Melissa's Menagerie's Second Chances: Cat Enrichment

What was the money or product used for?

The money was used to purchase cat enrichment items for our new cat room, including two food puzzles, a 5×7-ft. sisal mat mounted on the wall for climbing, a LickiMat slow-feeder cat mat, a PetSafe FUNKitty Egg Cersizer Interactive Toy and Food Dispenser, a Catit Senses 2.0 digger for cats, and two water fountains. We also purchase two premade hammocks, and materials to make two sets of double-decker hammocks that hang from the ceiling. We also purchased two cat towers — one for our new room and one for the old room. We purchased an IKEA cube shelf and then purchased cube beds to put on the shelves. We purchased two cat tunnels, packs of toys, and two wand toys, and made mats and beds out of sisal and fleece.

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

The nine cats and kittens who live in our new cat room are the happiest group of felines. Three started out very shy and hid all the time. But the treat puzzles have lured them from hiding, and now they are starting to play with humans more. The cat towers and hammocks provide the cats with relaxing places to nap, and the tunnels and toys keep the younger cats occupied and active. The climbing wall is also very popular among our resident felines. In all, the enrichment items we provide keep the younger cats healthy and active and are helping to socialize the shy cats in our care.

How many pets did this grant help?

Nine cats currently reside in the room. Cats rotate into the room from foster homes when they are ready for adoption. We plan to care for approximately 100 cats in this room each year.

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

Anise (first and second photos) is one of our long-timers and has been in our care since March 2019. She was rescued with her five kittens, all of whom were adopted in the early summer after they were old enough to be spayed and neutered. Anise was not feral, but was extremely shy. She would not make eye contact with humans, and would hide whenever humans tried to interact with her. Since moving into our new cat room in September, Anise has slowly come out of her shell. She is spending more time out in the room instead of hiding in the cat tree. Her favorite perch is a shelf near the window. She recently began interacting with the food puzzles, and playing with the other cats in the process. We are very excited to report that these cat-enrichment activities provided by the grant are slowly bringing Anise out of her shell, which we are positive will lead to a kind and loving purrever home. Meet Anise here.

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