though, she lost her ticket on a transport, but her foster couldn't bear to return her to the shelter, telling us - "she is SO SWEET. I don't have it in me to send her back to the shelter where she would surely be euthanized. Can you take her?"
And we looked at the nursery fund again - and here she is, with a second chance at life.
And no mother's day tribute would be complete, of course, without recalling Thomasina's story. Thomasina did the best she could to take care of her newborn kittens, being a homeless mom on the street: When she moved them before a concerned FFGW volunteer could trap them, and a concerned resident called animal control, she was separated from some of her kittens as she evaded the traps. But there's no better Mom's Day movie than the one shared by the Alexandria Animal Welfare League - click below to watch Thomasina's happy reunion with her kittens (be sure your sound is on!). Thomasina and her kittens are in the care of a FFGW foster mom, and will soon be available for adoption.
Not all fantastic moms with FFGW are kitties, though - some are foster moms! (Don't worry, foster dads - you'll get your day in June!)
The entire Heishman family fosters for FFGW, with mom Pam's sons Nicolas and Daniel making sure their foster cats are entertained and well socialized!
Nicolas teaching Priscilla and Bobby the right way to nap
Daniel showing Bobby the proper nose touch technique
The Heishmans got an early start in fostering and volunteering with cats when the boys were 5 and 7; about 10 years ago. They had an extra bedroom in their house and mom Pam wanted to involve the boys in a volunteer activity while they were young. While shopping at the Leesburg PetSmart shopping Pam saw a sign that they needed volunteers, and unlike the local shelter which did not permit kids, fostering gave them an opportunity to get up close and personal with their rescues. We are very fortunate that they did! Their current fosters are Cecelia who came from a distant rural shelter with her adorable 6 kittens. Pam says that from the start Cecilia has been super friendly with her human family and a great mom. Pam adds that she forgot how much nursing moms can eat, "she’s like a vacuum!" Pam adds that the kittens are very sweet and give them good laughs when they wrestle - her younger son acts like an announcer calling a match when they are playing!
Sharon Novak also has a houseful of FFGW kittens! Sharon has been fostering for the Feline Foundation for almost a year now. She discovered the Feline Foundation through a friend who also fosters for FFGW. Sharon has had cats as pets most of her life and had lost one to old age a couple years ago and thought fostering would be the best way to help shelter and care for cats in need of good homes. She was right! So far she has fostered around 18 cats/kittens that have been adopted into forever homes for FFGW!
FFGW is forever grateful for long-time foster Martha Reitman, who last year had a very special litter of kittens. Born without eyelids they needed corrective surgery. When we bumped into them at the specialty clinic they were just a few weeks old... and already loved their foster mom!
Now they're all healed up and have gone to happy furever homes!
And of course, we can't forget the Gregoire family, always willing to foster special needs kitties for FFGW (probably doesn’t hurt that Mom is a veterinarian!).
Tell us Your Stories!
Foster moms - and dads! - tell us your stories! We'd love to feature you, your human family, and the felines in your care in a future newsletter! Email firstname.lastname@example.org and let us share how you're helping us save the world, one cat at a time!