What a wonderful idea! “I love cats and starting tomorrow, I’ll volunteer for the local cat shelter, I made up my mind!” It sounds great but if out of 200,000 inhabitants only 5-6 people are willing to spend time weekly with the cats in the shelter, it means that it’s not that easy… There are also true reasons which prevent some people to come for the second or third time to see the cats, but what we hear the most often – if that person is kind enough to tell us – are just… excuses, nothing more. Sorry, but this is the truth.
What could stop you?
Time. Do you work every day until late afternoon? So do we. But if you really want to something for the cats in the shelter, yu can surely find 3-4 spare hours out of 168 in a week.
Consistency. The most important trait that you must possess, besides true love for the kitties, is consistency. Yup, there is a lot of work to do and we don’t just go to hug and cuddle our feline friends. Cats like their place clean, they love peace so we also go there to work. We never ran because of cleaning or other tasks, not even when it was really hard – both for them and for us, because we know they need us. Why then the 25 people who came to visit over the years and who said they want to volunteer, why they haven’t showed up ever since?
People skills. You’re not good with people? You’re not the “social” type? Neither are we. We talk a lot at first to make you get a picture of the activities and the situation. And after you get it, we also like peace and quiet. We never leave new volunteers on their own, even if they know their way around already, we are there to help and guide, but we don’t have an MBA in people skills. That’s why we chose cats. Sounds logical, right?
Family. If the family doesn’t share your love for cats, if they are not understanding… this can be a problem. But then, we rather not start the “training”. Some other time maybe. We really don’t want to be troublemakers.
We wish, truly wish, to be a bigger team. We wish really cat lovers would join us in our efforts and stay with us even after they realize there’s a lot of work to be done. Because there is: we clean floors and shelves, disinfect, clean litterboxes, blankets, we go to the vet’s, answer messages, take pictures, write texts, arrange supplies, keep files… We have something for everybody to do.
It’s not easy, we never denied this. But it’s definitely worth it! When the cat we cared for purrs happily in her human parent’s arms, in her forever home, and we can save yet one more… THIS is our reward! This is what we work for!
And especially because we know: CATS NEED US! So, dear cat lovers, we’d be more than happy to welcome you!