Foster volunteer steps in for a shy cat

Candace lying next to Hedwig the foster cat
Hedwig was so scared when he arrived at Best Friends that he’d only venture out at night, but it took him only three hours to bask in the sunlight of a foster home.
By Nicole Hamilton

When Hedwig arrived at Best Friends in Salt Lake City from a local shelter, his life was on the upswing. Not only was he surrounded by people who were working hard to find him an awesome home, but he also managed to score plenty of admirers. This wasn’t hard for Hedwig to do though, considering his baby blues and the most wonderfully impressive big cheeks. But even with a big team on his side, Hedwig just wasn’t feeling it.

The shelter environment ― no matter how many treats or toys he got (and trust us, he got plenty) ― just wasn’t his cup of catnip. On most days, he’d hide and only come out at night. And that wasn’t going to help him get adopted.

Enter longtime foster volunteer Candice Casteel, who one day emailed Best Friends requesting to foster the cat having the hardest time getting by at the lifesaving center. Not long after she pressed “send” on that email, she hopped in her car, picked up Hedwig and brought him home.

It took a mere three hours for Hedwig to feel comfortable with Candice and her family, who have always fostered cats needing a little extra help. And in a matter of weeks, Hedwig was adopted. “I’m just here to help them out, get them started, get them on their journey,” says Candice who has gone on to foster more cats like Hedwig.

Candice showed up just when Hedwig needed her the most, and today he no longer hides in the dark but lays in the sun. That’s the power of fostering for you.

Foster one cat, help many

Fostering a cat from your local shelter opens up space to help even more cats in need.

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Photo by Erin Fell