Starter Kit and FAQ for the Kitty Foster/Rehomer

(NOTE: Comments has been disabled for this page as this is purely a For Your Info service. Do note also that updates will be done as the occasion warrants.)

Over time, we’ve received requests from strangers and acquaintances alike for rehoming help. So we’ve decided to put up this kit in answer. Please note that this is gleaned from our own experience with kitty rehoming. Recommendations serve only as reference; do apply discretion and common sense when making your decisions on tools and media to use.

The first thing anyone looking to rehome a cat MUST acknowledge and keep in mind is that it DOES take time to rehome most cats. It is a great feeling when you find kitty a home but then you must also be aware that that is the ideal and is the endpoint of a hopefully short journey.

However, the truth is, it is highly unlikely that anyone is going to snap up kitty the moment you put the word out, unless the kitty you are rehoming has looks or is a cutesy young kitten, or all the elements happen to align, like they did for Bunny. The adoption rate for adult cats is tolerable but not highly hopeful. In fact adoptability appeal drop for kittens beyond the age of 3 months, reaching plummet speed at or before the 6 month mark; in short the older kitty is, the worse it is.

That is the reality, and sometimes it can seem harsh but reality bite marks are for real. For reference, you can check out our adoption page, our list of rehomed kitties and look up the postings on each cat… most of the chronologies can’t be accused of being short or sweet. Take a further look at our foster mum’s adoption kitties listing: most of these sweethearts are STILL with foster mum, with nary an enquiry, some more than one year after they were put up.

That is not to say it is impossible to find homes for cats aged 3 months or older; it is. Again, check out our list of rehomed kitties for reference. Case in point is Booties, a black and white tuxedo female aged 6 with the loveliest personality, who found a home 1.5 years after her adoption run started, and she had only received 1 casual enquiry during the intervening time. There is hope, however dim, so don’t give up.

Rehoming golden rule: Hope for the best, but expect the worst.

However, you do have to start early, especially if you know in advance of a kitty that needs a new home. Whatever the case, it would be grossly irresponsible and negligent on your part if you just offload kitty to any Tom, Dick or Harry who comes enquiring at the 11th hour of your deadline. Remember, YOU have the responsibility to screen any potential adopter and reject anyone who doesn’t meet your basic eligibility, which should be reasonable, not draconian. Therefore you must also have a checklist of stuff to look out for and a list of questions to ask.

Both the “putting the word out” stage and adopter screening process require some experience and learning before you get comfortable, but there’s a always a first time for everything. You can find resources online to help you start. How to do that I leave it to you to find out. Remember, the search engine can be a friend. (You may also find our cat care refence page for potential adopters a useful starting point.)

You will also need a lot of luck, patience and fortitude, because it can be disheartening when time passes and you still got kitty on your hands instead of in a loving home as you envisioned early on. Do not ever think that the SPCA is a viable alternative should you decide kitty has outstayed his or her welcome with you – 9 out of every 10 animals sent to the SPCA are euthanised, aka killed.

Among requests to tec, putting up kitties for adoption on the blog is the most common. But we aren’t going to accede to such requests for just anyone, because tec is only a personal blog, which means

  1. traffic just to this blog is not good enough to get kitty noticed
  2. enquiries may come to us instead of the requester, via comments or email, which means a delay in response due to the routing.
  3. we can add a link on tec to your kitty’s adoption blurb if it’s already online somewhere, and provided we know you (it is important to us that we help genuine fosters, and not feel-good fosters who don’t care for where the kitty they’re responsible for end up)

All in all, having your own adoption blog will be that much more effective and efficient. Best of all, it ensures all content and admin control is in your hands

What are the advantages of hosting your kitty adoption blurb somewhere yourself?

  • you can devote effort to describing kitty and kitty’s endearing traits in detail
  • you can post all the adorable kitty pictures you want
  • you can add videos to showcase “life-action” to show potential adopters just how lovely kitty is
  • you can post updates on kitty’s adorable antics
  • you control and have access to all content and communications to and from your site

Regular updates help to keep interest in kitty alive, and may persuade those who are interested but undecided to actually contact you when they’ve seen more of kitty, and start to feel like they’re getting to know kitty better.

And of course, you can field questions and comments, and be sure to receive all enquiries as soon as an alert lands in your mailbox.

So what do you need to start an adoption blog and how can you use it? A few simple steps:

1. Get yourself

  • a blog. Free blogs are available on sites like
  • photo hosting. Free photos hosting are available on sites like
  • video hosting. Free video hosting are available on sites like
  • camera: you will need this to take those tantalizingly irresistible photos of kitty (and perhaps videos)
    • optionally: photo and video editing software if you’re into slick packaging
  • educated on how to use these tools and how to organise your efforts (tec minions cannot offer usage advice or aid — that’s what faqs, manuals, user forums, and your own good judgment are for)

2. Put up adoption blurb

  • write a succinct blurb describing kitty, with emphasis on character and traits, especially endearing ones. But do not lie either. Similarly, do not put up a long-drawn sob-story about kitty’s tragic existence, however tempting, as sob-stories are potentially off-putting, not heart-wrench captivating. Remember you want to “sell” kitty’s adoptability, not jeopardise his or her chance for a home. There is only so much time to capture attention before it is diverted by other kitty postings jostling for attention. So don’t waste it, “sell” kitty’s adoptability and if you must, include only parts of kitty’s life story that are important to help the potential adopter get a feel of what kitty is like and assess if kitty is what they’re looking for. Keep the full details of the story of kitty’s life for the blog and the screening process. A good rule of thumb is to look upon the blurb as kitty’s version of a resume – you wouldn’t want to shoot yourself in the foot writing your own so why spoil it for kitty? Again, there are sites out there offering advice on how to write up an effective blurb. You can use your favourite search engine to find some. But for a start, here’s a good ref: How to Write Pet Profiles (note: it is in downloadable pdf format), and How to write a great pet profile.
    • It is also important to keep in mind that not everyone is a gifted writer, and you will never get that adoption blurb out if you are aiming for a perfect profile. But almost everybody can string a few sentences together. Just do your best and hope for the best. After all, you can modify the blurb for subsequent runs.
  • once your adoption blurb is ready, you can start the run in earnest. You can
    • email friends and family the link to the adoption blurb, and ask them to help spread the word
    • Put up the blurb on
      • Cat Welfare Society‘s adoption board (READ and follow instructions)
      • Forums. We don’t do this, as you’d have to check your thread and respond promptly. Plus we don’t find it effective as the audiences are typically not the right crowd to target
      • Classifieds online. Apparently, it’s free and gives each blurb a 2 week run, you just need to sign up as a member first. Again, we’ve yet to try this. We tried it but nary a pip.
      • Other sites and media – this is up to you to find out.

That’s it. Then you sit back and wait for enquiries, and fill up your time by posting updates on kitty to create and sustain interest.

Very IMPORTANTLY, remember to screen any potential adopters and do post-adoption visits. DON’T ever feel obliged to give kitty to the first person to ask, or pressured to “get rid” of kitty fast and forget all about kitty after. Because you don’t want your efforts to find kitty a real home ending up as a farce, do you?

You also have to bear in mind that the first time may not be the last time either. Every adoption should start on the understanding that it’s on trial basis. If something doesn’t work, then kitty may be returned to you, or you may have to insist on taking kitty back from a bad situation, which would hopefully not happen if you’ve done your adopter screening well.

So that’s the short version of what goes into kitty rehoming, from our experience. If you even feel a mite like it’s too much trouble, then for kitty and your own sake, don’t start at all.

(Created 1 Apr 08. Edited 4 Apr 09 )

(NOTE: Comments has been disabled for this page as this is purely a For Your Info service. Do note also that updates will be done as the occasion warrants.)