Fort St. John animal rescue society asks for more fosters amid kitten season

A Fort St. John cat named Paris with two of her kittens at a foster home organized by the On Our Way Home Animal Rescue society.

A foster with On Our Way Home Animal Rescue is caring for a mother cat and her newborns, but the society says more temporary homes are needed this kitten season.

It is believed the mother cat named Paris was left behind when her owners moved away from Fort St. John. But the cat wasn’t alone for long, a neighbour discovered she had recently given birth to six kittens.

Something the President of On Our Way Home Animal Rescue, Lani Belcher, says is a recurring theme every spring also known as kitten season. “We’ve had years where we’ve taken in nine litters of kittens. For a pretty small rescue that’s a lot of kittens. Not just nine kittens but nine litters of kittens,” she said.

A volunteer with On Our Way Home Animal Rescue is fostering the family of felines. However the society says not every stray found is as fortunate as Paris and her kittens.  

Belcher said “Unfortunately daily we have to turn down animals because we don’t have a foster.”

Luckily there are community members like Jeni Briscoe. She started fostering cats three years ago.

“I started because I wasn’t sure if I wanted a pet or not. So thought well if I fostered some I would see if I really wanted one. And then I couldn’t give the first two up,” Briscoe said.  

What started as a self proclaimed ‘foster fail’ has turned into a labour of love for Briscoe.  She says it feels good to provide a temporary home for animals found on the streets. “I give them loves and then I know they’re going somewhere where they’re loved and going to be taken care of.”

On Our Way Home is hoping Paris’ kittens will be available for adoption next week.

Belcher says the $125 adoption price helps cover medical bills, but that’s still operating at a loss and with the pandemic fundraising has been minimal.

“It’s all about fundraising. We have to make the difference between what it costs us and what the adoption fee is. That’s usually about $75 per kitten,” Belcher said.  

On Our Way Home Animal Rescue is hoping for more help from the community. ‘We’re looking for names that go with mom’s name being Paris… so we thought some French names or some Paris names like the Louvre,”  Belcher said.

For more information on helping strays in the city you can visit On Our Way Home Animal Rescue on Facebook.