Well, kitten season is upon us. And while kittens are remarkably cute, they are also very vulnerable and need a lot of care to survive. Did you know that on a typical spring and summer day, the Lycoming County SPCA may receive as many as fifteen kittens, sometimes with and sometimes without their mothers? This year presents a special challenge. With the shelter currently operating at limited functionality, we are looking to limit the number of kittens entering the shelter. Instead, we are looking to empower you, our fellow pet-loving community members. We want to provide you with information and support so that you can help our area’s kittens survive and thrive this kitten season!
So, what should you do if you find kittens outside?
- First, we encourage you to quietly “wait and watch” for the mother cat. Kittens thrive best when they have their mother. Leave the kittens undisturbed for a few hours (if they are 0-4 weeks old) or overnight (if the kittens are older) to see if the mother returns.
- Next, we encourage you to trap and foster the kittens and their mother. We can provide traps and trapping know-how. If you are unable to foster, please ask your network of friends and family to see if one of them would be willing. The less pets in the shelter, the better!
- If you haven’t already, please contact the SPCA (570-322-4646)! We are here to help and we love to do so! We have an experienced foster team who is ready and willing to reach out and help in any way that they can.
- Also, by contacting the SPCA, you will gain access to a vital set of resources. First, we will place the kittens legally in our care. What does that mean? It means that, while they are fostered at your home, we will lift the heavy burdens of:
- Providing information and expertise regarding feeding, warming, and helping the kittens survive and thrive.
- Ensuring support if they are ill: information, know-how, and medication.
- Supplying you with food and formula, as supplies allow.
- Vaccinating the kittens at the appropriate time.
- Helping the kittens get adopted. In other words, you do not need to re-home them yourself!
Did you know that something as simple as receiving vaccines and de-wormer early on can make a remarkable difference in a kitten’s odds of survival? They also thrive much better socially when they are raised in a home setting versus a shelter setting. Together, we can combine our resources and ensure that this year’s kittens are the best cared for yet!