You’re already a winner if you’re going to Cat Walk, but you don’t want to miss out on these exclusive raffle prizes! To be eligible to win, all you have to do is have your “passport” stamped (which you will receive at the beginning of Cat Walk), at each of the four participating bars. Who doesn’t love free stuff?
Some of our prizes include…
A one-night stay for two at the Drake Hotel
Two tickets to a Cubs game (Section 134), donated by Michael Gerhardt from ReMax
Two club seats to a White Sox game (with Stadium Club Access), donated by Barry and Bobbi Ann Fulk
Two cocktail class passes from KOVAL Distillery
Four distillery tour and tasting passes from KOVAL
Two tickets to a performance at the Joffrey Ballet
Two tickets to a performance at Victory Gardens
Dinner for two at Ramen-san, Sushi-san, and Il Porcellino (three prizes – $100 value each)
Seven $25 gift cards to Two Dots and a Dash
A pet lovers’ gift basket, including a $20 gift card to Jameson Loves Danger
Submit your completed passport at any Cat Walk venue to enter. Winners will be announced July 29. Surprise mini prizes will be given out to everyone at each bar just for attending.
Tree House would like to give a special thank you to all of our incredible friends and partners who have graciously donated to our raffle and helped make this possible!
Three special cats who are looking for homes need your help. Choose your favorite and let everyone you know know that you are going to be walking in their honor. Share their names, share their stories, and share that you care! Choose from:
Adam(o) (left) arrived at Tree House in dramatic fashion, aboard an aircraft filled with 180 other cats and dogs seeking refuge from the Oklahoma storms. He is one of the thirty cats admitted to Tree House (he hypothesizes the “o” was added to his name to remind him of his Oklahoma roots). Adam(o) has a touch of the FIV, but you’d never know it by looking at him. He loves to cuddle and is raising awareness for his fellow #OKStormCats! Choose Adam(o) and know that there will be fireworks (tiny, furry ones) awaiting you at the Cat Walk finish line. #TeamAdamoCat
Cleopatra (middle), a charming senior kitty, would love to be your choice for the 2019 Cat Walk. Around Tree House, her own very special cat walk is famous. A little bit swagger, a little bit arthritis and neurological condition, and a little bit confidence, Cleo has some trouble with non-carpeted floors and other cats. She’d be perfect for a home with carpets (or rugs), living the life of a single cat, where she could be adored by her human. She’s been at Tree House for a while now, so choose Cleo and help bring attention to this fabulous girl so she can find the home she deserves! #TeamCleoCat
Leonardo Pescatore (right) is Tree House’s longest resident at this time! He’s been looking for a home since December of 2017, and is currently staging a quiet protest where he wears a chicken hat (at his discretion) to speak out about his length of stay. Tree House has been caring for his Feline Leukemia Virus (FeLV), Feline Immunodeficiency Virus, obesity, and skin condition. While he’s no longer dealing with the obesity or the skin condition, he will still have the other two viruses for life. In spite of all of this, Leonardo is perfectly adoptable! He loves (loves) to eat and have his back scratched, and he’s really into sitting on floors of all kinds. Choose Leonardo to walk in honor of #ChickenHatProtest! #TeamLeoCat
PS. Don’t have your tickets yet? Get ’em now! We’re halfway to sold out already and t-shirt size guarantees end July 11th, as do the sweet $25 tickets. You can still get them later, but it’ll cost you and your t-shirt might be too tight. Consider yourself warned.
And so, we’d like to introduce you to our newest fundraiser: the Cat Walk.
Think: Catchella. Think: bar crawl meets fundraiser meets community engagement. Simply put, you can have a cocktail in honor of a kitten.
All of this fun will take place in Andersonville on Saturday, July 27 from 2pm – 6pm. Come hop along with us to Empirical Brewery,The Meeting House Tavern,The SoFo Tap, and Fat Cat. They have beer and one of them even has cats and, if you’re lucky, you’ll get the chance to see them as they patrol Empirical Brewery doing what they do best: keeping the rodents away as part of our Cats at Work program. No cat sighting, though? No problem! Every bar will be offering amazing drink specials. The Meeting House will have $5 Meow-garitas and $12 Purr-fect Mimosa Carafes. Empirical Brewery is planning a $4 house special on tap, Egon’s Ale, brewed specially for their brewery cat Egon’s birthday. The SoFo Tap is offering their Lap It Up special, half-off brews, and $4 Cat’s Meow Shot. And the aptly named Fat Cat will have $4 mixed drinks, featuring mango and paw-megranate.
Excited? There’s more! Get ready for cat trivia, kitten naming, and all kinds of other things our feline-serving staff are dreaming up for you. You’ll receive a passport at your port of entry (one of two bars, your choice when you purchase tickets) that will get a stamp for every activity you complete. When you hit all four Cat Walk locations, you get entered to win some big giveaway prizes, including an overnight stay for two at the Drake, box seats at a Sox game, and a cocktail making class at KOVAL Distillery.
We invite everyone to come out, bring your friends, and help us raise some funds to support our mission to empower communities of caregivers to protect, nurture, and support new solutions so no cat suffers. Be a part of the first-ever, hopefully-to-be-repeated, feline-fabulous, beer-filled Cat Walk and help support socially conscious sheltering and animal welfare in Chicago.
Tickets for Cat Walk can be found at treehouseanimals.org/catwalk. If you can’t make it, you can donate and support the Cat Walk with a virtual cocktail. Our kitties will love you for it.
And if you happen to be neither a cat lover nor a beer lover, why are you still reading?
We did it. In partnership with Anti-Cruelty and HSUS, three of Tree House’s team members showed up on the tarmac at Chicago Executive Airport in Wheeling, IL to meet 181 dogs and cats. With PAWS Chicago, Felines and Canines, Green County Humane Society, and Animal Care League, we took in almost 200 animals to make room at the Tulsa Humane Society in Oklahoma for the animals who need shelter while they’re separated from their families during the storms.
They were hot. It was noisy. There was a lot of meowing. But we got them all back to Tree House safely and the rest of our team took over unloading them, getting them into the clinic, and processing each one. Some went right to the floor for adoption. Others are too small and will go into foster. A few more are awaiting space on the adoption floor to open up. All are safe.
It’s days like today when someone like me, your writer, is thankful to work in animal rescue. All the way over here in Chicago, our community of rescuers and supporters came together to offer relief to animals and their families halfway across the country. The work is hard but so rewarding and it’s impossible not to be utterly, completely thankful on days like today that there are people out there who care enough to make sure these animals are safe and sound. Being out on that tarmac today brings an indescribable joy and satisfaction that I’ve never felt in any other place. Of course, not every day feels as heroic as today. Not every day includes airplanes and tarmacs, engines, running around, and hundreds of animals. Some days are quiet. But all days are important. And all days, we need each other because the animals need us.
Tomorrow, Tree House is joining the Anti-Cruelty Society and the HSUS for a major transport of animals, almost two-hundred cats and dogs. They are coming from the Tulsa, Oklahoma Humane Society in order to make room there for the hundreds of animals who have been separated from their families by the storms that need to stay local; we’re taking the ones who are already looking for homes.
We don’t normally take in this many animals at once, so we are going to need some help. After all this transport, these animals might get sick or stressed and need some time to recuperate. We’ll need foster homes for them so they can do just that. If you’ve ever wanted to foster, now is the time. Visit Treehouseanimals.org/foster to find out more and apply.
And if you can’t foster, please donate. We’re going to need funding to help all these displaced kitties out, so anything you can spare would help. You can see more at treehouseanimals.org/okstormcats.
We’ve noticed recently that people have been coming in to play with the cats. Not to adopt, just to play. How did we notice? Because our cats have been utterly exhausted at the end of the day, sometimes even way before the end of the day. And so, we must do what’s best for the cats.
We have to end unrestricted play time for non-adopters.
We know! Our cats are amazing. They are special and sweet and wonderful and sometimes, there’s nothing better than to show up and just cuddle them for awhile. And we still want you to do that, so we have another option for you: our fabulous cat cafe.
We have stocked that cafe with some amazing cuddlers. Nayla, Dr. Jones, Jaspurr, and Felicia are all waiting specifically to hug and snug while you chug the beverage of your choice made by our barista. Of course, because there are only a few of them and they also need a nap, we request that you make a reservation so it doesn’t get too crowded and so you can get plenty of cat time. You can make one ahead of time here
you can walk in and ask if there’s some time available and our staff will help you out. Yes, it costs $10 for 30-minutes, but it comes with a drink! And we are a non-profit, so all those $10 bills go right back to taking care of the cats we all clearly love so much.
The point is, from now on, any cuddling has to be done in our cafe, unless you’re planning to adopt. If you want to adopt, come on in and meet one of our counselors. They’ll introduce you to some fabulous future family felines who we have kept fresh, just for you.
And for the rest of you cat lovers? We still welcome you, we still appreciate you, we still value you. We just have to do what’s best for the cats, and we know that that’s something you want, too.
We are so excited to let everyone know that the long-awaited cafe` is now open for business!
As Chicago’s very first cat cafe within a shelter, we had a few ordinances to work with and a few hoops to jump through, but with a lot of help from our community, our supporters, donors, volunteers, and Alderman Debra Silverstein’s office, we have finally succeeded! We currently have five fabulous FeLV-positive kitties just waiting to meet you and knock your coffee on the floor politely sit with you.
Why FeLV-positive kitties you ask? Because they need you. They are healthy cats, but they have a virus that can cause complications down the line. They’re harder to adopt out because of a stigma around this virus, and just a few years ago (and sometimes still today) they are euthanized upon entry into a shelter. Programs like the one here at Tree House give other shelters who cannot care for these animals a place to send them to give them a second chance. Putting them front and center in our cafe` gives us the opportunity to speak more about this virus to help destigmatize it in the public eye and give these cats the possibility of a loving home. The more of these cats we can place into homes, the more we can save.
We think that when you meet them, you’ll see that there’s really no difference between the love they can offer you when compared to an FeLV-negative cat. They may have a shorter amount of time in which to do it, but that means the love even harder for the years they have left.
Please come join them for a cup of coffee or tea! Appointments can be made at our Cafe Page. We book in 30-minute increments, $10 per person, and that includes a drink of your choice made by our barista. We can’t wait to see you!
Ah. You’ve clicked. That means you want to save a life. That means we’re on the same page, you and Tree House. There’s one really easy way to do it. Ready?
That’s it. Every cat you foster is a life saved, especially for kittens under six weeks of age. CACC can’t keep kittens under six weeks, so they have less than 24 hours to find a safe place. We can pull them, but we HAVE to have a place to put them, and because kittens’ immune systems are delicate and they’re too young to be vaccinated, they need a safe place to rest until they’re big enough and strong enough to become full-fledged cats and come into our shelter.
Do you have a bathroom? Perfect. That’s all they need.
Do you have a spare room with a door to keep them separated from your resident animals? Great. You’re ready.
Do you live alone and have no other pets? Fantastic. You’re the perfect candidate.
It’s not hard, and once you do it, you’ll see why it’s one of the greatest experiences you, as a human, can have.
Ok, so he doesn’t actually live in a forest, but he does live in a Tree House (and he spends a lot of time on the floor), and we’re hoping to change that. See, Leonardo has been at Tree House since 2017. That’s a long time. Now, let’s take a look at this face and see if you can spot anything that would make it hard for him to get adopted:
Nope. Looks good, right? Ok, MAYBE he looks a bit older than he is (he’s actually only 6). Maybe his eye is a little goopy. Maybe he has FeLV (he does, that’s not a maybe), and FIV (he comes fully-loaded) but in addition to all that, he also has love! Love to give YOU, the one person in the whole world that he’s been waiting for to see through his slightly rough exterior right into his soft, lovely heart.
Imagine yourself sitting on the floor, right next to Leo on his very favorite Kingdom, him in his soft, comfy throne with a plate of wet food, you with whatever it is you like to do. You would pet him gently, but you would know when to stop and would respect his wishes, as is his right. Now, imagine the best part of all of this: that you single-handedly gave a second chance to a little guy who really, really needed it.
Leo doesn’t mind other cats, but Tree House recommends (in some situations)* that he live with other FeLV-positive kitties. Lucky for you, we have them! (See Ginger below) He would also prefer a chill, quiet home, one with plenty of floor on which he could impose his will.
If you think Leonardo could be the kitty of your dreams, come in to Tree House to meet him. Ask for him by name; we all know him here.
We hope to see you soon. So does Leonardo.
*Tree House doesn’t recommend sending an FeLV-positive cat into homes with kittens or geriatric cats. However, see our adoption counselors to see if he might fit into your existing cat household.
**This post was updated shortly after posting to reflect Leo’s FIV-positive status (we don’t think too much about it and forgot to include it) and Tree House’s new guidelines on mixing FeLV-positive cats with FeLV-negative cats. **
Hey you. Yeah, you there. I’ll bet you like kittens. It might be a little or you might already be wearing one on your t-shirt right now. If they’re not on your shirt, they might be on your socks. If they’re not on your socks, they’re probably on your mind. We know they’re definitely on OUR minds here at Tree House because it is just about to be kitten season. And what happens during kitten season? Kittens arrive. And then they need medical care. And food. And love. And they need to grow. Why? So we can spay and neuter them so they can go on to lead a long, fruitful life as someone’s best friend while not bearing any kitten-like fruit.
Now, let’s talk about the rub, for there is indeed a rub: Kittens aren’t generally spayed or neutered until they’re at least 2 lbs, which is around two months or later, depending on their health when they come in, and they can’t be admitted to our colonies until they’ve had their surgeries and vaccinations. So, where do the kittens go from the time we get them until they’re ready?
That word deserves its own paragraph because that’s how important it is. If you want to directly save a life, you foster. You see, if Tree House (or any rescue, for that matter) has open foster homes, we can pull more kittens from CACC because we know we have a safe place to keep them. If we have no place to keep them, we can’t pull as many. Every foster home equals AT LEAST one life saved. And if you take a whole litter of kittens? MORE lives saved!
Tree House needs two things right now: Long-term fosters and emergency fosters. If you are able to keep newborn kittens in a safe place for up to 72 hours, we need you. Those 72 hours are crucial and give us a place to stash these little critters while we find them the other thing we’re looking for: long-term fosters.
Our long term fosters will keep the kittens until they’re ready for the adoption floor. This is usually from 6 weeks to a few months.
Imagine it: you watch them grow, you love them, you scoop their boxes, play with them, enjoy them, and then, you set them free. Not back into the street, obviously, but into Tree House where they’ll find the homes of their dreams, all because of you.
PS If you want a little experience before you accept your first foster friend, come to our Kitten Shower & Foster Recruitment Event this coming May 5, from 11 am to 1 pm. We’ll play some games, provide some foster information, have some snacks, and we MAY have a visit from some kittens. It’s $10 per person, RSVP required.