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Can anyone advise on how to best handle a free adoption situation?

post #1 of 10
Thread Starter 
My older brother went about adopting two kittens a few weeks ago - one was given to him by a client while doing a computer repair job for them (said the cat- about 6 weeks old- was going to be treated badly had it stayed with the clients family, yet they still had quite a few other kittens that did stay there, as well as all of the other pets they already had.)

The 2nd cat (about 8 weeks old) he adopted out from a local humane society a day later. He said he wanted two cats so that they would keep each other company while he was out working all day

Now, I had been telling him/ pleading with him not to get any cats of his own, each time he brought up that issue since he moved into his own place a few years ago. I knew/ know that it wouldn't be/ isn't fair to the cats to live with someone so ill prepared/ irresponsible, and just the fact that, as far as I'm concerned, his place is too small for a cat- let alone two of them.

But he got them anyway. And now, just about 2 weeks in - he's coming to realize what a mistake it was on his part (he can't even handle the fact that one of the cats has used his floor/ carpet instead of the litter box a few times. He lacks even the most basic foresight and understanding when it comes to dealing with owning a pet and properly tending to their needs.)

So, he's come to me (as usual) asking for help in finding people that he will be able to give these kittens away to (along with about $400 worth of supplies/ toys, etc, that he splurged on during one of his silly impulsive spending sprees the day he got the 2nd cat.)

So now I'm just trying to figure how best to go about seeing that these cats are ;
A) Both "Really" wanted to begin with,
B) Taken in by people that actually have the proper means and intentions to take care of them, and that won't just take the new cat tree and the other supplies, etc, and then give the kittens up to a shelter or to some other undeserving/ ill prepared owner, themselves, right after.

I know free classified sites like Craigslist and Kijiji (here in Canada, at least) are fairly popular with people trying to give cats/ kittens up for adoption, etc - but I'd like to know if there are better places/ ways I should look into, first?

post #2 of 10
I wish I could help. I know you will find them good homes. If you were closer, I would take both of them. But, I'm in Virginia and can't help.

Keep us posted

post #3 of 10
Bless you for caring for those kitties...isn't there any way, that, with encouragement, your brother could become educated into being a good pet owner? That would be the best option...I have a friend who lives in small trailer (she's in a wheelchair) and her 5 cats do very well; I've visited too many no-kill shelters where cats spend years in tiny cages .....that said, if the kittens have to go, then I'd contact the local feedstores and the vets- sometimes someone who has just had a cat put down will be willing to rescue one....they wouldn't think of driving down to the shelter, but if "God sends one (or two) along....".
Sending prayers and vibes that the kittens get to go together to a happy, permanent home!!! Who knows, maybe your brother was just a "stepping stone" that Heaven used to get the kittens to where they're supposed to be....
post #4 of 10
Thread Starter 
Thanks for the kind gesture lostmary, and thanks catsknowme for the feedstore and vet suggestions.

I used to see adoption print-outs posted in our vets office, so that is definitely something I'll consider doing.

Our cat died in October 2007, he was just over 20 years old at the time. It was actually my brother -at the age of around 13 - who bought him as a kitten (same impulsive type of reaction from him, even back then.)

My brother lived with us/ our cat until about 2003. But, even when he was living here- he never actually looked after our cat in any way (just the odd pet/hold here and there, when he noticed him/ made time.) Since about the age of 12, I was always the one who looked after and cared for our cat, far more than anyone else in the family. I will probably never get attached to another living being like that again, for as long as I live, and that's why it frustrates me so much when I see people like my brother take pet ownership so lightly.

Knowing that my older brother is just not the type to be able to handle the responsibility of taking care of a cat, much less two of them - I was always telling him "please don't" whenever he would bring up the subject of getting cats to live with him. But, since he had that thought/ naively self-reassuring plan planted in the back of his head all these years since moving out on his own- and knowing the type of impulsive person he is - I assumed that he'd eventually find an excuse to adopt/ receive a cat from someone/ somewhere if the situation came up (just as it did.)

Right after he got the cats - he phoned me and told me - and we went through the whole "me reminding him of the costs involved with caring for a cat, and how unprepared he is, and how it isn't fair to the cats to live in such a small place with no chance of ever going outdoors...etc, etc" type deal - which he knew was coming from me.

He went to his usual reflexive retorts to all of the things I was telling him would inevitably happen and that he'd have to deal with (which he had yet to think about at all)... always replying with "I've done research / I'm not dumb, I know what I'm doing" (which, with him, almost always means he didn't do ANY "research" and it was a completely spur of the moment/ irrational /impulsive decision on his part- other than simply knowing he wanted to have another cat one day and this was an opportunity to make that happen sooner rather than later.)

I'm afraid encouragement won't really do any good in my brothers case. It's not that he's a bad person or anything like that, but he is, unfortunately, fairly hopeless when it comes to the capacity to sympathize/empathize with animals to the point that I feel is necessary for him to be able to be an adequate care giver for them.

He loves animals, but sadly, like so many other people, he loves only when it suits him and when he remembers to give them the attention they deserve (at least - what I feel they deserve, and much more frequently, too.)

He's like an overgrown child in many ways, really - he has too much on his plate, work wise - his mind is all over the place all the time. The way he spends his leisure time is not going to change for these cats even if he decided to keep them, and he's really bad with money/ spending/ organizational habits to begin with - which is never a good sign when you are responsible for lives other than your own.

Even if he could change his ways, and I felt comfortable in his ability to take care of these cats (less than 1% chance), I'd probably still feel that they deserve a better environment/space to live in. His place isn't really all that small (2 floor apmt) and a lot of people live with cats in much smaller more confined living spaces and it is clearly MUCH better than being stuck in a no-kill shelter cage for the rest of their lives (as mentioned above.)

But it always comes back to me wanting to push and hope for an idealistic life for pets and animals, whenever possible, before I concede to a comparably "better" life they could/would have vs. the hell so many of them do have to live through in our world.

I really hope I can find these cats a good home (preferably with a protected outdoor space to play around in), and soon.
post #5 of 10
Do not use Craigslist or Kijiji - I cant tell you the number of cats we get in to the shelter that people got for free on them but once they need speutering or any kind of care end up wrapped up in a box on the doorstep of a shelter.

A lot of shelters will offer a 'New Homes Needed' book for listings of private adoptions to show people who come into the shelter or offer those listings on the website or on petfinder.

Go to local humane societies and see what their application process consists of - many have the app online but see the whole process.

And charge something for them, even if its just $25 or something. It stops the people who want them for free iumpulsively or people using them for BYB or animal testing or something eually as bad
post #6 of 10
I think Craigslist or Kijiji are ok, but my experience is that you have to make the ad very strict, tell people you are going to ask them to fill out an application and tell them it is to weed out crazy people on the site and you hope they don't mind. Tell them to write a bit about themselves. Make your pictures of the cats GORGEOUS, and you need to write about them as if they are the crown jewels of England, very precious. And be sure to say things like "these kitties will love anyone who doesn't chase them around or treat them like a toy".

Bottom line, if YOU treat these kitties in your description like gold, that they are very special- and just say so- and if YOU present them as very precious and valuable, people will respond in kind.

I would definitely create boundaries and structure around your adoption; most people want to be guided through the process.

Manage their expectations by what you put in the ad. Be honest that you are looking for the right match for these very exceptional kitties, not just anyone to take them.

As far as determining whether the home is suitable- Establish a comfort zone with prospective adopters, i.e. make casual conversation to anyone who writes or calls, until you find common interests. Then once you sense they are comfortable and at ease, draw them out. Don't you do all the talking. Ask how they came to love cats. Ask if there are other cats. And what led them to an adoption.

Send me your email thru the PM and I will send you a generic application you can use for people who reply. DON'T adopt to anyone who doesn't fill out and return the app. You will need to put your own fax number on it.

I agree too about charging money. I did not read if the cats are fully vetted and spayed/neutered tested but if so, charge money. If not, say that fee is negotiable. But IMO you should vet them at your cost and then do the adoption and charge money to recoup your expenses.

Good luck, am sending vibes your way
post #7 of 10
I almost forgot, someone just recently told me that Petfinder.com now allows individuals to post cats for adoption on it too. I apologize in advance if someone in this thread already told you that.

Also if you PM me your email address or phone I can tell you other ways to make sure these kitties end up with a good home. My own phone number is a listing in Chicago for people to call who are giving up their cats, so I do know many different things that you can tell your brother to do that will work. But I can't post them all here.
post #8 of 10
One thing you must do for sure... if someone is going to adopt that rents, you MUST see the lease. You definitely do not want to adopt to people who aren't allowed to have pets. If they say they own, you need to see the title or deed or whatever. This definitely helps weed out people who aren't serious.

post #9 of 10
Thread Starter 
Thank you icklemiss21, BarbB and Laurie for all of your really helpful suggestions.

My brother finally got around to sending me the pictures I've been asking him to send to me for the last 10 days so I'd be able to get started on putting together the adoption listing for the kittens.

It turns out that he went ahead and took one of the kittens (the orange one) back to the original owners about a week ago, without telling me before hand (said he just couldn't deal any longer with all of the mess the orange one was making on his carpets all day/night.)

Not only was I upset that he split the kittens up again, but I asked him why he took the orange guy back to his previous owners when his (my brothers) entire argument/ excuse for taking that kitten in the first place was because he was "saving" him from those owners (specifically, the young child he said they had that was treating the cat like a play toy... all rough and dangerous, etc.)

Like I said in my original post - those people had many other pets already, and my brother never said anything about them being treated poorly, so this was more likely a case of my brother just sticking with whatever half-truth/ lie had first popped into his head at the time- which he always does whenever I confront him about something he knows he should not have done (in this case; taking a cat he had no business taking to begin with, after me always telling him not to because I knew something like this would happen.)

So now it's just the one smaller (yet, slightly older) grey kitten that he has, who he got from the Humane Society around 3 weeks ago.

I will PM you my email address, BarbB, and take you up on your gracious offer for that generic application. I will definitely make sure to be extra careful when screening for any potential adopters if I use Petfinder, Craigslist or Kijiji and any other website like that.

Petfinder seems to have around 18 cats up for adoption in their "Adoptable-Pet Classifieds" section at the moment, from the Ontario, Canada area (my brother lives just east of Toronto). So, I think I'll try that site out first.

Here are the pictures my brother just sent me:

[IMG] [/IMG]


The scratching post and cat tree will be given to the person that ends up taking the kitten, as well.



post #10 of 10
I'm usually a lurker here, but my advice is to talk with the original shelter the kitten came from.

The original adoption contract that your brother signed to get the kitten - most humane societies have them. Check to see if there's a line about rehoming animals - some rescues require that the animal comes back to the rescue if the animal needs a new home. Also, try talking to the place the kitten came from - they might be willing to post the picture of the kitten on their website, allow you place a flyer for adoption, or even bring the kitten to an adoption event.
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