Clock Is Ticking As Rescuers Race To Save Newborn Orphaned Kittens

There’s a reason Adopt-a-Cat Month is celebrated in June. Summer marks the beginning of kitten season, leaving U.S. shelters overflowing with homeless kittens and cats desperate for care. But kitten season doesn’t just end in July, when Adopt-a-Cat Month is over. Shelters remain crowded with kittens and cats as the breeding season continues all summer, causing a crescendo of homeless animals.

The situation is especially dire for orphaned newborn kittens, who require round-the-clock care and constant bottle feeding. Alas, nursing bottles and milk replacement formula are hard to come by – especially in the wake of a pandemic that’s left shelters struggling to cope with limited staff, resources, and funding.

Photo: Wisconsin Humane Society

This growing crisis led Greater Good to partner with the Animal Rescue Site to supply U.S. shelters with nursing bottles, nutritious formula, and other emergency supplies to help newborn kittens survive their early days in the shelter without Mom.

But we couldn’t deliver these emergency shipments without the support of Animal Rescue Site readers, whose daily clicks, donations, and shopping at The Animal Rescue Site Store allowed us to shower these hardworking shelters with critical supplies. Find out how we’re saving lives during kitten season!

Wisconsin Humane Society

Photo: Wisconsin Humane Society

At the Wisconsin Humane Society, GreaterGood’s nursing bottles and formula were eagerly distributed among the shelter’s foster network, where volunteers provide orphaned newborn kittens with bottle-feedings, warmth, socialization, cleaning, and 24/7 care until they’re old enough to go back to the shelter for adoption.

“Orphaned, newborn kittens are at a huge disadvantage and require round-the-clock in-home care,” Wisconsin Humane told Greater Good Charities, explaining how this timely shipment of bottles and formulas helped “give these kittens a fighting chance.”

Cabarrus County Animal Shelter

Photo: Cabarrus County Animal Shelter

Nor was Wisconsin Humane the only shelter to benefit from your clicks and shopping, which helped us distribute critical supplies to shelters across the U.S. In North Carolina, Cabarrus County Animal Shelter used our donation of bottles and formula to launch a “Bottle Baby” kitten foster program to save even more lives this kitten season.

“Having foster homes on hand ready to go with the needed supplies ensures that when bottle babies enter our building, they have somewhere safe to go,” said grateful workers, who are already up to their ears in abandoned kittens. Current residents include a litter of 5 rescued from a dumpster after a landscaper heard them crying for help. Another orphaned litter was mistakenly “kit-napped” by a well-meaning elderly couple.

Photo: Cabarrus County Animal Shelter

“These 4 babies were brought to us late on a Friday afternoon after being “kit-napped” from their momma,” shelter workers told Greater Good Charities, explaining how the kittens were only one week old.

“Despite our best efforts to educate them on taking them back and leaving them with their mom, they insisted they leave the litter with us,” shelter workers said. “They just couldn’t comprehend leaving the babies unattended. We asked them to please bring the momma cat to us as well if they could find her, but they never did.”

Photo: Cabarrus County Animal Shelter

Time is of the essence when dealing with newborn kittens, who must bottle-feed every few hours, but — thanks to your donation — Cabarrus County Animal Shelter already had a foster care team in place. After a few calls, the hungry newborns were placed with an experienced caretaker armed with GreaterGood’s nursing bottles and life-saving kitten formula.

“We sincerely appreciate the supplies that Greater Good has granted us in order to run our foster program,” Cabarrus County Animal Shelter told Greater Good Charities. “This program is donation-supported, and we do not have a budget to purchase supplies. Without their support, we would not be able to stock our foster homes with the items they need to raise kittens and save lives.”

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The Dog House Project

Photo: The Dog House Project

Our emergency supplies even made it out to Navajo Nation, where veterinary care is scarce and supplies are expensive. Even basic shelter supplies, including blankets, dog beds, collars, leashes, and pet food, often remain out of reach.

“For kittens like lil Simba born on the Navajo Reservation with no mom to be found survival would not be possible without the help of human compassion,” rescuers told Greater Good Charities. “Access of such things such as baby bottles and [PetAg KMR Kitten Milk Replacer] are not easily accessible.”

Photo: The Dog House Project

But with your support, we supplied the reservation with nursing bottles, formula, and other critical shelter supplies to give lil Simba and other rescued animals a fighting chance.

“These babies along with animals of all ages have received a much-needed supply of blankets, leashes, collars, puppy and kitten formula,” rescuers told Greater Good Charities, explaining how the puppy/kitten formula helped save some orphaned babies. “We are grateful to all those that donate to Greater Good,” rescuers wrote. “Without your generosity, we could not help those in need.”

Cat Tails Inc.

Photo: Cat Tails Inc.

Even before the pandemic, kitten season was an insanely busy season for shelters — and one of the worst times to have a shelter crisis. But that’s exactly happened at Cat Tails, Inc., where a virus swept through the Pennsylvania shelter’s main office, forcing foster parents to dump critical supplies right before kitten season.

Photo: Cat Tails Inc.

Thankfully, your daily clicks, donations, and shopping at the Animal Rescue Site Store, which funds food for hungry shelter pets with every purchase, helped us support this hardworking shelter during its hour of need. Because of you, we provided Cat Tails with replacement baby bottles and formula, pet beds, blankets, bowls, litter pans, scratch boxes, toys, and other vital supplies needed to weather this busy period. Thanks for helping us help shelters and kittens this kitten season!

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