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Mercer Island Eastside Orphans & Waifs (aka MEOW Cat Rescue)
February 20, 2012

MEOW Cat Rescue is a little gem of a shelter located in the Houghton area of Kirkland across the parking lot from PCC Natural Market. Once you step inside, you know you've discovered a very special place. The atmosphere is warm and welcoming and the cats are obviously very happy and well cared for. It is clean and very well organized. Some of the wonderful features are:

• Two wonderful free-roaming rooms are brightened by big windows and large window sills for the cats to lounge on (and the sills are always occupied!). Cat trees, climbers and scratchers abound as well as cozy beds. The rooms are cheerful, clean and happy - kind of like Disneyland for cats!
• Two 'Meet & Greet' rooms are used to introduce prospective adopters and cats/kittens. These rooms are cozy and give everyone room to stretch out and get to know each other. MEOW recognizes that some one-on-one time is essential in making that very important adoption decision.
• Each cat over the age of 9 months has a 'personality profile' which is a scientific evaluation process developed by the ASPCA. The 'Meet Your Match' program assesses how cats act in a shelter environment, which can predict how they might act initially in a home, how quickly they may adjust as well as some basic personality traits to expect. This assessment is based on a cat's behavior and level of interest in play, exploration, 'talking', and being the center of attention. Based on this evaluation, each cat is given one of nine distinct feline personality assignments ("feline-ality") and can then be paired with adopters whose personality and lifestyle fit the cat best. Some of the feline-alities are Love Bug, Leader of the Band, Secret Admirer and Party Animal. Research shows that good matches help make strong bonds and bonding is the key to successful adoptions.
• The volunteers and staff are very knowledgeale, helpful and friendly. They are well-trained and it is obvious that they love what they do. There is a genuine concern for the cats/kittens and placing them in the best home(s) possible.
• All cats/kittens are spayed/neutered, microchipped, receive a series of vaccines and dewormings and are tested for feline aids (FIV) and feline leukemia (FeLV). They are treated for parasites, both internal and external if necessary. They trim their nails and check their ears. These felines really get the spa treatment! They also leave the shelter with a free 'Well Kitty Exam' voucher which can be redeemed at most King County vet offices.
• Foster homes! MEOW has about 75 active foster homes. Because of the volume of cats/kittens that they help, MEOW can't house them all. Most kittens and some cats spend time in a loving and safe foster home until they are ready to make their journey to the shelter. The foster homes love what they do and are the reason that MEOW is able to help so many animals in need. They provide nutritious food, a safe environment and lots of love. This produces healthy, happy and social kittens!
• Although the name, MEOW Cat Rescue implies cats and kittens, MEOW also has a dog division! MEOW's K9 Division serves as breed rescue to Chinese Shar Pei for all of Washington, Oregon and Idaho. They also rescue Great Danes, hairless breeds and all other dogs as space permits. Because of the size of the shelter, all dogs are in foster homes.
The next time you have a little time on your hands or if you're interested in adopting, MEOW is a good place to start. Adoption fees are very reasonable and help to defray the cost of care for the animals. Adopting a pet is actually much less expensive than getting a 'free' pet when you consider the cost of services already provided to the animal.

There are hundreds of reasons to adopt a shelter pet - and each and every one of them has a name. MEOW's motto: All nine lives are precious.

More feedback

Would you volunteer for this group again?

Definitely

For the time you spent, how much of an impact did you feel your work or activity had?

Life-changing

Did the organization use your time wisely?

Very Well

Would you recommend this group to a friend?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2012

MY ROLE:
Volunteer