Cat News Rescue Stories

Owners Share Photos Of Their Cats Before And After Adoption And The Transformations Are Heartwarming

March 26, 2021 8 min read


Owners Share Photos Of Their Cats Before And After Adoption And The Transformations Are Heartwarming

Reading Time: 8 minutes

Despite the Adopt, Don’t Shop campaign, some people still prefer to purchase cats from breeders and pet shops. One of the reasons for this is that they assume a shelter cat carries diseases and are untamed. However, most shelters administer necessary vaccinations to every animal taken in prior to adoption. Also, the adoption fees will usually include spaying or neutering and necessary health tests to ensure that adopted cats are free of diseases.

After all, who could resist adopting and rescuing one of these cute fur-balls ! Shelters just can’t keep up with the amount of cute, lovable felines coming through their doors.

Instead of us telling you why you should adopt, perhaps these photos of cats before and after adoption will convince you to adopt a cat from a shelter. Poli Paw has compiled a list of the most heartwarming cats on their adoption day vs now that show the transformation being rescued can make.

Amazing Transformations, Then and Now Photos

“Its Been A Year”


“I Had To Fight My Wife To Not Leave Him At The Shelter—she Was Concerned He’d Either Cost Us A Ton Of Money In Vet Bills Or Die Soon Since He Was So Sickly, Turns Out He Just Needed Food And Kisses”

black cat before and after the adoption

“Took A Chance, And Decided To Rehabilitate This Boy Instead Of Letting Him Be Put Down. One Of The Best Decisions Of My Life”


There are approximately 1.5 million shelter animals euthanized each year and most are felines.

When you adopt from a shelter, you are not only giving them a forever home but you are taking them off “death row”.

“He’s A Whole Lot Better Compared To When He Was First Rescued! My Friend Took Him In. He’s Playful And Living His Best Life”

rescued cat before and after the adoption


“Found Homeless In 120 Deg Heat, Gave Birth To 5 Kittens Within 2 Hours Of Us Taking Her In…and Now She’s Our Princess!”

 before and after adoption cat found homeless in 120 deg heat, gave birth to 5 kittens


“What A Foster Home Can Do For A Sick Cat…now Misza Is Enjoying His Cat Retirement After Being A Neglected Feral For 15 Years”


Traditional shelters often have no choice but to euthanize animals due to certain circumstances.

Some of those include overcrowding, illness, aggressiveness and injuries. Every time a cat is adopted, the shelter opens up a space for another rescue kitty. Therefore, adopting also helps you save the life of the next cat that the shelter can rescue.

“Toby And Quinton Were Rescued Together And Adopted As A Bonded Pair. Toby Has Ehlers Danlos Syndrome And Quinton Was Toothless. They Became Brave And Happy. Quinton Passed Away Recently, I’m So Glad We Had Him For The Time We Did And He Passed Knowing We Would Keep His Best Friend Safe.”

“8 Years Ago Today The Triplets Were Born. From Bottle Feeding Every 3 Hours, To Beautiful Lazy Babies. Bob, Possum, And Arwyn Made Me The Crazy Cat Lady I Am Today”

“We’re Just Going To Foster Him,”

– My Mother, In May Of 2015before and after fostering a cat


“This Is River. At The Shelter, He Was Shaved As His Fur Was Extremely Matted And Riddled With Flees. He Had Coccidia And Conjunctivitis. After Some Medicine And Tlc, He’s Doing Amazing! He’s The Most Loving And Affectionate Kitty Ever, Always Snuggling Up And Kissing Me! I’ve Had Him For 4 Months”

from shelter to adoption kitty before and after photos


“Bones Had Some Issues With Ringworm When We First Found Him (~8 Weeks), But He’s All Better Now (2 Years)!”


Many rescued stray cats were once owned but were later abandoned or abused.

These rescue cats are actually more domesticated than those being sold in pet stores. The shelter may even share the rescue’s story with you and knowing your cat’s troubled past may help you help them recover from it as well as strengthen your bond. Many cat owners who adopted confirm that there is nothing more rewarding than to see their feline friends transform over time, as you can see from the pictures of cats in this article.

“I’m so happy for her progress”

“Our Kitty Was Already An Adult In The Photo On The Left. A 6 Month Glow Up.”

Louise Lee is the media officer at the non-profit Blue Cross For Pets organization says “We rehomed over 9,000 pets last year, which has increased significantly since a decade ago.”

This shows more people are willing to take the “adopt, don’t shop” approach and the stigma about rescued cats is slowly fading away. “Such misperceptions that these pets were all given up because of behavior and that they’re ‘broken’ are gradually changing, and people understand cats are handed over for all sorts of reasons,” explained Louise.

“My mom is a realtor. She went to show an empty house and found that the previous owners had left something behind. After checking with the listing agent and finding out that the person who had loved her was deceased, she went back and brought her home.”

“Two Months Ago I Found Him Mangled, Probably Had Been Run Over, And Almost Dead Due To Dehydration. Vets Had To Amputate One Of His Front Legs And Tail. Today We Finally Took The Cone Of Shame Off And Let Him Chill With Us On The Bed.”


“A Local Vet Treated This Rescued Stray From A Bad Case Of Fungus/Ringworm Few Months Ago. Look At Her Now”

Louise also says “we’re working hard not only to change the perception of pets in rescue” but also to help people who can’t cope with their pet.

“We seek to take the ‘shame’ away from people who are struggling to cope with their pet and decide to rehome or their circumstances change.” The Blue Cross team never judges anyone.

“Rey When I Found Her On The Street And At 1 Year Old. Good Job, Baby Girl!”

“Two Months Of Love Changed Mr. Biscuits”

“After 6 Months Spent In A Shelter, They Thought He Would Never Get Adopted Due To Him Having FIV. Now He’s Been My Bud For Over A Year And Living His Best Life.”

“Just A Year Apart”

“From Being Found In Our Woodshed Two Years Ago With Wounds The Vet Believes Was From A Coyote , To Yesterday A Happy Healthy House Kitty. Meet Chip!”


Louise warns that it is important to make sure the whole family is in agreement when it comes to adopting a cat or any pet.

“Make sure everyone in a family wants a pet and understands their responsibilities, the time needed, and financial commitment before getting a pet.” Everyone involved should be happy in the end.

“When We Got Hilda She Was Very Underweight After Having Recently Given Birth; Somewhere In The Last 6 Months She Turned Into A Long Haired Beauty Queen!”

“I Found This Kitten Dumped In The Middle Of A Road Too Weak And Hungry To Get To Safety. The Photo On The Right Is What 6 Days Of Cuddles By The Fireplace, Lots Of Food And A Cozy Bed Can Do.”

“Apollo Has Given Us Just As Much As We Have Been Able To Give Him”

“2 years ago today I walked into a Petsmart and met a cat named Sonny who no one would adopt because he was 13 years old, covered in fleas, underweight, and had a mouth full of rotten teeth that had to be removed. He came home with me that night and it was the best decision I’ve ever made.”

“so much healthier!”

“This Is My Best Friend LCDR Ryker. I Was Told You All Like These Kind Of Stories.”

“Frank At A Couple Weeks vs. Almost A Year, Also Threw In The Christmas Photo With His Brother Teddy”

“Got My Feral Kittens At 4 Weeks Old And Now They’re All Grown Up”

“My James Won’t Ever Be Cold Again”

“Jerry, Found In A Box With His Siblings, Covered In Oil And Fleas At A Couple Of Weeks Old. Now, At 11 Weeks, Healthy And So Lazy. We Fostered All Four Siblings And Adopted Him Ourselves.”

“Found This Girl In Need While In Greece, Now She Is Our Chunky Mischief Maker.”

“The Week I Rescued Him And 4 Months Later. He’s A Terrible Office Assistant”

“Wally Update Pt.2. He Chonkin’ Up Nicely”


“One Month Ago, I Found This Baby In The Wheel Of My Forklift At Work. Now She Lives At Home With Me. Meet Emmy (6 Weeks vs. 10 Weeks)”


If you have a rescue cat story, please share it in the comments!

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