Adopting a Cat or Kitten

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Kittens: Kittens are social creatures and enjoy the company of other friendly cats and kittens. When kittens are adopted in pairs they teach each other limits for rough play, help each other burn off all of their kitten energy, and keep each other entertained when the humans aren’t around. We will usually try to send our kittens to homes where they will have another young, playful cat or kitten to play with.

Cats: As cats get older their personalities emerge more clearly. It is usually clear if a cat likes to be held or not, sleep on laps, have its tummy rubbed, etc. It’s also clear how strongly they attach to humans and how well they get along with other cats. When you adopt a cat rather than a kitten you’ll have a pretty good idea of what it’s going to be like, although as they relax into their safe and loving home they will often become more loving, more playful, and more confident. Adopting a rescue cat gives them a second chance at a lifetime of love and stability.

Seniors: Like people, senior cats can be set in their ways and they may start to have medical issues. Adopters who open their hearts and homes to seniors are special indeed. They know they won’t be molding the cat’s behavior but will be inviting another fully-formed personality into their home.

Regardless of the age, all cats and kittens deserve regular healthcare and exams, a safe home with respectful humans, and a family that will consider what the cat needs and make sure its health and well-being are looked after for the entirety of its life. Responsible cat owners will research what they need to do if they’re going to introduce a dog, keep house plants, travel frequently, etc. They will embrace the idea of an indoor-only cat, providing plenty of stimulation and enrichment and recognizing that their cat is a family member and not an expendable commodity to be replaced as needed.

Can Indoor Cats Go Outside Safely?

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We believe cats should be indoor cats. Not indoor-outdoor, not outdoor. Indoor only. Cats can jump over fences and squeeze through small spaces. It only takes a moment for a cat to get spooked by something and run off. In our area, coyotes are being seen during the day, not to mention other predators as well as cars. Indoor cats live longer, healthier lives.

That said, there are ways cats can enjoy some fresh air and the sights, sounds, and smells of the outdoors in safe ways. We’ll share a few favorite ways here.

Catios: A “catio” is a patio for your cat! These are screened-in enclosures that allow your cat to be on a patio, deck, balcony, etc. while remaining safe from falls, predators, and other mishaps. A search online for “DIY catio” or “catio kits” will turn up all kinds of options. Catioworld.com and Catiospaces.com are two great places to learn more.

Harness and Leash: Cats can be trained to wear a harness and use a leash! When selecting a harness, be sure it fits securely so that your cat cannot wriggle out of it. This site posts reviews of several models of harnesses to choose from. Once your cat is used to wearing a harness you can add a leash and start venturing outside. Don’t be surprised if it takes some time for your kitty to feel comfortable, and don’t expect him or her to do more than sniff around at first. We’ve heard of some families using a harness and long lead so that they can bring their cats outside while they enjoy coffee in the morning.

Backpacks: There are special packs made just for pets so that you can take your cat on a walk or hike! Some feature a “bubble” for your cat to have a window on the world. Most feature some mesh for airflow. Search online for “backpacks for cats” to see the many options available.

Things to Consider When Adopting

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We want all of our cats and kittens to go to safe, loving, forever homes. Adopting a cat or kitten is a lifetime commitment, and indoor cats can live up to 20 years! Adoption should not be an impulsive decision. You’re adding a family member to your home who will require not just food and litter but also regular vet visits and probably medical care at some point as well. It is not a decision to make lightly! Cats are living, feeling beings and are not “things” to be discarded when they no longer fit into a lifestyle.

Some questions to ask yourself:

*If you’re renting, will you make sure you always seek out cat-friendly places if you have to move?

*If you’re a student, do you have a plan for your cat(s) when you go on vacation or find yourself moving often?

*If your household has never had a cat, do you know if anyone has allergies?

*Are you prepared to change their diet if required to support their medical needs?

*If you’re planning on starting a family, have you done some reading to learn how to appropriately introduce cats and babies and how to help toddlers learn to treat cats gently?

*If you’re elderly (and even if you’re not), do you have a plan in place for where your cat(s) will go in the event you can no longer care for them?

*If you have another cat or kitten at home (or a dog) have you read about properly (and slowly!) introducing a new cat or kitten?

*Have you read about the benefits of keeping cats indoors, and how to keep them happy and stimulated?

*Have you read about why declawing is barbaric?

There is quite a lot to think about and we want to be sure that every cat and kitten we adopt out finds the purrfect home for the rest of their lives!

This article at PetFinder has excellent tips for safely bringing a new cat home.

Introducing a New Cat

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Slowly.

That’s how you introduce a new cat or kitten to your other pets.

Everyone needs time to adjust. You cannot bring a new cat or kitten home and expect everyone to be friends right away. There are many articles written on the subject. We advise keeping the new kitty in one room at first. Let everyone smell each other through the door. You can even feed on either side of the door. Then trade spaces for a bit so the current pets can go sniff around while the new kitty checks out more of your residence. Be sure to give everyone lots of love and attention!

With a slow introduction you have a much higher chance of everyone getting along more quickly than just tossing someone new into the mix.

https://resources.bestfriends.org/article/introducing-new-cat

https://www.jacksongalaxy.com/blog/the-dos-and-donts-of-introducing-cats/

March Updates

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On March 16, 2020, Cassie’s Cats received its official determination letter stating nonprofit approval. We’re nearly a year out from there and feel proud of what we’ve accomplished and the groundwork we’ve laid in the midst of a global pandemic. We are ready to secure a lease and start moving things ever closer to the dream of opening a lounge and adoption center for rescued cats in Ventura! I (Jennifer) will be running the lounge and have had my first covid vaccination. Things are moving in the right direction, finally.

To date, Cassie’s Cats has raised over $12,700 in financial donations and has had over $1000 in in-kind donations. We have another $6500 promised to us as well. To have this kind of support before we even open our doors shows us that our community supports what we are trying to do and wants to see this dream come to life so more cats can have better lives.

We are up to about 512 followers on Facebook and nearly 500 on Instagram. We encourage our supporters to share our social media posts and accounts so that more people who love cats can find us and follow us.

We (Jennifer) recently had a chance to visit Purrmaid Cafe and Adoption Center in Camarillo and talk with the owner there. If you haven’t had a chance to visit, please do! They are also a nonprofit with the same core mission: to help rescued cats find safe, loving, permanent homes. Their generosity of both spirit and time is so appreciated!

Our fundraising through our online shop continues in earnest. In 2021 we’ve already sold 176 masks! We’ve also begun selling small and medium zipper pouches and we’re adding new prints as we can. We even have cute new oval logo stickers that you can add to any order for just $2.

We’re currently without fosters at Jennifer’s house, and things seem much quieter. We’ll see how long that lasts. =^..^=