Where To Adopt A Cat

How to find your new BFF!

Adopting a cat

You’ve made up your mind about adopting a cat (and can’t wait for all the snuggles).

But when you’re trying to figure out where to look for your future BFF, you have no clue where to even start.

The Dodo spoke with Mary Shaughnessy, founding member of Kitt Crusaders in Los Angeles, who shared some tips about all the different places where you can adopt a cat, and how to find the best rescue.

Where to get a cat

There are a whole bunch of options when it comes to looking for an adoptable cat.

You can check out places like:

  • Shelters
  • Rescues
  • Online classified ads (like Craigslist)
“My first suggestion would be to go to a shelter or rescue,” Shaughnessy told The Dodo.

Rescues will take in animals from shelters, so those shelters have more space (which is important because some shelters euthanize if they run out of room).

But rescues only have so much space, too.

So adopting from a rescue or a shelter doesn’t just help the cat you’re adopting, but it also could save the lives of other animals, too, because it opens up more space for the organization to help a new animal.

Are there rescues or shelters that specialize in cat adoption?

“[There are] so many that specialize in cat [and] kitten adoption,” Shaughnessy said.

Finding a place that works specifically with cats could be extra helpful, especially if you’ve never had a cat before.

Shelters and rescues that specialize in cats might have more specific knowledge about the kinds of things your cat will need to have a happy and healthy life, since they’re dedicated to just that species.

It also might feel easier to look for one in a place that only has cats, if you aren’t interested in any other animals. 

If you’re trying to track down a cat-specific rescue or shelter, Shaughnessy recommends checking petfinder.com and adopt-a-pet.com.

How to find a reputable rescue

“Word-of-mouth is generally the best way to find a reputable group,” Shaughnessy said.

If you’re curious about a specific shelter or rescue, ask around!

Hit up people who have adopted from that place before to find out what their experiences were like, and what sort of services or advice the shelter or rescue offered.

If you still aren’t set on a certain place, you can always ask people you know for recommendations.

“You might have friends or family members who have adopted from a group in the past and have had a positive experience.”

And it’s important to check a rescue’s nonprofit status.

You’re looking for a place with 501(c)(3) status, because that means they typically aren’t breeding animals for money or selling them for profit.

Instead, they’re actually rescuing animals, and are running on donations.

If you keep your eye out for all of these things, you’ll be sure to find your new cat in no time!

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