Welcome to my first post that introduces a new category on LLApets, an interview with someone who’s fostering and working with rescue animals.

My first guest is Jess Thoren who’s  a foster mom who runs KittenBnb. Hear the story about how she began fostering and her tips for those of you who might be thinking about doing the same. Definitely check out her web site www.kittenBnB.com.  and find her on Instagram for a huge dose of kitten cuteness overload. If you’re looking for a kitten, please consider contacting Jess to give one of these beautiful cats a loving, forever home. And also, consider fostering an animal because it helps shelters free up space, and therefore you could be saving a life.

Jess Thoren

Live, Love Adopt Pets (LLAPETS)-How long have you been fostering kittens?

 Jess Thoren (JT)-I’ve been fostering for almost 3 years and in that time I’ve fostered over 100 kittens!

LLAPets-Can you remember what was going through your mind when the first kittens arrived?

JT-I was so nervous! I grew up with dogs and I never had a cat before so I really didn’t know what I was doing. I went to a foster orientation class but I still felt unprepared for my first kittens.

LLAPETS-How many have you fostered since then?

JT-Over 100! 

LLAPETS-Is there a limit to how many you can foster at one time?

JT-Yes, definitely! I don’t have a hard number limit as it depends on the situation and how needy the specific kittens are but I’m trying not to have more than two litters at a time. I think it’s really important to not have that number too high because you want to give each kitten enough attention. This will help socialize them better and also if there’s a decline in the kitten’s health, you’ll be able to recognize it and take action quicker.

LLAPETS-You mention in your bio that fostering might be a good match for people who aren’t ready for the full pet parent commitment. Any advice for others who might be considering being a foster parent? Anything that you’d wish you’d known from day one?

JT-The best advice I could give is to just start fostering! Each new foster is a new learning experience and you will learn so much just by fostering your first cat or kitten. I also would suggest asking the shelter or rescue to help you find a foster cat/kittens that would fit best with your lifestyle.

LLAPETS-I know everyone’s going to want to know if it’s tough seeing them leave. Does it get any easier over time? Or do you always feel a sense of sadness? Have you had any kittens that you’ve considered adopting yourself? In fact, do you have any pets?

JT-I’m a really emotional person to the point where I cry at movies and TV shows that aren’t even that sad. Because of that, I used to think I could never foster because I couldn’t handle the emotional pain but I was so wrong. My first fosters were by far the hardest to let go and I seriously considered adopting one of them.  The best way to describe how I feel about them leaving me is bittersweet. I still miss them and love them so much but I get so much joy seeing them so loved by their new families. Each foster takes a little piece of my heart with me when they go. I think it’s probably how most parents feel when their children move out of the house. It’s sad but it’s also so happy because they are starting their new life and don’t need me anymore! I remind myself that this also opens up my home for other kittens that are in need and I get new kittens right away to ease the pain. There have been a few kittens that I have thought about adopting but I really am trying not to adopt a kitten that is easily adoptable which most of my kittens are by the time they are ready to leave me. When I adopt, I hope to adopt an older kitten or young cat that might be overlooked. I don’t have any personal pets, just fosters!

LLAPETS-You also run KittenBnB? Do you want to tell us about that and how that got started?

JT-Yes, so Kitten BnB started out as just an Instagram to show off my kittens and find adopters for them. After a while, a lot of people kept asking me if Kitten BnB was a real place and that gave me the idea to make it one! Kitten BnB is place to stay while visiting the NYC area and while you’re there you can cuddle and play with kittens and learn about fostering! My goal for Kitten BnB is to bring more exposure to fostering and to show people how easy and fun it is!

LLAPETS-If anyone wants to donate, adopt or stay at Kittenbnb, what’s the best way to reach you?

JT-If you’d anyone would like to donate to my foster kittens, they can do it through the link here: https://www.kittenbnb.com/donate/

The best way to contact me is emailing jess@kittenbnb.com