SNIFF NOTES: The Cats from the Summer


There were 21, all at one time. They had been abandoned in a home and left on their own.

Twenty-one cats all came in at one time to the Cumberland Valley Animal Shelter this summer and we were scrambling. We had to make sure we had enough carriers for all of them when we went to get them. We had to take a couple of vehicles to the house.

As staff members walked over garbage and piles of refuse to get the cats, we could tell how scared they all were. They didn’t know what was happening.

Once the vehicles were full and we were certain there were no more cats in the home, we drove back to the shelter, where the intake process began.

Because getting the animals out of the home is only the very beginning in these situations.

We brought kennels into the bonding rooms on wheels. We weren’t sure what kind of illnesses the cats might be harboring and didn’t want to put them in with the rest of our feline population at the shelter. Then, one by one, we took them into the surgery room to evaluate their health.

The majority of them were quite skinny and they all had a bad infestation of fleas.

Some of them were missing hair and a few had serious ear issues because of the fleas. In fact, one or two even had missing or partial ears because of the infestation.

It was clear that they hadn’t had any care for a long while.

We got them into clean kennels with blankets and water and food and let them settle in. They were all so scared.

Our animal care technicians and front office staff made sure to spend time with them when they could, getting them used to people and giving them cuddle time.

I’m proud to say that almost six month later, we have adopted 14 of the babies and the rest are doing incredibly well. Their hair has grown back and they have come out of their shells since they have had good food and time to recuperate.

I will say we’ve been struggling for a while with the cost of caring for them. Our cat population typically swells in the summer months and having 21 come in on one day means our funding took quite a hit.

If you would be willing to donate to help the final seven of these babies and help us get our coffers back up since the summer, we would be so incredibly grateful.

We work hard every day of the year to make sure we can care for the animals in our kennels and we could not do it without the support we receive from this community. This is truly an animal shelter that is supported by the people we serve and we are so grateful.

If you or anyone you know is looking to adopt a feline friend, please stop out at the shelter and see if we could make a match for your best four-legged friend.

When we have animals come in from tough situations like this, we’re never sure what will happen, but our 21 cats from the summer have turned out to be a real success story for CVAS.

And we couldn’t have done that without the help from our adopters, supporters and donors.


Jennifer Vanderau is the Publications and Promotions Consultant for the Cumberland Valley Animal Shelter and can be reached at [email protected]. The shelter accepts both monetary and pet supply donations. For more information, call the shelter at 263-5791 or visit the website CVAS also operates thrift stores in Chambersburg and Shippensburg. Help support the animals at the shelter by donating to or shopping at the stores.

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