Animal Welfare Association

Where are you located?

AWA does not have its own shelter, therefore, all the  cats that we rescue are in different places.
Some are
  boarded at vet clinics or boarding facilities and some are placed in foster homes.

Where is your office?
We don't have an office or any paid employees.  We are  all volunteers working out of our own homes.

How do I get to see the cats?
If you see a cat or several cats on the website that you are  interested in, please call a volunteer at
(905) 544-1053 or 547-4169
The volunteer will give you the locations of the cats  and phone numbers to call for appointments to see them.

Why do I have to talk to a volunteer?
Our volunteers need to briefly interview any person wanting to adopt one of our cats to ensure that they will
provide the cat with a good responsible home that is  suitable for the cat they are interested in.
Every cat is different ... a very shy cat would not do well with a family of noisy active children and an energetic young
kitten would not be suitable for an elderly person.  Some cats need to be an only pet while others would do well
in a multi-pet home ... the volunteers and vet clinic staff  know the personalities of the cats and can advise you.

What are the special requirements for adopting a tiny kitten?
Young kittens (2 - 5 months old) need a home where there will be someone with them most of the time.
These tiny creatures have always had the company of their mother and siblings and can become
very stressed and lonely when suddenly left alone for long periods.  People who are out at work all day
should NOT consider a very young kitten unless they are adopting two kittens together.
Even if there was another cat in the family that would be company for the kitten, someone would still
need to supervise them for the first few weeks to be sure there was no aggression from the older cat.
Kittens are not suitable for families with pre-schoolers.  An over exuberant toddler may treat the kitten as roughly
as a toy,causing serious injuries and the child could be badly scratched or bitten in return.
An older kitten or cat will usually be able to avoid the clutches of a small child.
Small kittens are highly active and constantly underfoot and therefore not a good choice for elderly people.
A senior would be well advised to choose a mature cat who will not outlive them and whose subdued energy level is a better match.

After I have been to see the cats, what do I do  if I decide I want to adopt one of them?
Tell the staff at the vet clinic or the care-giver in the  foster home and also the volunteer you spoke to
that you want to adopt the cat you have just been to see.   The cat will not be shown to anyone else and will be
reserved for you.  It is not necessary to make a deposit.   The volunteer will make arrangements with
the vet/foster home
  and you to do the adoption at a mutually agreeable time.
Even if you decide not to adopt, please call the volunteer  back and tell them so they know the status of the cat.

Can I take the cat home right away?
No, not usually.  We don't want you to make a snap  decision on a 15 - 20 year commitment.
We also need time
  to make sure the cat is ready to go out to a new home.  The  health record
needs to be prepared or updated and the cat
  needs its nails trimmed and a fresh application of Advantage.
However, exceptions can be made if you wish and advance arrangements are made with the volunteer.

What if someone else wants the same cat I do?
Whoever calls first and makes an appointment to see the cat  has 'first dibs' on that cat.
If the first person decides
  not to adopt, then the second person has a chance to adopt.

How does the adoption process work?
When a date, time and place have been arranged,  the volunteer will meet you there. The volunteer will give you an
adoption contract to fill out and sign.  Our adoption fee is $100,  cash or cheque.  We don't take credit or debit cards.
You will get a receipt, but it is not a tax receipt.  You also get the cat's health record, showing dates of
vaccinations, de-wormings, flea treatment, spay/neuter etc.  and a catnip ball as a going-home present for your cat.

What's included with the adoption fee?
All our adoptions include Feline Leukemia testing,  rabies vaccination, 1st and 2nd FVRCP vaccinations,
2 de-wormings, flea control, spay/neuter surgery and any other medical treatment necessary to restore good health.
If it's a kitten that hasn't had all their shots completed  at the time of adoption, we give you a voucher
to pay for that and
  for the spay/neuter surgery when the kitten is old enough.

Why do I need a cat carrier?
It is unsafe to transport a cat without a carrier, therefore,  no carrier ... no cat!
If you don't have a carrier of your own and are
  unable to borrow one, we may have one available that we
could lend you for the trip home - just ask.  You should however purchase  a carrier of your own as soon as possible.
You will eventually
  need one to take your cat to the vet for annual check-ups
and you never know when an emergency might arise.

Why do I have to buy food from the vet?
If you suddenly switch the food that the cat has been used  to eating at the vet's, it will probably result
in stomach upset and
  diarrhea for the cat and we're sure you'll both want to avoid that!
You can purchase one bag of food from the vet and gradually  switch over to another 'good quality' food later on if you wish.
We can advise you which foods are suitable for your cat.  The quality of the food affects the health of your cat.
Cheaper foods might have taste appeal, but could cause  expensive and painful health problems for your cat later on.

Why do you insist that AWA cats must be kept indoors?
We feel strongly that keeping a cat indoors is the safest,  healthiest choice.  Studies have shown that indoor cats usually live
twice as long as cats that go outside.  Even with vaccinations and  flea control, a cat that goes outdoors is still at risk from disease
and parasites.  Plus there are the dangers of road traffic,  attack from other aggressive animals, pesticides and poisons.
Apartment balconies may seem safe, but unless they are  completely and securely screened, cats can easily jump onto
a railing (perhaps chasing an insect or bird) and fall,  causing serious injury or death.  Even taking a cat outside
for a walk on a harness and leash is not safe. When confronted  by a dog, a terrified cat becomes surprisingly strong enough
to pull a leash from its owner’s hand and can be gone in a flash.  So why risk the health and well-being of your pet?
Don't find out the hard way that going outside is too  dangerous for your cat.  Indoor cats can enjoy looking at birds
and squirrels from a sunny window; scratching posts can replace  trees and small toys can provide the stimulation of hunting.

Why is there a 2 week trial period?
We want to make sure that this is a 'forever' home for  the cat.  A trial period ensures that there
aren't any conflicts
  with other animals in the home or any surprise allergy problems  in the family.
We want both the cat and the new owner to be happy!

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