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Shelter Cat Adoption

Adopting Cats From an Animal Shelter or Cat Rescue Organization

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Animal Shelters and cat rescue organizations play a huge role in helping homeless cats and dogs find permanent loving homes. The reasons for adopting a cat from a shelter are countless, both for the benefit of a cat as well as the adopting parent. A shelter cat will sense that you are a kind person, and will reward you with a lifetime of unconditional love. You simply can't go wrong by choosing your next cat from an animal shelter or cat rescue organizations. You will find here more information on shelter cat adoption.

Reasons to Adopt a Shelter Cat (by a Cat Named Wellington)

Photo of Caged Cat in Shelter
Photo Credit: © iStockPhoto/Martin de Wit
The benefits of adopting a shelter cat are not a one-way street. There are distinct advantages to the human, too. Wellington, a former shelter cat, shows you the life lessons a shelter cat can teach you.

Should I adopt a cat online?

Using the Internet to locate a potential adoptable cat is a useful tool. However it is best used solely for searching purposes. There's a matter of your eventual compatibility with the cat, for one thing, but that's definitely not all. Most shelters will not allow adoption without an extensive personal interview and in many cases, an at-home visit.

Adopting a Cat? Look to Your own Local Shelter

Picture of Adopted shelter cat Caruso
Photo Credit: © David Frischman
While it may seem noble to adopt a needy cat by long distance, there are several reasons why it is better to adopt a cat from your own local animal shelter The message I want to impart here is that if you have any inkling at all to adopt a cat to enrich your life - run, don't walk, to your nearest animal shelter or cat rescue group.

Adopt a Shelter Cat - Kill or No-Kill Shelter?

Adopted shelter cat Tadzio
Photo Credit: © Christine Wilson
For years, there has been an ongoing debate over the value of no-kill shelters (sometimes called "limited admission" shelters), versus kill-shelters. After you have read the article, you may vote in the poll linked at the bottom.

How to Choose a Cat From the Shelter

Observe the cat in its environment.Is it lively and friendly, or huddling in a corner?
Photo Credit: © Franny Syufy
Adopting a shelter cat is an important decision, and your choice of cats should not be made at random. It may actually take several visits to narrow your choices down to the cat that best matches your personality and lifestyle.

What to Expect When You Bring Home a Shelter Cat

Veterinarian Examining Cat
Photo Credit: © iStock Photo/Willie B. Thomas
So you've chosen the perfect cat for you at the shelter, and are ready to bring him or her home with you. It may be disappointing to find the cat hiding under the bed for several days, but it is probably very normal behavior for that cat, under the circumstances. The cat may also arrive with baggage, in the form of upper respiratory infections (URIs) or other medical conditions.

Shelter Cat Adoption Success Picture Gallery

Adopted shelter cat Coco Bear
Photo Credit: © HOSTPat

This picture gallery was envisioned as a visual way of promoting the adoption of shelter cats. So many people have tunnel vision focused on cat breeds, that they don't realize the uncountable rewards of giving a home to a cat who may die for the lack of a home. My readers rose to my challenge for pictures and stories of shelter and rescue cats they'd adopted.

If you just enjoy looking at photos of beautiful cats, you'll find them here. However, if you have an inkling to get a cat of your own, you can't go wrong by going to your local shelter or cat rescue. These stories are convincing evidence of the priceless rewards of shelter cat adoption. Many of the photos illustrating this list are from the gallery.

Index of Shelter Sheets

Years ago, following a forum discussion that "cats should come with instructions," my forum host and I designed what we called "shelter sheets." Shelter Sheets are individual one-page documents designed as handouts to be given by animal shelters, cat rescue groups, and other adoption agencies to new adoptive parents of cats. They offer easy to follow instruction for basic care, even suggestions for how to play with your new cat. These shelter sheets have been downloaded by hundreds of shelters all over the world. Newly-adopted "cat parents" are also encouraged to print out and read the information offered here. For more advanced information on raising cats, you might also want to enroll in my Introduction to Cat Care Email Course.
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