, Muskogee, OK


June 15, 2013

Library has range of resources for prospective pet adopters

— June is “Adopt a Shelter Cat Month.” If you are thinking about getting a cat or kitten for a pet, why not adopt from an animal shelter? There are several places and organizations in the Muskogee area that are always looking for good homes for a variety of animals, including cats.

Coins4Critters (www., The Muskogee Animal Shelter ( or (918) 684-6285), and Promoting Animal Welfare Society Inc. ( or (918) 686-7297) are three good places to find the perfect pet. Also, local Petco stores will often show adoptable animals from local shelters on various days.

When adopting a cat, many people lean more toward a kitten. They erroneously think that if an older cat is at a shelter, something must be wrong with it. But often the family has had to move or become displaced for some reason and couldn’t take the cat.

The blog “Raining Cats and Dogs” points out the problems of adopting an older cat in the article “Adopt-A-Shelter Cat Month: Something's obviously wrong with that cat.” It can be found at www. The most serious problems are that older cats are often friendly, loveable, playful and make great pets. Unless you are looking for these traits in a pet, stay far away from an older cat.

Before you visit your local animal shelters and find the perfect cat for your home, why not visit the Muskogee Public Library and check out the many books available on cats and cat care? You can learn about cat behavior, how to communicate with and understand your cat, what supplies you will need for your new cat, first aid for your pet and much more.

In  the “ASPCA Complete Cat Care Manual,” Dr. Andrew Edney shows how to select a cat, introducing it to your household, basic care and first aid, grooming, nursing a sick cat and more.

Master animal trainer and animal welfare activist Brian Kilcommons and Sarah Wilson have shared more than 30 years of raising, training and loving cats. In “Good Owners, Great Cats,” they provide a friendly, compassionate and readable book that helps guide people to better understand cats and to show what needs to be done so cats and humans can live together in peace and harmony.

In the book “Cat Culture: the Social World of a Cat Shelter” by Janet M. Alger and Steven F. Alger, it is found that the anti-social cat is a myth. Volunteering more than 12 years at a cat shelter, the authors observed that cats form close bonds with humans and with each other. In spite of the chaotic, ever-changing environment of a cat shelter, the social world of the shelter remained calm and stable. Cats would take an active part in maintaining their community so they could live together and meet their individual needs. This book tells about the culture found in a cat shelter and provides an intimate portrait of life in a cat shelter.

For those concerned about feral or stray cats, Tamara Kreuz provides a definitive “how-to” guide for helping them in “The Stray Cat Handbook.” It provides critical information and step-by-step directions guiding people through the process of humane and nonlethal management of feral cats.

These are but a few of the many books on cats and cat care that can be found at the Muskogee Public Library. Visit the library soon and learn how to care for the cat you adopt from an animal shelter.

Karen Thomas is the outreach librarian at the Muskogee Public Library. Reach her at (918) 682-6657.

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