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Ontario SPCA cat gets new home — and new job

Pawdre has found a happy home as a mouser at a Self Stor warehouse as part of the Ontario SPCA York Region's successful working cat program
After being featured in NewmarketToday's Adopt Me, a partnership with Ontario SPCA and the York Region Animal Centre, Pawdre has been adopted by Self Stor as a "working cat."

Pawdre was a cat in need of a home.

The Ontario SPCA York Region Animal Centre had taken in the two-year-old feline after it had been wandering in the community for awhile without a home. 

After some time waiting for adoption, including being featured in NewmarketToday's bi-weekly Adopt Me column, Pawdre has found a new home and a new job doing what cats have long meant to do — mouse hunting, for Self Stor Storage in North York.

“He’s actually very comfortable with people, which is quite shocking to us and a lot of our customers love him,” Self Stor marketing manager Justin Morgan said. “He absolutely loves contact, which is quite weird to say for a working cat.” 

Pawdre was successfully adopted thanks to the Ontario SPCA’s working cat program. The program adopts cats out who may not be suitable for a typical home, advertising them to be used as working cats instead.

Morgan said his company sought an alternative method to pest control at one of their storage facilities and found out about the Ontario SPCA program, getting linked to Pawdre through that. The initiative has been a success for them the past three months, with no signs of mouse activity, Morgan said. 

“We absolutely love the working cat program, and we think that everyone should try and get something like this. It really helps a lot of cats acclimate,” he said.

Ontario SPCA shelter health and wellness manager Monica Seto said the program has had success over its five years. It is a way to help adopt cats assessed to not do as well in a traditional environment.

“We have a lot of previous adopters that have been really happy with the program and really grateful,” she said. 

Pawdre was originally up for general adoption. Morgan said that sometimes cats are switched to the working stream based on behaviour, with shelter life potentially impacting them.

“Sometimes, animal statuses change when they’re with us,” she said. 

But Pawdre has become very warm to others, Morgan said. Although Pawdre will do his job roaming the storage halls, he said he will come to the office portion of the building every morning to greet people as they come in.

“It’s quite shocking to see that he was unadoptable,” Morgan said. “Though he is good with people, he is a little bit of an aggressive player .. but he’s good with adults and everything like that.”

The friendliness of Padre has led to customers asking to adopt him if the mousing job does not work out or wraps up, Morgan said. He added that he has also considered adopting Pawdre in that instance.

“Now he’s almost at the point (that) he’s a lap cat,” he said. “Such a dramatic change in his life in only a few months.” 

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Joseph Quigley

About the Author: Joseph Quigley

Joseph is the municipal reporter for NewmarketToday.
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