Senior Sam and sophomore Audrey McDonald run down stairs after a long cross country practice to be greeted by their three kittens they are fostering. A kitten comes over to Audrey and kneads on her leg until she scoops them up with one hand and cuddles with it’s soft black fur.This is nothing new for siblings Sam and Audrey.
The Mcdonald’s foster animals from the Great Plains SPCA around August of this year.
The Great Plains SPCA is is an animal shelter with multiple locations: a pet adoption center, vet clinic, and lost pet center. Audrey began volunteering at the Great Plains SPCA with her mom at the beginning of the school year because her summer job was ending.
While volunteering, Audrey and her mom decided to fill out a form to foster animals to help the shelter when they have too many kittens, puppies and even grown up cats. Audrey always wanted more animals around the house, but her mom wouldn’t let them get any more pets since they already own two dogs and one cat. That is why fostering animals is the perfect way to have more pets to play with and take care of around the house, without actually owning any.
“It’s fun having so many animals running around, since I’m a huge animal person,” Audrey said. “It’s one of the best things.”
The McDonald’s get to keep different animals.They have kept puppies that are so little their eyes aren’t open and kittens that can fit comfortably in one hand. Usually they keep them until the adopting age, which is eight weeks. They have three kittens they have right now are much easier to handle than the puppies they had before. The puppies, which was their first fostering experience, were two weeks old when they got them. The family kept them for one week, but quickly realized that those tiny puppies were lots of work.
“It was a relief to have the puppies leave because they needed around the clock care.” Sam said. “We had to make sure they didn’t bite off the other dogs’ ears because they couldn’t see, but they were really cute.”
The family came to the conclusion that kittens or cats would be a better fit.
“I get attached to some of the animals, but I am really attached to one of the kittens, Mufasa or Burnt Pancake, right now,” Audrey said. “It’s going to be hard to give it up, but we are lucky we have found her a good home.”
Audrey has to make sure that the kittens are fed with wet food and that they are growing bigger. That is very important when the kittens are growing. Sam is the one who likes to play with the kittens and makes sure that they interact with people so when they get adopted they don’t lash out. Both Sam and Audrey have to make sure that the living space is clean by cleaning up after the kittens.While taking care of the kittens is challenging because they have to make sure the kittens get their food on time. Even though they both have jobs they have to commit to, they enjoy having the kittens and puppies around.
“It’s so fun to play with them while they are babies,” Sam said. “They do the craziest things and always make me laugh.”
Both enjoy having baby animals run around in their basement for a short time. In the end, as hard as it may be to let the cute furry animals go, they have great homes they are going to.