On the other side of the coin there are always cats surrendered to animal shelters that are not suitable for adoption in most homes. Cats who are not using their litter box for behavioral reasons rather than treatable medical ones, are normally euthanized as “unadoptable” by most shelters.
Most of these cats would make suitable barn cats, or good shop cats, and as such many shelters are now trying to saves as many of these cats as they can by offering them up in such a way.
The Edmonton Humane Society is one place that has recently started a “Barn Buddies” program to give these cats a second chance. The cats are free (but donations are always welcome) and come vaccinated, chipped and spayed or neutered. They are also friendly. To note, some shelters do adopt out feral (less friendly) cats to farm homes as well. The Edmonton Humane Society requires interested people to apply with them for this program.
Potential adopters are required to have:
- A barn or building where the cat can find shelter from bad weather.
- Food for the cat. Note that a well fed cat is a better mouser.
- The right attitude to make sure the cat is cared for and receives veterinary attention as needed.
If you are bringing home a new cat to the farm or shop, it should be kept in an enclosed space with food and water for several days to help it bond to the area.
If you are a farmer who could benefit from such a program please contact your local animal shelter to see if they have cats available under such a system.
The information for the Edmonton Humane Society's Barn Buddies program is here.