Our Policy

 

Heatons Cats Rehoming Policy

Our cat sanctuary

We are a registered cat adoption charity, formed in 1998, and run by a small team of dedicated volunteers and staff. We continue to thrive thanks to the generosity of the public, through their cash donations, and from goods given to our charity shop. We also receive gifts of cat food via Sainsbury’s, and it is this support which allows us to help so many stray and unwanted cats.

Giving the cats the best possible chance in life is our priority, and we adhere to the following:

  • Providing we have space, we promise to take in any unwanted or abandoned cat, regardless of age or cost of veterinary care
  • We will feed and look after any cat at the sanctuary, arrange any necessary veterinary treatment, and finally rehome to responsible caring people
  • If, due to age, it is not possible to rehome the cat, we will place it in one of our established foster homes, to ensure it lives the rest of its life in a caring home environment
  • We will never, ever put a healthy animal to sleep.

Rehoming Policy

We are so grateful to people visiting us to rehome a cat or kitten. Adopting a cat or kitten from a rescue centre gives an abandoned animal a second chance of a happy and healthy life.

If you are thinking of adopting a cat or kitten, you need to be aware of our adoption policy, which is as follows:

  • While we are too small to have staff carry out home checks, we do need to make sure that our cats are being placed in a secure, loving environment. We do not rehome to houses on, or very near a main road. All our cats, unless specified as house cats, need access to a garden.
  • We do not rehome kittens into households where there are children under 5 years of age, or households that have dogs.
  • The estimates of age of the cat is based on what the previous owner, if known, has told us, and our best estimates
  • While we have a reasonable idea of the personality of our cats, and it is often clear if, for example, they don’t get on with other cats, it is not possible to guarantee their suitability to be around children. It is very important that potential adopters ensure that their children meet the cat in the presence of our rehoming team prior to adoption.
  • We reserve the right to refuse to rehome an animal. Placing cats with adopters is entirely at our discretion. Please do not be offended if we find your circumstances unsuitable for having a cat.

The rehoming process

We have an open rehoming session on Saturdays between 2 and 4pm, where there are no appointments, and people come and wait in the charity shop before being taken to see the cats by one of our rehoming team.

However, in peak times, it does get very busy, and the waiting time quite long. Therefore, we prefer to make appointments for people to view. Appointments are available between 1 and 4pm Monday-Friday. We can then discuss your circumstances in more detail, and introduce you to cats we think would be mutually suitable. Please call us on 0161 975 0794 to make an appointment.

We need to see two forms of ID, one piece of photo ID (driving license, passport) and one showing your address (bill or statement). This must correspond to the address where the cat will be living. We do not rehome to third parties; we need to meet the person who will be the cat’s new owner in person.

All our adult cats are neutered, vaccinated, vet-checked and microchipped. They are also treated for fleas and worms.

Kittens are vaccinated, deflead and wormed. If a kitten is too young to have been neutered, the adopter will be required to sign an agreement to confirm that they will be responsible for taking the kitten for neutering at 5-6 months. If a cat has not yet had his second vaccination (due three weeks after the first), you will need to make an appointment at our vets when they are due. This is paid for – you simply need to book an appointment. Should you choose to use another vet, this will be at your own cost.

Your Appointment

Once we have met you, and you have chosen a cat you would like to adopt, it is possible to take the cat home that day in most cases, or pay a reservation fee of £10 and collect the cat at a later date. You will need a secure cat carrier to take the cat home: we have second-hand ones available, should you need one, for sale at £10.

Adoption Fee

There is a £60 adoption fee. Without these sums, it would be impossible for us to carry on caring for so many cats. Our food and vets bills are huge!

Taking your cat or kitten home

Your cat may have been in the sanctuary for some time, and before that, been a stray. Therefore, the change in environment to your home can be scary for them, and they need time to adjust. Your cat may hide away from you for a few days. With patience and reassurance, they will soon explore their new home.

We recommend keeping your cat indoors for at least 4-6 weeks so they get to know where they live, and won’t wander away. They will need a large litter tray, which is changed regularly, access to fresh water and a secure place to sleep. It is a good idea to confine them to one room initially, but with lots of contact so they get to know you. It is important to remember that cats can squeeze through very small spaces, so keep windows closed!

The rehoming team will tell you what your cat likes to eat. Here, they are fed wet food twice a day, and have constant access to water and good quality cat biscuits. We never offer food other than cat food, or occasionally fresh chicken. Cats are lactose intolerant, so should never be given milk.

When you take your cat home, you will be given a vaccination certificate to show when their annual booster is due. It is vital to ensure that your cat is fully vaccinated, as many cat diseases can be fatal. Vaccinations are also required should you ever need to use a boarding cattery.

If you are rehoming a kitten, please remember that they will have been with their siblings constantly, and being alone in a different environment is a huge adjustment for them. Kittens need their own space, exactly as older cats do, with a bed that is specifically theirs, and a well-placed litter tray that they can locate easily. You may need to place your kitten in the tray after feeding initially, until they learn where it is! We feed our kittens three or four times a day with wet food specifically for kittens, and offer continuous access to kitten biscuits and fresh water.

Obviously, a kitten cannot go outside. They must be kept indoors until they are neutered, preferably longer so that they can fend for themselves. You will be given a vaccination certificate with a note of when their second vaccine is due, and you will need to have your kitten neutered at 5/6 months – this are essential, and a condition of the adoption.

Pet Insurance

You will receive 4 weeks free insurance through Petplan. At the end of four weeks, Petplan will then contact you to discuss taking out a policy, which is up to you. If you contact Petplan before the end of your free cover and take out a policy with them, you receive an extra free month’s insurance. We do recommend that every cat is insured through Pet Plan, as vet bills in the case of illness or accident can be very high.

If you have any concerns at all about your newly adopted cat, we are on hand to help. Just call us, or email us at purrs@heatonscats.org.uk

Post-Rehoming

We will contact you a week or two after rehoming to find out how your new furry friend is settling in. If you have any questions at all, please give us a call or send us an email.

Finally, we grow rather attached to the cats we rehome, and it is lovely to hear how they are settling into their new home, so please update us when you have a minute. We especially love to see photographs and hear your funny, mischievous, and heart-warming stories – email them over to us or get in touch via Facebook.