The winter storms that blew through the Portland metro area this past weekend interrupted business-as-usual for the Cat Adoption Team (CAT) in Sherwood, Ore. Following a four-day weather closure, CAT is reaching out to the community to encourage adoptions.
“A dedicated group of staff and volunteers who could safely reach the shelter came in to care for the cats during the snowstorm,” said Karen Green, CAT’s executive director. “But just like people who get antsy after a few snow days, we have over 100 cats and kittens who are anxious to get out of the shelter and into loving homes.”
When a cat is adopted from CAT, the shelter is able to take in another cat in need from a county shelter or from the public. “It’s a cycle of adoption and rescue that saves cats in our community, and the storm interfered with that cycle. We’re asking the community to help us catch up by coming in and adopting a new family member this week.”
Adoption fees for all adult cats will be reduced to just $25 from Feb. 14-16 during the “Find The One” Adoption Special & Scratcher Sale. Regular adoption fees are $85 for adult cats (age 1 year and older), $100 for teenage kittens (age 7 months to a year), and $125 for kittens under 7 months old. All adoption fees include a veterinary exam, age-appropriate vaccinations, microchip and registration, and spay or neuter.
CAT is located at 14175 SW Galbreath Dr., Sherwood, Ore. Regular hours are: Tuesday-Friday from 12 p.m. to 7 p.m.; Saturday-Sunday from 12 p.m. to 6 p.m. For more information about CAT’s adoption procedures, please visit catadoptionteam.org/adopt/process/.
Although they are now in their loving forever home, Uno and Tres had a bumpy beginning. These darling litter mates originally came to CAT as kittens and were quickly adopted together. But after about 5 months in a home, they came back to CAT because they weren’t socializing well with the people who had adopted them. After that experience, it was clear that these two kittens would need some extra time to get comfortable around people.
CAT’s volunteer crew at the Tualatin Petco Adoption Center was up for the challenge! For the next 8 to 9 months, a number of volunteers spent time helping Uno and Tres feel safe with people. They were shown love and kindness from a group of people who took extra care to encourage the kittens to not just trust people, but to seek human attention too. Thanks to this special effort, both cats gained more confidence around people. When adopter Kerri decided to give these two their second chance in a home, volunteers came in to say a fond farewell to two cats who had won their hearts.
Uno and Tres have come a long way since their adoption by Kerri last year. She says, “They purr all the time and love to run through the house at warp speed… They both have silly habits that make me laugh.” And the best news? “I love them dearly.”
Stories like this are made possible through the hard work and loving care of CAT’s staff, volunteers, and the families who adopt from us.
CAT and the other organizations that make up the Animal Shelter Alliance of Portland (ASAP) are doing a lot of things right when it comes to the cats and dogs in local animal shelters. Since founding ASAP in 2006, these organizations have worked diligently to save cats and dogs in our local shelters.
•Starting with a live release, or save rate, of 62 percent in 2006, ASAP implemented several programs that decreased shelter intake and increased the transfers of animals between shelters. By 2012, when over 33,700 cats and dogs entered the six shelters, the community’s live release rate reached an astounding 85 percent (compared to the national average rate of around 50 percent). Nine out of ten dogs and eight out of ten cats left animal shelters alive.
•ASAP’s successful “Spay & Save” program has altered over 30,000 cats owned by people needing financial assistance, resulting in a 25 percent decrease in shelter intake of cats within just two years.
•For metro areas with a human population of over two million people, Portland is in the top three safest communities for homeless animals, joining New York City and the Denver Metropolitan Area (source: Maddie’s Fund® National Community Statistics Database).
•Portland shelters have not euthanized a healthy, social pet in over two years, making it what Maddie’s Fund calls an “Adoption Guarantee Community”.
Acknowledging ASAP shelters’ achievement, on May 21, Maddie’s Fund® awarded its prestigious Community Lifesaving Award of $1 million to the six animal welfare organizations that make up ASAP.
This monetary award was divided between the six shelters based on their adoption and transfer numbers. Each ASAP shelter will be putting 35 percent of their individual awards into a pooled fund for ASAP to assist in coalition-wide activities.
The Cat Adoption Team, is already working on increasing the save rate for cats from 85 percent to closer to 100 percent in the coming years.
“CAT is honored to receive this award from Maddie’s Fund®. This grant is an investment in our ability to increase efforts to help felines who come to us from throughout our community,” remarks Karen Green, CAT’s Executive Director.
Karen goes on to say that “CAT is excited about further increasing the numbers of cats saved. To take our community to the next level, we need to be able to help even more cats who need foster care or veterinary treatment before adoption. We also want to find homes for more kitties who have manageable health or behavioral problems, like those who require a special diet or who are a little on the independent and cranky side.
Some of the things CAT is doing to save more lives include:
•Ramping up the foster program to provide care for underage kittens this kitten season.
•Working to increase capacity for cats with treatable medical conditions like upper respiratory infections and ringworm
•Promoting our special needs cat for adoption in local media from the Oregonian to the Greenlight classified
•Continuing and increasing adoption promotions like the June’s Kitten Palooza event
•Establishing a “CAT-vocate” program for volunteers, supporters, and online fans to easily promote their favorite CAT cat
Karen encourages community members to get involved. “This award can help our community become even safer for at-risk pets, however we need more volunteers, foster families, donors, and adopters to step forward. Please join us in making the Portland metro area a leader in lifesaving!”
About the Lifesaving Awards:
Maddie’s Fund® has established special Lifesaving Awards to recognize communities that are leading the way in saving animal lives.
These awards are designed to acknowledge the outstanding contributions being made by coalitions consisting of Traditional Shelters, Adoption Guarantee organizations, and Animal Control agencies in which all groups have already implemented:
•an adoption guarantee for healthy pets in their target community and are likely to sustain it in the future (Adoption Guarantee Community); or
•an adoption guarantee for all healthy and treatable shelter pets in their target community and are likely to sustain it in the future (No-Kill Community).
About Maddie’s Fund
Maddie’s Fund® is a family foundation endowed by the founder of Workday® and PeopleSoft, Dave Duffield and his wife, Cheryl. Maddie’s Fund is helping to achieve and sustain a no-kill nation by providing solutions to the most challenging issues facing the animal welfare community through Maddie’s® Grant Giving and Maddie’s InstituteSM. Maddie’s Fund is named after the family’s beloved Miniature Schnauzer who passed away in 1997.
Left to die in an 18 gallon Rubbermaid container in a dumpster with trash piling up around them, two young female cats are lucky to be alive today. Saturday morning (March 23), an employee of the Washington Square PetSmart discovered the cats discarded like trash behind the store.
They were both inside the nearly new, sealed blue plastic tub inside the dumpster with trash already starting to pile up on top of them. We don’t know exactly how long the cats were in the tub inside the dumpster - could have been for two to more than five hours. From the store manager, Cat Adoption Team learned that the employee who found the young cats was “taught by his mother to always look in a closed container, if he found one.” Apparently this employee grew up in New York and years ago a news story about a baby abandoned in a similar way struck a cord with his mother.
The cats were checked out by the veterinarians at the Banfield Pet Hospital at the PetSmart and then rested for the day inside the CAT adoption center at the store.
By Saturday evening, the two young female cats were safe at the Cat Adoption Team’s shelter in Sherwood.
Hazel is a brown tabby, and about one year old; the other, Grace, is two-year old orange tabby; it is uncertain if the cats are spayed or not right now. Hazel is the more outgoing of the two. Grace is still unsure of things right now and it taking her time to warm up to staff.
Right now the cats are not available for public viewing or adoption.
CAT urges anyone who knows something about these cats or the person who left them to die to contact authorities. Animal abandonment is against the law in Oregon and is a Class B Misdemeanor (punishable by 6 months in jail and/or a $2,500 penalty). (ORS 167.340)
If you have a cat you can no longer keep, CAT has resources to help at http://catadoptionteam.org/surrender/. “Please don’t wait until the last minute to try to find a new home for your cats,” advises Karen Green, Cat Adoption Team Executive Director. Because local animal shelters do have an intake process and a waiting list, it is better to get on the list early.
Everyone at the Cat Adoption Team wishes to thank the Washington Square PetSmart and Banfield Pet Hospital for helping to save these two young cats.
Hazel – the brown tabby – was not pregnant and is now spayed.
Grace – the orange tabby – was already spayed.
Both of these cats will be available for adoption today, Friday, March 29. CAT would like for them to go to the same home.
Barely on the adoption floor for one day, Hazel and Grace went home just before 7 pm on Friday. Adopted by Brett and Melissa of Portland.
The Cat Adoption Team is pleased to announce that Chomper, a 3-year-old, FIV+, adult black cat, is the our 30,000th adoption.
Chomper was adopted Friday evening (March 15, 2013) by Theresa Brown of Beaverton (pictured), Ore. He will be Theresa’s only pet.
For the past week, Theresa visited CAT’s shelter to get to know a few of the cats she was interested in. It was Chomper who nuzzled his way into her heart. “He’s a real sweet heart but loves on his own terms,” said Theresa. She likes a cat with attitude and is drawn to helping those with special needs. Chomper does have FIV, feline immunodeficiency virus. Only cats can contract FIV and transmission is through deep bite wounds and scratches where the infected cat’s saliva enters the other cat’s bloodstream.
He was surrendered to CAT in August 2012 with the name “Chomper”. Theresa is unsure if she will keep that name since it really doesn’t fit his gentle, shy nature. (Update: Chomper is now known as Hubert).
Now everyone at CAT is wondering who will be number 30,001.
Video of the pair.
(Photos by Denise C - volunteer)
CAT just put the finishing touches on an improvement project over 18 months in the making.
In November 2011, Petco Foundation awarded CAT a $15,000 grant to update and remodel the free-roam/colony rooms at the Sherwood shelter.
CAT staff began designing with an eye on improving the environment and enriching the lives of the cats in our care. Using recommendations from the Guidelines for Standards of Care in Animal Shelters, Petco Foundation’s grant would be use to totally re-do all five free roam room with the focus on providing ways for the cats to be more cat-like: climbing, stretching, and hiding—all with the goal of them healthier, physically and emotionally.
The first step was to create two smaller rooms out of CAT’s largest free-roam room. With the muscle and know-how of the Oregon Trade Women (pdf) and a portion of the Petco Foundation grant, the large space was made into two more manageable rooms. This was complete in March 2012.
Why make two small rooms out of one perfectly good larger room? Glad you asked. Previous, this large room (named the Garden Room after its green decor) housed up to 16 cats all vying for the high perches, protecting the litter box, and arguing over the food bowls. Now, these smaller rooms house six or less cats, which offers the cats a better opportunity to have privacy and being more amiable to their feline friends.
A small team of staff members researched what other shelters’ colony rooms looked like. Our rooms needed total make overs from paint to furniture. More subtle paint colors and designs were chosen. Durable furniture, shelves, and scratch posts were sought. It was all coming together, paint was going up, new items were selected for the rooms, and then a pipe burst upstairs causing water damage to over 60 percent of the shelter.
Completion of phase 2 was put on hold for almost four months. The entire floor upstairs, where these rooms are, was replaced due to the damage.
After everything dried out, the walls were touched up and the design team was back in business gussying up the rooms for the cats.
The grant from the Petco Foundation enabled us to purchase top quality paint and items for the room that not only looked good but were functional and able to be thoroughly cleaned without damage.
Now, more than one year after the project started, we are finally able to get it all complete.
The free-roam rooms are beautiful. The cats are enjoying the new perches and cubbies. Staff and volunteers appreciate the ease with which the rooms can be cleaned.
The only thing missing is more light. Cats love to bask in the sun and, unfortunately, the design of the building does not allow for all rooms to have outside windows.
Large windows were installed into two of the rooms and windowed doors were put into all the free roam rooms. While these do not face the outside, they allow more light into the rooms and better viewing by adopters of the kitties. Yes, we expect a lot of finger and nose prints. We are more than happy to add window washing to the daily routine because the cats are happier!
We are purring with excitement here at CAT.
Because we are so close to our 30,000th cat/kitten adoption. That’s 30,000 adoptions in just under 15 years!
Will it be Apple Box – named because he was found in one? He’s a sweet black cat who can throw his ample weight around to get your attention.
Will it be Ursula – CAT’s lobby ambassador? She’s a beautiful, yet particular, tabby who is sporting a few extra toes (polydactyl).
Will it be Accalia – our Thrift Store’s feline ambassador? She’s won the hearts of the Store staff and volunteers. Will she win your heart too?
“Every time I see an adopter walk out the door with a new feline companion, I am filled with gratitude that they choose to adopt from CAT,” says Karen Green, CAT’s Executive Director. “Think of the fun adventures they will have together. We are all humbled to be part of the long and amazing life they will have together. And to think, it all started right here at CAT!”
In May 1998, the Cat Adoption Team was founded to help homeless and unwanted cats and kittens through adoption, medical care, and fostering. Today, CAT is the largest cat-only adoption guarantee shelter in the region. Over 77 percent of the cats sheltered at CAT came from other animal shelters, helping those organizations save more lives and ensuring that no healthy adoptable cat is euthanized.
•May 1998 – founded with 35 cats looking for homes
•2000 – begins to partner with pet supply stores to open off site adoption centers
•2002 – opens on-site veterinary clinic (the very first vet clinic to be installed inside an animal shelter in Oregon)
•2006 – CAT adopts its 10,000th cat
•2006 – CAT becomes one of the founding organizations for the Animal Shelter Alliance of Portland
•2008 – the Cat Food Bank is opened at CAT (first organized pet food bank in Portland)
•2008 – low-cost spay/neuter clinics for owned begin at CAT’s veterinary hospital
•2009 – CAT adopts its 20,000th cat
•2013 – awaiting CAT’s 30,000th adoption
Our name says what we are all about - adoptions! Everyone who volunteers, donates, or fosters is part of the team dedicated to finding the cats in our care the best possible homes.
Thank you to everyone for getting is to 30,000 adoptions.
Promoting both adoption and spay/neuter, local animal shelters have drastically reduced the numbers of homeless cats and kittens in this area.
It started in 2006 when the Animal Shelter Alliance of Portland was formed by local animal shelters to offer low-cost feline spay/neuter services. Since then, over 28,000 cats of owners in need of financial assistance have been fixed through the “Spay & Save” program, resulting in a remarkable 25 percent decrease in the number of homeless cats entering shelters since 2010. Last year alone, the CAT preformed 2,048 low-cost surgeries for owned cats.
ASAP then formed the Life Saving committee whereby coalition shelters pull together so no healthy, adoptable cat is euthanized (and none have been since 2010). Last year alone, overall feline euthanasia in the metro area dropped 34 percent.
In the heat of the summer, when kittens abound and county shelters see an influx of adult cats, the private non-profit shelters, such as CAT and Oregon Humane, make room to take in cats from the partner county shelters, including unweaned kittens and cats with treatable heath problems like ringworm.
The coalition also comes together for frequent city-wide cat adoption promotions making it convenient and affordable for cat-lovers to find and adopt a feline friend.
Thanks to these efforts, more cats are being adopted – 8 percent more since 2006. Considering the number of cats entering shelters for adoption decreased, this means more of the less-than-perfect cats are finding homes than six years ago.
Add it all up and the Portland-metro area can boast being one of the top three safest communities for homeless animals, joining New York City and the Denver metropolitan area (source: Maddie’s Fund National Community Statistics Database).
This achievement is because of your support of coalition shelters. Thank you for adopting a shelter pet, for having your pet spayed/neutered, for donating to the shelters, and for volunteering your time.
For more information on the state of homeless pets in the Portland-metro area, go to http://tinyurl.com/Portland-pet-stats.
by Kathy Covey
Juliette and Renard have been adopted!
The Grimm cast is now at our Sherwood shelter. Okay, we actually named an adorable litter of kittens after the characters of this hit TV show filmed and based in Portland.
Found when they were about 10 weeks old, the Grimm kittens were on the verge of becoming feral. They were skittish and fearful of people, with the exception of Captain Renard, who was quite social from the first day.
The entire litter blossomed with the love and care of a CAT foster volunteer and they are now ready to find a home of their own.
Capt. Renard Red and white like a fox, Renard is clever and curious. He’s the social leader of the group and always likes to be on top – even if that means climbing over his litter mates. He loves attention and is usually out in front when people come to visit. (In fact, he’s already been pre-adopted.)
Nick was ill when first brought in to CAT. Because he didn’t feel well, was on the fringe of the kitten clan. Now healthy and happy, Nick is a sweetheart. He’s been growing by leaps and bounds and is catching up to Renard in sociability.
Monroe is a big, laid back ole’ boy who outweighs his litter mates by half a pound (which is a lot when you’re under 3 pounds.). He’s got a large head with big ears and a wolfish ruff – similar to his Blutbad namesake. But his personality is more teddy bear than wolf.
Juliette (the calico) is very shy and was the last kitten to warm up to people. She is still bit skittish and likes to have Nick or Monroe with her for protection.
The drama of the Grimm kittens has paralleled the show in some interesting ways. Juliette had an eye infection that took awhile to clear up (fans of the show recall that when the character Juliette awoke from her spell-induced coma, her eyes were very dilated).
Nick and Juliette appear to be very close. Nick will come running to watch, protectively, when Juliette is being given medication or is climbing too high to suit him. Kittens Juliette and Renard, despite their on-air character’s mutual obsession on Grimm, can take or leave each other.
Renard and Nick’s relationship is tenuous, especially now that Nick is more outgoing. One of the foster caretakers heard a strange noise recently and looked over to see Renard pinning Nick to the ground. They broke up that little battle but it’s happened again since. It must be time to get Renard fixed…
All the kittens will be coming to the CAT shelter to be altered before being adopted. Renard was pre-adopted, however, the other three are available to loving homes. Will Nick and Juliette be adopted together and live happily ever after? Or will buddies Nick and Monroe get to stay together? (Or will all four go their separate ways?) Will Nick come more into his own once he is separated from Renard? Only time will tell…
The other interesting note about this group is that they have yet to meow. At 10 weeks, when they should be mewing, they only squeak. It’s pretty funny when they settle down to sleep at night and squeak to each other, especially Nick and Juliette. Monroe is the only one who’s been able to muster a sound similar to a meow. We’re not sure, but think they are speaking some special Grimm language to each other.
The Cat Adoption Team is pleased to announce that Karen Green will be the organization’s new Executive Director starting December 3, 2012.
Karen has over 16 years professional experience in animal welfare and brings to CAT expertise in day-to-day organizational management, development, planning, and program administration. She worked for the Alliance for Contraception in Cats and Dogs and Best Friend Animal Society.
She has served on the CAT Board of Directors since January 2012. “As a CAT board member, I have greatly admired and appreciated the lifesaving role CAT plays in our community. I am honored and excited to accept the position as CAT’s new executive director. I look forward to working with our staff, board, volunteers, partners, supporters, and others to save even more cats and kittens in our community!” comments Karen, in-coming Executive Director for CAT.
Karen (in pink top) is pictured here with Kristi Brooks (CAT’s Operations Manager), Kathy Covey (CAT’s PR Manager), Robin Russell (CAT Board Member), and Sharon Sipprell (CAT’ Development Manager)