The cats that we can’t save and what you can do to help

by austinpetsalive • Posted in: Foster

Tamara had an infected uterus and was saved by medical foster Loretta.

Currently almost all cats are getting out of TLAC alive – this past month they only killed 50 total cats, compared to 226 cats killed in March 2008. Of course the number will never be 0 – there will always be cats that are just too sick or have too many behavior problems and simply can’t be saved and will need to be euthanised for humane purposes. However, of the 50 killed this month, some of those had the potential to be saved.

What types of cats are still getting killed?
The vast majority are cats with moderate to severe medical issues, and cats with severe behavior problems. The problems are potentially treatable, but they require expert help, funding, and specialized foster homes ready and willing to deal with the issues.

What is APA! lacking to save these cats?
APA! has the expertise and the resources available to save medical and behavior problem cats, the only component that we are lacking to save these additional lives are foster homes willing to take them in.

Can anyone be a medical or behavior foster?
YES. You do not need any training, expertise, skills or abilities. What you do need is a willingness to deal with difficult situations, to follow the advice of the vets and behaviorists, and an ability to commit to fostering for as long as it takes.

What does being a medical foster entail?
All medical care and expenses are covered by APA, we have medical staff on-call for emergencies 24/7, an email line where you can email questions anytime during the day, and a vet clinic open 7 days a week for checkup appointments and medications. Most of the medical cases our specialty fosters house have cancer, intestinal diseases, skin diseases, broken bones/trauma, or pneumonia (though there can be any variety of problems). If you love the show House and have always wanted to learn more about medicine and save a life, this is a great way to do it! Sometimes these kitties will have vomiting or diarrhea, so an ability to deal with yucky stuff helps J

What does being a behavior foster entail?
Most of the behavioral kitties have litter box issues, so you will need to work with them (and our behavior team) to help re-train the kitty on how to use a litter box and deal with any issues. If you have floors that are easy to clean that certainly helps! Other behavior issues include extra scared kitties that need help trusting humans again, and cats that swat or bite to communicate and need to be taught not to.

What if I work all day, can I still be a medical or behavior foster?
YES! Most of our specialty fosters have full time jobs.

Honey Biscuit, shown in her new home, had just been hit by a car when she came to us. Gerri saved her by fostering her throughout her surgeries to remove her bad eye and fix her broken jaw.

How do I sign up?
Go to http://www.austinpetsalive.org/foster/ to read more about fostering and fill out an application. Our foster screener will call you once you’ve filled out the application and explain everything to you; please let them know at that time that you would like to be a specialty foster.


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