Louisa Mae Allcatt watches volunteer Leslie Williams with great interest, pacing up and down the multi-level display kennel that spotlights her at the Humane Society of Northeast Georgia. When Williams pulls her out, the black feline curls up against her and licks her fingers.
“This is just a really sweet cat,” Williams said.
Despite her charms and playful disposition, Louisa Mae has lived at the humane society for more than six months. But the shelter is a limited-admissions shelter, which means it does not euthanize.
“Our animals stay with us until they’re adopted,” said Julie Edwards, director of development and marketing.
For this reason the shelter has to come up with creative ways to get its animals placed in homes.
Fabulous Feline February is the shelter’s first cat-adoption promotion. Adoption fees normally range from $70-$100, but this month the fees are reduced to $50 for adult cats and $75 for kittens.
The cats are spayed or neutered, up-to-date on their vaccinations and have microchips implanted in case they get lost.
“And they’re all healthy,” Edwards said. “When you get them from us they’re good to go.”
A common misconception about shelter animals is that they are the “leftovers,” which is not true, Edwards said.
Sometimes, especially in a recession, owners must surrender their pets because they’ve lost their homes and no longer have a place to keep them.
“There’s a lot of different reasons why animals are in shelters, not just because they’re undesirable,” Edwards said.
Cider, a brindle bobtail, certainly caught the attention of Jeremy Gable, 22, of Gainesville. In a special acquaintance room, Gable made friends with the 7-month-old cat.
“It was mellow and sweet,” he said.
Gable and his mother, Kristy Armstrong, 44, visit the shelter every weekend, despite owning three cats already.
“We just love animals — probably if I ever won the lottery I’d try and start my own animal farm,” Armstrong said.
All of the animals available for adoption can be viewed at the humane society’s website. Because it’s linked to the office software, the postings are updated as soon as an animal arrives and as soon as it is adopted.
“If you’re looking at it on the website, it’s available,” Edwards said.
She said the shelter hopes to adopt most of its cats to make room for the animals that will arrive during “litter season.”
“Spring is when cats start multiplying,” she said.
Soft gray and black paws playfully reached out to Gable as he placed Cider back in her cage among the other cats. He continued to pet the bobtail for a few minutes before finally closing the door.
“We might come back and get it,” he said.