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Humane education vets new ambassacat


Two years ago, 10-year-old Sophie the rescue cat zeroed in on Dumb Friends League Human Resources Manager Marjorie McCormack, who had stepped into the cat colony for a visit.

“As soon as I opened the door, she jumped up on my shoulder and gave me kisses,” said Marjorie. “That was all it took.” She took home the sweet cat, who appears to be a third or fourth generation Bengal, hoping that this mature feline could hold her own with the household’s resident blue heeler. Indeed, after a little adjustment, the two pets have achieved détente.

Although Sophie has yet to make her debut, she now has the distinction of being the newest ambassacat to have been selected by the League for Humane Education presentations. To make the grade, she had to perform a brief series of behavior tests and her veterinarian had to certify that she was up-to-date on her vaccinations.

Said Marjorie, “With her lovable personality, Sophie’s a natural for the job. She doesn’t mind being handled and she loves to sit on strangers’ laps. When I bring her to the office with me, she stays calm behind the baby gate, and she adapted quickly to wearing a leash and harness.” Marjorie notes that she will attend Sophie’s first presentation, but that later, the kitty will be on her own with the educator.

Ambassador animals give kids a chance to practice the proper way to meet animals and their owners, and to learn valuable lessons about animal shelters and pet care. Currently, the Humane Education department has access to a rotating pool of 13 qualified ambassadogs and two ambassacats that join them on classroom visits. All are owned by League staff or volunteers.

A big thank-you hug to Sophie and all of the League’s teachers’ helpers!

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