Toronto Cat Rescue receives many inquiries each week from caring individuals who have found stray cats and kittens in their neighbourhood. TCR does not operate a shelter and we do not accept strays into our program, but there are several ways that you can help.
Unfortunately, Toronto Cat Rescue can NOT help with trapping stray cats and/or provide foster homes for stray cats, as we just do not have enough foster homes or volunteer resources.
What to Do When You Find a Stray Cat
If you have found a stray cat never assume that it has been dumped or abandoned. Even if it has been hanging around your neighbourhood for days or weeks, there may be somebody out there looking for their beloved family member.
- Scan for a microchip. More and more shelters and rescues microchip cats before adoption to increase their chances of finding their way back home if they become lost. Please take the cat to a vet clinic or shelter where they will be happy to scan the cat at no charge.
- Post flyers around the neighbourhood, vet clinics, pet supply stores, groceries stores, community bulletin boards, etc. It is not uncommon for cats to wonder several kilometers away from home so don’t restrict your flyers to the immediate vicinity only. While you are posting your flyers be sure to check out any posters for missing cats.
- Social media. Post a picture and description of the cat you found to your social media accounts and ask friends to share. Make sure the post has instructions on how to contact you.
- Register the cat on Helping Lost Pets. This is a system that lists lost and found reports posted within your community and across North America. You can see a map of your area and attach a photo to a Lost or Found report to help owners and finders determine if the pets match.
- Contact Toronto Animal Services at 416-338-PAWS (7297) or firstname.lastname@example.org.
What to Do When Nobody Claims the Cat
If your efforts to locate the cats owners are unsuccessful after a reasonable amount of time there are several things you can do to help the cat find a new home.
- Keep the cat. Before you bring the cat into your home it is best to bring it to your vet for an exam, vaccines and parasite control. At this time your vet will be able to give you a general idea of the sex, age and health status of the cat and any future medical attention it will require. Make arrangements to have the cat spayed or neutered (if not already done) at the earliest possible time to prevent any unwanted litters. The Toronto Humane Society offers a high volume/low cost Spay/Neuter Clinic that is accessible to the public.
- Foster the cat while you try to find it a new home. If you are not able to foster the cat yourself ask your friends, family, neighbours, etc. if they would be willing. Toronto Cat Rescue can help you find homes for healthy, social, adoptable stray cats and kittens through our Stray Rescue Program (online form below).
- Surrender to a shelter. If you are unable or unwilling to help find the cat a new home and you are a Toronto resident, please take it to either Toronto Animal Services or the Toronto Humane Society. Both organizations work together and in collaboration with rescue groups to reduce the number of animals euthanized in the city. Animals that are transferred to both organizations are provided with a high standard of care and are attended to by dedicated, compassionate and knowledgeable employees. Please do NOT leave a stray cat to fend for itself outdoors, especially if it has not been fixed and will contribute to the feral cat overpopulation crisis.
Stray Rescue Program
Toronto Cat Rescue Stray Rescue Program allows you the use of our volunteers and our website to assist you in your efforts to find a new home for the cats you are caring for. The cats or kittens stay with you in your home, and once they have been spayed/neutered and vaccinated they will be posted on our website and affiliated websites (ie. PetFinder.com and Adopt-A-Pet). Toronto Cat Rescue adoption coordinators will recommend your cat(s) to suitable potential adopters.
Please click here for more information and to fill out our Stray Rescue Program application. Due to the high volume of inquiries, phone messages will not be returned. Thank you for taking the time to find these cats a new, safe, forever home. We will do all that we can to assist you.