Anke, an RSPCA foster carer wants to tell you about her fostering experience…

“My current “family” started out with one adult cat who we started to foster just before Christmas – Audrey. She had been hit by a car and therefore had a wire in her jaw, was recovering from cat flu and was in need of lots of TLC! She has recovered well now, the wire is gone and she has developed into an elegant young lady who has found her place in our household. She is very energetic at times – this is why we thought she might benefit from another cat in the household to play with and use up some of her energy. The RSPCA shelter in Wacol was full and looking to foster out more animals, so we welcomed adult cat Oscar into our home.”

“Oscar was one very sick boy – he still had a long way to go to recover from cat flu. Oscar was a huge ginger boy and being sick he had his own room where he could recover, rest and get better. In the beginning he wasn’t eating well, but with lots of steam “baths”, assisted feeding and attention, he slowly got better. His personality developed and we started to see the “real” Oscar – cheeky and a really cool cat. After about two weeks and several supervised encounters, Audrey and Oscar were spending time together in the main house. They got along fairly well. Even though Oscar is a big cat (8kg - big bones) both played well and Audrey sometimes showed him who was boss.”

Not long after Oscar was in foster care, Anke and her family answered the call to take on kittens in foster care too!

“Mittens the kitten was always the daring one of our kitten fosters! He’s was first one near the door wondering what the big hairy thing was that comes through the gap at the bottom (Oscar’s paw). It was very hard to contain him to his room in the introduction phase as he was so eager to get out and explore.”

“Oscar had the kittens following him around, it was so funny to watch. Especially little “mini-Oscar” who followed in his footsteps from the first encounter. Oscar regularly cleaned the little ones. They would come to him to demand licks and attention. He was such a gentle giant.”

“The kittens were such a joy to have around. There is always something going on. They discover they can jump, climb and run (very) fast. They rode on my shoulder and fell asleep on my lap. There are so many little cute things they did. They are naughty, cheeky, curious, smoochy and absolutely adorable.”

“It was amazing to see that five unrelated cats got along so well. And all different! Audrey, more human focused, Oscar is the cool dude who got along with everyone, and the three little kittens who loved to explore the world.”

“Oscar and Audrey both loved their food and spending time with their humans in the house. Even though both aren't lap cats, they enjoyed being in close vicinity with us and often followed us around the house to see what was going on. They also loved watching reality TV, sitting on the windowsill and watching the neighbours."

Oscar has now found his furever home. He was the purrfect father figure in an RSPCA foster care home. He was patient and kind and when Anke and her family decided to help foster some kittens in need, Oscar showed them the ropes before they were ready to adopt.

“It was a real pleasure having Oscar in our care. Audrey is still with us waiting for her furever home. It is always hard to let them all go, but I know I have given them a great start into their life or after a difficult time and now they have a new chance of life.”

For more information about the RSPCA Foster Care Program, or to volunteer as a foster carer click here.