Nine Lives gives new life to at-risk cats


Signs are put up next to each cat describing their unique personality.

Catherine Dahlberg, Staff Writer

It wasn’t long ago that unwanted and un-adopted cats from overcrowded county shelters were destined to be killed. Thanks to the work of the Nine Lives Foundation in Redwood City, however, local cats in need are getting a second chance to live.

“Nine Lives Foundation is a community based non-profit organization that rescues cats and kittens from high-kill shelters and homeless situations, providing them with a no-kill shelter and on-site medical care, seeking permanent loving homes for them,” said Carol Scola, a Nine Lives Foundation board member.  

Nine Lives takes in many cats, but specializes in giving cats who are out of options a new life.

Brooke Morey, a St. Francis High School sophomore who volunteers at Nine Lives, said: “Nine Lives is a no-kill shelter that takes in cats considered to be lost causes at other shelters. But it’s not just an adoption shelter. We also provide surgery and medical treatment that saves at-risk cats’ lives so they can be adopted into a new home.”

Nine Lives also offers opportunities to volunteer at the shelter.

“I’ve been working here since I was ten years old so about six years now. I saw an ad online about it. I am an adoption counselor we help introduce people to different cats. We also clean cats or give them flea baths,” said Brooke Morey.

Volunteers are always needed to help take care of the cats, maintain the shelter, and support the services offered.

“Volunteers must be at least 13 and have an adult volunteer with them,” said Scola.

Nine Lives’ current facility on on Jefferson Avenue is in tight quarters. It houses about 100 cats and kittens and an on-site clinic in 1500 square feet. The clinic provides critical treatment for ailing felines, and also offers low cost spaying, neutering, and vaccination services for both resident cats and the community.  

However, plans are in place to move to a new, bigger Nine Lives Foundation facility.

“The new building is 1800 square feet and we will have rooms for our Feline Leukemia (FELV) cats, our Feline Immunodeficiency Virus (FIV) cats, a baby kitten room, an isolation room where new rescues from shelters are kept for 2 weeks to make sure they are healthy before putting them out for adoption,” said Scola. “It will open at the end of April and will be located at 3106 Rolison Road in Redwood City.”

The new Nine Lives facility is being designed to help match prospective adoption families with a cat or kitten.

“We will have playrooms where visitors can meet and play with our available cats,” said Scola.

To support their ability to keep offering these important services for local cats without other options, Nine Lives seeks help from the community in several ways.

“We need support for items on our wish list, and at this time, financial support to sustain the shelter cats,” said Scola.