By Katie Vecchi, Adoption Coordinator
Every day at Animal Friends, our goal is to match our homeless residents with loving families. Even with the unique circumstances that arose with COVID-19, this dedication never faltered. Instead, this unprecedented time lead to numerous placements of dogs, cats and rabbits into caring and loving homes. Some of these adoptions were especially heartwarming, particularly the adoption of Hank the cat.
Hank came to Animal Friends at the beginning of the year after he had been found as a stray by a good Samaritan. She was unable to keep him, so she brought him to Animal Friends to find his new family. Shortly after his arrival, our Behavior team found that Hank was not interested in having cat friends – he preferred the company of people. To help Hank have the best possible experience while waiting for his new family, he was moved from our traditional kennels to one of our meet-and-greet rooms, where he was able to roam and lounge by himself.
In this space, Hank’s true personality started to shine. Our staff and volunteers quickly found that Hank loved to play with toys, spend quality time lounging on the bench with a human friend or simply watch the world go by from the top perch of his cat tree. Hank was often overlooked by potential adopters, but still, he waited patiently for his new family to come along.
As the COVID-19 pandemic continued to unfold, we had to change our adoption process to adhere to government mandates. In an effort to continue to serve the community, while fulfilling our mission, our Adoption team worked with potential adopters over the phone and through email to help them find the perfect pet. Adopters were then able to visit with our residents through scheduled meet and greets. This process proved to be extremely successful and resulted in so many wonderful adoptions, including some of our longest-term residents.
It was during this time that Kathy and Glen reached out to Animal Friends because they saw Hank’s profile on our website and wanted to learn more about him. They were experienced cat owners, who did not currently have any pets and were hoping that Hank could be the newest member of their family. On the day they came to meet Hank, it was only a matter of minutes before everyone knew these three would be going home together.
Within the first 24 hours of his adoption, our Adoption team received updates about how well Hank was doing and how quickly he made himself at home. He enjoys sitting in the living room and watching the world outside through the window. Hank has also acclimated Kathy and Glen to his schedule, ensuring they wake up in time to give him breakfast when he’s ready! Although it may have taken some time for Hank to find his new home, it was certainly worth the wait to be adopted by the perfect family.
This crisis has proven to be challenging for everyone. But, we have been truly amazed by how many wonderful people continue to open their hearts and homes to our animal residents. It has been a rewarding experience for our Adoption team to work with so many incredible families.