Can no longer keep your cat? Perhaps medical bills are overwhelming, you are moving, or you don’t understand your cat’s behavior. Please take some time to look through our advice to help you do what is best for your cat.
Solving behavior issues »
Resources and websites with answers that can help »
Advertise for a new home »
Advice on re-homing your pet »
Rescue groups »
CAT intake process » (taking names for a waiting list for adult cat intake)
Intake form/appointment »
Found a feral cat »
Solving Behavior Issues:
Sometimes, a behavior issue will raise thoughts of getting rid of a family pet. The first step should be to solve this issue and keep your pet with the family he/she loves.
Please visit CAT’s cat care section for information on common feline behavior issues.
Seek advice from your veterinarian to rule out any medical conditions that may be the cause of undesirable behavior in your cat. For information on finding a veterinarian, contact the Oregon Veterinary Medical Association.
Advertise for a New Home:
Since most cat owners obtain their family feline from sources outside a shelter, chances are good that you can find a new home for your cat through various forms of advertisement.
Advice on re-homing your cat:
Rescue Groups and Animal Shelters:
Rescue groups generally keep animals until they can be placed in loving, permanent homes. In some cases, rescues work only with animal shelters and might not accept pets directly from owners.
Be sure to find out as much as you can about the rescue group, and always carefully screen an organization before relinquishing your pet. You should make sure the current animal residents appear well cared for, that the group screens potential adopters, and that the group offers post-adoption support services. Do not be afraid to ask questions.
Animal shelters may be able to take your cat more quickly. Many shelters work with other organizations, like CAT, to provide the best options to find your cat a new home. However, most county shelters have limited space. Please discuss their holding period before you relinquish your cat to the shelter.
Please check this list for shelters or rescue groups in your area and review their websites for information on relinquishing a pet.
Please do not abandon your cat at any shelter or veterinary clinic. Animal abandonment is a misdemeanor offense in Oregon. Shelters can find and prosecute those who dump animals at their doorstep.
NOTE: Many shelters and groups, like CAT, receive animals by appointment only and do not take walk-in relinquishments. This is to better help the animals by not overloading the shelter and to provide pet owners with all the information necessary to make the best decision on re-homing your cat.
CAT’s Intake Process:
Right now, we have a waiting list for adult cats. There is no waiting list for mother/lactating cats with kittens.
We accept cats from the public on a limited basis. As cats are adopted, space is then available to bring in new cats to find homes.
If you have a stray cat and live in Yamhill or Clackamas County, CAT may be able to help you (see below). If you are in Washington, Multnomah, Marion, or Clark Counties, please contact your local animal control agency. Please try to find the cat’s owners by using tips found on our lost/found web page or find a new home for the cat using the tips below.
CAT may be able to help you with your own pet cat if you live in Multnomah, Washington, Clackamas, or Yamhill Counties. Outside that area, please check with other humane societies and shelters.
The majority of the cats in our shelter come from other shelters and veterinary clinics in the Portland metro area, where we help take in stray, sick, and injured cats and kittens who might otherwise be euthanized due to space constraints or medical needs. Because the high number of public intake requests regarding cats in need—averaging 125 to 200 a week—exceeds available space at the shelter, we must often encourage everyone to explore other options (set forth above) or continue to provide for the cat until we can make room in our adoption center.
NOTE: CAT is not scheduling new intake appointments for adult cats. Adult cats will be placed on a waiting list.
For pet cat owners unable to find a home for their cat (and live in the required counties listed above) or for Good Samaritans helping a stray (and live in the required counties above), please complete the CAT Intake Consultation Form and submit it online. Completing this form does not guarantee CAT can take in your cat; it does notify our intake counselors to call you, however.
Cats must be tested for FIV and FeLV prior to being accepted into our adoption program (we offer to perform these tests by appointment at CAT’s on-site veterinary hospital for a $40 fee, but we do not require that cats be tested at CAT, as long as they are tested; once cats are tested, they do need to be kept indoors to prevent future exposure to these diseases, as otherwise the cats would need to be re-tested before being admitted to our shelter).
We’d also like to know why you are giving up your cat, and whether he or she will do well in a household with other cats, dogs, or children. Please keep in mind that we adopt to indoor-only homes; therefore, the cat needs to be a good fit for this environment.
To help cover medical costs and general costs of caring for the cat while in our shelter, we do ask for a $35+ donation when you relinquish a cat to our shelter in addition to the $40 intake fee.
Because of the high number of intake requests, we are scheduling limited appointments. After you complete the CAT Intake Consultation Form (only one cat per form) and speak with an intake counselor, you may be given the next available appointment or spot on the waiting list. You will be told your waiting list number. As space opens up and your number draws near, we will then contact you to schedule an appointment to bring your cat to our shelter. If you are able to re-home your cat on your own or decide you wish to keep your cat, please let us know so we can take you off our list.
Found a Feral Cat
Is that cat or kitten a stray or feral cat?
When you come across outdoor kittens, you may feel the need to immediately pick them up and bring them home with you, but that might not be the best thing for the kittens—or for you. Here are some guidelines on how to decide if kittens in a colony should be removed and socialized for adoption, and how to care for them should you choose to remove them and raise or socialize them yourself.
Please read and consider this information from Alley Cat Allies: click here.