The Coast News Group
Before the 24-hour Kitten Nursery was established in 2009, many orphaned kittens were in danger of euthanasia because of a lack of resources required to care for them. Courtesy photo
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San Diego Humane Society prepares for kitten season

San Diego Humane Society is preparing to open its 24-hour Kitten Nursery for the busy kitten season this spring. In the coming months, thousands of orphaned kittens will rely on around-the-clock feedings and care provided by staff and volunteers at SDHS.

“In San Diego County, we do get kittens year-round, but as the weather warms up, and the days get longer in spring, cats go into heat and our kitten numbers rise,” said Nursery and Foster Manager Jackie Noble. “Cats can have multiple litters a year, so we usually see a boom of kittens in the fall too.”

San Diego Humane Society’s Kitten Nursery was the first of its kind in the country, making it a national leader in providing 24-hour care for kittens who need extra attention in order to thrive. From bottle feedings to specialized medical treatments, the Kitten Nursery offers lifesaving resources for some of the tiniest companion animals throughout San Diego County. It also serves as a model for shelters across the country, so even more lives can be saved.

Before the 24-hour Kitten Nursery was established in 2009, many orphaned kittens were in danger of euthanasia because of a lack of resources required to care for them. But today, these fragile kittens have the chance to grow, thrive and be adopted.

This is the time of year when thousands of kittens are born in our region. “If you come across these adorable newborns, first watch and wait before interfering,” said Noble. “If you don’t see their mother right away, it doesn’t necessarily mean they’ve been abandoned. Mom is off looking for food and will return soon!” If the mother doesn’t return for more than two hours, then the litter can either be brought to San Diego Humane Society for 24-hour care in the Kitten Nursery, or you can foster the litter in your home until they’re old enough for adoption. Information about caring for kittens can be found at sdhumane.org/foundkitten. If the mother of the kittens (called a queen) shows up, she can also be brought to San Diego Humane Society so she can be spayed, in order to stop the kitten cycle.

The lifesaving work at San Diego Humane Society’s Kitten Nursery is only possible thanks to the generous support from donors in the community. The organization relies on gifts of supplies from a virtual registry, in addition to monetary contributions. If you’d like to help, please visit sdhumane.org/kittenshower.