Did you know that Maine has one of the highest rates of cat ownership in the country? We’re in the top three with Vermont and Massachusetts. That means more purrs, leg-rubbing and hazy sunshine naps. But it also means more cats that are homeless or in need. And that, in turn, means financial need on the part of organizations like the HART (Homeless Animal Rescue Team) Adoption Center & Shelter for Cats (302 Range Rd, Cumberland). HART spends about $192,000 on medical care alone per year, without even taking into account their costs for food, toys, overhead and payroll.
Feel your purse strings loosening yet? Good, because there’s a fun way for you to help. This month, HART is putting on the Meow Madness Online Auction (https://www.hartofme.com/) from March 17 to March 31, to raise money to care for their furry felines. So, starting Friday, log on and shop for things like getaways, gift certificates, pet products, and services, with proceeds going directly to help cats and kittens in southern Maine.
The people at HART, a no-kill, cage-free, all-volunteer, non-profit shelter, are in their 20th year of operation. So, to celebrate the anniversary, they’re making the auction extra-special with a follow-up event, Spring Fling, on April 8 from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the Woodfords Club (179 Woodford St, Portland). The event is free. This is where auction participants get to pick up the items they’ve won. It’s also where these cat lovers can learn about keeping their cats healthy, at sessions on pet acupuncture, first aid and general wellness, even a presentation on TTouch.
TTouch stands for ‘therapeutic touch’ and is a type of nonverbal, tactile communication through cellular memory. TTouch’s circular rubbing movements create a kinesthetic interspecies connection that has been found to be effective in soothing ‘challenging’ animals and improving health, behavior and owner-cat rapport.
Also at Spring Fling, attendees can engage in a little kitten-play therapy, enjoy great, free refreshments, meet animal-centric vendors, and even take part in the beer and wine tasting at the end of the day. Rising Tide, Tomaso’s, and Maine Beer Company are among the participating sponsors.
Click, buy, learn, and drink, all to help our felines. What could be easier than that?