Cat Sanctuary

Who Are They?

Salem, playing with Honeydew & Leo  (PC)


Volunteer Pauline Chin is present during Saturday visiting hours, and offers this blog.


Word of the Cat Sanctuary’s public reopening has slowly spread and is gaining momentum.  Some visitors have come from as far (so far) as Kamloops just to see the cats.  At least 80% of visitors are first-timers.  Their eyes are aglow and wide as they take in the incredible sights.  With that, comes the inevitable questions, “who’s this?” and “what’s that kitty’s name?”.

Here are the 6 most notorious mystery cats that have graced visitors with their presence in the front courtyard:

Meet the calico sisters.

Kiwi at ease   (MW)

Easiest to identify is Kiwi.  She’s black with orange and white markings.  She’s still warming up to people now that weekends are full of humans, but that’s far from her previous don’t-touch-me-dash.  Of the three, Kiwi is the clearest loner.  Don’t be offended if you only get in a couple of pets before she flees.

Honeydew  (MW)

Next is Honeydew.  Upon first glance, she looks the same as Melon.  They both sport the over-cut bangs and white bodies.  The main differences are Honeydew has a near-continuous trail of splotches on her back and a white chin.  Her personality now is much friendlier and she will interact with strangers.  She still likes Salem, but doesn’t rely on him like in the past.  Honeydew happily hangs out with other cats.

Melon   (MW)

Melon has the most white fur of the sisters.  Her back has a few splotches of orange and black, as if she walked beneath a table dripping wet paint.  She wears a permanent black goatee.  Melon enjoys the company of other cats over humans.  Get her interested with a toy or treats.

Kiwi prefers the swing canopy to the swing seat (PC)

It’s worth noting that all three will scale the fence and sit atop either the umbrella or swing set.  If you think seeing them up there is shocking, wait until they leap down out of nowhere as if it were raining cats.

Together – but not too much! Melon & Honeydew  (PC)


On to team black!

Salem with Melon  (MW)

Big boy Salem has maintained his harem of girl cats and has also attracted a few others to relax with.  (He’s from Lethbridge, just like the sisters and a handful of others.)  He’s gained some weight and a bronze tan over the 2 years he’s been here.  If he were human, he’d probably sport a gold chain and sunglasses.  His eyes are in the yellow-green spectrum.  Still confident and friendly as ever, he welcomes everyone to join his cuddle club.

Reefer   (MW)

Reefer’s features are more rounded than Salem’s.  His eyes are more yellow-gold.  He too, has a bronze tan from the sun.  Sometimes, he rolls around and ends up wearing all the dust.

Boxed Reefer (PC)

Reefer prefers staying dry and avoids the misters we use on hot days.  He loves catnip toys.  While he doesn’t have a cat harem, he’s delighted by all the extra admiration from visitors.  He often flops over for affection and is easy to befriend.

Gidget – “Pet me, please!” – KN

Last, but not least is Gidget.  She is a quiet, small black cat who came in with Wickem – though they didn’t remain together.  Visitors have remarked about her curly question mark tail.  Her unique feature is her cleft-like mouth; her lips seem to always be slightly agape.

Gidget – “Do I have to get up?”  (PC)

I make an effort to wake her up before opening, so she has a chance to interact with visitors. She’s a leg-rubber and can take people by surprise.  She’s sought out more attention this summer than the whole 3.5 years she’s been here.  Gidget became a fast favourite.

Reefer playing  (KN)

If you’re a newcomer, these 6 cats are nice to get to know.  Playing Cat Bingo is another way to familiarize yourself with popular cats.  So, why not learn new names and impress your family or friends?  The cats appreciate being called correct names, too.


Blog by Pauline Chin.
Photos by Pauline Chin, Karen Nicholson & Michele Wright