There are many reasons why someone may no longer be able to care for their much-loved cat or kitten.

A common situation we experience here at Cat People of Melbourne is being approached by people who have become unwell, are going into residential aged care or have had a family member pass away, and need to find a new forever home for their cat.

We accept surrendered cats

We will support anyone who needs to surrender a cat. We understand how distressing and heart-wrenching this process can be both for owners, families and the cats.

If your life circumstances are changing, we can also give you advice about some options for your particular situation, and can help you take the steps required. There may be other solutions you can consider before you decide to rehome your cat through us.

Please let us know as early as possible

We quite often have more cats in need of care than available foster carers, so we ask that you contact us as soon as you realise that you’ll have to surrender your cat. Please do not leave it to the last minute.

As the surrendering and rehoming process can take several weeks, the more time you give us means the better chance we have of delivering the best outcome for your beloved companion.

Rehoming is our priority

Our ultimate aim is to rehome your cat from the home it knows into another loving home.

Wherever possible, we want to avoid having to move your cat, even for a short time, into a pound or shelter. Cats who haven’t been exposed to that kind of loud, scary environment can find it hard to cope, leading them to act out or shut down. They may then be incorrectly assessed as having behavioural issues and they are euthanised. Unlike foster care networks, pounds and shelters can’t give cats the 3 days to 2 weeks they may need to settle down, to the cats’ detriment.

Sometimes these cats are older, like their owners – and needing to move into a new environment in their senior years, or having to move multiple times, can be difficult for them.

We are a network of foster carers and if we have an available carer, we can accommodate your cat in a temporary home during the rehoming process – although it is a great help if a family member or friend can take temporary care of the cat, as our foster carers are often at capacity.

How we help

We will work with the owner and family to find out about the cat – everything from its personality and behaviour, to preferred food and games.

By law, cats being surrendered must be desexed, microchipped and have their vaccinations up to date. Our vets will do a full health check and advise if anything else needs to be done, such as dental work or blood tests. This is usually paid for by the cat’s owner/guardian at our rates via our organisation, unless there is financial hardship. Talk to us about this, we’re here to help.

Once your cat is adoption ready, with a snappy profile and lovely pictures, we will advertise for a new home. And we have a tried and proven collaborative adoption process between the owner/foster carer and our adoptions team to ensure the cat is adopted to the right people in the right environment for them.

We don’t charge a fee to accept a cat being surrendered, but a donation to our organisation is always appreciated. Every cent donated goes straight back to the cats and kittens in our care, for their vet treatment, food and litter.

Then there’s the love and care our dedicated network of volunteers provide. None of us are paid to do what we do – it’s all for the love of cats!