Our mission is to educate the Chicagoland area about the importance of fostering animals, to encourage prospective foster parents to find a rescue or shelter in their area with which to foster, and to provide foster support to individuals, rescues, and shelters in the animal rescue community.
As of 12/2/2019 I have fostered or TNR’d (both long-term and short-term) 123 cats and 82 dogs. (Click here to meet some of my favorite fosters.) These were all incredible and deserving animals that I personally had a hand in saving. 200 pets that I cared for, introduced to prospective families, donated time, money, and supplies toward… these are pets that I have fought for, fundraised for, medicated, fed, cleaned up after, and most importantly, these are 200 pets that I have loved, fiercely.
After years and years of begging, my wonderful parents found a pair of adult pugs in a classified ad when I was a pre-teen; they were my first dogs and the absolute highlight of my childhood.
In 2010, before I knew anything about rescue (because obviously you cannot find a small breed puppy in a shelter… or so I thought many small breed foster puppies ago) I bought a dog from a backyard breeder and was given another pup later that year.
In June of 2014, I rescued my first pet as an adult. Frank joined my family as a 10-week-old kitten from a local shelter’s adoption event. My extended family had always had cats, but I was frankly a bit intimidated by them. Cats scratch furniture; their litter sprays everywhere; they claw people to shreds… or so I thought. Frank was an angel, a sweet and gentle kitten. She was – and is still – perfect, beautiful, sweet, and affectionate. I was finally in love with (and no longer afraid of) a cat. My cat.
In September of that same year, a friend reached out about a kitten he found in a Chicago alley. She was a tortoiseshell polydactyl, maybe five weeks old. I had just adopted my kitten and wasn’t sure about taking in another. Nowadays I am the one convincing people that, when kittens are concerned, two is always better than one. She went to a farm to become a barn cat and went missing a few weeks later – whether she was stolen, eaten by coyotes, or run over on the nearby highway, I will never know. But when I found out she was gone, this gorgeous and sweet kitten, just gone, I promised myself that the next time an animal needed help, I would not say “no.”
Now, I didn’t go searching for animals in need (like I do now, I should add). About a year later, June 2015, animals in need found me. I lived in a condo and the association was “fed up with” the feral cats living in the courtyard. They were about to hire an extermination company to “trap and remove” the feral cats and their kittens. Whoa there buddy. No. No way. I know what “remove” means when you hire an extermination company.
I frantically started researching and stumbled upon Triple R Pets, a Trap-Neuter-Return (TNR) program for feral cats based in the South Suburbs of Chicago. I did some digging, sent an email, and attended their workshop the next week. I returned home with five borrowed traps and a mission. Within 24 hours I caught a male cat (Whiskey) and a kitten (Toby) in a trap together, the mom cat (Mamacat), and two other kittens (Foxtrot & Zulu) in individual traps. When trying to separate Toby from Whiskey, Toby ran away – I trapped him again the next night. The adults were TNR’d, two of the babies passed away from my first experience with Fading Kitten Syndrome, and Toby has never left our home.
In November 2015 another neighbor called – more feral kittens! I bought traps and contacted a friend who volunteered with a rescue. The rescue agreed to provide medical care and supplies for my kittens, and find them a home, as long as I was able to foster them. On the night of their adoption in January 2016 I commented off-hand, “I’ll foster at least one more litter in 2016.” I was sent home with a litter of kittens and their mom that night. The rest is history! I have not been foster-free for more than a couple weeks since that night, and I wouldn’t have it any other way!
Are you ready to foster?
Contact us with questions today! We love introducing people to the foster lifestyle, educating the community about options in the rescue world, and assisting in finding a rescue or shelter nearby!