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Holiday Cheer for Rescued Cats

cat looking at holiday ornament
“Sophie Gets a Look at Herself”

The rescue story today is one that you can help to write: you make a donation that helps people help cats, and I will give you a little reward, now through the end of January 2016. This year I’ve added a big reward to the list!

Every day, selfless individuals are helping homeless cats in any way they can from answering the call to capture orphaned kittens to foster and care for and find forever homes, trapping cats living outdoors for spay and neuter and veterinary care and either keeping them indoors or returning them to a supervised outdoor site, accepting hissy kittens and cats who need medical treatment from shelters, scouring craigslist for kittens and cats being given away for free or for sale and retrieving those they feel are in danger, also offering information and assistance to humans who can use it, and providing safe housing for and feeding thousands of cats every single day in outdoor colonies and much, much more. There is no payment for this and much of the expense for it out of their own pocket.

black cat with red bow
“I’m happy to see another Christmas!”

You see many of these cats and kittens featured in my “Cats for Adoption” articles each week, in several of my “Rescue Stories”, and you’ve even virtually met a number of them: Kennedy, Emeraude and Lakota, Basil and Bella, Bert and Ernie, Charm and her kittens, Alvina, Simon, Theodore and whoever else may come along.

After the endless parade of kittens over the spring and summer and into fall, many of whom are still looking for homes, we are headed for the often deadly winter months when sturdy straw-filled shelters have been built and maintained for cats living outdoors, and often critical emergency veterinary care is needed for kittens born in the cold, and cats suffering injuries caused by or made worse by wintery weather along with the usual street injuries and, unfortunately, abuse.

We may call this Trap-Neuter-Return or TNR or simply rescue. It’s far more than just grabbing homeless cats and spaying or neutering them, returning them to their outdoor home, and as long as people continue abandoning cats the need for all this work will continue as well. Often there’s a network of assistance behind what rescuers do to help them with this rescue and care for outdoor cats, offering food and materials if they can’t afford it on their own and low-cost veterinary care for a cat they’ve rescued or a foster or outdoor cat they are caring for.

The Homeless Cat Management Team (HCMT) and PittsburghCAT provide that network of care to rescuers in the Pittsburgh area, loaning out traps, networking rescuers, providing low-cost or free spay/neuter clinics at least monthly and making low-cost emergency veterinary care available to rescuers as well as distributing food and even shelters to those who are caring for rescues in their homes or community cats living outdoors.

Here’s where you come in

You can help this effort by making a donation of cash, gift card or goods to HCMT or PittsburghCAT, through the PittsburghCAT wishlists below or by donating gift cards or feline necessities:

  • Dry or Canned Cat and Kitten Food
  • Small Cat Beds
  • Cat Treats
  • Cat Toys
  • Food Bowls
  • Clumping Litter
  • Carriers and Crates

You can also simply donate cash.

And here’s the newest benefit

If you adopt a cat or kitten from Pittsburgh CAT or sponsor an adoption, I’ll give you a certificate for 65% off your entire order of at least $25.00! Adopting one of our fosters leaves room for us to rescue more, and the fee also helps to offset the costs of vetting, feeding and caring for our cats in foster homes.

The fee to adopt from Pittsburgh CAT is generally $65.00, so even if there is an adoption special at the time you adopt and the fee is discounted, you will still get 65% off in my Etsy shop. I can only give you 65% off once, though, so even if you adopt two kittens as I suggested I can only give you one discount. Your adoption fee must be paid in order to qualify—it doesn’t count if you’ve just filled out an application.


Donating goods, gift cards or cash

1. Donate through the PittsburghCAT wishlists linked below.

2. Donate a gift card by mail or electronically (see instructions below)

3. Donate cash

I’ll give you a $10 gift certificate to my Etsy shop for every $25.00 you donate in goods, gift cards or cash:

  • Each certificate is good for $10.00 off your order of $25.00 or more.
  • Use for your holiday shopping, to give as a gift, or keep for later.
  • Certificates are good until January 31, 2016.
Donate gift cards electronically

Help HCMT and PittsburghCAT continue to provide much-needed food and supplies to foster homes, rescuers and caretakers by donating a gift card for pet supplies and they can purchase food and supplies tailored for the animals they are caring for. Petco, PetSmart and WalMart are each convenient.

Here’s what you do:

1. Go to the Petco, PetSmart or WalMart website and purchase an electronic gift card for at least $10.00.

2. Designate it as a gift to “Homeless Cat Management Team” or “PittsburghCAT”.

3. In their “notes” section (most have one for gifts), note that this is through “The Creative Cat” so they know where it came from.

4. To complete the gift card, here is their contact information:

Mailing Address: Homeless Cat Management Team, P. O. Box 100203, Pittsburgh, PA 15233

Email:  [email protected]

Phone Number: 412-321-4060

5. Email your confirmation to me, or simply email me that you donated a gift card through the Holiday Cheer program. Please let me know if you’d like to be acknowledged publicly at the end of the campaign with just your name, no donation amount. Your name will not be used without your permission to publish it.

6. I will reply to your email with your gift certificate(s) attached.

If you’re not comfortable purchasing it on the internet, you can purchase it in person and mail it to them using the address above. Simply let me know and include a note with the card that it’s part of “The Creative Cat Holiday Cheer for Homeless Cats”, or just “The Creative Cat”, and make sure you include your email address. They will contact me when they receive it and I will send your gift certificate.

Make a donation

A cash donation will help support the low-cost veterinary care that has saved many lives and, most importantly, prevented the births of many kittens.

Here’s what you do:

1. Go to the HCMT website and make a donation of at least $10.00.

2. The donation is made through JustGive which has a “notes” section. Note that this is through “The Creative Cat”.

3. Email your confirmation to me, or simply email me that you donated cash through the Holiday Cheer program. Please let me know if you’d like to be acknowledged publicly at the end of the campaign with just your name, no donation amount. Your name will not be used without your permission to publish it.

4. I will reply to your email with your numbered gift certificate attached.

How to use your gift certificate

holiday cheer for rescued cats, the creative cat, portraits of animals
Your Holiday Cheer Gift Certificate to use or give as a gift.

Your gift certificate will have a code that will be active for use in Portraits of Animals on Etsy until January 31, 2016. This code is entered at checkout for your $10.00 discount. But if you are shopping elsewhere on one of my pages or you’d like to use the discount toward a commissioned portrait or in person, you’ll just need to give me your name and the certificate number and I’ll either manually discount your order or refund $10.00 to you.

Feel free to use your certificate for your holiday shopping, for your post-holiday shopping, or to give as a gift. For my own accounting purposes, I’d like to keep all the transactions within a shorter period of time.

I will have a link to this post in the right-hand sidebar of my home page until December 31, 2015 and I will also have a link to it in the footer of at least one post each day.

Holiday Cheer for Rescued Cats
Holiday Cheer for Rescued Cats

Happy shopping!

You can visit my Etsy shop to browse what’s there right now, and keep in mind that I add new products regularly, especially one-of-a-kind handmade items. Also visit my page here on The Creative Cat that explains about “Ordering Custom Artwork” where you can have a custom print made of a sketch, painting or photograph you like.

. . . . . . .

Thanks to everyone who has donated so far this year through other donation opportunities on The Creative Cat!

. . . . . . .

And thanks also to those of you who are out there rescuing. These cats are in good hands!


Amazon Wish Lists

amazon wish list for kittens
The Amazon Wish List for our group’s foster kittens.

Many rescuers pay out of pocket for veterinary care and food but the costs of raising even the average litter of four healthy kittens is more than many people have, and many rescues have greater needs. Pittsburgh CAT has a number of wish lists that include foods for feeding neo-natal kittens like KMR, and other lists that include the best kitten foods, adult cat foods, food and materials for feral cats, and preferred toys and litter.

Pittsburgh CAT Wish List:

2015 Foster Cat/Kitten Wish List:

Winter Kitten Wish List!

Fall Wishlist for Fosters/Ferals!

Food For Foster Kittens:

Our Groups Foster Kittens!


Can’t adopt? Foster! Can’t foster? Donate or volunteer.

There are so many ways you can help cats who need homes and care. You may not have room to adopt another cat, but can foster a cat or kitten for a few weeks. If not that, you can volunteer at a shelter or with a rescue, or donate. You do this because you love your cat, and by doing so you help all cats. No matter which of these actions you take, you help to save a life, and make life better for all cats.

  • Adopt one of the cats I’ve posted here, or from any shelter or rescue near you, or from Petfinder, to open up a space for another cat to be rescued and fostered.
  • Offer to foster cats or kittens for a shelter or rescue near you.
  • Volunteer at a shelter or rescue.
  • Find a group of volunteers who work with homeless cats and help them with their efforts.
  • Donate to a shelter or rescue near you.

If you can foster kittens or adults cats to help prepare them for a forever home, please run to your nearest shelter and find a cat who needs you! Anyone can help with this effort at any level, even if all you do is donate to a shelter or rescue so they can help to pay for the food or medications needed for their foster, or the spay/neuter/veterinary care during a clinic.

Need to know more? Read Fostering for Your Shelter and Fostering Saves Lives

Browse some rescued cats and kittens—browse here or visit PittsburghCAT!

cats and kittens
Gallery view of Pittsburgh CAT cats for adoption.

All images used on this site are copyrighted to Bernadette E. Kazmarski unless otherwise noted and may not be used without my written permission. Please ask if you are interested in using one in a print or internet publication. If you are interested in purchasing a print of this image or a product including this image, check my Etsy shop to see if I have it available already. If you don’t find it there, visit Ordering Custom Artwork for more information on a custom greeting card, print or other item.

Do you appreciate the stories and images we offer you each day?

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© 2015 | | Published by Bernadette E. Kazmarski
Weekly schedule of features:
Sunday: Essays, Pet Loss, Poetry, The Artist’s Life
Monday: Adoptable Cats, TNR & Shelters
Tuesday: Rescue Stories
Wednesday: Commissioned Portrait or Featured Artwork
Thursday: New Merchandise
Friday: Book Review, Health and Welfare, Advocacy
Saturday: Your Backyard Wildlife Habitat, Living Green With Pets, Creating With Cats
And sometimes, I just throw my hands in the air and have fun!




From health and welfare to rescue and adoption stories, advocacy and art, factual articles and fictional stories, "The Creative Cat" offers both visual and verbal education and entertainment about cats for people who love cats, pets and animals of all species.

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