Too many cats, not enough homes: Best for Kitty builds winter shelters

By Daniel Adam
Staff Writer

Best for Kitty is building insulated wooden shelters to house cats they can’t keep inside anymore.

Joan Foley of Best for Kitty said they had vetted a handful of cats, but since no fosters or adoptive homes stepped up, they had to release some.

But knowing a cold winter is imminent, Foley’s husband began building shelters.

“We can’t leave those cats outside all winter,” said Foley. “We just can’t.”

The cats will still be fed and looked after, it’s just that there’s no more room for them indoors. Foley said the shelters should be ready in a few weeks.

Best for Kitty previously had styrofoam shelters, but Foley said they weren’t really used, especially since they only had one entrance.

“Cats shelters need two [openings]—an entrance and an exit,” she said. “So that, should a predator come in, they can escape. The ones that we’re building have two.”

Foley said Best for Kitty is still getting almost daily requests to house cats.

“We can’t possibly take them all,” she said. “There’s too many.”

Though they try to help as many people as they can, it isn’t always possible.

“It’s sometimes tough to get fosters because they may have animals of their own,” said Foley.

As a pet rescue service that gets cats off of Rainy River District streets, Best for Kitty will first vet the cats by ensuring they are spayed, neutered or vaccinated before they are adopted to good homes.

“I would say we’ve had really good success since we started,” said Foley. “People in the district have been so incredibly generous. That’s how we keep going. Without the community’s help, we would not be able to do this.”

People have dropped off supplies, donated money, and offered to build shelters.

Best for Kitty operates on donations and are hoping to eventually obtain charity status.

The group at Best for Kitty is all volunteers and will always welcome any kind of donation.

Sweet little Charlotte is one of the lucky kittens being cared for by Best for Kitty, but a lack of foster homes has forced the shelter to turn away many others in need of help. Volunteers have started building cat shelters, to give them a chance at survival this winter. To help, or be a foster, reach out to Best for Kitty over Facebook.