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Working Cats

A traditional indoor home environment works for most cats, but there are some who won’t fit the typical path to a new home. Some cats may have behavioral challenges that make it hard for them to find homes, such as litter box issues that are not health related or a lack of socialization that makes them difficult (and sometimes impossible) to handle. These cats need an alternative adoption solution that fits their needs. The SPCA has developed a Working Cat Program to find homes for these cats.


The Working Cat Spectrum – What is a Working Cat? 

Working cat isn’t an easily defined classification for cats. It doesn’t just mean “feral barn cat.” Nor does it mean “always outside.” You might say all feral cats can be working cats, but not all working cats are feral. Instead of thinking about working cats as a yes or no question, think of them on a spectrum. Some working cats crave human attention! Others won’t tolerate handling at all. There are many cats in between. Working cats may be barn cats or they might live in an office, church, feed store, plant nursery, workshop, or another type of property. The possibilities are endless!

Kittens need frequent interaction with people to be properly socialized. They are also not equipped to take care of themselves in a working cat setting. Because of this, kittens will not be part of the working cat program.


Why Working Cats?

The SPCA wants to save more lives. Cats with a unique set of needs, like working cats, are frequently skipped over in favor of cats who are more easily adopted. We know there are people and businesses out there who would appreciate the right working cat. The purpose of this program is to match these unique cats with non-traditional homes.


How Do I Adopt a Working Cat?

If you are interested in adopting a working cat, you will need to fill out a Working Cat Survey then speak with an adoption counselor about the next steps. Copies are available at the Adoption Center or you can print/fill out the form at home to bring with you. For Adoption Center hours and directions click here. At the Adoption Center, you’ll speak with an adoption counselor about choosing a working cat and acclimating them to their new home.