Just under three years ago, I first proposed the idea of purchasing a cat to share my new apartment with, and several of my friends encouraged me to further investigate adoption over the pet shop route. The process for adopting my furry friend was one that I was new to, seeing that my family had always been pet store buyers. I made the decision to adopt two remarkable felines into my life. There was a fair amount of research that went into pre-pet owning, but the ultimate time buster was the actual hunt for that special pal. Once I had fully prepared myself mentally for a new pet, I started on my endeavor, searching through every shelter that housed within a hundred mile radius of me. I visited several of the adoption facilities more than once, going back to see cats I had grown fond of, before I made my final decision. All of the centers I saw were very nice, but three of the adoption places earned a special place in my heart.
1. Anderson Animal Shelter
This loving location was my most frequent spot, and my personal favorite. The Anderson building is tucked away down Route 31 in South Elgin. It may be a bit of a cruise for some, but enjoy the ride and prepare yourself for a cat room full of characters. Employees will be on your right to greet you as you walk in, and if you venture to the left you will find the cat room. Here, the cats exist in every crevice of the room: some are caged, while others aren't. Each cat has a name, and a distinct personality. When I use to go there, a big adult cat by the name of Darwin had earned himself the nickname "The Godfather", because...well, I'm sure you get it. If you wish to get closer with a caged kitty, the employees at the front will hand you mandatory brief paperwork, before helping you grow closer to a potential new friend.
Visit @ www.andersonanimalshelter.org
2. Tree House Humane Society
This particular shelter has two branches: found in the Uptown and Bucktown neighborhoods of Chicago, and they focus solely on the adoption of cats. Both locations are cageless and offer their foster kitties a wide variety of play items, as well as what seems like a limitless amount of play room in comparison to most other places. Quick paperwork is filled out before entering the kitty wonderland. The Uptown location offers a wider variety of cats, as it is a bit larger in size. Although, the Bucktown spot is nice because the workers seem to spend a good amount of timing creating a personal bond with their adoptees. I felt no rush when I would stop by to see the Tree House cats, I could sit on the floor and interact with the crowd for as long as I pleased, (within business hours, obviously).
Visit @ www.treehouseanimals.org
3. PAWS Chicago
Finally, a no-kill adoption center! The first thing I noticed about this Chicago pet palace was the fresh feeling the interior pumped through me, everything presented itself cleanly and welcoming. Employees are behind the front desk, walking about, and showing adoptable animals in separate rooms throughout the building design; so when I pin-pointed a fuzzy face that I wanted to meet, it was easy to find a helper. As the other locations, PAWS also requires obligatory paperwork (done on one of their computers) before venturing into a room full of joy. I will admit, the paperwork took the longest here, but it showed me how much they cared about the animals they were helping. Cats and dogs are set up in various cageless rooms, ready to greet guests with cuddles and kisses. Everything down to the air at PAWS is genuine.
Visit @ www.pawschicago.org
If you have decided to adopt a lucky pet into your own life, I wish you a happy hunting! For some easy access viewing, visit www.petfinder.com, where shelters (including the three listed) post available animals online.