Local Adoption Agency Aiding Cat Crisis
Article by Summer Grace | Owl Staff
Kittens like the one above are available for adoption through Frogtown Fosters.
A poster featuring a crusty orange tabby available for adoption caught my eye as I walked through the doors of To Wag For, a grooming salon and boutique in Bel Air Maryland. The 3 month old kitten was described as “still figuring it all out,” and I knew I had met my perfect match. This kitten was being sponsored through Frogtown Fosters, a local rescue organization.
Megan Conway and Patti Parker are the proud chairmans of Frogtown Fosters and are dedicated to finding them the perfect home.
“Patti said in year one, we will only take 25 kittens. This year, we’ve taken 116. We went a little overboard,” Conway jokes. Even though this was her first year fostering, she says it took some convincing when asked to help Parker start the rescue.
Parker has worked with other organizations in the past, including the Humane Society and Shadow Cats. Because of her prior experience, she was able to easily decide what she wanted to do differently in a rescue of her own.
“Other organizations just don’t have the resources or the people that can feed [the cats] at 2 in the morning,” Parker says. The resources are so slim, that they’re almost constantly receiving kittens from all over the area, such as Delta, Edgewood, Bel Air, and even Baltimore County.
According to Parker, 75% of kittens that are born in the wild, die. Most kittens are brought to them freezing cold, underdeveloped, or injured. “As long as they’re breathing, we won’t say no,” Conway says. Parker agrees and feels that, “Even just giving them hospice care is better than them dying in a barn.”
In order to ensure Frogtown Fosters can continue caring for the kittens, they rely heavily on donations. “The adoption fee covers everything for that animal, unless there’s other things that they need,” Conway says. They always keep a supply of antibiotics and eye cream, but besides these necessities, everything has been donated.
“It’s tough but we saw a need and we’re fixating on the portion we can help,” Parker says. Of the 116 kittens that they’ve had in the system, they’ve lost 17. “When you look at it, that’s taking that 75% and flipping it around to a survival rate instead of a mortality rate,” she continues.
Once the kittens are of age and healthy, they’re transported to To Wag For. Customers are welcomed into the visiting room and given the opportunity to socialize and get to know up to four kittens. If they’re interested in adopting, prospective adoptees can complete an application to ensure they’re the best match for the kitten.
Frogtown Fosters has its own adoption coordinator, Lisa Carpenter, who wants to make sure the kittens are placed in good homes. She checks to make sure all the family pets have been properly vetted, and asks important questions to determine whether the kitten is the right match for the family. In addition, Carpenter keeps track of the medication schedules.
“It’s a wonderful job and wonderful staff. I’m very very lucky,” Conway shares. Parker agrees and adds, “When I’m at my breaking point and I need help, Meg steps in and asks how she can help.” This internal support system helps keep them focused.
“Our friendship has really grown into something stronger than friendship,” Parker says. “Those little pieces are what builds success and that’s why these kittens are doing so well.”
To Wag For is located on Main Street in Bel Air, MD. Check out frogtownfosters.com for more information.