Here are some of our favorite success stories from Catsbury Park!
CAT'S NAME: Ellie B (Elbow)
I have always loved cats. I grew up with them within a household of an extremely strong man, my father, who loved cats. Which I love!
My adoption story began in Asbury..along side with DJ, Jenn and Catsbury Park and of course that face, Ellie! I met this sweet kitten at a park in Asbury. I had been following this litter that DJ had taken in, from the start. I knew, heading to see DJ with these kittens, I would end up being in love but I wasn't prepared for this love.
I met this petite little kitten that had many special qualities. She was born with a substantial bowing in her front legs and some extra toes. I fell in love immediately!
She joined our family along with my daughter Amelia, who is unique in her own way and our other cat, Morel, who was also adopted.
Our family is complete with this little love. She was a part of that Catsbury Park litter that was named after pasta. Her name, "Elbow" which was fitting. We renamed her, Ellie B.
She has been an incredible addition to our home. She loves my daughter. She has brought out playfulness in our other cat.
I will always be thankful for DJ, Jen and Catsbury Park. ❤
CATS' NAMES: Brandon & Brianna
It has been a whirlwind of a decade for my Peter J and I. Between 2007 and present, the Internet introduced us, we married, had one precious babe named Madeleine Jane, struggled through (and kicked the ass of) a stage 3 cancer diagnosis, the loss of a dog and a cat, and finally the move to our forever home. After several months of settling, renovations and unpacking, we realized it was time to complete our little family of three with the addition of some four-legged fluffy babes. Our little 6 year old was sweet and loving and would make an awesome mommy to some felines.
When my friend Sara recommended Catsbury Park, it felt like a great fit. I had spent many days exploring the (then) abandoned city, following my fascination with all things left in ruin and disrepair after college. It held a special place in my heart after living on Deal Lake for five years. When we followed the directions to come visit, it was as if i were heading home.
When I first started corresponding with DJ, I mentioned that I would love to adopt two so they had companionship as they grew up. He immediately mentioned that he had three siblings, one of which was named and claimed: (the famous) Lil Brian, his brother and his sister. It was love at first sight when we met. We brought them home that day, on a trial basis as there were some serious allergy concerns that we were hoping could be managed.
There was NO way we ever could have returned Brandon and Brianna. They were inseparable cuddlers that completed our family. Friends and relatives (one of whom is a vet) could not believe how personable and friendly they were, especially considering that they were rescued. They behave more like lap dogs than cats. There is nothing aloof about these lovers. The second a guest sits, there is often not one, but both of them jumping into their lap.
When not sleeping, often in a loving embrace, these two are definitely getting into something. They may be zooming around in hot pursuit of each other, leaping high in the air to avoid a collision. They may be lying on their favorite mid-century modern bench which looks out into a thicket filled with chirpy birds that make them sometimes roll over and stretch out with fascination. They may be zooming over to the sink the MOMENT that I rinse off spinach for my breakfast muffins. They must hail from some herbivore somewhere down their lineage as they adore leafy greens!
I sincerely thank Catsbury Park for giving us such a great gift. They make us smile all day long. When I have to descend into my basement at 5 am to run on the treadmill, kitty cuddles and noisy purrs give me something to look forward to at the end. I am so happy to have kept these two together and can rest assured that their brother Lil Brian is only a few towns away in a sweet home filled with more cat love than one could ever imagine!!!!
ADOPTER: DJ & Jen
CAT'S NAME: Lil Brian
Little Brian came to Catsbury Park's foster room from Camden County Shelter with almost identical jet black litter mates Brandon and Brianna—who we later dubbed the triple B kitties. They were not three weeks old. Emitting loud squeaky mews and with their six big green googly alien-eyes they stared at us from a cuddle puddle in the corner of the cardboard carrier. Adorable and goofy, the triple B babies wobbled around with food on their faces, too small to even get into the litter box without a boost. Though we had already fostered, and adopted out over twenty kittens to forever homes, these three were the tiniest we had to care for yet. And anyone who fosters kittens knows, that tiny kittens can face big challenges. Rescued kittens, in shelters or on the street, are subject to a host of typical viruses and infections. But there was something about Little Brian, he was wheezy and lethargic—and he was not growing. The medications did not seem to be working and then one night, after we had isolated him in a separate room, I found him laying on the pillow lifeless and struggling to breathe. As we rushed him to a 24 hour emergency vet, he lay on my chest fighting to keep his barely two pound little body alive. I thought for sure the tiny guy would not make it. But Little Brian had other plans.
He made it through that first night breathing on a tiny nebulizer. The next day Oakhurst Veterinary Hospital told us that Brian had a rare condition called “megaesophagus. “ He was born with an enlarged esophagus which made eating and breathing difficult—and which would result in filling his stomach with gas. There is no cure. OVH informed us that he might grow out of it but it was going to be a fight, an expensive one, and even with around the clock care his chances of survival were slim. We had a long talk about what to do, what quality of life Brian would have if he somehow was able to survive, and whether we should consider other, perhaps kinder, solutions. We decided to fight for our little fighter, in that tiny body was the sweetest soul—and a fierce desire to survive.
So we came up with a plan with OVH (who was incredible, and love Little Brian almost as much as we do), and my own mother (who is allergic to cats but was still willing to help) took Little Brian in to foster him and give him around the clock care. He had to be fed a small spoonful of food every two hours along with meds all day long as well as be in isolation to monitor his progress. He got better each day, grew, had more energy, and soon became known as the “little ankle biter.” But for most of the first three months of Brian’s life he was either alone in isolation or in a hospital. Until October, when because of OVH’s excellent care, and Little Brian’s determination, he was cleared to come home. Home, after what we had been through together, was with Jen and me, and his saucer mates for life Cleopatra, Moo, Klay and Toni--Brian’s best friend and playmate.
His social skills are still a little “off” from spending so much time alone during such a formative age, he loves to eat (all the time), and he isn’t interested (or even aware) that there is a struggle for “top cat” status in the house (between Moo and Toni). He follows after his “big” brothers but in reality he is almost the biggest cat in the family now! That’s right, at 11months old Little Brian is not so little anymore and weighs in at 12 pounds! But don’t tell him that, he will always be our baby. Brian is never far from my side (or he gives a few little mews to try to find me), he likes to burrow in bed curled up on my hip, sit for hours in one of his “boxes” or stare at the sink in fascination. Big Brian is kind, so loving, and makes me grateful everyday that he fought to live, to be part of our lives, and in our hearts.
ADOPTERS: Andrew and Gina
CAT'S NAME: Saylor
We were on our way to see a concert at the Stone Pony Summer Stage when we walked by Catsbury Park's kitty playpen with a litter of all white kittens. We almost instantly fell in love with Angel Hair because of her different colored eyes and her small little head. We asked if we could hold her and she melted in Andrew's arms like a little mush. We put her back and left to head to our concert. During that two block walk, we ended up turning around and adopting her right then and there. We named he Saylor since Andrew is a Merchant Marine! Since bringing her home she has become quite a mama's girl, and has become the little Angel of the house. She loves sitting in every window, and enjoys watching the chickens in the backyard. She is a purr monster and loves being part of anything we do. There is nothing that goes on in our home that Saylor doesn't have a paw in! Lately, she has been running up to us to give us the top of her head to kiss<3 We are so happy to have her in our lives.
ADOPTERS: Korwan family
CAT'S NAME: O'Malley
Can you fathom this unfortunate boy who was originally affectionately dubbed November being found in the elements near a dumpster on the Camden County College Campus with his brothers and sisters?
Wait!! Rewind that cassette deck back to December of 2008. You know, when the roof of the Stone Pony caved in. That's when the O'Malley story really begins.
Yes!! Had O'Malley's people father not been a bit out of his mind taking his 9 year old son, Matt, to the Asbury Lanes to see the Revival tour, had Matt and dad not run into Bryan and Pete of the Bouncing Souls on the way out at 12:30 am, and had not Bryan and Pete asked Matt, the 9 year old O'Malley people brother to play guitar with them at Conventional Hall for Home For The Holiday shows, this little kitten never would have graced our home with his huge heart!
The show went off without a missed note! DJ and the Souls could not have been any more awesome to Matt.
O'Malley's people dad for years wanted to pay the Souls back for their incredible generosity and awesomeness. Fast forward that cassette back again to 2016!!
Whoa!! DJ is now rescuing cats and adopting them out!! ?? Purrfecto!! O'Malley's soon to be future family has not recovered from laying to rest a 3 year old Himalayan they dearly loved who took ill. And what a mend to 4 Korwan broken hearts.
Now, while the once young guitar slinger is off on a college visit with mom, little sis and that impulsive dad are off to Cookman Ave to a Catsbury event where they instantly fall in love with the little tuxedo charmer, the kitten of countless nicknames, O'Malley, Malley Moo, the Moo Bear or Mouse. We never really called him ever November.
O'Malley, DJ and Catsbury Park have brought back the life to our home that was so saddened by the loss of our Himalayan. O'Malley is in constant play mode, stopping briefly for some love bites and licks. It gave our family such a rejuvenation of life to help Catsbury rescue this kitten and care for him, because we could not save our poor Himmy. O'Malley went from Camden to Asbury to final destination in Ocean County! He loves to attack your legs and then sleep on them, bury himself in pillows and blankets and help change guitar strings. When O'Malley decides to crash, he will jump up on dad's lap and enjoy some tasty vinyl.
O'Malley/November can't thank DJ and Catsbury Park enough for the life they afforded him.
ADOPTERS: Jess & Ryan
CAT'S NAME: Sally
When Catsbury Park began fostering kittens, we had the great luck of spending some time with one of their first groups up for adoption. Sally, known as Gabby at the time, stood out to us as one of the most playful and curious kittens in the group. We had been thinking about a new addition to our furry family for some time and Sally seemed to be perfect. We really wanted to find a kitten that we could introduce as a playmate for our other cat, Ramona, who we adopted from the Monmouth County SPCA a year and a half earlier. After a bit of a rocky start (Ramona did not think a playmate was a good idea) Sally and Ramona slowly started to become friends and playmates. Sally's energy and curiosity hasn't changed much from the night we brought her home, she still tears around the house playing with Ramona, her toys, and our feet, but she's also become quite the lap cat and cuddle-buddy. We're so happy to have her as a part of our family and so grateful to Catsbury Park for their compassion and generosity and for bringing Sally to us.
CAT'S NAME: Larry David
We came to know little Larry David through our friends, Jen and DJ. He was a teeny kitten with a crushed paw that we were told would probably need to be amputated, and needed constant care and one on one love (Jen and DJ had probably a dozen cats at their residence at the time). I excitedly said yes, but my husband, Cory was a little hesitant as we already have two rescue cats, Lettuce and Lemon, and he knew I'd plead to keep the third. After a few weeks of TLC, I asked our vet to change his cast: He was such a little baby and was going potty on it regularly when I wasn't looking and we couldn't get it any cleaner! To all of our surprise when she took the cast off his paw was almost completely healed! Larry was ready to head back to Jen and DJ and the general population of Catsbury, but he had already secured his spot in our hearts and home (as I'm pretty sure Jen knew would happen all along 😏). We were pleasantly surprised at how well our other cats handled the addition of a kitten and we can't imagine our home without our weird little baby anymore!
ADOPTERS: Jen Kash / DJ
CATS' NAMES: Play & Toni
As many of you know, DJ and I have two amazing adult cats Cleopatra (Cleo) and Maimuta (Moo) who we spoil with love, lots of attention, and greenies (of course). I adopted Cleo when she was 8 months old (she is almost 10 now!) and Moo at barely 3 weeks when a friend found him walking on a busy San Francisco sidewalk. I coddled and bottle-fed Moo who was a difficult and demanding kitten (still is at 9 years old, such a baby). DJ, who credits falling in love with Moo as part inspiration for Catsbury Park, did not have as much experience with kittens (he sure does now!). To address this, and because I heart kittens, I suggested Catsbury Park foster last summer. DJ and I agreed that if we did foster, we could not keep any because we already had two wonderful cats. Okay, maybe I said we could not keep more than one?
Our first litter of kittens were dropped off on Wednesday and by Saturday night I was holding the biggest of the litter in my arms, a fluffy gray tabby, and crying to DJ that I had to keep him. This kitten became our Klay, who will be a year-old next month. Klay is the most athletic of our five (keep reading!) cats and is smart as a whip. He has an inquisitive sharp little face, and likes to be as high up in the house as possible with his paws draped over whatever ledge he is on--watching the action. I call Klay my secret love, because he prefers not to be picked up or held, but when I am in bed (night or early morning), he meows his little chirp until he finds me. As he has done since we first brought him into “general population” he lays on my chest with his paws around my neck (kneading with claws can hurt if not trimmed) and nibbles at my ears and licks my face. He is adored by all of our cats, especially Moo (even though Moo bites off Klay’s whiskers). But when he first joined our family, Klay drove Cleo and Moo crazy because he always wanted to play—but Queen Cleo likes her naps. Klay would sit with his head cocked, puzzled, in front of the foster room door, intermittently sticking a paw under trying to connect with the kittens inside. We cannot have four cats DJ and I reminded each other.
Enter the famous “pasta” litter we fostered from Camden. The only male and largest pasta, Rigatoni (now referred to more often as Toni), was a real Casanova. From the foster room if Toni heard anyone in the adjacent bathroom, he would cry loudly until someone came to pick him up (Toni remains our most vocal cat, and he is not even our Siamese!). Upon entering the room, he would put his little paws on our legs and demand to be picked up so he could nuzzle into our necks, put his little pink face into ours and cover us in kisses. All it took was DJ telling me that if I wanted to keep Toni, he wouldn’t be mad about it. Klay was so happy with a playful little brother to tumble with and chase around. Now 10 months old Toni will not allow me to go to the bathroom without holding him. He runs in when he hears the door open, keeps his front legs stick straight in the air as I pick him up until he can put them around my neck—where he purrs and holds on as if his life depended on it. Yes, I can use the bathroom and often dress myself while holding an eleven-pound white cat. I welcome suggestions for the shower, which Toni sits outside of and cries. He is the snuggle-bug we loved at first sight, with as big and playful a personality as his name suggests. As the end of August approached, with two cats, two kittens, and the two us—we assumed our bicoastal family was complete.
But what about Lil’ Brian? Klay and Toni are momma’s boys, so it made sense for me to write our adoption story for them. But “little” Brian only has eyes for daddy.
ADOPTERS: Brett and Lauren
CAT'S NAME - Chico
Chico literally fought for months to be a part of our family. He made us bond because It was the first time any living thing depended on us working together. When we met Chico, we didn't plan on bringing a kitten home. But we just could not put him down! He was the tiniest kitten in the bunch. He was nestled up in our arms searching for warmth and love. We fell in love with him right away. When we brought him home we noticed that he was breathing heavy and wheezing very loud. He was so weak and sick for the first couple weeks. After 3 different vets told us "there is a possibility he just won't make it". We resorted to the only remedy we know, cuddles, kisses and Unconditional love and affection. Soon we noticed a healthy, playful and strong kitten! I think the bond we have with him is so extreme because of his very rough start to his life! Thank you Catsbury Park for giving us our best furry little friend!
CATS' NAMES: SKELETOR & BUTTER
STORY: I moved from LA to NY last year to get married and asked my husband if instead of having a baby I could get cats. I specifically wanted two from the same litter because my husband and I are sometimes away for long stretches of time for work or school, and when I heard from a friend Dean was fostering a buttload of kittens I rushed over, made sure I didn't smell like anyone or anything and said "I'll see who wants to climb in my purse and come home with me." Pretty much as soon as I got there, my two furballs actually did climb into my purse and my decision was made for me. They were both pretty sick when they came home from being in a shelter - Skeletor kept headbutting my face and then sneezing green snot all over it, and I had to repeatedly unglue poor Butter's eyes and get her to the vet for conjunctivitis. We thought she was gonna have a fat butt but it turns out she'd been mostly blind for the first couple weeks, and after that they were fine. Skeletor is the friendliest, most affectionate kitten (and cat) I've ever met, and Butter is actually just as needy although she's bad at demanding attention like her brother (or maybe just isn't such a ham.) They're both ridiculous, like I taught Skel to play fetch and now he'll demand it relentlessly for up to 6 hours straight, and mildly concussed himself running head first into a wall a week ago chasing a toy. Butter thinks she's an owl and creeps the hell out of me by peeking her head of somewhere above my head and making me scream like a little girl, lol. She's also comically afraid of any bodily function sound (like a sneeze or cough) but has THE WORST FARTS EVER. When I get home from a trip I'll climb in bed with them and they take turns rotating from my chest to my feet for the next 8 hours. They're one of the best decisions I ever made :).
CAT'S NAME: Tupelo Honey aka Tupes
STORY: Adopting tootsie roll, now Tupelo Honey aka Tupes, was the best thing we ever did. Everyone who meets her falls in love instantly. I mean, how couldn't you with a face like this?!
The most common reaction from our friends is "I don't even like cats, but she's the coolest". She always wants to meet new friends and loves to play 24/7. I do think that's because you did such a great job socializing her from such a young age.
She loves straws, watching anything out the window, playing fetch, and catching any toy you throw at her with her little white paws. (I know you're wondering if I'm talking about a dog or a cat).
CATS' NAMES: SUNSHINE & STORMY
STORY: I have to give credit to Shannon Mitchell, an amazing person and animal lover. I never thought I would have a cat, definitely not 2. I'm not sure how it happened, but Shannon and my son Chris talked me into going to Catsbury. Shannon had already picked out 2 beautiful kittens for me to "look" at. They brought them to my house when they were old enough and we decided to keep them. We fell in love with them. They have been so much fun to play with and just watch them together.
I have to send thanks to DJ and Jenn for helping me with no adoption fee and other help they gave me. Love you, DJ❤️
I have no regrets, they make every day a happy day🐈"
ADOPTER: TONI ANN
CAT'S NAME: SPAGHETTI
STORY: Spaghetti is doing awesome!!!! She is as playful as ever and seems to live up to the fun and wild definition of a kitten! In fact, she's already made a name for herself at our vet because every time we bring her there for shots, check-ups etc., she is climbing, jumping and trying to tear-up the room so much so that her spunkyness is already legendary there!
Spaghetti has been an amazing addition to our family and literally everyone who's met her instantly loves her. So many people have told me that it makes their day to see all the pictures that I post of her, and that's very cool to hear!! It still blows my mind that we found her and she fits in the way she does- we feel truly blessed to have her in our family.
Before I met Spaghetti, I was still mourning the unexpected passing of my cat Sunny a year earlier. She was only 7 years old and was my bff, so it was devastating. I wasn't in the market for a new feline friend but I was lonely because Sunny was always by my side. I ran into DJ and we got to chatting about Catsbury Park and I told him that I was kind of interested in a cat but not just to get one- I had to have a connection with one. I gave him some criteria and he said he'd be on the lookout for me. Cut to a few weeks later and I had seen a few posts about the "pasta litter" on instagram and I started to feel interested. Then one night, I was getting off work around 1130 pm and saw a picture posted of Spaghetti (posted below) and that was it! I knew at that moment, I had to have her!!! With that one picture, I fell instantly in love!!!!!! And it took all my might not to text DJ at 1130pm and say I wanted that cat!! Haha!! I was able to hold off until the next morning to talk to DJ, we met Spaghetti the next day, she cuddled onto me, and the rest is history!
Spaghetti is so fun and so lovable! She loves to cuddle me and sleeps on my chest at night or she'll sleep with my 4 year old son, right at the edge of his feet! She's kind of a bruiser too! Nothing is too high for her to climb on or too far for her to jump on. She loves to explore and squeeze into the teeniest spaces in the house! She also is a daredevil and spends a lot of time trying to divebomb our super old and slow yellow lab! Spaghetti will stalk the dog from the counter and reach down and grab her fur!! Or when the dog is sleeping on the couch, Spaghetti will pop-up from the ground right in front of the dog and tap her on the nose!!! It's hysterical to watch!!
We are still in amazement of the good fortune we had to meet Spaghetti and to be able to adopt her! We talk about it constantly- we will forever be grateful to DJ, Jen, and Catsbury Park for bringing this sweet, lovable (and crazy) kitty into our lives!!!!
CAT'S NAME: MARGEAUX
STORY: "I have always loved cats and always had several at a time growing up with my mom. Out on my own I had no intentions of adopting one of my own because I know kittens are a huge responsibility and I didn't know if I was really up for it. Until I saw this beautiful little angel muffin on the Catsbury Park instagram and immediately messaged to see if she was still available. I went to meet her the next day and it was love at first meow, I swear. Since I brought her home that day, we have been inseparable. Even though at the beginning she needed eye drops twice a day and antibiotics three times a day, and she would wake me up at 5 am for treats (which she still does every morning because she is spoiled and it's all my fault), I didn't mind because she's my little cat soulmate.We even have matching eyeliner. And I know every day when I get home from work, she'll be there to meow at me and bully me into giving her more treats and I will do it,because she is now a grown ass woman, and she is the boss."
CAT'S NAME: LYANNA
STORY: Here's my story about how I came to adopt Lyanna and how life has been with her since:
Back in July 2016 I went to see a favorite band of mine, Cayetana, open for the Bouncing Souls at the Stone Pony. Outside the show they were handing out Catsbury Park flyers. I love cats and looked up exactly what the deal was the next day. I followed the instagram and Facebook pages. Then found out the next week you were waiving adoption fees. Now I had just moved out of my parents house and while I always planned on adopting a cat when I moved out, I also planned on giving myself some time before taking on the responsibility. But I decided to contact you guys anyway and go meet the kittens.
I don't think wasn't really any reason why I picked Lyanna (at the time Charlie), and on the ride home with her crying in her carrier I was scared I had done this too quickly was making a huge mistake for both me and her. Well almost immediately I realized I was wrong. I absolutely made the right decision and I love her with everything I've got. Even if she does hate being held, refuses to eat all but two very specific kinds of food, and occasionally poops wherever she feels like it. Fortunately that last one hasn't happened in a while. She's made great friends with my roomies' cat Spooks (on the left in the picture). She greets me when I come home from work every day without fail.
I'm so grateful to you guys (and less directly Cayetana) for leading me to Lyanna. Thank you and I'm looking forward to visiting the cafe.
CATS' NAMES: CASH & CARTER
STORY: I am so very fortunate to have found my 2 partners in crime, Cash and Carter through Catsbury Park. I have one male seal point Siamese and a female black cat. When I saw the two sisters, I knew I had to adopt them. They were the spitting image of my two adult cats. What are the chances of that?
They were very feral, as you know when I first adopted them. They were super timid and didn't really want to be approached at all. Since their adoption, they have since warmed up immensely and are like totally different kitties.It took patience, socializing and TLC from both my adult cats Edgar and Petunia and my family but they are a dream. We are so grateful for you guys and we cannot wait to come and see the new location!