This is a pet store in Fairplay, Colorado, USA with a cat shelter attached to it downstairs.
They took in a monster tabby cat for rehoming. His name is Andre the Giant Cat! And he truly is one of those exceptionally large cats which we see very rarely indeed. They think he may have some Savannah blood in him because he has some wild cat hybrid characteristics such as a different voice from the normal. It could be true. There is a Savannah cat breeder near by apparently and Andre does not like processed food. These are signs of a wild cat hybrid and a cat raised on raw food by a breeder.
Rather than rehome Andre they decided to keep him as a resident store cat. And what a good idea. Andre’s presence has been a boon to cat adoptions from their sanctuary. They have soared.
It seems that people have noticed Andre (how could you not?) and been intrigued. He has drawn people in and then they have adopted a rescue cat. Within a month of him being at the store things happened for the better:
“Within a month of us having him, people coming in to see him and to visit, the adoption rate for the rescue skyrocketed,” Miyuki Takeda, owner of High Paw Pet Supplies said.
He weighs around 25 pounds. When he was picked up wandering around downtown Fairplay he was underweight at 20 pounds. A vet said he needed to put on weight!
Andre appears to have a tendency to go wander. He escaped the store the other day. He disappeared. The community rallied around and found him in the snowy weather.
Precautions are being taken to keep him in. I hope they don’t make him an indoor cat, though. His nature will motivate him to roam and use lots of space, I suspect.
Lesson learned? Find a way to promote your shelter to raise the profile. How many animal shelters have a resident mascot cat or dog who can attract visitors and fire up the imagination?