Friends of Companion Animals, Monroe’s only all cat rescue and adoption center, yet again came to the rescue of 40 felines of various ages at a single location in Monroe County in the Temperance area. This recent endeavor is the largest that the all-volunteer, nonprofit has faced since it rescued 33 cats single-handedly from one location in downtown Monroe in March 2021. Ten of those semi-feral felines are still looking for barn homes via their free barn cat program and one friendly cat, Tiny Tot, still needs her forever inside home.

 

It was discovered through various sources that the resident who had dogs on the property also had 40 cats in the single-family home that included 20 adults and 17 kittens to 3 nursing mother cats. FOCA then contacted the resident who said they were struggling financially and were unable to care for all the animals. Over the course of a few weeks FOCA collected and provided health care to all the cats, all of whom also required spay/neutering and medication for upper respiratory infections, which often happen in colonies such as these.

Charlie, the blind kitten, at home with his new sibling

 

Originally, an acquaintance of the surrenderer paid to have two of the 40 cats altered so they could be returned. However, upon seeing the cats’ condition the veterinarians were gravely concerned for their well-being and even suggested reporting the case to animal control for possible prosecution. Since the surrenderer worked willingly with FOCA to address the neglectful situation, shelter director Penny Bly simply wanted to get the cats to safety and into new homes that could provide proper care.

 

According to Bly, what started off as someone trying to help cats escalated into a hoarding case after a few litters because they were unaltered. It’s one of the many reasons FOCA is trying to create the first ever local low-cost spay/neuter clinic for feral cats in Monroe County.  But as she mentions, it’s something that requires community financial support from individuals and businesses in the area.

 

“We could have this clinic up and running next month if we had local sponsorship. We have veterinarians ready to go – we just need funding. Our rummage sale in March generated about half of the $20,000 we need to get started but we require financial support to see it come to fruition. We’ll be hosting the rummage sale again August 17th to 20th (Wednesday to Saturday) from noon to 5 pm in the hope of raising more capital. By having a clinic like this, it would cut down on events such as these. Many people don’t realize cats reproduce quickly and they can mate with siblings as young as 4-6 months old,” explains Bly.

Macy and her kittens

 

Director Bly says that’s the situation with some cats in this hoarding case. Since these litters are breeding with one another it leads to health issues for some of them. For instance, a kitten Charlie was born with no eyes and Spencer had a rare bladder condition from birth that was never addressed. Charlie, although blind, did find a forever home with a vet tech, but Spencer, however, wasn’t as fortunate –he had to be euthanized since he never received an operation that could have saved him if done earlier in his life.

 

“Don’t misunderstand. It’s always wonderful when the community wants to help cats in the area. But you need to know your limits,” says Bly. “Saving animals means more than just giving it a little food now and then and some shelter. It also means regular check-ups and providing extended care should they need it. Unfortunately, that didn’t happen in this case, but we’re trying to make it right and we hope that the community pitches in to help these cats.”

 

Bly says, “This project so far is over $5000 and growing. Add in the fact that the shelter, which we purchased in 2020, is seeking donations for a new roof, funds are tight to say the least. That means every donation goes a long way in keeping the rescue going.”

 

Bly added that the good news is that most of these cats are socialized and friendly. Now it’s just a matter of getting them matched into loving homes. She says if anyone would like to adopt, become a volunteer or make a donation to their care they can do so by visiting their website friendsofcompanionanimals.org. Plus, to create awareness of the over 200 cats in their care they’re offering a special in July and August. Adult cats are $60 each or two for $100. Likewise, kittens that are $90 each will be discounted at two for $150. Also in July, the resale shop at the shelter has 50% off toys and games (some exclusions apply).

 

“As we often tell people, get cats in pairs; it’s not a sales gimmick. Cats really do better together and since we have an abundance of felines it’s perfect. Costs to run the rescue are rising and next month we’ll probably have to raise our prices as well. So right now is a good time to get yourself a new family member of the four legged kind,” Bly remarked.

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RE: Male Calico at FOCA

Contact: Nadine Meeker @ 734.770.8324

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

 

Monroe, MI — Friends of Companion Animals, Monroe’s only all-cat rescue, is pleased to announce one of their new arrivals this kitten season is literally 1 in 3000. Barney the kitten is officially a calico! About one in every 3,000 calico cats is born a male, which means there’s less than a 0.1 percent chance of a calico cat being born a male. A visit for his neuter today at Humane Ohio in Toledo officially confirmed it.

 

Rescue director Penny Bly stated, “We love all the felines who make their way to us. There are those rare few who are rarer than others and he’s certainly the most unique one we’ve seen in our 11-year history. His foster mom has a done a great job of taking care of him, his mom and his four other siblings.”

 

Although he might look like an orange tabby to the casual observer, his distinct black marks on his belly, hips and back make him unique.

 

“This news is also fun because it comes on the eve of our yearly plant sale Mother’s Day Weekend from Thursday to Saturday Noon to 5 PM,” says Bly. “It’s one of our biggest yearly fundraisers that keep the shelter going while also allowing us to grow. One of the biggest plans is a low-cost feral spay/neuter clinic. The shelter recently held a three-week rummage sale that garnered just over $7000 of our goal to raise $20K by the end of the year.”

 

Bly goes on to admit that although kittens are adorable, and in some cases like Barney rare, there are way too many felines in the area. That’s where having a local clinic will help communities throughout Monroe County.

 

“But we can’t do it without community support and that’s where donations, or shopping for plants this weekend at FOCA, helps cats like Barney. It puts food in bellies, keeps the lights on and hopefully, by years’ end, provide a low-cost clinic for area residents.”

 

Getting a peek at Barney in person won’t be an option though because he’ll be headed back to his foster mom while he recovers from his surgery. And although male calicos are almost always sterile, he still requires being neutered.

 

As Bly states, “Not only is it about stopping reproduction, but neutering also stops urination, aggression and reduces the rate of cancer so they live longer and happier lives. And although Barney won’t be onsite, the shelter still has over 100 cats and kittens that people can visit and possibly take home during our normal hours of Wed – Sat from Noon to 5 pm.”

 

To learn more or make a donation to the shelter visit https://friendsofcompanionanimals.org/donate/

 

FOCA Announces Feral Spay /Neuter CLINIC Plans with Rummage Sale

 

RE: FOCA Announces Feral Spay /Neuter Plans with Rummage Sale
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Friends of Companion Animals, Monroe County’s only all cat rescue and adoption center, which rescued 33 cats at a single location in downtown Monroe in winter 2021, has a new venture – plans for a low cost feral spay/neuter clinic. The all-volunteer, nonprofit rescue established in 2011 is seeking donations to help fund the project, which would make it the only low-cost spay neuter clinic between Toledo and Downriver Detroit. They will kick off the endeavor by hosting an Indoor Rummage Sale fundraiser starting March 9th in their events building next to the shelter.

Director Penny Bly states, “The hoarding case we experience from last year is a prime example of how rapidly cats can reproduce and why we stress the importance of spaying and neutering pets, especially outdoor feral cats. Monroe, like most areas, has a serious overpopulation problem. As a rescue and adoption center, we find cats homes, but that’s only treating the symptom and not addressing the root problem. So, the only logical step is to host a spay neuter clinic in the events center next to the shelter.”

The clinic plans to serve only outdoor feral cats found by FOCA’s TNR program and by local Monroe County citizens who want to control the population of colonies they maintain. The cost is to be determined but it will include the spay/neuter, ear tip (where the top part of the ear is clipped to show it’s been altered) and a rabies vaccine. The low-cost service will try to remain competitively priced with nearby overworked low-cost clinics and help lessen their burden.

“Local low-cost clinics in southeast Michigan are overwhelmed. It can take weeks or months to get appointments because the need outweighs their resources through no fault of their own. The number of cats and people that need help are just enormous. But with financial support from the Monroe County community, and local businesses, Friends of Companion Animals will be able to help lighten the load and address the issue head on.”

Bly says at least four licensed veterinarians said they support the clinic idea and plan to be a part of the solution by performing the surgeries. She adds, “At first the clinic will be doing monthly or bi-monthly appointments. However, before we get to that point, there are supplies we need to acquire to get started — that includes everything from surgical instruments to patient tracking software and that’s where our fundraiser comes into play.”

Starting March 9th through the 13th and then again March 16th to the 20th, FOCA will have their Indoor Rummage Sale. It’s a rain or shine event where everything that’s raised will go toward the evolution of the new spay neuter clinic. In addition to the usual resale shop items, the sale plans to feature items not normally found in their store like furniture, office equipment, linens and other odds and ends. As for when the clinic will open, Bly says that depends on how much they raise and how soon.

“Essentially, the more donors we have who support the project, the sooner the clinic doors will open to area residents. We realize that times are tough financially for many people, but we’re hopeful that those who have the means – whether it’s individuals or businesses – will see the necessity here and contribute to the cause.”

Bly points out that the reason for this clinic doesn’t just benefit people who care for cats but the entire community. She says, “As a whole, it’s better for everybody when overpopulation is brought under control. We truly believe that together we can all make a difference because even five dollars from one person here and one person there really adds up quick and proves that even a small donation can make a large impact.”

To learn more or to contribute to the cause visit their site at www.friendsofcompanionanimals.org today.

RE: FOCA Announces Building Purchase

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

 

Friends of Companion Animals, Monroe’s only all-cat, non-profit rescue and adoption center, finally has a forever home of their own.  This week they purchased the buildings located in front of Detroit Beach off N. Dixie Hwy. in Monroe where they currently reside. The birth of the ‘FOCA campus’ will open the opportunity for more growth for the organization and more help to local cats, individuals and families in the coming months and years.

 

Rescue director Penny Bly, explains, “FOCA always leased our space in the last 9 years of our existence.  Being able to have a building, not to mention multiple buildings, is a dream come true. Our hope is it will continue to help local residents while helping control the feline population in Monroe County. But we couldn’t have done it without the generous support of our FOCA Friends.”  

 

Since 2011, FOCA has helped with a variety of programs over the years that include their Trap-Neuter-Release program, barn cats program, discount cats for seniors and the ever popular adoption center which brings in adopters from Monroe County, but also Wayne and Washtenaw Counties as well as Lucas County in Ohio. This year alone they’ve taken on ventures in Monroe that include mobile home TNR projects, rescue cases for felines in physical trouble and possible treatments for deadly feline diseases like FIP, which currently has no test and no medical-recognized treatment.

 

“2020 has been a rough year for everyone but we try to look for the bright spots. For example, two young women witnessed a cat thrown from a moving car on I-75 and rescued it from the freeway. They made their way to us where it received medical care thanks to our generous Facebook donors. Another example involves our TNR team that located a missing cat who was accidentally released by a shipping company that a family hired for their move. FOCA volunteers went nearly every day to the Welcome Center rest stop near Erie where it was lost and spoke with nearby residents. One caring Monroe citizen saw the cat on their surveillance camera and contacted our team. So, we staked out the location and caught the cat within 48 hours. But it took over 30 days and people – both at FOCA and everyday citizens – coming together to help an animal in trouble. Our volunteer even drove to Pennsylvania to meet the grateful New York family half-way to do the pet return. So again, in uncertain times like these, we look to these stories that illustrate the compassion of others.”

 

Bly adds that it’s that same caring and kindness from others that has made this purchase possible. FOCA is an all-volunteer organization with an assortment of generous people that include monetary donors, resale store shoppers, cat adopters, fans on social media who share posts and a team of dedicated site workers like the resale shop clerks, marketers or animal caregivers, who work 365 days a year. Since FOCA has little to no overheard, their fundraising efforts of the last 2 years helped them save money for the building down payment. The purchase, which includes the current structure that houses their shelter and resale store, also comes with the third building closest to Grand Blvd. at the front of Detroit Beach in Monroe.

 

“Our supporters, which we call FOCA friends, are the reason this purchase even happened. Although Huntington Bank is the one who truly owns the property now, our goal over these coming years is to continue our fundraising so our name will be on the deed free and clear someday. So, until that day comes, we’ll continue our bottle drive, monthly events and other fundraising projects.”

 

As for what happens next, Bly has some plans in the works and says, “There are a few ideas we’ve got for 2021 that we know will help our local community tremendously, but they’re a surprise for now. In the coming weeks, we’ll be researching and planning those ideas in greater detail, so we hope to have more exciting news soon.”

 

The shelter and resale shop are currently open to the public with limited capacity four days a week from Wednesday to Saturday Noon to 5 PM and you can learn more about the upcoming events at FOCA on their site friendsofcompanionanimals.org.

 

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Friends of Companion Animals Receives Grant

 

Friends of Companion Animals in Monroe, MI has received an $878.00 Senior Pet Adoption Assistance Grant from the Petfinder Foundation.  The Petfinder Foundation Senior Pet Adoption Assistance Grant program is used to assist Petfinder members to help facilitate the adoption of senior pets. 

 

Grant funds must be used to help senior pet become adoptable by funding any of the following:  adoption fees, transportation to the adopter, assist the adopter with the cost of medication for the duration of the senior pet’s lifetime, spay/neuter surgery.   

 

This money will go a long way in helping F.O.C.A. to match senior cats with senior citizens. Friends of Companion Animals posts its adoptable pets at www.petfinder.com/shelters/MI918.html.  Visitors are welcome to meet cats face-to-face during their normal business hours Thursday through Saturday from 11 AM – 5 PM.   

 

The Petfinder.com Foundation assists the 12,000+animalshelters and rescue groups that post their adoptable pets on Petfinder.com. A nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization, the Petfinder Foundation helps adoption organizations find homes for the pets in their care through its Sponsor A Pet, Disaster Fund, Quality of Life and other programs. Since its founding in 2003, the Petfinder Foundation has given more than $20 million in cash and product grants to shelters and rescue groups in the United States, Canada and Mexico.

Cat Rescue:

Give Him a Second Chance 


“Chance” was found near PetSmart in Monroe, MI and brought into the store. Friends of Companion Animals (FoCA) cat rescue center was called to see if we could help him. A microchip scan revealed that he is been adopted in August 2017 at four months old to a home in Southfield Michigan from a rescue located in Walled Lake, Michigan. His adopters didn’t report him missing and they had him declawed, which is against the organization’s policies. Because of this contract breach, the rescue has retained custody of Chance.

Since he is now back in their possession, they are responsible for his medical costs and care. In fact his original foster from when he was a kitten will be fostering him during his recovery. After the veterinarian examination, it appears that his jaw is dislocated or broken. They surmised that the injuries he sustained are consistent with riding under or inside the engine compartment of a motor vehicle and ultimately falling from that vehicle. 

Currently, we are seeking funds for his vet care so any monetary help we can give is appreciated. You can send your checks with a ‘memo’ note that says ‘Second Chance Fund’ to:

Friends of Companion Animals

Attn: Second Chance Fund

2532 N. Dixie Hwy.

Monroe, MI 48162 

 

Below are some additional images but they are more graphic in nature. However, it illustrates the extent of his injuries and why funds for his care are desperately needed. 

 

 

Some Images Might be Unsettling

Trigger Warning

 

 

 

Friend of Companion Animals would like to offer our thanks to I want marketing.com. For every site they build for a business they also construct one for a local nonprofit animal organization. We are very honored and happy that they chose our feline rescue and adoption center.

Along with information about our facilities, this site will also include a list of our adoptable animals, which appear on Petfinder, in the coming weeks so stay tuned.

And if you are in need of a new website make sure to check them out because you’re not only helping a Monroe-based web design business you’re also helping other homeless pets in the process.

Friends of companion animals would like to thank all of the attendees of our fifth annual auction fundraiser, which was held Saturday, October 21, 2017. People came out to enjoy a delicious dinner and bed on a variety of items, from gift cards to local businesses to gift baskets and more.

As a completely volunteer run, nonprofit organization, all proceeds from our auctions go directly to support the care of our shelter and its felines. It’s always wonderful when people come out to support our endeavor of making Monroe County, MI free of homeless and unwanted cats.

So again, we like to extend our thanks to everyone who donated items and to everyone who show up for our events. Your generosity is greatly appreciated.