Our animal rescue group, Shelter Me Inc, established a barn cat program in 2008 and has placed 142 otherwise ‘unadoptable’ cats in barns since then. As a result, we frequently receive emails from people seeking an alternative home for a cat who just isn’t suitable for life indoors. One such email arrived the other day from Lynn, a volunteer with the New England Society for Abandoned Animals based in Centerville, MA.
Lynn described a beautiful grey and white cat named Yolanda whom her rescue group trapped, spayed and released (TNR) a few years ago into a quiet neighborhood where an elderly couple fed and cared for her. Apparently, Yolanda had a pretty good life with this couple who let her regularly wander into the house to eat and then leave. This cat cat never allowed herself to be petted or held but that’s not unusual for ‘feral’ or wild cats. Some cats are simply not tame-able, and Yolanda certainly appears to fall into that category.
As the couple who cared for Yolanda grew older, her care and the feeding became too much for them and because she would never be happy as a housecat, they asked the rescue group to euthanize her. That’s a pretty tough-to-swallow turn of events for people in animal rescue and Lynn said, “No, let’s find her a barn.” So, she and her colleagues trapped Yolanda and brought her back to the shelter where the cat has been unhappy but is nonetheless safe while they put together a campaign to find her a barn home.
Yolanda sounds like she would be a great barn cat. To settle her into a new home, she would need to remain in an acclimation cage in the heated area of a barn for roughly 6 weeks if they relocate her in winter–or else wait until Spring and follow the same protocol. Either way, some lucky barn owner is going to end up with a great cat. If you are that barn owner who can provide a safe haven for Yolanda, please contact Lynn’s colleague, Sarah at the following address:
Sarah McLain, Manager
The New England Society for Abandoned Animals
89 South Main Street
Centerville, MA 02632
Just a quick aside, my sister once rescued a beautiful orange cat named Woody from neighbors who were about to move and were going to have him euthanized. My sister placed him in her barn where he lived happily in a heated feed room for more than a dozen years. You can see Woody in the featured video at the bottom of the Shelter Me Inc website (About our site). FYI, there are quite a few videos on our site about acclimating barn cats and how to provide for them, if you are a barn owner who is wondering how to convince a feral cat to make itself at home on your property.