Cat House on the Kings
Sometimes you experience something that touches your heart so deeply. This experience will be etched in your mind forever, and you wish everyone could also know the feeling you had that day.
I saw a video on the National Geographic channel last year, about a woman who runs a cat rescue. This isn’t any ordinary rescue – she has acres and acres of land (12 acres actually!) and over 700 cats! She is not a “crazy cat lady” by any means, just a gentle soul who loves animals and just HAS to help them. No cages and no kill means a peaceful life for these furry guys.
The Cat House is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit corporation, receives no government or public funding, and relies entirely on donations from the public to carry out its mission.
Since its founding 20 years ago by Lynea Lattanzio, The Cat House on the Kings has saved over 18,000 cats and 5,000 dogs (not counting the 40,000 animals we have spayed and neutered!) and currently cares for more than 700 cats and kittens, dozens of dogs and a handful of goats, who earn their keep as lawnmowers!
This fun video will give you a good idea of what it is all about, and why it just left me speechless.
It is such a well thought out operation, and they make sure all kitties are healthy before letting them near the others. When they come in, they go through a screening of sorts, to determine the needs of every cat. There is a “senior” home which is fenced in, for the elderly cats. It is an actual house with a yard – and the seniors can come and go as they please. There is a kitten house, where the babies are separated by age, and adoptability.
My friend and I decided to visit Cat House on the Kings during their Spring Open House (2013) and it really was something. We had the pleasure of meeting Lynea (the sweetest woman with the biggest heart ever!) and chatted with her awhile, as cats came up to her randomly and rubbed her legs and pranced all around her. They obviously LOVE her.
Upon arrival we were in awe of how many cats were just hanging out casually near the entrance.
This fella below seemed to have a thing for my friend. He was SO friendly and just so sweet!
There is a large house on the property, that used to belong to Lynea. Over the years it just became a house for the cats and she now lives in another, smaller, house on the property, where about three cats live with her. Although the large house belongs to the cats, it doesn’t smell like cats (which is amazing, considering how many there are). In the kitchen, cabinet doors have been removed and there are beds inside. Countertops have more cat beds neatly lined up.
This kitty was especially fond of my friend:
At Cat House on the Kings, every room has plenty of beds…
and litter boxes…
This guy below gave me plenty of snuzzles and just couldn’t get close enough to me. He kept pushing himself right up against me and wanted to be hugged. I wanted to take him home.
The guy below was very comfortable!
This little beauty was hanging out all by its lonesome. He was napping but woke up when he saw us walk near.
Hanging out in the tree…
Stalking the grass monsters! As we toured the property, cats followed us everywhere. They happily played and pounced and of course, rubbed our legs and “let” us pet them. There wasn’t a mean cat in the bunch.
After we finished our tour of the grounds, we headed over to the raffle area to see what goodies we could find. We placed our bids with the help of some kitties:
And some kitties just couldn’t resist trying out a few of the items for the raffle. They were in and out of tunnels, playing with toys, and generally just having a great time.
The Cat House on the Kings is located at 7120 S Kings River Ave, Parlier, CA 93648. If you ever have a chance to attention one of their open houses, you just have to go! They have two per year, Spring and Fall. Do call ahead if you plan on visiting at another time, instead of during an open house.
If you are looking for a fur-ever friend, this is a fantastic place to find just the right one. And of course, if you would like to make a donation towards the care and feeding of the kitties, they are always welcome. In fact, on the Cat House on the Kings Facebook page, you can choose a kitty to sponsor for $15/month. I sponsor Mr. Pickles 🙂 Or you can make a regular donation (donations can even be made via Paypal!), or even send them items from their Amazon Wish List. You can find the details on their website. It is VERY expensive to run Cat House on the Kings and naturally they go through massive amounts of food & cat litter, in addition to costs such as electricity (thousands per month), medical bills, etc.
I cannot begin to tell you how impressed I am with Cat House on the Kings. Lynea and the volunteers work tirelessly to make sure that these kitties (and dogs), are taken care of, given lots of love, and have a forever home (for those not adopted).
I plan on taking my husband and daughter to the Fall open house next month. Since we are huge cat lovers, I just know it will melt their hearts too.