A Foster Failure?

6:00 AM

This past weekend while running errands I saw a sign at PetSmet that foster families were needed.  I was once a foster parent for a little black kitty.

It was 2001 and I had just moved into an apartment that allowed pets with a small deposit.  Being a flight attendant I am not home enough to have a pet.  But I really, really wanted a cat.  I had seen a sign that the Denver Dumb Friends League needed foster parents.  I immediately signed up.  I had to have an interview and a home visit.  I fibbed a little when I told the lady I was home everyday.   But it worked I was approved to be a foster parent.

A week later I received a six month old all black kitty.  She had just had a litter of kittens and had gotten fixed.  She followed me around the house and I named her Shadow.  She lived with me for one month which was the assigned time.  I wrote up a little blurb to put on her kennel at PetSmart .  I wrote it from Shadow's point of view.  I met the coordinator from the DDFL at the PetSmart location that had room for kitties up for adoption.  And I cried like a baby.

It was very hard to give up Shadow even though she wasn't my kitty to begin with.  I knew that.  I guess I could have applied to adopt her, but I just wasn't home enough for a single kitty.  (When I bought my house I did adopt two kitties who I still have).   I've never given up an animal that I owned and I hope to never experience that feeling again.   I felt responsible for her and I felt like I was letting her down.  

The coordinator walked me to my car, gave me a hug and basically told me that I should reconsider being a foster home.  In fact I should find an entirely different avenue of volunteering.   To this day every time I go to PetSmart I stop in and visit the kitties up for adoption and tell them I would take them home if I could.  I don't volunteer in any capacity at the shelter, but I do take in pet food occasionally.

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3 comments

  1. You were wonderful to foster Shadow. I've often wanted to foster a service dog to help train him or her and then pass on to someone in need but my kids have already warned me that they would never be able to give the dog up! I guess I have to wait to do that in my old(er) age once the kids have flown the coop! ; )

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  2. You go to PetSmart and talk to the kitties too?! I'm so glad I'm not the only one! I've often thought about being a foster home for kitties, but I think that like you, I would not be able to say goodbye. Giving up Shadow must have been really difficult, but at least you have provided a wonderful home to two other kitties!

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  3. I use to visit the local SPCA every day to visit with all the animals, help the office workers and give my children a chance to learn to give for the sake of giving. It was always so hard to leave the animals there and I know in my heart I wouldn't make a good foster parent.
    I think what you did was wonderful and you should feel good about it! [[hugs]]

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I love your comments. Thanks for sharing your thoughts.

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