WILTON, Conn. — With at least another day of below-freezing temperatures ahead, Wilton’s Animals in Distress — a nonprofit, no-kill cat shelter run entirely by volunteers — is worried about keeping its many feline residents warm, since the building’s heating system died.
Shelter Director Katherine Reid said that although cats have fur coats, that alone isn’t enough to keep them warm.
“We like to maintain the temperature in the shelter so that the cats’ immune systems don’t get out of whack,” she said. “During the day, the shelter is fairly warm thanks to the all the sunshine coming in. But at night, it gets very cold, and the extreme shift in temperature is hard on their systems.”
Animals in Distress is currently home to 28 cats. Reid said the shift in temperature is tough on any cat’s health. However, she said it is particularly hard on older cats, of which the shelter has many.
Since the HVAC system gave out, the only source of heat has been a small wall unit in the kitchen, Reid said. And because the free-roaming shelter is unattended at night, she said using space heaters is not an option, as those devices can't be left unattended.
With help from generous community donors, Reid said the shelter hopes to be able to purchase a new HVAC system soon.
“We hate asking for help, especially after so many people supported us this holiday season, but as a nonprofit organization, it’s tough,” Reid said.
Anyone interested in supporting the shelter can do so through the official Animals in Distress website. Whether used to help purchase a new HVAC system, cover installation costs or help pay for veterinary care, all donations will be used for the shelter, Reid said.
“Every donation we get always goes back to the cats,” Reid said. “We are so grateful for the community’s help. It’s what keeps us afloat.”
For questions, email firstname.lastname@example.org or call the shelter at 203-762-2006.