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Foster a Kitten: And Save a Life

Consider this: One cat and her offspring can produce a whopping 420,000 cats in just seven years. Yikes, thats a lot of cats. Each year, from April to November, hundreds of thousands of kittens are born - often to feral or stray moms that eke out a meager existence on our city streets, in the suburbs and in rural areas across America. Without human intervention, most of these newborns will die or, at best, lead short, miserable lives. The moms that are not killed by cars, other animals or disease, will repeatedly become pregnant, adding to the already crushing pet overpopulation problem. Aside from ensuring that your own cats are spayed and neutered, consider fostering a litter of homeless kittens. Sadly, many animal shelters dont have the staff or resources available to care for kittens that are ill or too young for adoption. Newborn kittens that have lost their mom must be bottle-fed around the clock and their tiny bladders and bowels must be expressed on a regular basis. Animal shelters that have kitten foster programs in place need dedicated people who are willing to welcome kittens into their home and nurture them until they are old enough to be placed for adoption.

Help Your Kitten Develop Healthy Eating Habits

For cat lovers, few things are more pleasurable to witness than the astounding progress that a kitten makes in terms of physical development during the first year of its life. Typically weighing about three and a half ounces at birth, a kitten - if properly fed - will gain as much as a half-ounce per day; its birthweight will double in the first week; and it will have tripled its birthweight by the time it is three weeks old. As the weeks pass, the little creatures rate of growth rate will gradually slow, but it will reach its adult size by the it is 10 or 12 months old. Passage through the first year - transitioning from total dependency on its mothers milk to the cutting of its baby teeth and its introduction to an adult diet - can present a formidable challenge to a young cat. Throughout this period, during which the kitten's weight increases 50-fold, it can use all the loving care and attention it can get from its owner, especially in meeting its nutritional needs.

Mothering Myths & Truths

The ancient Egyptians revered her in the form of Bastet, the feline goddess of fertility and protector of women and children. Other ancient peoples kept small statuettes of her with suckling kittens throughout their homes to bring good luck. Modern science has studied her, attempting to explain her ways. Who is she?

Best Care For a New Kitten

It is well known that few can resist the winsome charm of the teeny, tiny kitten. He is loving, playful, downright adorable and a wonderful companion. I remember, as a child, bringing home two beautiful kittens.

Developmental Defects

Some abnormalities are apparent at birth. Others become evident later in life. Heres how best to help your kitten or cat.

Whats In a Name?

Smokey, Felix, Mittens, Tigger - what has been your inspiration when naming a feline friend? Many methods abound.

Lethal Threat to Kittens

Panleukopenia - also known as feline distemper - can be fatal within a few days. Here are the signs to look for.

The Complex World Of Feline Sexual Behavior

Although fascinating, it can result in a tragic surplus of unwanted kittens.

How to Select a Kitten

Temperament and health are two important considerations when adding a new family member.

Some Good Homes Needed

Raising a litter of kittens is a big responsibility. Heres help in placing them in suitable hands.

The Mind of Your Cat: 01/04

Question: I am a veterinary technician at an all-cat clinic. We have a healthy kitten at our hospital that has been here since he...

Calicivirus and Your Cat

Kittens and cats living in crowded conditions are most at risk for this feline virus.