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 are Pets At Home Stockport Charity Of The Year. This support allows us to help so many stray and unwanted cats, and we are very grateful.

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.

  • 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
  • Unfortunately, we cannot take in a cat needing emergency veterinary treatment or a serious illness, but can advise where help may be sourced.

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:

  • We always do a home check to ensure that the location is safe. Our visit is not intrusive, but we do need to see where the cat will be living. 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: With Covid19 still affecting all of us, we are only taking applications by email (purrs@heatonscats.org.uk). Please tell us your address, a contact number, whether you have children, other pets and, if in rented accommodation, if you have your landlord s written permission to have a cat. We would also like to know your average working pattern. We are holding outside meetings here in our yard. To give us a chance to meet you and discuss a possible adoption with you in a safe and remote environment

All available cats and kittens are on the website and on our Facebook adoption page.

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. We  do not rehome kittens until 48 hrs after their second vaccine, by which time they will be approximately 13 weeks old.


Your Appointment

Once we have met you, and you have chosen a cat you would like to adopt, you  pay a reservation fee of £10 and collect the cat at a later agreed 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 £75 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 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. 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


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.