Cats love naps. Lots of people love naps too.
So, what happens when the two are joined?
An absolutely adorable situation is what!
Which is just what happened at Safe Haven Pet Sanctuary, a shelter for special needs and elderly cats in Green Bay, WI. While many a volunteer offers time and support to the shelter, one man comes every day to spend time with the cats. He arrives with a brush in hand and a yawn on his lips.
Introducing Terry Lauerman, known as “Grandpa Terry” to sanctuary cats and staff.
About six months ago, Terry walked into Safe Haven carrying a cat brush. The sanctuary’s founder, Elizabeth Feldhausen, said Terry “just walked in and started brushing” even though he never asked to become an official volunteer. He was such a natural fit with the kitties, the sanctuary staff had him fill out the volunteer paper work. He quickly became the furballs’ official minion of grooming.
Terry visits his cat buddies every day to check in with them and share one of a cat’s favorite things. A nap!
The daily naps started accidentally. Terry and the cats would grow so comfy in their chosen spot, they drifted off to sleep. These napping sessions have become an almost everyday occurrence. The special needs cats love their nap time with Grandpa Terry. Looks like the snoozing is doing everybody involved some good.
The act of snuggling is a healing thing for many, cats included. Being snuggled in someone’s arms for a nap can help an ailing cat in more ways than we can ever know. A sweet purr of thanks offers all the proof we need.
Every Cat Matters
Safe Haven’s mission is giving love and care to cats with issues both physical and psychological. According to a statement on their website, Safe Haven Pet Sanctuary “accepts cases of abuse, neglect, FIV+, blindness, missing limbs, and other physical and psychological disabilities upon review of medical documentation.” The sanctuary also takes senior cats and neonatal kittens.
Their approach is unlike other shelters. The center is set up without cages and the cats in residence have free range of the place. As a non-profit organization, Safe Haven depends on donations, sponsors, and volunteers to keep things going.
The sanctuary offers varied opportunities to spend time with the felines. From adoption events to Pawffee Shop Pop Up events, volunteers and visitors can meet the cats and donate their time in whatever fashion suits their lifestyle. Safe Haven even offers yoga so visitors can give therapy to needy kitties while finding some Zen in return.
But, Terry’s favorite activity is just chilling on the couch with the kitties.
Safe Haven is so thankful for Terry, writing in a Facebook post, “We are so lucky to have a human like Terry.” The world indeed needs more innovators like Terry Lauerman. After all, who knew a nap could count as volunteering?
Thank you, Terry! Keep those kitties comfy…