Spring has finally sprung in Northwest Ohio! Flowers are blooming, luscious green leaves fill the trees, snow blowers have been traded for lawn mowers, and snow boots for flip-flops. The chirps of baby birds fill the air, squirrels are playing in the branches above our heads, and perhaps you have glimpsed a fawn on a walk through one of our beautiful Metroparks. New life is bursting throughout our region, a welcome change from the frozen landscape of winter.
Mostly, that is.
Each spring, animal shelters in our region quickly fill to capacity with cats and kittens. While efforts to curb the influx of cats exist, such as Humane Ohio’s discounted spay/neuter program for zip codes with the highest numbers of feral cats, this time of year strains many rescue shelters and their resources. Many of these shelters are no-kill shelters, meaning their animals will not be euthanized unnecessarily, which is an important factor for many when surrendering an animal.
Many years ago, after my cat had surprised us with a litter of kittens, I found myself needing to find a rescue shelter for the final kitten of the litter. This kitten, whom I had dubbed “Lil Guy,” was born with two clubbed front legs, and though I desperately wanted to keep him, circumstances prevented me from doing so. Lil Guy ended up with Paws and Whiskers, a no-kill shelter on Hillwyck Drive in Toledo. Despite his handicap, Lil Guy was just as active as his siblings had been, and I wanted to make sure he was given the chance to live out his days with someone who could see how special he was, as I did. While I have no idea what happened to Lil Guy after we dropped him off, I like to think he found the perfect environment for him.
No-kill shelters are wonderful but come with some challenges. Due to their nature, some animals can be with the shelter a long time, and in times of high or full capacity, resources can be stretched thin. Shelters, as with most nonprofit organizations, rely heavily on donations. However, not all donations needed are financial in nature. Certain items, such as food, paper towels, toys, bedding, and cleaning supplies are always in demand. Some have created a Wishlist on Amazon or Chewy, similar to a baby or wedding shower registry.
For Fur Rescue Animal Shelter, however, “our biggest obstacle is not having enough fosters for the number of animals we are asked to take in,” said Brooke Dutridge, founder of the nonprofit. “Because of this we, sadly, have to turn animals away.”
Dutridge was 26 when she founded Fur Angels in the beginning stages of the COVID-19 pandemic. “My long-term goal is to become a brick and mortar rescue so we can help more lives,” she said, using her six years in the animal rescue industry as the foundation for her mission. “Kittens are coming into our program nonstop; spring and fall are our busiest times for kitten intake.” She encourages the public to get involved by volunteering to be foster families, which are in high demand across all area shelters and rescues.
If you are ready to add a furry loved one to your family, or if you are interested in fostering or donating, no worries! We’ve done the hard work for you! We compiled a list of every cat shelter in the area, from Monroe to Findlay and Defiance to Oak Harbor. We even included links to all area Humane Societies, too. All shelters accept monetary donations on their websites. Direct links to specific Amazon, Chewy, or other wishlists are provided if available.
TOLEDO METRO AREA
Paws and Whiskers
32 Hillwyck Dr, Toledo, OH 43615
Maumee Valley Save-a-Pet
5250 Hill Ave, Toledo, OH 43615
Toledo Animal Shelter Association
640 Wyman St, Toledo, OH 43609
Cat Tales – the Cat Clinic
7341 Airport Hwy #1, Holland, OH 43528
Free medical exams for kittens adopted from the Humane Society
P.O. Box 350908, Toledo, OH 43635
4299 County Road 1 2, Swanton, OH 43558
29098 Hufford Rd, Perrysburg, OH 43551
1421 Holloway Rd, Holland, OH 43528
Tabby Tails Cat Rescue
22550 Mermill Rd, Custar, OH 43511
By Appointment Only
P.O. Box 563, Neapolis, OH 43547
ECox@GoodShepherdOhio.Org – by appointment only
Includes farm animals, dogs, and cats
10693 Salem-Carroll Rd, Oak Harbor, OH 43449
A working farm, also rescues farm animals in addition to cats
3320 Co Rd 175, Clyde, OH 43410
4107 Napoleon Rd, Fremont, OH 43420
3751 W Oak Harbor SE Road (aka Route 17), Port Clinton, OH 43452
Currently not accepting cats or kittens for rescue; works with area shelters to place rescue felines. Currently offers flea/worm treatment and ear cleanings.
12409 County Rd 99, Findlay, OH 45840
2532 N Dixie Hwy, Monroe, MI 48162
Monroe County’s only all-cat Rescue and Adoption Center, Thrift Store
51299 Arkona Rd., Belleville, MI 48111