What could be cuter than images of cats and dogs interacting and encouraging one another? More images of cats and dogs interacting. Because of some lovely and emotional videos and images that her owner shared on Instagram, a dog named Kona became an internet star.
Chester and Blair, Kona’s owners, were placed in foster care. They were around 10-12 weeks old when they were discovered in a New York City backyard during a bitterly cold winter.
Kona had been kitten-free for approximately three days when Chester and Blair came, and it was just a matter of time until they connected, as Kona understood exactly what the kittens needed.
“It’s my way of giving back to the animals via fostering. I’ve always adored dogs, having grown up with three of them (4 at one point). I grew up in a shattered home, and my dogs were the one consistency in my life. As an only child, I relied heavily on them for comfort. They gave me so much joy throughout my youth that I knew I wanted to repay them in some manner, and fostering is my way of doing so.”
“It just happened!” says the narrator. And the longer I nurtured it, the more it grew. She was ecstatic when she first met a foster kitten, but she bonded with her more as a friend than a foster mother. Then, as I began to foster more kids (both pups and kittens), she began to take on more of a babysitting role, finally becoming a mama!”
There’s no denying that Kona, Blair, and Chester share a unique relationship.
“I think she recognized these two were a lot more shy and undersocialized than the other kittens we’ve previously fostered,” Asa explained. She truly possesses a magical touch! They still run away from me after 6 weeks (socialization has been a difficult process for them), but they attracted towards Kona from the minute they met her on their first days here.
Blair used to attempt to nurse Kona for the first few weeks; I’m not sure if it was a method for Blair to feel more at ease in this new surroundings, but Kona simply laid quietly and let her chew on her.”
Asa likes fostering, but it may be difficult to say goodbye to the animals. “Fostering may be emotionally, physically, and financially taxing. The emotional element, in my opinion, is the most difficult. I’ve wept a lot since letting go of most of these fosters, and they’ve all felt like a horrible breakup. Some fosters I form a stronger relationship with than others, and they are the ones that are the most difficult to overcome; I’ve wept for two weeks straight before!”
Fostering, on the other hand, is extremely rewarding: “Watching these animals bloom! Whether it’s witnessing an undersocialized kitten or a timid dog open up and learn to trust people, watching a kitten or puppy grow up, or experiencing and witnessing a dog’s first (first time on leash, first bath, first treat, first snow, etc. ), each and every dog has their own story and way of blossoming, and it’s such a rewarding experience to be there to witness all of it.
Kittens that had spent their lives on the streets with no human interaction need socialization.
Kona had raised a lot of foster kittens before, so she knew what to do.
Warm hugs worked their magic, assuring kittens of their safety. The shy cats’ confidence improved, and they even engaged with Asa lately. “These two nuggets opened up to mom Kona instantly, but it’s been a much slower journey with me,” Asa posted on Instagram.
As a result, they’ve started to: take food from my hand, purr when touched, fall asleep near me, and even play right in front of me in the last week. But I’m sure we wouldn’t have made nearly as much progress in the first week if it hadn’t been for Kona, so thank you, mom Kona!”