"Online Foster" FAQ
What is "Online Fostering"?

"Online Fostering" is a way to support the cats at CATNIP until we can find them a long term home. You pay a small amount of money each month to cover a cat's food and toilet costs while it is with us. You don't actually meet the cat.

How many "Online Fosterers" will each cat have?

Either one person, who pays 2000yen/month, or two people, each paying 1000yen. We may change this at some future time to let more people support a single cat.

What do I have to do?

Choose a cat, then apply to Online Foster, When we get back to you, make a payment via credit card, post office or bank. This should be a minimum of 1000yen.

What do I get?

Our thanks - the knowledge that you are doing something practical to help the stray cat population - and we will add your name and details to the web-page for the cat, and maybe at other places on this website. We will include links to your Instagram, Twitter and Facebook too, if appropriate and at our sole discretion. We will also drop you a line occasionally to tell you how the cat is doing and send you pictures.

See here for an example: Eri's Online Fosterer

How long is my commitment?

As long as you want it to be. You can either specify a time limit, or have it as an ongoing payment. The minimum payment is 1000yen. That is “half” a cat for 1 month.

How do I pay?

Bank Transfer [domestic only], Post Office account transfer, via PayPal (we will send you an invoice from within paypal) or by credit card.

See: CATNIP's Bank and Post Office account details

I want to pay by credit card - how does that work?

We will send you an invoice by email containing a link for you to pay securely online.

When you apply to Online Foster you can choose either to pay the full amount as a lump sum, or to pay monthly.

If you choose to pay monthly you can choose to have the money debited automatically from your credit card each month, or to receive an email with a link for you to make the payment manually.

This will continue until the end of the period for which you have agreed to fund the cat.

If I choose the "automatic debit" option, will I get an automatic email each month to tell me what has happened?

We believe not, but are not completely sure - automatic debits are handled by the payment processor.

However each month CATNIP will send you a courtesy email just to remind you that a payment is going to be taken automatically from your card.

When will the "automatic debit" end?

At the end of the period for which you have agreed to fund the cat.

If I choose the "automatic debit" option can I cancel it at any time?

Yes of course. Contact us, we will do it within 24 hours. We will also refund any payments that might have been made after the date/time you sent the email.

Can I use my company / business name?

Sure: and we will link to your company twitter, Facebook or Instagram. However, we do not link to web-sites, and we reserve the right to say "no thank you" if we believe the company or business isn't appropriate to be linked to by a family site like CATNIP.

Some cats are with Fosterers, not at the shelter. Are they part of the Online Fostering programme?

Yes. In principle, CATNIP is responsible for food etc for these cats, although some Fosterers kindly provide this themselves.

What happens when my support “expires”?

We rely on you to know when this will happen and contact us. We +may+ send you a single email. We don’t want to pressure people, or make people feel bad - CATNIP is a “low emotion” organisation. If you are no longer in a position to support the cat - that is fine - just let us know - we are grateful for what you HAVE been able to do. We will remove your name from the cat's page but leave it on a page listing all the people who have been "online fosterers", but without SM links.

Alternatively, contact us when the period for which you are supporting the cat is expiring, and let us know whether you want to continue.

If I make a donation for 3 months and the cat finds a home after 2 months, what happens to the remainder of the money?

You can change your support to another cat. For Post Office and Bank transfers we don’t offer refunds unless the outstanding amount is more than 5000yen. [Fighting with the furikomi - money transfer - machine at the bank is one of our least favourite ways to spend time.] If you have paid by credit card we will refund you the outstanding amount for each whole month remaining.

Do you accept donations of food?

We do, but NOT as part of the Online Fostering programme. [It is better for the cats if we don’t keep changing the type of food we give them as it can give them tummy upsets. We can usually get reasonable quality food more cheaply if we buy it ourselves in person from a shop like "Lumiere" (a local supermarket chain here in Fukuoka). We can buy food there at about 2/3rd's the cost of buying on Amazon.

Low quality food causes more trouble than it is worth… We hesitate to draw a mental picture - but think “tsunami of poo”. What we save financially on the "input" side becomes a cost on the "output" side.

If you wish to donate food, please contact us first.

If you wish to donate money and specify it is for the purchase of food - we are more than happy to buy food and send you a copy of the receipt for the amount you sent.

How much does it cost to keep a cat at CATNIP?

Food, toilet and flea-treatments cost around 2000yen/month/cat. There are other costs too of course - it probably costs 4000yen/cat/month to run the whole shelter.

CATNIP staff are all volunteers - no-one is paid.

Do I get to visit the cats?

Sorry - we are not open to visitors right now.

What is the application process?

1: Read this Online Fostering FAQ.
2: Choose the cat or cats
3: If you plan to pay by transferring money you our bank or P/O account, read the payment transfer options
4: Fill out the application form
5: We will contact you within 24 hours and ask you to make the payment. If you are paying by credit card you will be sent a payment link by email.
6: Email us when you have made the payment.
7: We update the website. This may take up to 24 hours.

Please do not make a payment until we have contacted you.

Please note that any payments and donations made through the "Online Fostering" programme go to provide a pool of food that is used to support all our cats.

Apply to Online Foster