Feline Lifeline: Cat Enrichment Grant Report
How did this grant help your organization and the pets in your care?
Feline Lifeline's primary mission is TNR (trap, neuter, return), but we often find kittens in feral cat colonies who can be adopted into forever homes if simply given a chance. However, these kittens need socialization. Occasionally, we also find dumped pets who have lost their trust in people, so our volunteers must find ways to teach these adult cats that they are safe.
As a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization, Feline Lifeline is an all-volunteer, foster-based rescue. We don't receive many donations or grants, so volunteers typically use their own funds to pay for essential items such as food and litter when fostering and socializing kittens and cats. There is rarely enough money to purchase enrichment products, too.
This grant allowed our organization to purchase new items such as scratchers, play tunnels, and toys that offer a bridge between the volunteers and these scared, timid cats. We used toys to distract scared kittens, who eventually came to associate people with fun activities. This enrichment opportunity was invaluable and allowed our organization to reduce some of the monetary burden on our key foster families. It allowed us to give cats who might have otherwise needed socialization for longer a quicker path to a home. Thank you so much!
How many pets did this grant help?
It is not easy too give a number, since we will reuse many of these items with multiple kittens and cats. If a number is needed, we'll estimate 50 cats.
Please provide a story of one or more specific pets this grant helped.
Lily and her siblings were rescued from beneath a backyard deck as young kittens. (The first photo shows Lily upon intake.) Their foster mom, Cindy, took them home and worked on socializing them, but Cindy has a limited income and could not afford toys or similar items.
When we received the funds from the Petfinder Foundation, we sent her some enrichment products, including beds, scratchers, and toys. Initially shy, Lily came out of her shell and quickly bonded over playtime. She now loves to play and loves people! Lily became a perfectly adoptable kitty, and we were able to find her a loving home (second photo).
Pip was found on a very cold night at one of our managed feral cat colonies. We trapped him, and the cute black kitten wanted nothing to do with his rescuers (third photo)! He has been a difficult case to socialize, mainly because he turned out to be older than we first realized.
However, we’ve worked with Pip steadily, and while he’s not yet a lap kitty, he’s getting there. This sweet boy absolutely loves to play with his toys, and he only allowed his fosters to hold him after they won his trust with food, playtime, and naps in the window!
Pip is still available for adoption and needs a home with someone willing to give him lots of love and attention, knowing he needs a little more socialization to become the ideal house cat. You can meet Pip here.