For All Time Cat Haven (a.k.a. F.A.T. Cat Haven) actually started in March 1993 by Harold and Christine McChesney in their Crescent City home, but was not a non-profit organization. The organization, the only true no-kill shelter in Del Norte County, was originally a rescue and retirement home for elderly, handicapped, abandoned and abused cats; and cats that would likely be unadoptable at the Del Norte County Humane Society or through the Wild Feline Rescue organizations. The goal was to provide a forever home so these cats could live out their lives with the care, maintenance and quality of life they deserved.
F.A.T. Cat Haven established federal non-profit status in 2001. The rescue started with 36 cats, and has grown to 130 cats. The average population is between 60 and 85 cats at any one time. The rescue uses the McChesney home and 4 acres to make a cage-free habitat. Over the years, F.A.T. Cat Haven has grown not only in size, but also in scope. F.A.T. Cat Haven rescues, rehabilitates, cares for, and adopts out when possible the cats that come in. Many of the cats received have been abandoned and have nowhere to go. They would have eventually succumbed to starvation, or disease, and would not have survived, or would lead lives of illness, fear and hunger on the streets if not rescued. We have also rescued many abused or injured cats that are in immediate need of life saving veterinary care
The McChesney’s continue to operate F.A.T. Cat Haven, with the help of volunteers, out of the comfort of their home. It is extremely expensive to purchase property and build all of the necessary buildings required for a functioning sanctuary. Rather than wait and hope for the thousands of dollars needed for a sanctuary before they rescued more cats, they opted to use their own home and 4 acres so that the rescue of cats could continue. F.A.T. Cat Haven has no rent, electric, trash, or heating bills to pay, these expenses are still donated by the McChesney’s. The Board of Directors, staff, and volunteers, all volunteer their time so that all funds received go directly to the cats through the purchase of food, litter, and veterinary care. With money dwindling and demand increasing (receive about 20 calls a week from people hoping to find a home for their cats or stray cats that have showed up), the “Haven” is hoping to secure some grant funding or other financial support, in order to provide services and homes for the intake of these additional cats and kittens. It breaks our hearts when we have to say “no” to accepting another cat due to lack of funds. We have the room but not always the money, remember we will provide everything for each cat for its entire life or until adopted.
F.A.T. Cat Haven greatly benefits individuals and families who must find a shelter for cats due to economic duress, loss of their home, illness, death, and other difficult life circumstances. This sanctuary accepts cats from all over. It benefits Del Norte County community, the Brookings / Harbor, Oregon areas the most, but we have received cats from as far away as Sacramento, Fairfield, Vallejo and the Bay area in California.
We hope this has helped to give you some insight into F.A.T. Cat Haven, the people who run it and all of the love that goes into it. Please enjoy the photos of F.A.T. Cat Haven, and a look into the lives of the cats that live here as you view the website. The lives of so many cats could not have been saved without the generosity of people like you who make this possible through your donations.