How to Adopt a Cat
1 Check the 'Shop' on this site and look at cats listed under 'Cat Adoption Reservations'.
(Please note that you are not 'buying' a cat just because they are listed in the 'Shop': you are able to reserve one but this is pending approval of your application. We use shopping cart software that has a pre-labelled header 'Shop', which we cannot alter, although 'Adoptions' would be better!
3 Having sent your Adoption Interest Form, visit the Shop section to reserve a pet you are interested in.
Expect to pay around £185 per cat. Does that sound a lot?
To be honest, we have had this fee for 15 years now and not had a problem; pedigree cats do not and should not come at 'moggy' rates and it is a great deal of work to vet applicants, advertise pets (we pay too, to do this on Facebook) and to liaise between adopter and owners.
Adoption fees are an essential, to offset costs. In many months we do not rehome any animals at all, but we still incur the fostering costs, vet bills etc and a few small overheads. The outgoings per annum are around £20,000 at a basic level. The income from adoptions is as low as £4000 per annum.
One major reason also, for having a fee at this level, is that some rescue cats are passed around for gain, after being rehomed at lower than market rates. (However, our rate is still lower than market rate for any pedigree breed).
You will be asked to reserve your chosen cats quite early in the process because it prevents confusing outcomes if several people apply at the same time. Once you have reserved we will deal only with you, until we accept or decline you.
It is important to understand that a reservation shows your commitment to the pet; it is only by taking reservations that we can know who is serious about adopting, and we rely on these funds for day to day overheads, especially for foster care of cats and the bills these incur.
A reservation fee is not refunded if you change your mind, if we have approved you; what happens in this instance (though very rare) is that we keep your name on our file so that you can come back and choose a cat at a time more convenient for you.
**However**, of course it is refunded immediately and in full if you visit the pet and at the adoption visit, decide the pet isn't what you seek.Of course you cannot know for sure til you make that visit.
The reason we have to say that reservation fees are non-refundable for mind-changes, is because as soon as any adopter is approved, the funds are transferred out to pay our fosterers' care bills (across the rescue as a whole, it's not specific to the cat you applied for); adoption fees are the sole source of revenue in most months so it is absolutely crucial that when someone says they are adopting, they do follow through.
Of course if we decline you, fees are refunded in full the same day but we introduced the Reservation Fee to curtail the large number of non-serious 'browsers' we had, who would ask to adopt and then back out; this is very difficult for the administration of any rescue and also causes problems when we are trying to free pets from their former homes, if we promise an adoption that then doesn't happen.
Therefore, reserve when SURE you wish to adopt, and take the commitment seriously..
You do not have to reserve a pet but by doing so, you know that nobody else can take that pet ahead of you. Sometimes it does happen that pets get no applicants for months and then suddenly, they all apply at once so whoever reserves will be considered first. .
4 We will also need photos of household members, pets and the home inside and out so if progressing, you need to send these to the email address above but if you like, as it's a lot of work for some people, you can wait til your application has been approved.
If approved, the Reservation Fee becomes your Adoption Fee and nothing more is due.
Around 45% of applicants are declined at present. Fees are refunded same day as the declension and cat(s) made available again to other applicants.
Top Reasons for Declining Applicants
Stupid questions are the top reason to decline applicants; remember your questions will be some indicator of how skilled you are, at cat ownership or integration.
While we don't mind guiding novices (in fact novices welcome as long as willing to learn) we don't expect 'silly' questions:
Will it drop hair?
Will he need any vet treatment in the next 5 years?
Will this cat scratch the furniture? (Er, possibly, cats scratch, and again we can't see into the future).
Will this cat like my dog/elephant/pig? Umm, if cats have been around dogs, then we would state it in the write-up but we usually would not know. It comes down to your skill at cat integration.
Most Persians are really sociable if handled correctly and introduced slowly.
Lack of thought is another reason to decline. Here are some real answers from application forms:
"What would you feed your new cat?" ANSWER: "Cat food".
"Please tell us what you would vaccinate against". ANSWER: "Things that make the cat ill". Also "Bird flu".
Unsuitable environment/lifestyle for the pet available. E.g. "I am on holiday for the next 3 months, will this be a problem? I can always take the cat with me."
Treating us like a shop, i.e. "is there discount if I buy an old one/two at once".
Lack of adequate planning is another reason to decline: for example, it's frustrating to discuss a cat with someone and then hear them say "I will discuss it with my husband; I haven't told him I was thinking of getting another cat". Make certain that all the family is consulted and involved in the process before contacting any rescue. It just wastes our time otherwise.
Those are only a few examples but another priceless example was the lady who sent "family photos" without checking them. Let's just say they were not the pics we expected. very nice I'm sure, if you're into that sort of thing!
All quite funny really but less so when I am tired and have a lot of work to do. : )
After adopting a pedigree cat from us you have a commitment to give the pet adequate facilities and time to settle IN ITS OWN SPACE in a room of its own, away from the family.
We are decidedly unimpressed by people who, the next day, email saying 'I don't think this cat will mix with my cats' - i.e. they have taken the poor pet home and put it right in with other animals.
We also get:
"It isn't eating, it will die."
Cats normally do not eat for a few days post upheaval. Again, common knowledge. The less stressy you are, the more likely the cat settles. People who have anxious behaviours pass these to their pets. Don't be one of them.
If you adopt a pedigree adult cat it is expected that you know what good cat integration entails. Putting cats straight in with other pets, or confining them to cages, or panicking if they don't eat straight away... well, guys, GOOGLE reputable petcare sites before approaching any rescue to adopt a pet.
If you have poor integration practices then the adoption will be difficult, so do your homework. We really ask for EXPERIENCED adopters not novices as we cannot hand-hold. There are dozens of good homes per pet.
To give a cat adequate time to settle could take up to a month, going slowly and carefully.
You are not acquiring a product; it's a pet with unique habits and traits.
What if I adopt Direct and the Pet is Unwell?
If you adopt a pet with us as intermediary, (where the cat is still in the owner's care, not with our fosterers), then we rely on what the owner has said about the pet, and their provided images. If you then see the pet and it does not appear 'as advertised' **you must decline the pet and explain to the owner**.
They can then come back to us and we can determine what they should do; in most cases it would mean they have to get any necessary work addressed at our own cost.
However, most are exactly as expected.
If you get a pet home and find, for example, it is not neutered, contact us and we will arrange to pay your vet direct for any essential vet care immediately post adoption.
NEVER return a pet to the original owner - always do what has been agreed with the rescue.
If you make a decision to take a pet back to his/her owner, that is too upsetting for the owner and we need to know that you are following normal procedures to care for the adopted pet.