Meet our “Scaredy Cat School” grads!

santa-at-IGASanta was one of many folks who visited Safe Haven’s Open House at our new Thrift Shop, next to the IGA in Wells.

Joyce McKay, president, introduced visitors to some of the “formerly feral” kitties who are now ready for adoption.


Safe Haven now has a “Scaredy Cat School” for kitties who are feral and need special care to prepare them for adoption. This training takes place at our IGA Thrift Store, under the supervision of their steadfast and most determined teacher, Joyce McKay. This person being myself, I can attest to the joys and rewards of being their teacher!

The ferals arrive from the woods and fields in a rather catatonic, horrified state. They do not blink. They stare. They do not purr, they hiss. They swipe their claws to warn you they’ll defend themselves if attacked. They’re much too fearful to play.

Some humans are scaredy cats themselves, and think these kitties will never let themselves be petted. But never say never! Every kitty deserves a chance and miracles happen at Scaredy Cat School all the time! We’ve never had a dropout!

All it takes is lots and lots of love. And patience. And lots of cat treats! Each kitty gets a progress chart and levels of socializing are worked on and checked off. They’re never pushed or challenged. Gentle handling, great respect, quiet training sessions repeated at least six times day and night, and exposure from a distance to everyday life eventually teaches them that people don’t have to be feared. They learn that people are their food source, their comfort and their friends.

Their progress is our joy. Their first blink, their first play session, their first purr, are momentous and give hope for their futures. Our goal is to help them become socialized enough that they can be adopted into someone’s home — a special person’s. We only adopt ferals to cat-savvy folks who “get” ferals and shy kitties, and understand they need to help them continue moving forward.

Those who adopt graduates from our Scaredy Cat School enter an elite club, which will gather for an annual celebration to share their stories about our graduates and will be linked together to share journey stories and help promote more feral kitty adoptions.

Our current class at Scaredy Cat School is ready for graduation and adoption. The “Feral Five” have worked hard at their classes. They now purr, respond to being patted, and play. They’re relaxed, confident and happy.

Chilly Willy is already spoken for. He’s the most feral of all, and made a big impression on a local teacher who wants to help him complete his journey. We’re now accepting applications for Hootie, Itty Bitty, Boo Boo, Charlie and Sweet Caroline. They’re bonded and need to be adopted in pairs so they continue to have the comfort and familiarity they need.

Come and meet them, learn more about ferals and how you can adopt a Scaredy Cat Graduate! FMI: 229-8314.

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Come to our Open House this Saturday

Please join us at our Holiday Open House this Saturday (Dec. 20) from 12-4 pm at the Safe Haven Thrift Shop, next to the IGA Supermarket on Rt. 1, Wells. Enjoy light refreshments, pet the kitties, and Christmas shop to support our No-Kill cause!

The shop itself is open 9-6pm every Saturday in December, 11-4 pm Sundays and weekday afternoons by chance.  Donations of Christmas decorations, warm winter clothing, quilts, comforters,  blankets, sheets, and “gift-able” items are especially welcome. FMI 229-8314.

See you there!


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Weekend Fundraiser at Bamboo Garden, York

This weekend, Nov. 1-2, York’s newest Chinese restaurant is holding a big fundraiser for Safe Haven — and they’re generously donating 100% of the proceeds to our No-Kill cause!

This is a great opportunity to check out a new dining spot, and support Safe Haven at the same time.


But you MUST present this voucher when ordering. Click it to download copies for yourself, and your friends. Thanks for supporting Safe Haven!

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Oct 8 Dining for a Cause


Click to download voucher

Join Safe Haven Wednesday, Oct 8, from 5-10pm for Dining for a Cause at the 99 Restaurant in Biddeford’s Five Points Shopping Center. A portion of the proceeds will be donated to our Capital Campaign.

NOTE: You must download and present this voucher in order for us to share in the proceeds. You can also pick up copies at our Adoption Center or IGA Tag Sale location. Only one voucher per party is needed, so share with your friends and co-workers!

As always, thanks for your life-saving support!

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Tag Sales every weekend in July & August

Due to overwhelming positive response from both shoppers and donors, Safe Haven is expanding our summer tag sale schedule.

Our Tag Sale location next to the Wells IGA will be open EVERY SAT-SUN in July and August. Hours: Sat: 8-6pm, Sun: 9-4pm.

We’re also open weekday afternoons and evenings when we’re working, tagging, etc. But there’s no firm schedule, so if you’re heading to the IGA, Dairy Queen or laundromat anyway, drop in and browse.

Please keep shopping, and keep those donations coming! Your support keeps our No-Kill organization going! Thanks to your support, our vet bills (which average $50,000-75,000 a year) are paid up to date! Thank you!

Every penny you spend at our sales goes toward vet bills and our Capitol Building Fund, so we can purchase our own building for our adoption center and thrift shop.

Got donations? Please don’t leave them at our tag sale location. Drop them off at our Adoption Center, 1616 Post Rd (just a few doors south). (Please, no junk. We have to pay to haul it away.)

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Yard Sale in York July 12-13

Attention York residents and visitors: A big Yard Sale is being held this weekend (July 12-13) from 8-2pm at Bell Farm Antiques and Backyard Birds & Garden Frills, 244 US Route 1, York, to benefit Safe Haven’s Capital Building Fund: Also, the owners are generously donating 20% of their shop’s sales that weekend to our capital campaign!

York Yard Sale this weekend

Of course, our big indoor Tag Sales continue every Saturday & Sunday during July, next to IGA Super Food Market, Rt. 1 in Wells. Both locals and tourists find our big retail location a great place to scout out useful and unique items at bargain prices. Proceeds benefit our No-Kill rescue. Shop this weekend, Sat 8-6 and Sunday 9-4.

We also welcome your donations to keep our inventory full of new things to sell. We’re especially in need of wooden cupboards, book cases, shelving and tables to help display our inventory.

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Another Monster Yard Sale May 31-June 1

godzillaIt’s back — like another Godzilla movie! But a lot less scary.

It’s Safe Haven’s next yard sale. Thanks to the generosity and support of the owners of the storefront we used last weekend (next to the Wells IGA), we are staying in the same place this coming weekend – May 31 and June 1.

Good thing, too. We still haven’t emptied the four huge storage unit of donations — that’s right, FOUR storage units of donations.

So shake the change from your old fruit jar and join us this weekend for bargains, bargains and more bargains!

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