Cats have creative ways to get what they want—their favorite kibble, a special place to soak up the sun, or even a human to be their forever friend.

When Stephen Day became an administrative volunteer for Animal Aid, he wasn’t thinking about adoption. One medium-haired, 10-year-old tortoiseshell kitty named Amara had other ideas, though. When she moved into the office directly next to the reception desk, she began to work her charm on him.

Stephen liked to visit the cats in the shelter after his volunteer shifts. As the days passed, he spent more and more time with Amara. 

“She would seem really shy at first,” he said, “but she seemed to take a liking to me.”

“There were so many cats that I loved at Animal Aid,” he went on to say, but there was something that drew Stephen to Amara. “It was how affectionate she would be when I took a little bit of time to sit with her. It didn’t take her long to hop into my lap. She remembered me when I came in, and I just felt a bond with her. I’d always visit the other cats, but Amara was the last on the docket.”

Then, late last year, Stephen got a full-time job, and his schedule didn’t allow him time to volunteer anymore. After he left, he couldn’t stop thinking about Amara. He realized how much he missed her and decided to fill out an application to adopt.

During the process, an Animal Aid adoption counselor asked everyone who lived with Stephen to come into the shelter to meet Amara and make sure they felt compatible with her. The counselor was also happy to answer everyone’s questions.

“[The adoption process] was very thorough,” Stephen said. “Working as an admin there, I knew it would be like that going in. I felt good that the shelter truly looks for good homes for the animals.”

In late January, Stephen and Amara were reunited and officially a family. Amara settled in quickly. 

“It was probably quicker than somewhere else because she knew me,” Stephen said. “She pretty quickly took over my bedroom as her home space. She’s like a kitten at heart.”

When Amara discovered that she had a new environment to explore, “she became one of the most physically aware and adventurous cats I’ve had,” Stephen said.

The third night after she arrived at his home, Stephen was awakened by a noise. Amara was exploring the bookshelves. She’s declawed, so climbing can be a challenge, but she didn’t let that stop her.

At the time he woke up, “she was just about to jump to the top shelf. I got out of bed and caught her before she tried to jump. She would have missed the top of the bookshelf if I hadn’t caught her.”

Amara has a few favorite spots around the house. She likes her window perch, where she can sleep and keep an eye on Stephen. Last winter, she burrowed under a deep pile of blankets and comforters on his bed while he was gone for the day. When he returned and couldn’t find her anywhere, he finally thought to pull back the covers.

“She likes finding spots to hide,” Stephen said, and “sometimes it’s a guessing game” she plays when he comes home. He often discovers her in a brand new hiding place that she hasn’t tried.

Stephen is elated that he and Amara found each other: “It was like adopting a little best friend. I can’t say enough how thrilled and happy I am.”

Is there a happy tail in your home? We’re always excited to hear how our former Animal Aid cats and dogs are doing! Email us at with the mews and pupdates, and don’t forget to share a photo or two as well, please and thanks!

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