Cat Enrichment

Memphis Animal Services: Cat Enrichment Grant Report

What was the money or product used for?

This grant was approved by City Council on May 21, and we were able to access the funds on May 31. We purchased 712 hanging cat scratchers from stretchandscratch.com, and due to the volume we purchased, they donated an extra 50 scratchers. They arrived on June 7, and we have begun putting them on adult-cat kennels.

How did this grant help your organization and the pets in your care?

They are cardboard scratchers that hang on kennel bars via twist ties on the back. They help our cats practice normal cat behavior (scratching), reduce stress, and help make them more adoptable.

We haven’t had to euthanize a cat for space in over two years. That is great, but does mean that we sometimes have cats that stay here for months. It’s really helpful for us to be able to offer them 24/7 at-will enrichment to help combat kennel stress.

How many pets did this grant help?

762

Please provide a story of one or more specific pets this grant helped.

Penny is an FeLV+ cat who has been with us since April 30. She’s very friendly and social but, unfortunately, due to her specific adoption needs, she hasn’t found the right match yet. Being in a shelter long-term is stressful for any pet and compromises their immune system, but an FeLV+ cat especially needs to minimize stress and maximize immune system functioning. When we put the scratcher in her kennel, she immediately began playing, scratching, and even climbing. This scratcher is going to help keep her stress level down and show adopters just how fun and lively she is! Meet Penny here.

Project Precious Paws: Cat Enrichment Grant Report

What was the money or product used for?

We shared the Kong cat toys with the cats we already had in our care and saved a couple for new cats.

How did this grant help your organization and the pets in your care?

The cats and kittens had a blast with the exciting new Kong cat toys. There were a few different designs in the shipment and it was fun seeing them discover each one. They are more interactive and interesting than the usual cat toys we receive. We also sent one toy home with a cat when he was adopted. We have a “cat room” for some of our less-adoptable cats; some are semi-feral and they had a great time playing with the new toys.

How many pets did this grant help?

Eleven so far.

Please provide a story of one or more specific pets this grant helped.

Ares (first photo) is a huge flame-point Siamese who came into the shelter with his collar wrapped under his arm. It took a long time for the wound to heal (second photo), and once he was able to play, we gave him one of the Kong toys to try. We sent that toy home with him when he was adopted so he would have something familiar in his new home.

Rancho Coastal Humane Society: Cat Enrichment Grant Report

What was the money or product used for?

The money was used to buy items that would enrich the lives of our shelter cats. These items included Scratch & Sniff pads, electronic motion toys, and modular cat trees.

How did this grant help your organization and the pets in your care?

Anything we can do to enrich the lives of our shelter cats/kittens while they are waiting for their “fur-ever” homes is important. The reaction of some of our residents to the items this grant funded verified how important it is to provide stimulating activities. Active and well-socialized cats/kittens make better adoption candidates. We are very thankful for the support from the Petfinder Foundation.

How many pets did this grant help?

We typically house up to 60 homeless cats and kittens.

Please provide a story of one or more specific pets this grant helped.

Little miss Reba McEntire (first three photos) had lost virtually all interest in toys, preferring to just nap the whole day, and I was honestly a bit skeptical about whether she would even enjoy the toy. Much to my shock, she came up to the new motorized toy immediately to play with it in a way I hadn’t seen her play with anything in a long time. I left to do some work around the shelter, and when I came back into the cattery, I heard meowing and realized it was coming from Reba’s room. She was sitting there by the toy, batting it, and when she saw me, ran right up, meowing like crazy and then turning back to the toy and batting it again. So I clicked it back on for her and she immediately went right back into playing with it! Meet Reba McIntyre here.

For Mr. Feeny (fourth and fifth photos), our challenge has always been keeping him mentally stimulated and helping him burn some of his seemingly endless energy. Even with all the time staff and volunteers dedicated to playing with him, it still seems like we can’t tire this guy out. I didn’t even need to press the button on the motorized toy before he was already playing with it. Once I did turn it on, he could not get on it fast enough. He even ignored the remaining kibble in his feeder despite his love of food. It’s been nice having something that staff and volunteers can turn on after spending time with Mr. Feeny to help him get even more playtime in the day. Meet Mr. Feeny here.

Placer County Animal Services: Cat Enrichment Grant Report

What was the money or product used for?

We purchased 12 Kitty Kasas houses and 200 Stretch and Scratch scratching posts with the grant money. These items are used in our shelter kennels and the kennels that we adopt cats from at our local PetSmart store.

How did this grant help your organization and the pets in your care?

These items provide comfort and enrichment for shelter cats. The Kitty Kasas provide a safe space to stay for shelter cats in our shelter kennels, but more importantly in the kennels at our local PetSmart, where it can be much busier with people and other animals. The Kitty Kasas not only allow our shelter cats to cuddle and take a break from people, they also provide vertical shelf space, and the cats often lounge on top of the shelves to relax. The Stretch and Scratch scratching posts that we purchased are provided to all shelter cats to provide a surface for them to use for scratching and letting off some steam. Not only do the cats love using them at the shelter, but the public love watching the kitties claw away on their tiny scratching posts. These items are sent home with the cat upon adoption, too, so they have something fun that they can use immediately in their new home.

How many pets did this grant help?

The Kitty Kasas are sterilizable and reusable and will help thousands of cats during their use. The scratching posts will help 200-300 cats depending on how many cats are in the kennel.

Please provide a story of one or more specific pets this grant helped.

Little Tim was transferred into our shelter from a local shelter where he was having a hard time adjusting. He had facial injuries on intake and was treated and had recovered, but was very sensitive to the noise and hustle at the busy shelter where he was housed. We transferred him into our shelter, which is much calmer and quieter, and placed him in a smaller kennel with the Kitty Kasas that we had purchased through the Petfinder Foundation grant. Tim immediately calmed down. He started to explore his environment and come out of his shell a bit. Turns out that he is quite a loving and social boy who would be a great family cat. He loves to come out and socialize, but also loves to hang out in his kitty cave to snuggle. Thank you, Petfinder Foundation, for helping our deserving cats stay happy, healthy and emotionally strong while they are waiting for their forever homes!

Upper Peninsula Animal Welfare Shelter: Cat Enrichment Grant Report

What was the money or product used for?

Kuranda towers for our shelter cats

How did this grant help your organization and the pets in your care?

Kuranda towers are awesome! Cats love to be high up, stretch, lounge and have their own space. Plus they like to play on them too! And they are sturdy and easy to disinfect, which is important. Providing for our shelter cats’ mental well-being is just as important as providing for their physical well-being. Cats have natural behaviors and needs; to be healthy and happy, they must have opportunities to express those natural behaviors in appropriate ways. PLUS in turn, a more relaxed and happy shelter cat will be adopted faster!

How many pets did this grant help?

Thousands

Please provide a story of one or more specific pets this grant helped.

Mackenzie (first and second photos) LOVED her tall Kuranda! She was put in a colony room and that was her safe space to be. She was overlooked many times in her small kennel because she was an older, black cat. But once she got into the open room and up on her Kuranda and able to look out the window — well, this little lady opened up! She has since been adopted and doing very well in her new home!

Cenla Cat Project: Cat Enrichment Grant Report

What was the money or product used for?

Cat towers, televisions for video entertainment, toys, beds, scratching towers.

How did this grant help your organization and the pets in your care?

It is the little things beyond the necessities that make life fun. Once we meet the medical needs and provide food and litter, there are no funds left for the fun things. Our kitties are loving having tall scratchers for their nails, towers to climb and jump on, and a great variety of toys (wand toys, toys to bat around, track toys). They adore kitty YouTube videos and cartoons. Their minds and bodies are kept active and agile thanks to the grant. Once worn out, every cat has a cozy place to sleep.

How many pets did this grant help?

50 to 60 at a time. (Over 200 per year.)

Please provide a story of one or more specific pets this grant helped.

Gidget (first photo) was in need of medical treatment and good nutrition when she came to us. She was living in a car, malnourished, and with an old break to her left rear leg. In order to improve her quality of life, the leg had to be amputated. While “Gidgie Goo” was recovering, she was able to always have a clean bed, and toys to play with. She had to be kenneled away from the other kitties in her foster home while she healed. She had small toys that she could nuzzle and play with. Since she was let into the house, she has been playing with ball-track and wand toys. These toys have helped her find her balance and build muscle. Gidget is still looking for her forever home. Her true family will have to be as special as she is. Meet Gidget here.

HOPE Safehouse, Inc.: Cat Enrichment Grant Report

What was the money or product used for?

The money we received went toward the medical care of Lena, one of our momma kitties, and her five babies.

How did this grant help your organization and the pets in your care?

The grant helped us be able to take in more mommas and their kittens.

How many pets did this grant help?

6 pets

Please provide a story of one or more specific pets this grant helped.

Momma Lena and her babies came from a high[-intake] shelter in Kentucky. They needed a safe place for her and her five little ones so they wouldn’t get sick. The boys are Langston, Langford, and Langstrom and the girls are Lulu and Lori. We will be accepting applications starting May 5.

Friends of Companion Animals: Cat Enrichment Grant Report

What was the money or product used for?

Our “Second Chance Ranch” cat enclosure construction and the items that are in the enclosure such as the cubes, blankets, cat trees, etc.

How did this grant help your organization and the pets in your care?

The new free-roaming enclosure is a wonderful part of our rescue because it’s a great enrichment tool. It allows the cats to interact with each other, with our visitors and with potential adopters. They become more socialized, which makes them more adoptable. Thanks to this enclosure, they’re free to do all the things cats love: run, jump, climb, snuggle. In short, it’s the closest thing to actually living in a real home.

Because of this grant, we were able to afford the construction as well as the shelving and the blankets for the cubes. We also were able to get chairs so that humans can sit down and relax with the cats, which helps them make a connection and increases the chance of adoption. The cat trees provide a place to scratch, climb and play on, which they all thoroughly enjoy.

This free-roaming enclosure also provides more time for our volunteers who do cleaning, because we have fewer cages to clean on a daily basis. The positive side effect is that this allows us more time to interact with the cats beyond simple janitorial duties.

In closing, being able to build this enclosure for them was one of our long-term goals (for both humans and felines). The funding that the Petfinder Foundation provided to realize this dream is much appreciated, to say the least. It’s something that will bring our cats joy and better health for years to come.

How many pets did this grant help?

Honestly, countless cats, because it will provide years of enjoyment for any felines in our care. But if you’d like an actual number, 200 a year, since that’s about half the number we adopted out last year.

Please provide a story of one or more specific pets this grant helped.

We have some very shy cats, Gabby (first photo) and Gessica (second photo), who really came out of their shell once we were able to let them roam outside of the cages in the new enclosure thanks to the Petfinder Foundation. For 10 months, they’d been confined to their kennels, but this allowed them to really open up. They get to exercise and play and just enjoy being in an environment that’s as close to an actual home as possible. They haven’t been adopted yet, but we’re sure it’s only a matter of time now, since they are already more friendly than they were last week. It’s really remarkable how much has changed in just the last seven days.

You can meet Gessica here.

Meet Gabby here.

Ruff Start Rescue: Cat Enrichment Grant Report

What was the money or product used for?

Funds were used to purchase craft supplies to make enrichment products for our rescued cats. The supplies were used to create fishing toys, catnip toys, scratching posts, and fleece bedding.

How did this grant help your organization and the pets in your care?

This year we will care for nearly 700 cats. We rely on donations from the public to provide required and enrichment products for our animals. At the same time, we believe in teaching children and families about the importance of animal care and enrichment through a variety of community outreach activities. With this grant, we purchased craft supplies to make toys, scratching posts, and bedding for our foster cats. Children from the community came out to our facility to make a variety of toys and blankets for our cats. The children get the opportunity to learn about the animals, and the cats benefit with access to the fun toys and bedding that were made from the activity. We appreciate this opportunity to educate children and families and, at the same time, give back to the special cats in our care.

How many pets did this grant help?

100 cats

Please provide a story of one or more specific pets this grant helped.

Mr. Murray (first photo) came into rescue with a severe injury to his back. He was missing fur and had multiple cuts and scrapes that we assume were caused by a hawk or eagle. Despite his injuries, he is the sweetest cat. He loves pets from his human caregivers and snuggles in fleece blankets. He has received appropriate treatment for his injuries and is now ready for his forever home. We know he will find the perfect family soon. Meet Mr. Murray here.

Tuna (second photo) came to Ruff Start from a local shelter. He is a super playful and loving cat. His motto is “Play hard, nap hard.” He really appreciates new toys, and fleece is his favorite. He came into rescue with another foster cat named Babs. Babs is very shy, but she comes out of her shell with the support of Tuna. It has been difficult to get these two placed in a forever home because we would prefer that Tuna and Babs live out their lives together. In the meantime, they are enjoying their foster home and getting new enrichment items from the rescue once and awhile.
Meet Tuna here.
Meet Babs here.

Valley Humane Society: Cat Enrichment Grant Report

What was the money or product used for?

The money was used to purchase Kuranda cat towers for our free-roaming-cat rooms.

How did this grant help your organization and the pets in your care?

This grant provided our cats with a safe, secure and easily sanitized area to lay their heads upon. With ringworm being so hardy this year, we had to discard all of our carpeted and rope-covered cat towers. These items cannot be sanitized against ringworm. With 10 free-roaming cats living in one room and 18 housed in the second, our animals were in desperate need of raised areas to use.

How many pets did this grant help?

The initial number of cats helped is 28. However, Kuranda towers are so well-made that hundreds of cats will be helped by this generous grant.

Please provide a story of one or more specific pets this grant helped.

Gracie is a 3- to 5-year-old spayed female tabby domestic shorthair. She has been with us since January 2016. When she arrived, she acted very feral. She hid, and did not want to be touched, held or even looked at. She was sent to a foster home in hopes that being outside of the shelter environment would allow her to open up. It didn’t work; she hid the entire time she was with the foster. After six months, the foster, feeling dejected and concerned, returned her. Gracie continued to hide at the shelter. We placed her in our large free-roaming-cat room with other cats of varying behavioral and social abilities.

When ringworm broke our last year, we had to discard all of our carpeted cat trees. Gracie no longer had a place to hide. In lieu of darkness, she sought out high places. We eventually build our carpeted towers back up, only to have ringworm raise its very ugly head again this year. That was where the Petfinder Foundation grant came in.

With the Petfinder Foundation’s help, we were able to bring in many cat towers, providing Gracie with the height she desired. As a result, Gracie has come through in leaps and bounds. She has actually been caught soliciting affection! We had a group of high-school students come in for a tour and she actually laid on the tower and allowed multiple students to touch her. I had to do a double take when I saw who was allowing so much affection all at once! It will definitely take a very patient adopter for Gracie, but then what else would you expect for this very special girl? Meet her: http://www.petfinder.com/petdetail/41389195