Fostering furry friends

Junior provides care to animals in need


Photo courtesy of Daniel Holt

Feeling comfy, junior Daniel Holt cuddles with his foster dogs. His family has fostered many animals, and these are just a few of them. “I am excited to come home every day to play with the puppies” Holt said. “Although they can be a handful sometimes, fostering animals is worth it.”

Jenna Reynolds, Staff Writer

People help out the community in various ways. For some this may be by donating to charities, lending a hand at the soup kitchen or assembling care packages for soldiers. However, junior Daniel Holt gives back in a unique way. 

Five years ago, Holt and his family applied to be a foster family for animals. After Holt’s sister saw a sign advertising the idea, and told their parents about the opportunity. After begging, the siblings convinced their parents to submit an application. The process seemed simple enough. It entailed paperwork, a background check and a house visit to check for the safety of the animals. 

Confused and surprised, Holt came home one day to a litter of kittens roaming his house. This moment was when he realized they had been accepted to foster animals.   

“I was extremely excited to have this opportunity not many people get,” Holt said. “The kittens were so cute and precious. I knew it would be a time consuming, but a fun journey.”

Every week the Holt family receives an email about animals that need fostering. The choice is theirs to decide what animals they want to take in. It ranges from one full grown cat or dog with minimum work, to a litter of kittens or puppies who need supervision constantly. The animals stay with the family for different amounts of time. A litter will typically stay with the family for two months, or until they are eight weeks old and able to be adopted. When the animals are old enough, the family has to do the most difficult act of giving the animals back to the adoption agency. 

“My family and I tend to stick to puppies and kittens because they are the most fun to have around,” Holt said. “When we want to foster kittens we try to make sure they come with their mom, because it’s hard to feed five kittens with syringes.”

The most animals the family had at once was a cat and her seven kittens. They usually foster new kittens and puppies for two months, or until they are eight weeks old. The Holt family gets the chance to watch the animals grow a significant amount. Then the puppies or kittens are adopted. However, with older cats or dogs, they are fostered for varied amounts of time.

“Having to give the fosters back is very hard sometimes,” Holt said. “That’s why we have adopted three of the animals we’ve fostered. It is easier when you know family or friends are going to adopt some of your fosters.” 

For Holt, fostering animals has had a positive impact on his life. New litters of animals continuously keep Holt’s house full of people who want to play with the newborns. Animals are a way to connect with others and create bonds. He has learned the importance of caregiving and patience through the animals which can be an immense handful some days.