TO THOSE WHO NEED TO FIND SHELTER FOR A CAT OR KITTEN:

So you have found an abandoned cat or need to desperately surrender one for miscellaneous reasons? That's great (and not so great) to hear. First, let me tell you that it is wonderful you are trying to help this cat find safe and warm shelter. You obviously must care to have come this far, so please read further!

I'm going to say right now that trying to find an open shelter during the spring and summer months is going to be very difficult. Why? Because this is mating season, which means shelters are swamped with tons of kittens and mother cats. Many shelters often make rescuing these little ones top priority during these months, as kittens are so much more susceptible to illness, disease, predators, becoming feral, and death. Even then, shelters often reach their capacity for cats around the middle of the summer.

It is very hard to turn down people who are only trying to make sure these poor cats find forever loving homes. Ideally, we would take in every cat we see or get calls about, but it is impossible. It is especially even more difficult for us because we are a no-kill shelter, which means we do not put healthy cats to sleep until a home is found for them. As a small shelter, we cannot take in more cats than we can handle. That would be unfair to the cats, and it would get us shut down.

It it also important to remember that almost all shelters are NOT funded by the government. They are private institutions which rely solely on donations and are almost always run by volunteers. Not a single person here at the Community Cat Connection gets paid for what they do, including the president. We are all giving our free time to help the kitties as much as we can, so please do not feel we are the enemy. We are doing the best we can.

Don't fret just yet, though! There are still other options if we are unable to take in that sweet little kitty. Besides this list of shelters in Massachusetts, Connecticut, and Rhode Island I have compiled, I have also included a list of animal control numbers. If you do not see your town on that list, then please go to google.com and type in "animal control [your town], [your state]." More often than not, there will be a number for animal control on there. If not, then try calling your local police station; they should have the number of someone who handles stray animals in the area.

Craigslist.com and petfinder.com are also great places to list your kitty. Both are free to use and have tons of viewers everyday. Please, please, please do NOT list your cat as "free to a good home." There are sick people out there who often take free cats and then torture or use them for medical experiments. Always charge a fee for your cat, even if it's just a small one. If it is a small amount, then do not put it on your listing. Instead, tell the potential adopter the price once s/he has gotten in touch with you.

If none of these options are able to work for you, then try asking shelters if they have a waiting list. It might be possible that you have to wait a few weeks or a few months, but eventually a space should open up for you. If you have multiple cats or kittens you need to bring into a shelter, try asking if they're willing to take only one or two. It's a lot easier to handle two kittens than, say, nine. You could potentially find multiple shelters to take in the cats this way.

Whatever you do, please do not threaten to directly or indirectly hurt the animal in any way, shape, or form. This does not "magically" open up free space, and most shelters WILL report you to both animal control and the state police. Making light of animal abuse is not a good thing, and it is neither helpful to yourself nor the cat.

Thank you for taking the time to read this, and I wish you luck on your journey to help save that precious kitty!