SAN DIEGO (CNS) - The San Diego Humane Society today announced a public naming contest for the 10,000th feline to be brought into its 24-hour kitten nursery, touted as the first of its kind in the country.
The domestic short-hair kitten is now in foster care until he's old enough to be adopted.
"Neonate kittens are the most vulnerable animal in shelters and I'm extremely proud that San Diego took the lead to establish a 24/7 nursery in 2009 to reduce the needless euthanasia of underage orphan kittens," said Gary Weitzman, president and CEO of San Diego Humane Society.
"Most shelters simply don't have the resources to care for fragile kittens around-the-clock," Weitzman said.
"We're very grateful to our staff, volunteers and donors who enable our important lifesaving work."
Young, orphaned kittens need to be bottle fed every 3-4 hours and receive the same attention they would normally receive from their mothers.
This comprehensive care is vital to both their physiological and behavioral development during a critical time of their lives, according to the Humane Society.
Once kittens reach about 4-5 weeks of age, they are typically moved to foster homes for socialization until they are old enough for adoption.
The kitten designated as the 10,000th was found in a box by the side of a road with seven littermates when they were just weeks old.
The public can suggest names for him online through Thursday at 5 p.m.