At LifeLine Animal Project in Avondale Estates, the Dog House and Kitty Motel are often at capacity with homeless pets.
Everywhere you look there are pets who were rescued off death row at kill-shelters, cats and dogs who were abandoned, abused or seized by authorities in criminal cases.
All these animals are getting love and attention, medical care and, if needed, obedience training. All are waiting on adoption and their own, personal, new beginning/happy ending.
Even the rescue and animal advocacy group's administrative office has a few furry occupants, mostly cats waiting on new homes, who spend all their time "helping" the staff work by taking up chair space for their naps, rolling pens off the desks, greeting visitors and sunning themselves in the window.
Valmar is one of LifeLine's office cats.
A good-sized, amiable, adult black cat, Valmar lived on the streets before landing his "office job". He's extremely friendly and loving and enjoys being around other animals. He's about 4-years old now and healthy, despite being diagnosed as being FIV+.
Feline Immunodeficiency Virus, or FIV, is an immune disease that is thought to affect 1.5-3 percent of cats living in the United States. With appropriate care, good food and healthy living conditions many infected cats will live long and robust lives. Neither humans nor dogs can catch FIV from a cat and it cannot be spread from one cat to another through casual contact.
Outdoor cats most often catch and spread the disease through biting and fighting. There is a preventative vaccine for FIV.
"Valmar deserves a great home," said Mickie Blair, LifeLine'scat rehabilitation director, "This is a cat who loves to be held and likes to give playful head butts. He's very sweet."
When Valmar was first rescued by LifeLine he had a deep gash on his side, consistent with being caught in a fence, perhaps one with barbed wire. Once treated by vets and completely healed, he moved into LifeLine's offices and has been there ever since.
He walks up to every visitor or staff member who comes through the door, hoping there's time to be held and petted. Once in your arms, he melts into your shoulder and appears to fall asleep, purring the whole time.
If your life would be made better by a cat who loves to cuddle and knows his way around your office supplies, Valmar is the feline for you.
To learn more about him or if you want to foster or adopt Valmar, please contact mblair@LifeLineAnimal.org.