Sunday Gratitude – Foster Kittens

Flame (orange), Ember (calico), Ash (white) and Flint (grey, partially obscured)

In case you weren’t aware of the seasons of rescue animals, right now is kitten season. The ferals of the world are having their feline families, with not enough human families stepping up to take them in. Our family cat, now six years old, is a former feral named Bobby Sweetface, seemingly a cat hitman from Miami. He is FIV+ and immunologically compromised so we cannot adopt another cat.

What we can do is foster kittens, and when a sister alum who runs Off the Rocks Rescue reached out for help with fosters for kitten season, we raised our hands (all except for Bobby who is a very jealous dude). And received not one, not two but four 5-month old kittens. They are from St. Thomas, and were flown over by volunteers.

The four kittens — Ash, Ember, Flint and Flame — were terrified at first. For the first two days, they were entirely under the guest room bed. A look underneath saw four sets of wide eyes and upright ears following every movement. Then finally, one brother came out– Flint, the grey and white, decided that he wanted some pets, quickly graduating to flopping on my neck, and nipping my hair. Then Flame, his brother, saw that this was good and started purring as he crossed the room for some pets. He will come over any time Flint gets some pets–pushing his head under my hand. These two will be adopted together–they already have two applications.

Then Ember and Ash–the shyer two. Ash, slightly cross-eyed with the most beautiful blue eyes, is playful with everything, but less needy for humans. He’s on a mission. Not sure what that mission is but he is on it. He is bonded with his sister, the only girl, Ember, who is a gorgeous calico. Ember did not come over for five full days–she watched her brothers get pets, would wait til the last moment to get food, would hold back even when her favorite toy–the kitty fishing pole–came out. Finally she can’t resist and bounces and leaps after the mouse. She is my favorite–and eventually sat on the couch next to me and figured out how to purr.


Anyone who has fostered an animal before knows the satisfaction when the animals break out of their shells and realize that some folks are good. The fuzzy head that peeks out from under the bedskirt, then inches forward, then eventually comes all the way out. You will also know the joy of little paws kneading your leg and the diagonal head butt under your arm as they ask for more pets. Also, the laughter as these rambunctious young animals misjudge leaps, knock over small objects that scare them, roll and wrestle.

Play time!

The Fire-y Four will hopefully be moving to their forever homes soon, but I’m grateful for the time they spent with me. They shall be missed!

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