Giving Up a Cat

"Can Tabby’s Place take my cat?"

On a typical day, we hear this question five to ten times. The vast majority of the questioners are owners who feel that they must give up a cat.

If you are in this position, follow the steps below for answers to your questions and advice on how to proceed. Please bear in mind that finding an appropriate home, rescue, or shelter for your pet will be challenging. This challenge is increased significantly if your pet is older, or has medical or behavioral problems.

Step 1: Do You Really Need to Give up Your Cat?

Be honest with yourself and your family: are you certain that you can't keep your cat? We speak to people every day who have to give up a cat. The truth is that in the vast majority of cases, it only requires some additional effort, organization and care to enable keep their cat.


As you search your heart, remember that your cat is a living being and that you made a commitment to love and care for him for his lifetime. Consider how your family and your pet will be affected by the change. As your family has grown to love your cat, your cat has developed a bond with your family. If you surrender your cat to a shelter, there is a good chance that the cat will be euthanized. Your pet has the best chance of continuing to lead a happy, healthy life by staying with you.

If you are having trouble making a decision, you should refer to the following sections, which address the most common "reasons" people report for giving up a cat:

  1. New baby
  2. Allergies
  3. Inappropriate elimination (peeing outside the litter box)
  4. Moving
  5. Cat's Medical Condition

If after serious consideration you feel that you have no viable options, proceed to Step 2.