ACCT Philly offering alternative adoption program for 'working cats'

Two very good boys oversee a former wood shop at Berks Warehouse.

ACCT Philly — the city’s only open-intake animal shelter — is offering an alternative way to help cats with behavioral challenges.

Under the "Working Cat Adoption Program," the shelter hopes to find placement for cats who are struggling to adjust or are not typical adoption candidates by pairing them with non-traditional homes like working farms or barn buildings.

Other unconventional homes include warehouses, workshops, breweries, churches, art studios, offices and other properties suited for independent felines.

"Working cats," also referred to as "barn cats," usually describe cats who live mostly outdoors and help control a property's rodent population.

Some working cats may be difficult to place as traditional indoor house pets due to lack of socialization, high enery or litter box issues that are not health related, according to the shelter.


ACCT Philly's Lifesaving Department developed the program to give such cats safe and loving alternative homes.

"While not a typical adoption, the program gives them what they want and need: safe and sheltered forever homes with limited human interaction," shelter officials said in a statement.

Those who adopt a working cat must commit to being the cat's primary caregiver for its life. All working cats are vaccinated, spayed or neutered, and microchipped. Like regular house cats, they require routine yearly vaccines, regular flea and tick prevention and medical care as needed.

Anyone interested in saving an urgent cat may email the shelter's lifesaving office or call 267-385-3800, ext. 500.

Working cat candidates are currently housed in either foster care or the main ACCT Philly shelter in North Philadelphia.

Wood shop kitty Mango

Good Boy Mango surveys his kingdom at Berks Warehouse.

ACCT Philly continues to seek additional fosters and volunteers to service the nearly 22,000 animals it takes in each year.

As of Tuesday, one dog and one cat are timestamped for euthanasia. The shelter currently has more than 100 cats and 100 dogs available for adoption.

Those interested in helping high-risk animals at ACCT Philly, but cannot commit to adoption or fostering, can pledge donations to urgent dogs and cats through its Love Local Program.


ACCT Philly

(ACCT Philly: At-Risk Cats)

A pledge is a promise to donate to the rescue group that pulls a given animal from ACCT Philly. Individual pledges help accumulate the necessary funding for participating rescue groups to save urgent animals.

Volunteers say that rescues are more likely to pull animals, particularly those with expensive needs, when they see pledges have been made.

ACCT Philly is located at 111 W. Hunting Park Ave. Adoption hours are weekdays, 1–8 p.m. and weekends, 10 a.m.–5 p.m.

For more information about ACCT's Working Cat Adoption Program, see here.


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