Seattle Area Feline Rescue
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Joey’s Story

Joey is a special kitty in many ways, and his epic tale is one you won’t soon forget. Joey’s journey started in Eastern Washington, where he was living outside a shotgun factory and fending for himself.

From his loving nature, you can tell that Joey had once been loved and cared for. But hard times can affect us all. When Joey’s person passed away, he was left on his own. By the time he came to SAFe Rescue, he had a plethora of medical issues including an Upper Respiratory Infection so severe you could hear his snuffling across the rescue, and a painful, swollen mouth caused by a condition called stomatitis. It was obvious that Joey would need medical care, so we immediately started treating him.

Further diagnostics unveiled a past even sadder than we originally realized. Radiographs revealed that Joey had a fractured nose bridge and a BB gun pellet lodged in his throat. Although we could see Joey had been mistreated, he didn’t let that affect his sweet, attention-seeking nature.

The next step in Joey’s medical care was a dental procedure to help alleviate Joey’s mouth pain. He needed to have almost all of his teeth extracted. During that time, the vet also discovered that Joey was diabetic. Poor, unlucky kitty! As Joey recovered from his dental surgery, we began insulin treatment to regulate his diabetes.

Without the continued support of our community, we might not have been able to give Joey the extensive medical care he needed. But SAFe Rescue is lucky to have such a generous, caring community of people like you surrounding us. Because of you, Joey—the kitty who fell on hard times—was “SAFe” and loved here.

Joey’s luck continued to turn! The veterinarian at Cascade Pet Hospital who had been caring for Joey during his medical treatment, was (not so slowly) falling in love with him. By the time Joey was cleared for adoption, the doctor wasted no time making him her own. Joey now has a human mom and dad, as well as two kitty sisters. We couldn’t be happier for him! Joey is, without a doubt, one of the nicest kitties you will ever meet. Now Joey has it all: looks, personality, and now a purr-fect family of his own to look out for his medical needs and give him love and pets every single day.

Joey’s portrait by K.A.Moore Photography.

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Keep Your Cat Safe on July 4th

While July 4th may be a fun summer holiday for you, your furry friend probably feels less enthusiastic. Cats never really appreciate sudden, loud noises, so an entire night of crashing and booming is sure to make even the most calm kitty a little uneasy. Here are a few ways to make sure you keep your cat safe on July 4th:

Create a safe space: Make sure your best feline friend has a safe, quiet place to retreat during the festivities. A bedroom or large closet with a warm comfy bed, her favorite treats, and some water will be sure to lessen the stress.

Keep kitty inside: Indoors is always the safest place for kitty—but even if your pet goes outside normally, keep her in on July 4th. Fireworks are frightening and disorienting even to cats who are used to the great outdoors.

Keep windows closed: When the weather is hot, we tend to open windows, but even the smallest opening can be an escape route for a panicked or determined kitty. Screens are not always enough to keep a cat in, so shutting the windows is the safe way to enjoy this fourth!

Use white noise: In his purr-tection room that you set up for him, turn on the TV or radio to a calming station or movie (maybe a nice bird movie?) to drown out the noise of the fireworks.

Visit the vet: If you have an especially anxious kitty, plan to visit your vet’s office before the holiday to inquire about medications that can be used as needed to lower anxiety in high-stress situations.

Update your microchip: most importantly, check to make sure your kitty’s microchip information is up to date with your current contact info and address. Unfortunately, statistically July 4th is the day of the year when the most cats (and dogs, too) go missing. The above precautions should ensure that kitty stays safe at home with you, but it is always good to prepare and make sure that—in a worst-case-scenario—you can still be reunited with your furry friend.

Although 4th of July may never have your kitty jumping for joy, your kitty will thank you with purrs and cuddles for trying to make the festivities a little bit less stressful for him!

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Wanted: ‘MEOW-valous’ Event Planners!

Planning is underway for this year’s Nine Lives Gala—and we’re seeking Auction Committee Members to help create a life-saving night for the kitties! Committee members are a driving force behind this memorable event. The work is fun, fast-paced, and essential to the rescue’s mission to save homeless felines.

Nine Lives Gala is Seattle Area Feline Rescue’s biggest fundraising event of the year, and includes silent and live auctions, dinner, and entertainment. This year’s Gala will take place at Shoreline Community College on Saturday, September 29th.

Committee responsibilities include:

  • Monthly planning meetings (with a few possible additional meetings added as the event draws closer)
  • Independent work on an event focus area (For example, helping procure donations, picking up items, or recruiting guests…)
  • 1-2 September work parties to help prepare for the event
  • Set-up help the afternoon of the Gala and volunteering at the event. (Or, recruit friends and family to join you instead: as a Table Captain, you’ll spend the evening relaxing with your guests!)

You don’t have to join the Committee to be part of the excitement!

Are you feeling inspired to help with one particular aspect of the event? Or do you want to help out, but don’t have time to commit to the committee? Never fear!

* We’re especially in need of volunteers to procure items and/or sponsorships. (Procuring can be fun: it’s like trick-or-treating for the kitties, but without the tricks!)

* We always love to have help with paperwork, data entry, and item pick-ups!

* If you have a special skill or expertise you’d like to put to use to help the event, let us know!

Please contact Shelley Lawson, Shelley@SeattleAreaFelineRescue.org, to learn more.

We can’t wait to hear from you!

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Feline Vaccines

Cat getting a veterinary check-upWe’re not going to lie, having a kitty IS all fun and games! But amidst the purring, cuteness, and cuddles, there are a few not-to-be missed steps to ensure your kitty thrives. The most important is to take your feline friend to the vet! Working with your veterinarian to find the schedule of feline vaccines that’s right for your kitty will keep her protected against certain diseases—and also prevents the spread of disease in your community.

Two of the “core” feline vaccines are Rabies and FVRCP.

  • Rabies is a viral infection spread by bite wounds from an infected animal, and can be fatal for both animals and humans. Vaccinating your pet against rabies is a legal requirement in Washington state. Rabies is not a thing of the past—there have been cases of rabid animals in the Puget Sound area in recent years—so keeping your furry friend up to date doesn’t just comply with the law. It helps keep yourself, your kitty, and your community safe.
  • FVRCP is also known as the vaccine for feline distemper. The letters FVRCP stand for the viruses it protects against: Feline Viral Rhinotracheitis, Calicivirus, and Panleukopenia. All three are potentially life-threatening viruses that can affect your beloved kitty’s health.

When you take your kitty to their first check-up, your veterinarian will go over these important vaccines with you and create a vaccination schedule for your kitty. For more information, you can also visit the American Veterinary Medical Association’s Feline Preventative Care Guidelines.

Still have questions? Be sure to ask your kitty’s veterinarian! Here are two of the most common questions regarding vaccines:

“My kitty is indoor only, why would I need to vaccinate her?”

Good question! We’re glad to hear that your kitty is living a happy, healthy life indoors. (Staying indoors greatly lowers your cat’s risk of accidents, predators, parasites, and illness.) There are still important reasons to vaccinate your kitty. Rabies vaccination is legally required, and both the Rabies and FVRCP vaccines are safety precautions.

  • Vaccinations ensure that if your kitty accidentally escapes and ends up outside or in a shelter after going missing, she will be safe and protected from the most dangerous viral threats to cats.
  • If you need to board your cat while you take a vacation, the kitty will be required to be up to date on their vaccines.
  • If you have a kitty friend visit, make sure all the cats are vaccinated.
  • Are you and your cat going through a stressful life event? Vaccines can also help prevent viral flare-ups.

“Are there any other vaccines that my cat will need?”

A licensed veterinarian is the best person to consult about which vaccines your cat needs. Rabies and FVRCP are generally considered the two “core” feline vaccines, and the most necessary. There are also a few other additional “lifestyle” vaccines, that may be important depending on your kitty’s age, health, and living situation.

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Babette’s Story

Babette has perfected many skills: being adorable and sweet, making kitty burritos, purring as loudly as possible… And now, finding a furr-ever home! Babette came to the Pacific NW from California—Long Beach to be exact—in search of her time to shine with a family of her own.

Not a lot was known about Babette before she came here, except that she was a momma kitty at one point and that she tested positive for FIV. FIV (Feline Immunodeficiency Virus) affects a small percentage of cats nationwide, and it’s a non-progressive retrovirus that is usually asymptomatic (meaning kitties can have the virus without getting sick). In fact, statistics show that the most common cause of death for FIV positive cats is old age. FIV+ kitties like Babette do not usually require much special care; they do best when they stay indoors, eat nutritious diets, and have their standard annual veterinary visits. (Curious to learn more? Check out our blog on FIV.)

Although Babette’s condition is very manageable, FIV is often misunderstood. Sometimes shelters do not have the resources to to keep FIV+ kitties, or fear that they are “unadoptable.” That makes a positive test result very sad news in some cases. But not to worry, FIV+ kitties like Babette are “SAFe” here!

Once she arrived at SAFe Rescue, Babette went for a dental evaluation. While she was homeless, she ended up with a sore mouth and some broken teeth. (Poor kitty!) After dental surgery to make her more comfortable, Babette got the green light to be listed for adoption. She eagerly awaited her person.

A few days later, Babette showed off all her purr-fect skills that she had been working on for so long to a potential adopter. Not only was the adopter impressed, she was in love! Now Babette is happy and safe in her new home with all the love and yummy food she deserves.

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Seeking Board and Committee Members

Join the Board of Directors or special committees

SAFe Rescue is looking for new members to join the Board of Directors or to serve on special committees to help guide our growth and save more cats!

Volunteers are key to every aspect of the rescue’s work. From taking care of essential daily operations like keeping bowls full and helping adopters find new family members… To engaging in broader endeavors like crafting a vision for the future (one where there are no homeless kitties), and helping us get there… Volunteers make the world go ‘round!

We are currently looking for some key volunteers to take on the visionary work of growing SAFe Rescue as an organization. Could that be you?

Perhaps you are a volunteer who is ready for a different challenge, or your schedule doesn’t allow for regular shifts in the rescue…

Maybe you are an adopter who wants to give back to the organization who helped you find your beloved family member…

Or you are looking for a meaningful resume builder to help you move to the next stage of your career…

And of course you love cats and want to help them!

We are seeking volunteers to serve in the following, high impact roles:

Board Treasurer: Do you want to use your nonprofit finance or accounting skills to help save kitties? Are sustainable budgets and financial systems like catnip to you? Does reviewing a P&L statement make you purr? We would love to talk to you about being our next Treasurer!

At Large Board Members: Do you enjoy strategic planning as much as curling up in a sunny spot for a nap? Does networking and partnership development perk up your whiskers? We are looking for volunteers to join the Board of Directors who are interested in helping increase our visibility in the community.

IT Committee: Do you have the time and expertise to help keep our technology running smoothly? Seeking volunteers with flexible schedules willing to come to the rescue when computers crash, printers panic, and the wifi won’t work.

Budget/Finance Committee: Do you chase budgetary goals like a kitty chases a laser pointer? Help develop sustainable budgets and financial systems!

Development Committee: Help craft fundraising strategy, appeals and events that let donors know how much their support means to the kitties.

Auction Committee: Do you love parties? Help this established team put on the party of the year, which is also SAFe’s biggest fundraiser.

Outreach Committee: Help save more cats by helping get the word out about SAFe Rescue’s volunteer program, foster opportunities, and of course adoptions. Committee members will help develop display materials, select events to attend, and train outreach volunteers.

Interested in learning more? Please email Executive Director Emily Sprong: emilys@seattleareafelinerescue.org.

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A Fixable Problem: Mouse’s Story

MouseMouse began her life in Eastern WA, fending for herself while living outside near a trailer park. Despite this rough start, she grew up friendly and trusting. When Mouse was a few months old, a Good Samaritan found her and sent her to Seattle Area Feline Rescue for a second chance. It didn’t seem like Mouse would wait long to find a home and—for the first time in her short life—have a family of her own. As you can imagine, such a friendly, fluffy kitten is sure to catch the eye of adopters!

Sadly, Mouse’s journey turned out to be more complicated after she tested positive for “Ringworm,” a fungal skin infection similar to Athlete’s Foot. This condition is very treatable and, after clearing the infection, kitties go on to lead 100% healthy lives. Even so, in some places ringworm is a death sentence for homeless cats. The treatment process is complex and time-consuming, and the infection contagious. Spending weeks or even months housing kitties in an Isolation Room and actively treating them is not something all organizations have the resources to do.

Mouse was lucky: helping Ringworm kitties is a project that’s very close to our hearts at SAFe Rescue. Mouse joined the “Kitten Cadets” at our “Ringworm Academy” (AKA the Isolation Room). Here, she receives special baths, meds, and lots of love from staff and volunteers specially-trained to care for cats with skin infections.

Now, two months later, Mouse is nearly finished healing. She’s an expert hunter of toys, and a cheerful, sassy little cat. Soon, she will be able to find a family after all.

Ringworm is such a fixable problem, and it’s deeply saddening to know that kitties lose their lives because of it. That’s why we are so profoundly grateful that we’ve been able to build our ringworm program over the past two years, thanks to you, our generous, caring community of supporters.

Your generosity makes it possible to offer a last resort to infected kitties with nowhere else to go. Your kindness can remove the obstacles to a bright future—opening up a whole lifetime of happiness—for kitties like Mouse.

Will you GiveBIG for kitties with skin infections this week? Please mark your calendars for this Wednesday, May 9. With a Challenge Match and chances to win BIG, and you generosity will go even farther to help more cats. (Want to get a head start? You can even schedule your GiveBIG donation online now!)

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GiveBIG for Cats

GiveBIG for Bottle BabiesHomeless felines need our help!  On May 9th, SAFe Rescue will participate in GiveBIG, a 24-hour online giving event to raise funds for local nonprofit organizations.

GiveBIG is a critical, life-saving day for the rescue cats and kittens. The kitties who are here at SAFe Rescue now—and many more who will need our help during kitten season and beyond—rely on support from this event to fund their care and medical treatment throughout the coming months.

Every gift counts: Your gift will be DOUBLED by a Challenge Match (up to $11,000), so your generosity will go farther and save even more lives. Each donation also enters the rescue kitties to win prizes from the Seattle Foundation’s “Dollars for Change” program.

Mark your calendars: We have an ambitious goal to make this GiveBIG the best ever for felines who need our help. Please mark your calendars and plan to join us on May 9th to create a safer world for homeless animals.

Give early: you can also get a head start by scheduling your gift today.

From bottle babies to seniors, from special needs cats to happy kittens, all of the rescue kitties are grateful for the GiveBIG heroes like you who make it possible for them to find homes. Thank MEW!

 

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Why License Your Cat

License your catSteps to kitty ownership: Get supplies, choose a kitty (That’s the most fun, if you ask us!), take kitty home, give kitty food and cuddles, establish care at a vet, and. . . License your cat with the city or county?

You read that last step right! Your furry friend needs a license. Not a driver’s license—we hope kitty won’t be operating a motor vehicle anytime soon. A pet license! Your city or county requires that you license your pets as a form of identification.

If you’re tempted to skip that step, think again! There are some very important reasons to get a pet license:

1) Having a current license will help reunite you with your pet if kitty gets lost. (Some cities will even give lost, licensed pets a free ride home instead of taking them to the shelter.) Licensed pets can also be held for longer at city shelters. Having more time can make all the difference: if your pet goes missing, it’s often at the worst possible time, like when you are out of town!

2) Knowing how many pets are living in the area helps your city allocate resources so that it can best serve pet owners. (It’s helpful for disaster preparedness, too.)

3) Funds from pet licenses support your city shelter and help save lives.

4) Pet licenses, even for indoor-only kitties, are required by law.

Where to Get a License: Although licensing your pet might sound daunting, it’s actually quite easy! For Seattle residents, you can even license your new kitty right here at the rescue during the adoption process, or stop by the rescue later on to license your cat. (And if you do, a portion of the license fees will go to help the kitties here at SAFe Rescue.) You can also go online to get a City of Seattle license: click here.

If you live in a municipality serviced by Regional Animal Services of King County, you can purchase that license at the adoption center too. Many King County cities, including Shoreline, require a King County License. Click here for the complete list.

If you have any questions, one of the friendly, knowledgeable staff or volunteers at the rescue will be happy to help! Wherever you live, make sure that you get a license for your beloved kitty—it’s the best choice to keep your pet safe, and it’s the responsible thing to do for your community!

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Wendy

Where can a homeless, itchy, senior kitty have a second chance at finding a home in Seattle? At Seattle Area Feline Rescue, of course! Wendy fits that bill exactly: at 10 years old she was brought to another local shelter as a stray after fending for herself along Lake City Way. She was experiencing discomfort due to extremely itchy skin and hair loss. Soon, she came to SAFe Rescue for a second chance.

Seattle Area Feline Rescue is a “SAFe” haven for kitties who might need extra love or care. When Wendy arrived, the volunteers and staff here were immediately smitten. Her eyes reminded us of a beautiful galaxy: she looks like she has stardust in her gaze! She was consistently sweet and loving, soliciting everyone she met for pets and affection. Although she wasn’t enthusiastic about playing, napping on catnip pillows became her favorite pastime.

At SAFe, Wendy went from stray kitty to TV star when KING  5 Television featured her as their adoptable cat of the month. We are certain that viewers were as mesmerized by her eyes as we were! Soon afterwards, her purr-fect family came into the rescue looking for a kitty. She now has 2 human kiddos to play and snuggle with, and even better… she has a senior kitty brother to keep her company!

SAFe Rescue is dedicated to giving kitties like Wendy—whether they are senior, special needs, or just in need of some TLC—all the love, food, and medical care they need until they can be placed in furr-ever homes with their purr-fect humans.

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