Saying Goodbye - How To Rehome A Cat
Finding a new home for a cat isn't easy. I know this from personal experience. I've been finding homes for cats who come to my rescue group's shelter for nearly 15 years. Sometimes I think the cats will never get adopted. Others find their forever families so quickly, we barely get to know them. We've decided it all comes down to luck. Or maybe it's the cat's ability to send out "adopt me" vibes to its forever family, wherever that family happens to be.
If you need to find a new home for your cat, please be patient. Rehoming a cat can take weeks or even months. But if you're persistent and don't give up, your cat's perfect new forever home will come along eventually. Here are some tips for rehoming a cat with the least amount of stress for both the cat and you.
Your Marketing Plan - Finding A Home That Meets Your Cat's Needs
Finding a new home for your cat is as much about his needs as yours. If you make the wrong match, he could be returned to you or, even worse, his new family could take him to a shelter where he'll be killed. Try to visualize his idea of the perfect home where he'll be happy and successful, and include his requirements, as well as yours, in your ads.
Advertising Your Cat - There Are No 'Safe' Or 'Unsafe' Places
Believe it or not, some of our favorite adopters found us on the Craig's Lists in our area. There are good adopters and bad ones everywhere. The trick is being able to tell them apart.
Fliers in coffee shops, veterinarians' offices and pet supply stores; newspaper classified sections; PetFinder.com and, yes, Craig's List, are all good ways to spread the word about your cat. Contact local rescue groups, too. Some might give you a courtesy listing on their websites or post your cat on their Facebook pages.
If you advertise the cat online or in the newspaper, don't mention all the possessions he comes with. You want people to be interested in the cat because of his great personality, not the free litter box, toys and food.
In your ads explain why you're putting the cat up for adoption. Describe his personality, his likes and dislikes, and the kind of home that would be perfect for him. Be honest about any behavior or medical issues. Many people are willing to adopt a senior cat or a cat with a chronic health problem, like diabetes.
Your ads should also ask people to tell you a little bit about themselves and their home. Do they live in a house or an apartment? Do they have children, and if so, how many and how old? Do they have other cats or dogs? Will the cat be able to go out if he wants to? Their answers will tell you whether they might be a good match for your cat. We generally do not adopt to people who have more than two or three other animals.
Screening Adopters - Some Ways To Keep Your Cat Safe
Rehoming a cat isn't without risks. Sadly, there are people who do terrible things to cats. Screen carefully so you know your cat will be safe.
On Moving Day - Making The Transition Easier For Your Cat
Saying goodbye is never easy, but try to be upbeat and positive when you deliver your cat to his new home. He’ll pick up on your thoughts and be less stressed and anxious about what’s happening to him. Be sure to take an unwashed towel or pillowcase. The familiar scents of home will be comforting to him. Also take his dishes. Cats in strange surroundings eat better if they have their familiar dishes and bowls. He’ll need his favorite toys and cat bed, too, and don’t forget his medical records.
About Rescues And Shelters - There's Usually No Room At The Inn
Okay, so you’ve already ruled out taking your cat to a kill shelter. Thank goodness that option’s off the table. But don’t assume a no-kill rescue will be able to come to your rescue, at least not right away. The only way no-kill shelters can make room for new cats is through adoptions. And shelter life can be very hard on cats who have always lived in the same home and older cats. Your cat will be much more adoptable if he can stay with you until his new family comes along.
If you do give your cat to a no-kill rescue, find out how the cats live. Are they in foster homes? Do they live in cages? If the cats are in foster homes, how many cats are in each home? Also ask how the rescue is funded and what it does with cats who get sick. Does the group ever transfer cats to kill shelters, and under what circumstances?
Home Safe Home - Finding Alternatives To Rehoming Your Cat
A cat’s territory is more important to it than anything else. Your home is your house cat’s territory. He knows where to find food, and he knows the safe places to hide from potential danger and the comfy places to nap. Leaving familiar territory and going to a new home is always traumatic for a cat.
Before rehoming your cat, try to find a way to keep him with you. With help and some research, there are solutions to behavior problems and even allergies. It’s also possible to find cat-friendly housing when you move if you're determined enough and are willing to negotiate and be firm with your new landlord.
Sometimes finding a new home for a cat is unavoidable and in the cat's best interest. But most often, it's best to compromise and work out your differences so the cat can stay right where he is... with you.
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