A 7-year-old dog named Winnie has helped her owner foster almost 20 motherless kittens.
She is a therapy dog to little human patients at the Children's Hospital, and now she's doing the same to help feline babies in need.
Casaundra Maimone from Greensboro, North Carolina learned about fostering kittens when she was at a pet conference in New York City a couple of years ago.
"I met Hannah Shaw (Kitten Lady) and her partner Andrew Marttila. I knew absolutely nothing about cats or kittens," Casaundra told Love Meow.
"I had no idea that kittens under eight weeks old were one of the most euthanized populations in the US. Hannah was an inspiring animal advocate and her passion was contagious."
Not long after she returned to North Carolina, she signed up to be a volunteer for a local rescue group called Juliet's House Animal Rescue. That's when Winnie's kitten foster journey began. (Scroll down for video)
Winnie has been a registered Pet Partners therapy dog for more than four years. "Her calm demeanor and incredible affection for strangers allows her to touch lives in a special way though our therapy work."
When Casaundra brought home her first batch of orphaned kittens, the tiny bundles of fur were immediately drawn to Winnie and started snuggling and kneading on her while purring up a storm.
"The kittens naturally gravitate to Winnie (and try to nurse from her at first) and she is very calm," Casaundra added.
"When the kittens get a little bit older they start grooming Winnie which is always funny because her hair is so long! Winnie has the patience of a saint, and the kittens love her."
Even the most scaredy kitty finds something so soothing in Winnie's presence. They come out of their shells and cuddle up to her for an extra dose of TLC.
Orphaned kittens crave comfort and warmth from a cat mother.
When they meet Winnie, they stop crying and become less anxious around her as if their mother was right beside them.
"Almost all of our foster kittens seem to love cuddling with Winnie. She is incredibly patient and seems to have a calming effect on the kittens," Casaundra told Love Meow.
"Kittens have a developmental window between 3-7 weeks old when the right type of socialization makes a big difference."
Over the past year, Winnie has helped Casaundra foster almost 20 feline babies, all of whom are now happy and healthy living in their forever homes.
Winnie continues her work in helping little human patients at the Children's Hospital and making a difference in their lives.
"I asked this little ICU patient if he would like a therapy dog visit. He wouldn't make eye contact with me and whispered, 'What's she for?' 'She's here to make you feel better,' I told him. He set aside his ninja turtle doll and Winnie immediately cuddled up in his arms. After several minutes of silence, he looked at me and said, 'She works, can I keep her?'"
Fostering orphaned kittens has turned out to be a perfect fit for them. The positive change in the kittens is almost immediate as they find the comfort and love that they yearn for.
Winnie is always there for the kitties if they need a friend or someone to cuddle or nap with.
Watch Winnie and her foster kittens in this cute video: