This month, we celebrate our wonderful foster, Sampradha! She has been fostering with SAFe Rescue since June of 2021 – like many, she felt the call to foster when her plans were upended due to the COVID-19 pandemic. With international travel bans in place, Sampradha found herself alone at home, with her husband unable to leave India. She had always longed to have a pet, and started looking into adoption, but the idea of being a first-time pet parent during a time of such uncertainty was intimidating. Then she learned about fostering – being able to help care for cats and kittens with the support of a whole team of people at her side was just the experience she was looking for!
Though she has fostered 18 kittens so far, her first pair, Mia and Marco were her biggest challenge. She recalls, “Both of them were shy and had upper respiratory infections. I still remember Amy [SAFe’s Intake Manager and sometimes Foster Coordinator] showing me how to give them their oral and eye medication. She also warned me that it wasn’t as easy as it looked when she gave it to them. Boy, was she right!” But the foster team at SAFe was there to help! “They were a great support and answered all my questions patiently.” She says, “SAFe gave me confidence that they would be with me all the way and that I was not alone in this fostering journey. These two terrified kittens slowly started trusting me and owning the house. Their confidence and antics grew and they even captured the hearts of my parents and husband in India through my daily video calls.”
Since then, Sampradha has had many more rewarding experiences fostering, including the first time a kitten purrs in her presence, approaches her for pets, or starts to sleep anywhere and everywhere without inhibition. “The most rewarding thing is when shy kittens start to trust me. This assures me they can trust their adopters as well.” She says, “We fostered an all black kitten whom we named Vesper. She was the shyest of that litter. She was the one I’ve got most scratches from, but also the one whom I’ve got the most love from. She was terrified, but once she realized pets were what she loved the most in the world, she started looking forward to my visits to the foster room. She even chose sitting down with us over playing with her siblings. One of her favorite activities was snuggling in between my husband and I as we lounged on the couch watching TV.” And though it’s hard to give them up after caring for them so much, Sampradha says that “when I see my babies are adopted, it makes me feel so proud.”
Sampradha’s husband, Siva was very invested in the kittens she fostered, although he was far away. Since being able to return to Seattle he has helped to co-foster two sets of kittens! “The first time he experienced a kitten purring was pretty amusing to me.” She says, “He is a big contributor in socializing the kittens and also helps me a lot with taking photos of them. We both work from home as software engineers and our foster kittens are our new co-workers.”
When asked what impact fostering kittens has made on her during this time of social distancing, Sampradha replied, “The kittens have brought sanity to me. Also, it helps that I am able to enjoy more time with them due to working from home. A kitten purring in your arms or lounging beside you while you work feels amazing, and in a way, more relaxed. All the social distancing had made me lazy and fall out of routine. They helped me get into a routine and I feel much better about myself. I also find myself laughing more, because kittens can be silly and definitely a welcome distraction from all the worrisome things happening around the world. Capturing the adorable things kittens do has also become a hobby and I love sharing photos of my fosters on Instagram @purrciousbeans_fosters”
For anyone considering fostering, Sampradha says, “Fostering is a very rewarding experience, and if you can, please foster. Yes, giving up kittens for adoption is difficult, but that sadness is temporary and so small when compared to the kittens getting their forever home and you being able to foster more kittens. I am very impressed by how SAFe makes fostering so easy by providing all the support, supplies and guidance to foster parents. They have made fostering an even more enjoyable experience.”
We at SAFe Rescue are grateful to have Sampradha and her husband, Siva as part of our community of amazing fosters. Thank you for helping so many kittens grow up healthy and find loving homes!
Two of Sampradha’s previous fosters, Huckleberry & Nori, recently found their loving home and you can read all about their journey in their Warm Fuzzy Tale!