When Owner Dies, Pets Still Need Care


Payson Humane Society receives numerous pets from owners who pass away or become too frail to care for them. For many people, their pets may be the closest, most loyal and devoted friends to them in their later years of life. Too often the heirs of the estate bring their parents' or grandparents' pets to our shelter, tossing their fate to the wind.

There are ways to ensure that your beloved pets will be well cared for upon your death. People of all ages need to have a will prepared in which they decide how their possessions should be distributed to family, friends and favorite charities. If you have pets and you die without specifying how they should be cared for, you could leave them to an uncertain fate.

Many humane societies have continuing care programs for the pets of people who leave a bequest to them in the name of their pets. By making an estate gift to a participating humane society, you not only plan for your own pets' future, but also for the futures of countless other unwanted, homeless, sick, injured and abused animals.

Animal shelters have a variety of programs that provide companion care for life. They guarantee that a good home will be found for healthy, adoptable animals. Some have a V.I.P program (Very Important Pet). In this program, when an animal comes with a bequest from the owner's estate, it has a sign on its kennel stating that it is a V.I.P. pet. Prospective adopters know that when they adopt this animal, they will also be releasing a sizeable amount of money to the shelter to help other animals. It is an incredible incentive to the adoption process. It makes adopters feel doubly good about giving a V.I.P. pet a home.

Payson Humane Society does not yet have a continuing program in place, but hopefully may soon look into the potential it could offer not only to animals left behind by their owners' passing, but also to the many other homeless pets that pass through the doors of our shelter.

This week we are highlighting some wonderful cats that are at our shelter through no fault of their own:


Toby is a friendly 3-year-old neutered male shorthaired white and black cat.

He has been declawed on his front paws and therefore should be kept indoors.

Toby is very gentle and accommodating. He has already made friends with another cat named Maui who looks a lot like him.

The reason Toby is at our shelter is because his loving owner passed away and he was brought in along with his buddies -- Woody, Al and Ranger.


Ranger is a striking 5-year-old neutered male black and white cat. He wears a black mask just like the Lone Ranger and his golden eyes peer out from behind it.

He has been declawed on his front paws and needs to be an indoor-only cat.

Ranger is very noble and composed. He will do best in an adult household that is quiet and nurturing.

Ranger is at our shelter because his dear owner died and he was brought to the shelter with three other cats named Woody, Al and Toby.


Ellie is a darling two-year-old spayed female mostly white calico kitty. She looks so clean with her dazzling white coat and artistically placed splotches of calico colors.

She not only looks clean, but is also very clean in her habits. Staff calls her the tidiest kitty in the shelter.

Ellie is very docile and sweet, probably because she belonged to an elderly person who grew too weak to care for her.

She may do best in an adult home because she is used to a calm atmosphere.


Bertha is a wonderful 3-year-old spayed female bicolor gray tabby. She came to our shelter with her buddy Copper after they were found abandoned on the property their family moved away from.

Bertha was obviously well cared for because she is a "tubby tabby" and is sweet and loving as the day is long.

She has a soft-spoken meow that reflects her gentle disposition.

Bertha is very clean in her habits from our observations.

She is very worthy of your consideration for adoption and a forever home.


Copper is a super friendly 3-year-old neutered male bicolor orange tabby. He has exquisite patterns in his coat.

His coolest features are his polydactyl paws (with an extra toe) that make him look like he has mittens on. And to show them off, he does a high five to get your attention, reaching out to touch you.

Copper has a great personality that grabs you as well.

He is Bertha's best friend, also abandoned when his family moved away, and now he wonders how it can be that he is homeless.

He deserves a new lease on life with a family that can promise him a lifetime commitment.

To view these and other adoptable pets, visit paysonhumanesociety.com.

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