Maddie’s Fund will present the largest national free pet adoption weekend ever, June 1–2, 2013, and the Mayor’s Alliance for NYC’s Animals will be presenting this awesome event in the New York City area on June 1 and 2! Thousands of cats and dogs will be available FREE to qualified homes at more than 50 participating shelters and other adoption locations, and at two large, outdoor adoption events in Manhattan.
The Mayor’s Alliance and Maddie’s Fund asked me to blog about this event, and to share the joys of adopting shelter pets. Only one of the three of us was adopted directly from a shelter (Boodie was a foster and her story is here, and I am a breed cat). That leaves Binga, so I thought I would tell you her story, and why shelter cats are awesome family members.
In spite of appearances, trust me, the humans are very happy to have her here — even though they weren’t actually looking for her and were only rescuing her because they did not want to leave her in a kill shelter. The original intention had been to find a home for her.
It was October of 2000, and the humans had befriended a neighborhood cat, a black kitty who seemed to like their house more than his own. He turned up missing for a couple of weeks, and since my human didn’t exactly know who he belonged to, she went to the nearest animal control to see if he had been taken there. She did not see him, but she did see a very friendly young black cat who she fell in love with. The shelter did not allow black cats to be adopted near Halloween, but said she could come fetch him November 1. While she was looking at the cages of cats, there was also a small tortoiseshell kitten who would not leave her alone. She kept begging for attention, sticking her paws through the cage, and grabbing my human’s hand and licking her fingers.
My human did not want to leave this kitten in the shelter, so she asked her boyfriend if he thought the vet clinic where he worked could find a home for her. He figured they could, so they came down to the shelter and got her out. She weighed enough to be spayed, so after her surgery, my human picked her up and drove her to her boyfriend’s work.
She had rescued this kitten with no intention of ever keeping her; she just did it because she couldn’t bear to leave her in a place where her life was in danger. On the drive to the clinic, the kitten was yelling to get out of the carrier, so she pulled the car to the curb, and let her free for a few minutes. The kitten whose life my human had saved happily crawled all over the dashboard and purred playfully. It was a magical moment. My human has, by choice, never had children, and she says this is the closest thing she ever felt to unconditional love.
Two weeks later, on November 1, my human showed up at the shelter, ten minutes after it opened, to adopt the black cat she had seen… and he had already been adopted! The woman who originally brought him in only did so to make sure he didn’t belong to someone else. Since no one claimed him, she came by before the shelter opened, waiting to give him a home. “I’ve never seen two people want the same cat,” said the guy at the desk.
My human went home and called her boyfriend at work. “Bring that kitten home,” she said. And that is how Binga wound up with them. She was tiny — this photo is small, and a terrible scan of a color print, but you get the idea:
A friend of the humans came to visit and he did not think much of tortie cats. He said she looked like a “tore-up kitty,” and Binga bit him on the nose! Her favorite game as a kitten was to wake up the humans by attacking their faces. Eventually she outgrew that. But she has never outgrown believing that the rules do not apply to her.
And except for that one guy, Binga loves everybody and greets all visitors, whether they are friends of the humans, or handymen, or selling something. She is a combination of social butterfly and outlaw… who was once a throwaway shelter cat.
There will be thousands of shelter pets up for adoption at the Maddie’s Pet Adoption Days event June 1 and 2. In addition to New York City, there will also be adoption events in San Francisco, CA; Santa Clara County, CA; Alachua County, FL; Dane County, WI; Alameda County, CA; Contra Costa County, CA; and Washoe County, NV. The goal is to find homes for all the pets from these shelters! If you live in one of these areas, stop by… and tell everyone you know!
Note: This is a sponsored post but it is clearly a topic I am passionate about, and I am more than happy to spread the word.
Lesley castle says
What a lovely story! I love Binga!
PS: I have 2 torties of my own
Team Tabby says
Binga is such a sweetie, we are so glad she has a home with you!
Baby Tali says
Binga is cool like my Aunt Susie who is a Tortie..Aunt Susie could use them horns Binga is wearing too..she has lots of Tortie-tuid 😈 and she love to break the rules but we sure loves her..My Humom was sitting on the porch one morning having her coffees and hears crying..she reach down in her black eyed susan flowers and pulls out a little kitteh..that’s how she get her name of Black-Eyed Susan or Susie for short or Susan when she is being bad..MOL..PS..We hopes all them sweet kittehs gets furever homes.. 😉
Oh Binga! Your story made our eyes water. We are so happy you ended up where you did.
We really liked the last two photos of Binga best. and good for her to bite the mean man on the nose. We think she is really beautiful and found the purrfect home. Purrs and hugs, Lily Olivia, Mauricio, Misty May, Giulietta, Fiona, Astrid, Lisbeth and Calista Josette
Dash Kitten says
Oh my what a story, I HAD to keep reading 😯
GOOD LUCK every pet up for adoption. Good Luck very pet owner looking for their soul mate at the adoption events. There IS hope, there IS love, and Torties Rock! 😉
Spitty the Kitty says
I have always loved Binga a little bit and now I loves her more. She is a furry pretty girl and she was ‘dorable as a kitten. Your Human is a good lady, Sparkle. You should be nicer to her.
Oui Oui says
That is a great gotcha story! We never realized that Binga and Oui Oui have a lot in common. How awesome the pets are free. If they did that nation wide, a lot of lives could be saved.
Yay for Binga! And yay for shelter kitties everywhere! We hope lots of shelter cats find their homes at this wonderful event. 🙂
Cathy Keisha says
Hooray for Binga! Wow, I get the NYC papers and I hadn’t read about that. Maybe in the Saturday paper when they have the Critter Corner or whatever they call it. Hope they do a better job publicizing it as June 1st comes closer.
feeling beachie says
Love the story (especially the happy ending for you Binga). What a wonderful event, I hope all the furbabies find their forever homes!
Katie Bella says
Binga you beautiful BEAUTIFUL girl, I am so glad your momma found you and rescued you and that you are loved. I knew you were 🙂 but I love hearing Sparkle tell of it all. xoxoxox
Tillie and Georgia says
What a great story!! Binga was a lucky kitty and we think she is too cute!
Good luck to all the kitties looking to get adopted too 🙂
Purrs Tillie and Georgia,
Treasure,Tiger,JJ and Julie
The Island Cats says
What a great gotcha story Binga has! And we think tortie kitties are so cool looking! The mom almost adopted a tortie instead of Wally (his sister) but she had already been spoken for and the mom really wanted an orange kitty anyway. I’m the only one out of the three of us that was adopted from a shelter. The mom thinks shelter cats make the best pets because they are SO grateful that their human got them out of that place!
Callie (a.k.a. Trouble) says
Thanks for the information on my hero, Binga!
Callie (a.k.a. Trouble)
The human here! I loved reading Binga’s story 🙂 I got Austin from a rescue shelter and I hadn’t even intended getting a cat! He just crawled up the side of the cage and into my heart!!
Famous SpokesGoat Pricilla says
Binga knew a good thing when she saw your human.
Sherpa is a shelter kitty. The very first one the publicist ever had. All of her other kitties had always found her as stray kitties.
Ingrid King says
I loved hearing Binga’s story!
That was a beautiful Binga story and we hope many, many, many stories happen at this event!
What a great story! Binga, I’m glad your human did what she did!
Binga is one lucky kitty! I saved Selleck from having to go to a shelter. His original family had to move unexpectedly and their new residence didn’t allow pets of any kind. Their families had all the animals they could care for. Happily, one of the family members knew that I was looking for a second cat. They brouhgt him by and it was love at first sight. Bandit took some convincing, but now they are best friends. I hope for many happy endings fo all the kitties up for adoption. Bandit, Selleck, and Their Person, Emily. 😀
Layla Morgan Wilde says
Shared with <3. We are promoting the cause and will be volunteering at the event in NYC. P.S. our blog post glitch is resolved
Sue Brandes says
What a wonderful story. Hope many kitties find new homes.
Caren Gittleman says
Loved hearing Binga’s story!!!!! While I LOVE the “concept” of “free” adoptions I am interested to know how they are going to be “vetting” the homes to make sure they are “qualified?” I used to LOVE the word “free” in reference to pet adoption and still do, if they are “vetted” properly.
Eons ago, back in the day when I worked in advertising at a newspaper we were NEVER, EVER permitted to use the word “free” in pet ads. We were strongly urged to have the people placing the ad charge SOMETHING for the pet, even if it was just $5. The reason why is that often if someone has to pay for the pet, they have more of an investment (that doesn’t include finding strays or feral cats)……sadly, there are evil folks out there (especially in reference to black cats) that I would HATE to see get a cat for free.
Just presenting the other side of the coin but that being said, I hope the event is a huge success and that as many pets as possible are placed in GREAT “furever” homes.
Susan Helene Gottfried says
That shelter worker must have been new. Geronimo, the foster I had before the current kittens, had two FAMILIES fighting over him — not to mention my dad and one of my kid’s friends.
I told the shelter that if he EVER comes back, they are to call me immediately and Geronimo will be my third kitty (and I’ll still find a way to foster). I’ve only had rescue cats, and hope to keep it that way.
What a wonderful story! I love the episode she bit a guy who called her tore-up kitty 🙂
The Poupounette Gang says
We really enjoyed reading Binga’s magical adoption story!
Random Felines says
We loved hearing Binga’s story. And we hope LOTS of adoptions happen at these events!!!
She has a case of what I call “torti-tude”! Love it! She’s a purr-fect kitty!
We loved Binga’s story! We love seeing baby pictures of her too! We’re so glad that your human and her boyfriend rescued her and has given her such a loving home! Isabella loves everybody too but she’d rather sleep than cause trouble so she doesn’t have that Tortie trait. We hope lots of animals get loving homes on the free weekend too!
Yay for Binga!
Glogirly & Katie says
Awwww…. we LOVE Binga’s story!!!
Such a great event too…we hope there are LOTS of new forever homes in the future of many kitties!
WHAT a meow-veloud story, Sparkle! TWO adoptions! And kudos to your hooman for wanting a black kitty! I like her even MORE now! 🙂 🙂
Yay Binga! We’re so glad they adopted you ’cause we get to know you!
Selina & MomKatt
Cats of wildcat woods says
Great story and we know Binga is a tortie from her toritude!
HH and the Boys says
It’s great to hear Binga’s story. And we love the pictures. They are wonderful.
Have a great day.
hugs, Bugsy and Knuckles
All of our babies (with the exception of Boo who was a Siamese) have been shelter kitties – and only one was a kitten – the others have been older – hanging out for months and months in cages because no one wanted them – for us it was always love at first sight. Sure spending 5 or so months in a cage when you are young doesn’t make you the friendliest cat ever but we love/loved them any way…or maybe because
The Florida Furkids says
What a great story! Thanks for sharing it!! We hope lots of kitties get adopted.
The Florida Furkids
Fur Everywhere says
Our mom adopted Carmine from a shelter, and she says she’s so glad that she did! Milita was given to mom’s dad by a friend. Mom says we show her the unconditional love she never experienced befores. We are happy we can give something back to our mommy who takes such good care of us!
We don’t live in any of those areas, but we will definitely share your post on our Facebook page!!
We are so glad that your human adopted Binga and that she has such a great home! 🙂
That is a great story. Glad to hear that the Black cat got adopted too. That is terrific about adoptions being free. They did that here too at our shelter. Hope lots of animals find their forever homes.
Toby & Leia says
Serves that guy right! Jerkface. We hope lots of furry folks adopt hoomins, though it can be hard to find just the right one.
Hannah and Lucy says
We are so happy Binga decided she wanted to live with you and even happier she was rescued from that awful kill shelter and has a wonderful and happy home. Thank goodness we don’t have those shelters here. If Lucy feels she is being ignored she gives Mum little nips to remind her she’s there!
Luv Hannah and Lucy xx xx
Binga was destined to live with you. I am so glad that she was saved from the kill shelter. The nose bite made me laugh because that is how Eric used to like to wake up my mum and dad. I have wake them with purrs.
Spunky Doodle and Manny says
Yea for Binga and for your mom for saving her! Neither of us were shelter cats, but Mr. Moe was at a shelter for a very long time and so was our dog, Abby.
Mark's Mews says
We love Binga’s story!
The Kitties of Purring Pines says
Great story! We hope lots of kitties find forever homes!