Year of the Cat

ARL Year of the Cat

The Animal Rescue League of Iowa (ARL) has deemed 2017 "The Year of the Cat". We are putting extra emphasis on cat-related programs and improving our shelter cat living spaces - all in an effort to SAVE MORE LIVES.

The Need:

  • While cats are just one of the many different species in our care, they represent the vast majority of the total animals in our care.
  • Cats are the most at-risk animal in any shelter.
  • Shelter environments are stressful for cats for a number of reasons, including cage size. Stressed cats are more likely to become sick cats and require additional treatment, leading to a longer length of stay, and increased expenses. Nationally, cats are the most at-risk animal in any shelter.


  • Phase 1 of the Year of the Cat will double the existing cat condo size for all of the cats at ARL Main through an Extreme Cat Condo Makeover. To allow for this increase in condo size, without decreasing our capacity to care for the same number of cats, Phase 1 will also include the construction of a new building, called The Clowder House (a "clowder" is a group or cluster of cats) at our main campus. Construction has begun and will be completed in Spring 2017.

Other solutions we are working on include:

  • Legalize TNR (trap-neuter-return) and the option of caring for Community Cats to prevent unnecessary cat intakes (stay tuned for more information on how you can help!).
  • Increase cat adoptions – including promoting the benefits of multiple cat households.
  • Increase the number of Shelter Cat Getaway foster homes.
  • Offer free and low-cost spay/neuter of owned cats in areas of most need. (Learn more here.)

How you can help:

We are currently in Phase 1 of our year-long agenda. You can help by donating toward the Extreme Cat Condo Makeover and Clowder House capital campaign to make both projects a reality. View the recognition levels below for donations over $250, and then click here to contribute to this campaign at any level.

Donate Now

Questions about Year of the Cat?
Contact us at

Sign up to receive our quarterly cat e-newsletter and stay up to date on Year of the Cat and the ARL's cat programs and events.
Sign Up Now

Year of the Cat ARL