San Diego/ Community & Society
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Published on April 08, 2024
San Diego Humane Society Celebrates 15 Years of Kitten Nursery, Over 27,000 Felines SavedSource: Pieter Lanser from The Netherlands, CC BY 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons

The San Diego Humane Society marks a milestone for its tiniest residents, celebrating 15 years of its pioneering Kitten Nursery & Foster Center, according to the organization's recent announcement. This special wing, a game changer for more than 27,000 feline lives since its inception in 2009, was among the first in the nation specifically designed to care for neonate kittens, those under eight weeks old who face the grim odds of shelter life.

After opening its doors, the Lester Kitten Nursery has not only flourished in San Diego. It has expanded its operations with nurseries now at their Escondido and Oceanside campuses catering to thousands of these vulnerable kittens, and today, they boast an extensive network of foster volunteers who provide indispensable round-the-clock care through the critical early weeks. These volunteers raise the kittens at home, nurturing them to a healthy size fit for adoption. Jackie Noble, Sr. Director of Behavior, Nursery and Foster at San Diego Humane Society, underscored the crucial impact of the nursery in ensuring they stay at zero euthanasia of healthy or treatable shelter animals.

This anniversary is not just a number; it signals the unwavering commitment the Humane Society has made towards these fragile lives, like the nursery's first arrivals of the season, Rose and Ruby—named for traditional 15th anniversary symbols—their story emblematic of the thousands more to be welcomed under this haven of healing and growth.

With expectations to admit over 10,000 kittens this year, Noble stresses the importance of this facility, "Our Lester Kitten Nursery is critical to helping us stay at zero euthanasia of healthy or treatable shelter animals," Noble told San Diego Humane Society, adding that such services are scarce in other communities. In San Diego, they are committed to giving every kitten a fighting chance. The call to action is clear: for those looking to support the mission, you can lend a hand by donating or signing up as a foster volunteer by visiting