The Rescue House


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A San Diego Cat Rescue

The decision to bring a new pet into your home isn’t always an easy one. Do you have enough time? Do you have enough space? Where are you going to get your new pet from? In San Diego, we’re lucky to have a variety of different organizations to choose from when it comes to getting a new furry friend. But how do you find one that’s right for you? With so many shelters and rescues in San Diego, each one functioning slightly different than the next, I believe it’s important to work with people who view pet ownership as you do. I found just such an organization when I recently had the pleasure of adopting a cat. Let me tell you what notably sets The Rescue House apart.

The Rescue House has been serving San Diego cat lovers and rescuing San Diego’s stray or unwanted felines since 1999. Their mission is to ultimately eliminate the need for their organization, but in the meantime, they strive to find loving, permanent homes for the cats that come their way. Currently, The Rescue House operates through a mix of adoption centers made up of businesses and local pet stores. The Cat Café in San Diego (see article on page 20) is just one of the businesses partnered with The Rescue House that routinely houses a clowder of adoptable cats.

What stood out to me with this organization was their adoption process. Once you decide to adopt a cat from The Rescue House, you fill out an application and are interviewed over the phone by a volunteer adoption counselor. In my interview, the counselor went through a mix of questions about my lifestyle and living situation, and I could tell she was trying hard to pair me with the best possible cat for my home. I believe this is a critical step, because people often choose their animals based on the way they look, not necessarily on their personality traits. Also, a majority of potential cat owners want kittens, not grown cats. Because I have a busy house and a dog, the counselor I worked with made sure I got an outgoing cat that wouldn’t be scared by a lot of action. I spent a good bit of time talking to the adoption counselor. I could tell she truly cared about the cats and that it was important to her that the homes they went to were the right ones.

Another noteworthy trait of The Rescue House is that this true nonprofit organization is run by a mix of volunteers and foster homes. All the volunteers are there because they have a passion for helping animals. They’re typically people who have adopted a cat from The Rescue House or who can’t have cats of their own but want to spend time with them. All the foster homes they work with are located in San Diego, roughly 30 to 40 homes helping to care for the cats and kittens moving through the organization. When I spoke to my adoption counselor, she pointed out, “Our fosters are vitally important, with the ongoing medical care required for some of the cats and helping them feel loved and comfortable, along with helping them socialize with people and other cats.” The Rescue House has fosters who help with cats of all ages, right down to tiny kittens, who need to be bottle-fed at all hours of the night. The behind-the-scenes heroes, fosters are responsible for buying all the food and supplies required to care for the cats and taking them in for check-ups and other medical care. They’re a unique group of passionate, selfless people who can love these cats for a short period of time until they find their forever homes. The Rescue House takes fostering cats just as seriously as adopting them, so all potential fosters are required to submit an adoption application and be interviewed by an adoption counselor.

After interacting with members of The Rescue House, I could see that it’s the passion that drives their success. Even though volunteers are fighting what seems to be an uphill battle, The Rescue House adopts out an average of 750 cats a year into good homes. There are always more cats in need, so they do rely on donations and help from volunteers to keep the organization alive, and every little bit helps! For more information, visit

If you’re in the market for a new feline friend, check out one of these upcoming adoption events sponsored by The Rescue House:

June 23–24: Two-day adoption event, Petsmart Encinitas

July 21–22: Two-day adoption event, Petsmart Encinitas

August 18–19: Two-day adoption event, Petsmart Encinitas


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