Senior Companion Program
The Heartland Cats Senior Companion program places older cats with senior citizens. Many who are retired would love to have a companion but either feel they cannot afford the expense or are concerned for the animal’s welfare in the event they can no longer care for it.
Heartland Cats will work with each guardian home providing necessary supplies and veterinary care. Cats placed in guardianship will return to Heartland Cats should the guardian no longer be able to provide shelter and/or care for the animal.
Heartland Cats, as space permits, accepts cats from those entering hospice care or the next level of health care where they can no longer have their companion with them. Prior to placing, each cat will first spend time in our facility where we can assess the animal’s temperament and needs. This will help us find the perfect match for cat and guardian.
All cats entering Heartland Cats will be altered and microchipped prior to being homed. They will have had a wellness check and will be up-to-date on their vaccinations. Any health issue will be disclosed and the guardians must be in agreement to care for the animal according to veterinarian instructions.
Heartland Cats is very aware that many retirees are on a fixed income and may not be able to afford the costs associated with caring for a cat. The only initial out-of-pocket expense for the guardian will be to license the cat as required by local authorities and cover any pet deposit as applicable. Heartland Cats will provide the necessary supplies and veterinary care. This will include:
Starter Kit -
- Litter Box
- Food (including prescription diets)
- Veterinarian Wellness Check/Vaccinations
- Food (including prescription diets)
- Health Care/Vaccinations/Medications
- Veterinary Transportation (in network only)
Heartland Cats will not be liable for any costs incurred to the guardian as a result of caring for the cat. This would include
- Medical costs due to illness or injury resulting from the care of or injury from the animal
- Damage to or destruction of personal property.
- If the guardian rents their home, they must provide, in writing, from the owner, or Management Company, approval to have a cat.
- Security/Pet deposits and any associated contracts are the sole responsibility of the guardian.
- Damages incurred to the property as a result of the cat are at the guardian’s sole expense.
Heartland Cats will not assist with, or be held responsible for expenses incurred for neither deposits nor property damages associated with the cat.
Heartland Cats will determine where veterinary care is rendered. Expenses for veterinary care not scheduled within the Heartland Cats veterinarian network will be at the sole expense of the guardian.
Heartland Cats will rely on a staff of volunteers to assist with disposition of supplies and assist with veterinary appointments as needed. When delivering supplies, a quick visual check will be made of the cat’s general health. Volunteers will be trained on basic care in order to answer questions, detect potential health issues and assist the guardian or offer recommendations as needed.
When a cat is placed, the contact information associated with the microchip will remain with Heartland Cats. Should we be contacted, we will confirm the identity of the animal and contact the guardian. We will reunite and cat and guardian as long as the guardian wants and is able to care for the cat.
This program is available to the Omaha Metro area.
Seniors with pets are better able to remain emotionally stable during a crisis than those without. (Journal of the American Geriatrics Society, May 1999)
People who own pets can have significantly lower systolic blood pressure and cholesterol levels than those who do not. (American Journal of Cardiology, 1995)
Pets help to fight depression and loneliness, promoting an interest in life and helping seniors stick to a regular daily routine. (Between Pets and People: The Importance of Animal Companionship)
Pets help to lower health care costs. People with pets actually make fewer doctor visits, especially for non-serious medical conditions. (National Institute of Health Technology Assessment Workshop: Health Benefits of Pets)
Funding is important to the success of this program and will determine how many cats we can be place and support. Please help us save an older cat and provide companionship for one who could use a furry friend to brighten their day.