‘Cat Crisis’ at AWLA Prompts Free Adoption Offer

by ARLnow.com December 8, 2010 at 12:12 pm 3,892 37 Comments

The Animal Welfare League of Arlington is experiencing a cat crisis.

With nearly 60 cats and kittens awaiting adoption, the shelter has reached capacity. Yet for every cat that’s adopted, two more come in, according to a staffer. And other shelters in the area are at or near capacity as well.

To help spur more adoptions, the AWLA is waiving the adoption fees for all cats at least three years old through the end of the year. See the cats currently up for adoption here.

“It would be great some of these lovely animals out an into forever homes before the holidays,” said AWLA Executive Director Neil Trent. “If anybody is thinking of offering a home for an animal, please think about it sooner rather than later.”

Trent noted that the shelter has experienced an influx of kittens much later in the year than usual. Traditionally, most kittens are produced in the spring, Trent said, but for some reason the peak period for kitten litters seems to have been extended into the fall and winter months.

  • YTK

    Can you folks transport some of those “excess” cats to another local shelter where they will have a second chance at life????

    And WHY are so many cats being relinquished? Why don’t people understand that A Pet IS For Life!

    HERE is another classical example of the NEED for Mandatory Humane Education in the schools.

    • Susan

      I think it said that the other local shelters are at capacity, but I thought that some local rescue groups took on excess shelter cats for fostering, groups such as Alley Cat Allies, and such. Or that’s what THEY say anyway!

    • PikeHoo


      That is something not enough people truly understand. Barring a gun to your head, if you are able to abandon your pet, there is something wrong with your character. Pets are a responsibility and there WAY too many irresponsible and neglectful owners.

      I can’t even imagine abandoning my wonderful boxer/pit bull mix who I adopted from Lost Dog.

      • mehoo

        People get old, or disabled, or assigned overseas, or develop allergies, or move in with someone who has allergies or lives in a place that doesn’t allow pets, or lose their home to foreclosure…

        Not everyone is just dumping cats because they’re bored with them.

        And maybe some of these cats are, like, strays.

        • PikeHoo

          Out of your list, I’d only agree that an unanticipated disability would be an acceptable reason to dump a pet. As for the rest (age, military, home foreclosure/can’t afford), don’t get one in the first place.

          Not to mention, dogs and cats are sometimes the best companions that disabled and elderly people have.

          • mehoo

            By that standard, nobody who owns a home should get a pet, at least until they pay off the mortgage.

            You can’t predict everything in life.

          • PikeHoo

            Correct. I suppose I have high standards for pet ownership. The treatment of cats and dogs has always been important to me. And, I have even higher standards when it comes to home ownership, finance, and personal accountability, but that’s another discussion.

            Yes, I do agree that you can’t predict everything in life, but there’s an awful lot you can predict with something as basic as a credit score and a W2.

          • V Dizzle

            Yeah, that’s what I’m reading as well. Nobody should have pets due to the risk that life might unexpectedly make it extemely inconvenient. Plus, owning a pet and leaving it home all day alone while at work is kindof cruel anyways. So if you have a job, or a home, or might one day have a job or a home, please count out getting a pet (pet- herein definied as a domesticated cat or a dog. Not rabbits though…they don’t count).

          • mehoo

            I have high standards too, which is why I don’t have any furry pets. But again, not everything in life is predictable. If everyone refused to have pets unless they were absolutely sure they could keep them for life, we’d have alot more kittehs stuck in shelters.

  • LP

    If cats didn’t attack their owners (and others) at random times for no reason there probably wouldn’t be as many surrendered.

    Dogs Rule!

    • Lou

      What, you don’t like random pounces to the forehead in the middle of the night?

    • G

      Haha, this is so true, for some cats at least. I already have 2 cats, the max our condo will allow. Dogs are fun, but cats are extremely easy to care for. You can leave them alone for long weekends without having to pay to board them or arrange for friends to take them out every few hours to go to the bathroom.

    • Susan

      Oh, that’s right, dogs NEVER attack anyone.

      • Susan

        This should have gone under L.P’s comment, sorry.

        • LP

          Sorry, it’s just the truth. I’ve been attacked by numerous cats at friends houses for no reason. That’s just how they show their “affection”.

          Yes, dogs do attack (all animals do), but cats do it on a regular, if not daily basis.

          • Vinh An Nguyen

            My cats have never attacked me or anyone at my house. Now any mice that were foolish enough to enter the house, that’s a different story.

          • mehoo

            Cats can sense evil.

    • Katie

      Maybe cats just know you are “off” and react.

      I knew a woman with severe bipolar disorder who said that animals reacted that way to her when she went off her meds–growling, hissing, hair standing on end.

  • el fat kid

    i know a great chinese place…

  • V Dizzle

    Sorry, are these ‘eating cats’ or ‘pet cats’? Either way, I’m allergic.

  • Susan

    I thought some of the rescue groups, such as Alley Cat Allies and such, took some adoptable cats from these shelters and fostered them until they find homes?

    • Sunny617

      No-kill shelters do take in cats. Problem is, everyone is over-capacity. I volunteer for two no-kill shelters and we are maxed out, both for space at the shelter and fosters. We try to save as many as we can from kill shelters, but there’s just not enough space and not enough fosters to accommodate them all. With the down economy, surrenders of pets have exploded. It’s sad. I encourage everyone who loves animals to adopt or foster if you can. And please, people–spay and neuter!!!

      • Katie

        Spaying and neutering is key!

        And yes, a lot of the surrendered animals are because of owners losing their homes or having to move in with relatives after losing a job.

    • Liz

      Alley Cat Allies doesn’t take in cats…they advocate for feral cat rights (feral cats are the unadoptable, “wild” cats). Orgs like Lost Dog and such take in excess cats, but they can only do so much

  • Stefan Sittig

    Dude–I am a dog person, but the nasty comments about chinese plces etc..I think are totally uncalled for. It’s the holidays, have a heart!

    • V Dizzle

      Cats always go cheap on gifts.

    • el fat kid

      you just need better recipes!

      • V Dizzle

        Haha, nice. Tur-du-cat?

  • Arlington Native

    Cats can be awesome pets if you’re careful to chose the right one. I’ve had experiences with nasty, timid cats in the past, but the one I have now is an adorable, intelligent, loving member of our family. He doesn’t need to be walked and if we go away for the weekend, we just leave out extra food and water bowls for him. You can’t do that with a dog!

    • G

      I completely agree. Picking the right one is key (or raising it right). I can’t stand the shy cats that will never let you go near them. The only time my cat growls at me is when I don’t let her cuddle with me… haha.

  • Pingback: ‘Cat Crisis’ at AWLA Prompts Free Adoption Offer – ARL now | Cat Store Blog()

  • Claremont

    This move by the shelter is an interesting change — typically shelters dissuade the whole ” give a pet as a gift ” situation, as that can make for less thought-out adoptions overall. Desperate times, I guess.

  • CrystalMikey

    *sigh*, I’d love to help out, but I have allergic reactions to some cats. I’d have to pick up each one until I found one whose dander didn’t affect me.

    • lily

      I’m allergic to kitties too, but a daily Claritin/Zyrtec takes care of the problem.
      If you do want to help I would definitely urge you to sign on as a foster. I am 100% a dog person, grew up with dogs, etc, but am not in a position to get one right now. I started fostering kitties because I wanted a furry critter of some kind around the house even if it couldn’t be a dog. I have come to really like kitties though. You will be amazed at how low-maintenance cats are relative to dogs. It’s true they’re not quite as cuddly, but some of them come darn close.

  • mehoo

    Time for a giant cat mural on a wall.

  • i like cats

    Why not offer free adoptions for all of the cats until the shelter has more space?

  • mehoo

    I want you all to know that I have successfully resisted the urge to make an indecent juvenile joke here, so far.


Subscribe to our mailing list