Rescue groups and shelters will tell you that black cats have a more difficult time getting adopted. A 2002 study by the Journal of Applied Animal Welfare Science conducted over nine months in a California shelter found that black cats were about half as likely to be adopted as tabby cats and two-thirds less likely than white cats.
One rescue group in particular found these statistics unacceptable and decided to do something about it. The group is Black Cat Rescue located in the greater Boston area. The all-volunteer network is dedicated to saving the lives of homeless black cats and kittens by providing quality foster care, while the members actively seek loving, permanent adoptive homes.
Founders Jennifer Stott and Samantha McDuffee formally established the organization in 2008 and achieved non-profit status in 2009. Previously, they had volunteered with other shelters and feral cat trap, neuter and return (TNR) programs. The decision to start their own group also was prompted by their own experience in 2007 when they found Dottie, a black-and-white cat, who they were unable to keep. Their success in finding her a home convinced them they could undertake placing black cats on a larger scale.
Today the group has a network of about 12 foster homes. Black Cat Rescue takes in all black and black-and-white cats, which also have a difficult time getting placed, Jennifer points out. They will in an emergency take other colored cats, but try to keep their focus on the black and black-and-white kitties.
The cats come from a variety of sources including surrenders from owners who would quite understandably prefer to leave their cats in a foster situation awaiting permanent placement versus a shelter. Black Cat Rescue also takes cats from shelters around the state. The group has formed relationships with several shelters who call when a black cat is surrendered. Even local vets now contact the organization when a client brings in a stray black cat it has found.
Lyuba still needs a home.
Public unaware of difficulty black cats have
Jennifer says that many people are surprised to learn that black cats have such a hard time finding forever homes. Educating a sympathetic public to the problem helps increase adoption potential.
Most adoptions are arranged online through Black Cat Rescue’s use of adoption profile matching system. Jennifer coordinates the adoptions when an application comes in and then the potential adopter schedules a visit with the kitty at the foster’s home.
Black Cat Rescue receives calls from shelters asking for advice on the best way to ‘market’ their black cats. They tell them:
• Get some good pictures
• Focus on personality
• Organize special black cats adoption events
• Let people know the problem black cats are facing
Black Cat Rescue has placed over 75 cats in since the organization has gotten off the ground. With a growing reputation and the great PR they are doing for black cats, they expect those numbers to climb.
If you would like to know more about Black Cat Rescue and find out more about the beautiful cats in their care or become a foster, go to:www.petfinder.com/shelters/MA378.html . You also can join their growing membership of Facebook Fans at http://www.facebook.com/blackcatrescue.
For more information on Lyuba featured above, go to: http://www.petfinder.com/petdetail/15862492