February 2, 2010
Bud says: I am not a cat person. I am however married to a cat person. When we married in my youth, I wasn’t astute enough to read the marriage contract close enough. It turns out that when married to a cat person, the non-cat person finds him or herself at the very bottom of a fairly long pecking order. All pets rate higher!

For the last several years, my wife has moved me even further down the pecking order by fostering cats from the Fairbanks North Star Borough animal shelter and a local cat rescue organization called Pet Pride. Both shelters frequently find themselves with pregnant cats but need to isolate the kittens from their general population to keep the kittens from the various diseases carried by the many adult cats. The solution is to find someone like my wife who will foster the kittens in their own home until they are large enough to be adopted, which in our area requires that they are two pounds so they can be fixed before they create new kittens. First the shelter will send someone out to inspect your house to ensure you have sufficient space for the kittens. In our case that means a separate room to keep the mother cat and the kittens away from our other pets which include three cats and two Siberian huskies. Then you are granted the pregnant cat to feed and care for.

While I’ve not noted any nesting behavior on the any of the cats we fostered’s part, my wife immediately works out a birthing box. Carefully prepared and considered, it contains several cat toys, is lined with old blankets, and is carefully selected to be the right size and located conveniently near the litter box and feeding station. Of course when the big day arrives, the mom cat ignores the carefully prepared birthing box and has the kittens behind the dryer. So I wake up to go to work and my morning preparations are interrupted by screams from my wife that kittens are coming and I need to immediately move the dryer. So there I am, in my BVD’s, wrestling the dryer out of the way so my wife can join in the miracle of new life while I go back to preparing for my work day.

Now we have kittens! At this point I note a change in our neighborhood status. I know parents have online lists of child predators to keep their children protected. However, after we managed to populate our neighborhood with the first batch of kittens (it seems an eight-week-old kitten and an eight-year-old child will bond in a time span of between four and five milliseconds!) we are now on the “has kittens” watch list. Children seem to be instructed to stay at least 300 yards from our house and when we are walking the dogs, concerned mothers come racing out to cover their child’s ears, in case we tell the child that we have kittens and they are welcome to come play with the kittens.

At roughly eight weeks the kittens hit the magic two pounds. Now my real danger point arrives. My wife doesn’t seem to have problems parting with the kittens as the shelter and the pound have no problem giving away the kittens. However, the mom cat is a whole new story, as they do have problem adopting out adult cats. While I’ve never given permission to get new cats, my wife found a loophole in the instruction. Last year I got a cat for Christmas and the year before I got a cat for my birthday! So we are now reaching that eight-week limit and I fear I’ll get a late Christmas present.

Maybe when they come out from the shelter, they need to check for the most important component of a household considered for fostering… an understanding spouse.

All Photos Courtesy of and ©: Bud Marschner
Bud Marschner is an Alaskan wildlife and landscape photographer; please visit his Web site to see his spectacular photos and to order his new 2010 calendar

Comments and LOLs:
Kephara -
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Kephara
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Congratulations Bud - You've become a cat person! This fuzzy bunch is WONDERFUL.
Kayli -
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Kayli
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The cat people of the world love you, Bud! Have you fallen in love with kitties yet? :-)
bigdummy -
Bless your heart - wonderfully told :)
kittymombo -
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kittymombo
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got swagger?
Leanna -
Leanna
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Bud, I think you have become a "cat person" without knowing it. That is ok, it makes you a better person that way. These pictures are so cute that it is really hard to pick a favorite one.

Yes, I am a big "cat person", but more than that I am a hug animal lover with the word "sucker" written on my forehead in animal language!
Holy Cuteness -
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Purrfect modelling...
Koala10 -
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Koala10
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Hilarious and wonderful story. You two are Good Peeps. Momma Cat is beautiful and it sounds like she might have found a home. I for one will have the little tortie, please and thank you !
paulajeanne -
paulajeanne
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I love you, Bud.
judyabbott -
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I love you too Bud. I wish you &Wife a long happy life full of gorgeous cats :)
SeekingPlumb -
Great post!! Many a kitten thanks you for your patience & understanding. :)
Krazy_cat -
You are an inspiration to catruled-husbands everywhere. A foster mom myself, and proud mommy to ten permanent feline residents, I finally decided to buy my husband a book about being married to a cat-addict... hmm.. I've never thought of using the "cat for xmas" trick though... thnx! ;)
docsquid -
docsquid
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What a lovely story, and such a bunch of cute kitties too.
mma -
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mma
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I can tell you're a cat person, undercover! Thanks for the cute story.
CarMar -
Delightful story! And precious kitties too.
kittapotomus -
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kittapotomus
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Aww Bud, stop trying to deny it. You ARE a cat person. I love your story and your little furbabies.
boodie -
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boodie
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awww, so very very cute!
sewinggirl -
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One of the best stories I've heard yet. I hate to tell you, but you have become a cat lover.
Vicki -
You're a good man Bud! And, my hubby 'became' a cat person too, after we were married. Now, our girls have him wrapped around their paws. <wink> You and your wife are to be commended for your efforts. That's a cute bunch of fuzzbutts for sure!
asianzheng -
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asianzheng
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Love the story. My hubby was not a cat person before he met me and my cats; now he cannot go to bed without having a cat by his side.
CY -
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CY
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patboridout -
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Tamara -
Thanks, Bud for the morning laugh!
Linda Sue -
Thank God for understanding foster daddy's...LOL
Mavis -
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Mavis
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OH baby!! How cute! Looks like my Diego!!
Mavis -
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Mavis
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cats@5 -
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What a cute set of kittys.
nili -
nili
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What little dumplings! I want them all. Thanks Bud for being a foster dad!
BooksandCats -
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BooksandCats
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These little guys are like thieves;
they steal your heart!
BooksandCats -
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lisal -
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Natthecat -
Natthecat
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For some reason my comment disappeared, so I repeat. The kitties are charming and Bud is a wonderful writer. Also charming.
Bud Marschner -
Good News! One of neighbors screwed up and didn't check the "has kittens" list and brought his daughter over to sell us girl scout cookies. Of course I didn't miss the opportunity to ask the little girl if she wanted to see the kittens. Dad must have said "NO!" about 25 times. But like I said, the bonding had already occurred! One down, three to go!
Denise -
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Denise
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I read your story to my husband as I laughed and laughed. I too, foster kittens every kitten season. I'm sure he could relate to becoming second class in our house. Thanks for the wonderful story.
chocoluv -
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I love your story Bud! You should start a club...I'm sure many husbands would join. Thanks for helping to raise such adorable kittens!
chocoluv -
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siameez -
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You are a hero just like my husband. We couldn't do it without you guys! Two years ago I rescued 7 kittens (2 in one litter; 5 in the other) & tried to get them adopted out thru a rescue group but only 3 out of the 7 got homes. We still have the other 4 almost 3 yrs later. Tell your wife she's blessed to have you....
siameez -
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siameez -
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adorable pic!
Kirsten -
So cute! And so glad to hear one is already adopted!
BirmanMama -
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BirmanMama
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I haven't laughed so well in days ... THANK YOU! Your wife is wonderful for all she does and so are you as the supportive spouse. Your foster babies are adorable and best of luck finding homes for them.
MoreKittens4Me -
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Bless the people who love the cat addicts...especially those who foster/adopt animals in need!!
MoreKittens4Me -
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MoreKittens4Me
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And how can ANYONE resist any of these faces????
catiam -
catiam
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Beautiful kittens. Great story. You are a good spouse.
kibblegirl -
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What a funny narrative, Bud. Glad that you got to take the mother cat. Thank you for people like you and your wife. You both do such good work with the baby catties.
I love the little orange tabby.
ksilver -
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Party colors!
ksilver -
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ksilver
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fuzzymeow -
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so CUTE!!!!
Lynne -
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Lynne
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Sweet:):):)
LikeRain -
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jojosmom -
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Bud, Bud. You ARE the man! What a delightful story! Your wife (bless her heart) is so lucky to have an understanding husband like you. And look at it this way--Mama is a beautiful girl, and would make a lovely Valentine's Day present. Thanks for all you do for these babies.
kitbce -
kitbce
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sssooo cccuuuttteee!!! squweee!
Amy -
Amy
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Bud - You have the best story, hands down, on the daily kitten!

Oh, and all the macros/LOLs are fantastic! :D
LeCrosse -
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Oh, but how could you refuse??? Bud, do you have any *single brothers*? ;)
Sarah -
Bud, your story is hysterical. I laughed out loud! I can only hope that someday I'll find a nice "non-cat" man who understands the proper household "pecking order." :)
bono -
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bono -
bono
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As everyone else has noted, Bud, you ARE the "father"!! Well written story, I laughed and I cried!! I would like the instruction booklet that came with you!!! Which one is adopted now??
Ingajonna -
OMG! What a great story! Bud, I am so sorry for you! I wasn't a cat person for most of life. I didn't like them at all. Then a friend moved in with her cat and it was so OVER! I was enlightened. I have two cats now and love all cats! I love the kittens so cute. I think the tortishell is so beautiful! Good luck to you! You really are the cat daddy!
deborrah -
bud, you are a wonderful spouse! your wife is a lucky woman -- and all your foster kitties are just as lucky. thank you!
kittease -
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mee -
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While the kitteh pictures are wonderful, your story is Pulitzer material! Love the way you tell your story! You have a future as a writer of humorous pieces! Send MORE to this site! Please! : )
SambosMom -
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SambosMom
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I think that you are a Best Seller book writer in disguise,what are the titles so us cat people can buy your books???
Very nice, thanks to those furballs
you might get publish.
Bud Marschner -
Now for the rest of the story:

On Tuesday, my wife decided it was time for the kittens to return to the shelter. Usually she goes to a class on Tuesdays and I am off to dinner on my own. However, when I came home Jamie was still there. I asked how it went and while she complained at the time it took, she noted that all three kittens were adopted out within 30 minutes or so.

I knew she was becoming attached to the black kitten, so I gave her a hug and asked if she was doing ok. She paused for a moment and then said she was fine given that I had adopted the little black kitten!

Now Jamie's working on names for my new kitten. She's decided that I am not qualified to name kittens given that my suggestions were not any good..."scuz bucket cat"..."goddam cat"..."Over the Limit Cat, the sequel".

Now that I know what my Valentines present is, I'm considering what Jamie needs for her birthday. I'm trying to decide if it's a new vaccum cleaner or a new lens for my camera! Perhaps you can help me decide which is best!
smokey demon -
Love you both! Wish you, and the kitties, many happy years together. The world needs more like you!
MissyofMissylandia -
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MissyofMissylandia
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Can you say No to these eyes? I guess not. Lovely story.
tuna -
tuna
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anybody who says there are lots of unwanted cats in the world is WRONG i DARE you to watch the video at the bottom of this link. he takes in stray cats look what he does for them


http://www.nidokidos.org/cat-house-t4...
pjfedorkowicz -
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pjfedorkowicz -
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