Puffy Paws Kitty Haven, a cat hospice and rescue shelter

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Puffy Paws Kitty Haven is a no kill cat hospice and rescue shelter located in Englewood, Florida. They humorously bill themselves on line and on Facebook as the “World’s Greatest Cat House.” And indeed, they are. The founders and operators, Rick and Chrissy Kingston work very hard, day in and day out caring for two hundred special needs and unwanted kitties on their own.

Puffy Paws Kitty Haven takes care of the largest amount of special needs cats and kittens in the area. They care for cats with feline leukemia, FIV, blind cats, feral cats, epileptic cats, senior kitties, kitties with only one eye and more. All of these special needs cats and kittens would have been euthanized because they would be deemed un-adoptable. None of the cats or kittens are put down due to behavior problems, space or adopt-ability issues. The only ones that are humanely euthanized are those with medical conditions that cause pain and suffering and have no chance of survival.

Also, Puffy Paws is the first rescue in the area to feature adoptable and special needs cats live on the Internet. It all started 16 years ago in the loving home of Chrissy and Rick Kingston. There they took in cats and sometimes even families of cats. In the fall of 2009, Puffy Paws Kitty Haven moved outside the Kingston’s home. To better handle the different medical needs, they have separated them into two separate living quarters. The “Haven Home” is a 2200 square foot building which houses the healthy, adoptable kitties and a permanent resident for those that have physical, emotional and behavioral problems. The second building is 800 square feet with a 400-square foot used solely for kitties with feline leukemia. This section has been nicknamed the “The Kitty Angel Club.”

Over the last 11 years, founder Chrissy Kingston estimated that she has worked thousands of hours caring for the kitties and spent over $100,000.00 on unwanted though loving cats and kittens.

Puffy Paws Kitty Haven was named after a small, sickly kitten that was part of the Kingston’s family for only one year. The kitten’s name was “Poo-Puffy Paws,” or “Poo Puff” for short.  Although he was a happy, well loved, and well cared for kitten, he passed away during Hurricane Charlie in 2004. Naming the Haven after this very special kitten represented to the Kingstons something they wanted others to know and appreciate; one kitty at a time can change the heart of one person at a time.

On November 20th, 2006, Puffy Paws Kitty Haven became a not-for-profit corporation. This allowed Puffy Paws to raise funds for the cats currently in their care as well as future cats that will come to them needing a safe haven. But caring for 200 cats can be very costly and difficult to maintain when you rely solely on donations. It costs $946.00 a month to feed the cats and $275-$300 a day for cleaning supplies to keep the two buildings spotless and the litter-boxes clean.

(Photo of cat hospice via Facebook)

To read more about Puffy Paws Kitty Haven, donate or adopt one of their cats visit their website.

Also, visit their Facebook page.

“What greater gift than the love of a cat?”
Charles Dickens (author, Great Expectations)

8 replies
  1. Cynthia Como says:

    May God bless these real life angels on earth! What an outstanding, stellar example of kindness and compassion!! We need to clone these wonderful cat caretakers for this world should could use more of these amazing human beings!!! AMAZING!!!!!

  2. linda says:

    I grew up with cats and many more growing up. I have never stopped owning cats.I have 3. After being married to my husband who owned GSD throughout his life we adopted a GSD as a married couple with 5 adult cats I owned and they surprisingly got along. If I were to ask which do you prefer cats or dogs. Answer………both!

  3. pennysdachshund says:

    What amazing People these two are… WHY HAVENT” they been Nominated for CNN”S Heros of the YEAR AWARDS … there would be much more funding for them to operate on !!!! It Also makes People in America have More Pride in what some very caring individuals in this Country that is becoming desensitized to NEGLECT of Animal’s and Abuse that THERE REALLY IS PEOPLE TRYING TO MAKE A DIFFERENCE!!!

  4. bryan havemann says:

    I know these people pain and struggle , I’m greatful for more cat caretakers out there and puffy paws is doing a tremendous job !

  5. Jill says:

    I sent another donation. The math doesn’t add up. 30000 for 200 cats??? The vet bills may be too high. The cats are too much for Chrissy. The man, her hubby, must have a job! How do they pay the mortgage? Why is’nt the other day lovers helping out? I have to give locally. I am on a fixed income. I cannot give more. It is a total travesty that they do not have more help! Please give but realize that the numbers are really high. No financial accountability. I am out.

  6. Malory says:

    Puffy Paws is in danger of closing. I get emails from them all the time. I can’t donate enough to keep up with what they need, but do when I can. Their email today says they are in danger of shutting down due to not being able to pay rent AND they ran out of cat food. Is there no way they can get more help, say from companies?!

  7. patti says:

    Hi Rick and Chrissy, my name is Patti Vandebogart you helped me with Elvira. I am now in Bonifay Florida and there is no rescue sanctuary for kitties or dogs I have been taking in kitties. Right now I have 3 kitties that are about 4 months old and a new Mom with 6 kitties that are 2 weeks old. I absolutely will not take them to the shelter. They immediately euthanize. I can’t let that happen. Please please please help
    Thank you


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