Creating a Safe Foster Kitten Room
Kitten Foster Room
Choosing A Safe Space
When I decided to foster kittens I knew my downstairs bathroom would be a perfect place. The vinyl flooring is easy to sanitize, the pedastal sink meant I wouldn’t have to worry about claws scratching up a cabinet. It was a no brainer.
A great space for kitten fostering is one that offers:
- Safe space, free of hazards that the kittens could get hurt by.
- Easy to maintain cleanliness during fostering.
- Abilty to sanitize flooring and surfaces in between kitten litters.
- Room to play.
- Secure from your resident pets to avoid spreading germs and disease.
Some kitten fosterers use entire spare bedrooms, if you have laminate flooring this is great, if you have carpet - you need to have a game plan for cleaning up after they make a mess.
These little bundles of fur are messy. Expect that they won’t always make it to the litter box, that they may find it fun to tip over the food bowl, that they may climb on their high walled litter box and knock it over, and that they will fall into their water dish when chasing each other and slash the water everywhere.
This all happens and while it’s a minor inconvenience to clean up, if you’ve got carpet - you just need to set up your room to make clean up as easy as possible. A large plastic mat may be useful for keeping the litter box, food, and water on.
What If You Dont Have A Spare Bathroom or Room?
No problem. There are still ways you can house foster kittens even if you can’t devote an entire room to them 24/7.
A large vertical cat cage or enclosed animal play pen can give fosters a safe place in a room to live when you are not available to watch them closely.
It may seem like housing them in this manner is cruel, but in the shelter - they generally have much, much less space and if you are able to bring them out frequently- they are still getting a chance to run around and socialize with you.
I’ve considered getting a pet pen for when I temporarily need to relocate my fosters, but if I did not have the extra bathroom available, I would purchase a cat cage. They are highly customizable, you can add platforms and hammocks to great and even larger amount of play space for the kittens.
Before purchasing, check in with the shelter or rescue organization to see if they mind or have any recommendations.
Keeping The Foster Kitten Room Clean
While I have fosters I am frequently sweeping up paper and pine litter they’ve tracked all over the place and wiping up spilled water. I don’t use harsh chemicals while they are in the room so no spray cleaners any sort. It’s important to keep the area clear and picked up but kittens are constantly licking themselves clean And putting things in their mouth so I dont To risk them licking a spot with wet cleaner on it.
I wash their bedding in hot water about once a week. I have a collection of soft blankets and they quickly get traces of litter in it. Litter can carry germs and their young immune systems are still developing.
I have had to remove them all into carriers so that I could sanitize the floor after they tipped over their litter box, but generally I keep a pack of pet wipes and paper towels for any messes while they are with me.
In between litters however, I always fully sanitize the room. I’ve recently begun using Rescue disinfectant and added the sprayer from one of my spray bottles. It’s made especially for animal kennels and to kill the germs that cause disease. If any of my kittens have been sick or were carriers of disease, I wouldn’t want that to spread to my next litter.
After I removed everything from the room I spray it down, wait 5 mins and then wipe up with wash cloths.
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Uh Oh! One Last Check For Hazards.
Before you really let your foster kittens loose in their new foster room, get down at their level and look around for things they can get into and place they can get stuck that you may not see from 5+ free up.
I had a scared kitten climb behind our pedestal sink, it took a good 20 minutes and an extra set of hands to get him out. Anticipate that if they can find a way to fit into a space, they will.
Below is a picture of him stuck, he was fine after and did not have any injuries.
Can You Let Your Fosters Roam Your House?
Some foster homes allow their fosters to roam freely in their whole house. I don’t advise it but this is a preference of the foster parent and should only be done if in agreement with the rescue org or shelter.
If you are considering this you will want to keep the follow in mind.
- Kittens are still learning to use the litter box and need to have one close by at all times to prevent accidents.
- Kittens in foster programs sometimes come from questionable health backgrounds. Until you know for sure that you do not have sick kittens, it’s possible for contagious disease to be spread wherever they play. If you have resident pets, this could spread to them or remain in the house for future fosters to come in contact with. Have a plan for what to do in this situation.
- Nothing Is off limits and they will get into everything. Make sure there are no plants they could get sick from eating or other hazards.
© 2018 Stephanie