Highland County Humane Society Barn Cat Program is a Win-Win


Corena Huffman is the president of the Highland County Humane Society and has she got a deal for you!  I asked Corena to stop by the studio so that I could find out more about the Humane Society’s barn cat program. 

What can you tell us about barn cats?

Well, what we found over the years was that there was a niche for both folks needing some pest control, and some of the considered unadoptable or less adoptable kitties needing a home.  So the idea is that people might want to help the Humane Society adopt out the cats, but they might not necessarily want an inside house cat. So the barn cats can help them in the sense that if you think of them as kind of more of a working cat, and their job is to kind of help and deter with pets around the house. Just having a cat around keeps mice and chipmunks and things away, just as a natural deterrent. These kitties that fall into this program don’t necessarily want to be held and coddled and taken into the house. They kind of want to be more independent, but also have shelter and a home and consistent feeding schedules, but they’ll still work for you.

So when we refer to these as barn cats, they’re not strictly barn cats. That’s just sort of the general term. But many people who adopt these cats like to keep them around the house?

Yeah, some people don’t have barns or farms at all, they just are leaning more towards a natural organic, non-chemical option for mice and pests. Maybe that’s a problem in a shed or their home or their greenhouse even. And they like having these cats around the deter the pets, they’re natural hunters without having to use, Rat Bait and some chemicals on their farm or at their home. And the cats just kind of do their do their thing and aren’t trying to sneak in and become your lap cat. They are very persistent with their job and they don’t really want to live indoors.  We try to set up the adopter with the adoption and kind of match them with an ideal cats for their situation. Some like them to be a little bit tame and want them to be able to be petted and touched down at the farm or the garage but don’t necessarily want them at the house.

When a person comes to you and says I want a barn cat, how many barn cats do they really want?

It depends. We’ve had anywhere from I just want one or two or one gentleman wanted a dozen and that’s what he got. So we do like to bring them in pairs. Most of these cats have been housed together when our foster homes or my cat house and are used to one another in that way. They have something familiar, some companionship, they’re more likely to stick around and do their job

What’s the process for adopting a barn cat?

The process for adopting a barn cat from the Highland County Humane Society is pretty simple. You can contact us via phone, Facebook, email.  We’ll have a conversation about it to see what would be best suited for what you’re looking for and the kitties that we have available, and then we can schedule a time to come out and get set up and get to work.

Is there a fee for adopting a barn cat?

There is not a fee. All the cats are vetted, just like our house kitties or our companion kitties, which means they get spayed and neutered. They’ve had their vaccines for distemper and rabies, parasite control, de-wormed, they’ve been tested for feline leukemia and FIV.  Should they come into contact with, say, your house cats, they’re not carrying diseases or parasites where they’re going to get anybody sick. So they’ve had all the same preparedness as our adoptable kitties.  They are just more suited for a barn kitty house.

Year-round pest control for your home or your barn and all it costs is a little cat food.  Anyone interested in adopting a barn cat or two can contact Corena Huffman at the Highland County Humane Society by telephone at (540) 908-9152    or email at info at highland county humane society dot org.

This is Mickey Frank Thomas for Allegheny Mountain Radio.



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Mickey Frank Thomas

Mickey Frank began his radio career in October 2017 when he was offered the impossible-to-fill 9:00 p.m. to midnight slot on Saturdays, where his coordinated mix of pop, soft rock and R&B from the 60s through the 80s met with little acclaim. Deciding that he needed a more awake audience, he added the 3:00 to 6:00 p.m. afternoon drive slot to his workload when it became available in December 2018. Originally from Morton, Illinois, good, old Mickey Frank has lived in more places than he can count on his fingers and toes, but now resides in Highland County.  Email Mickey Frank at  mickeyfrank@amrmail.org.

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