By Lindsay Black, AARCS
Calgary, Alta – Kitten season is upon us once again and Alberta Animal Rescue Crew Society (AARCS) and other animal welfare groups are being inundated with calls about orphaned kittens. “In the past 24 hours, we are aware of three calls about newborn kittens found without a mother cat that were dropped off at veterinary clinics in Calgary,” says Deanna Thompson, Executive Director of AARCS. “There is a high probability that the momma cats are out there and only left for a short period of time to either go and find food or were scared off by people. We are now tasked with having to care for newborn kittens, including feedings every couple of hours.”
If you come across a litter of kittens you think might be orphaned it is best to leave them where they are and call a local animal welfare agency to assist. If they are in imminent danger of a predator or environmental threat please take them to a local veterinary clinic, but ensure to leave your contact information at the clinic and write down the exact location so that animal rescuers can go search for the momma cat. The greatest chance of survival these kittens have is to be with their mom.
Kittens who are very young and are taken away from their mom stand a very low chance of survival, even if being bottle fed by a foster parent. When the kittens are taken away, the mother will go into heat again and have a new litter of kittens. Ideally if we can rescue the entire family together their chances of survival are much greater.
AARCS is a non-profit charity whose mission is to improve the lives of animals by rescuing and providing sanctuary to abandoned, surrendered or abused animals in Alberta.