Kitten Season has begun. If the term if unfamiliar, I assure you that it isn’t cute and warm and fuzzy and adorable unless someone steps in to fix the mama (if she’s around) and get everyone vetted and vaxxed and adopted. More on this later.

If you come upon kittens, don’t scoop them up until you’re sure mom isn’t just out hunting. Newborns are fragile and need to remain with their mother. Here’s a good article to fine-tune good intentions regarding saving newborn kittens.

Meanwhile, there are a few rainbows over Long Beach during the cloudbursts of kitties—one, appropriately, on St. Patrick’s Day. Everything indicates that a couple of them will curl up on the corner for quite a while and the other will leave its mark on your waistline, if all goes well.

First, the Long Beach Little Paws Project, a joint loving effort of rescues Helen Sanders CatPAWS and The Little Lion Foundation, with further support from Long Beach Animal Care Services, will be opening in a few weeks as soon as the red tape has been clawed off. Little Paws will be a 24-hour care facility that will help as many neonatal kittens as possible thrive and become healthy and adoptable.

And what teeth-grinding play on words hasn’t been written about staying cat-feinated? Finally, after a few years of batting ideas around and belling all the cats, Feline Good Social Club is presenting our city with its first-ever brick-and-mortar cat café! Fellow feline fanatic Valerie Osier will have lots more about this soon! (see Things to do, pets to support).

This St. Patrick’s Day—or in certain corners (like this one), St. Catrick’s Day—you’re encouraged to indulge in as much ice cream at Long Beach Creamery in Bixby Knolls as your stomach can handle. It’s better for you than green beer, and no doubt they have some kind of frozen green concoction. It’s also better for the cats at Little Lion, because a huge 50 percent of all the ice cream sold will benefit the cats at the rescue! You’ll meet a few of them, and you may be able to take one home and finish the pints you purchase while you listen to the purring on your lap. Details are in Things to do, pets to support. Here are a few Little Lions to get all Paddy with.

cream-and-light-orange cat with tag sitting on dark bedspread. Cat has green eyes.
River, 4 months old, was trapped at a Metro station in Compton just a few weeks ago. She was initially thought to be feral and unsocialized with humans, but immediately blossomed into a sweet and gentle girl who loves to cuddle and play. Photo courtesy of The Little Lion Foundation.
Black kitten with big ears and closed eyes. She is blind.
Stevie is only 5 months old and is blind. She was rescued off the streets in horrible condition and had been suffering from two severely infected and ruptured eyes. She was rushed to the vet and underwent emergency surgery to remove the infected eyes and has been thriving in foster care ever since. Despite her inability to see, she acts like any “seeing” cat. She is sweet, playful, and outgoing. You wouldn’t even notice her blindness. [This is not Little Lion’s first experience fostering a blind cat. The patience and knowledge of the rescuers coupled with the love they show is what develops these cats as seeming “normal.”] Photo courtesy of The Little Lion Foundation.
A brown tabby cat lies with her arm around a black cat.
Harriet, a brown tabby, and Hannibal, a sleek black fellow, form a 7- month-old bonded pair. These sweet babies were trapped in a feral colony in Long Beach at only 6 weeks old and have been in rescue ever since. They are sweet, affectionate, cuddly, and so adorable! Their foster momma loves their silly personalities. They may appear shy at adoption events, but once you get them home, anything goes. Photo courtesy of The LIttle Lion Foundation.

Please send any Long Beach or Seal Beach pet-related events or projects to [email protected]. Posting subject to approval.

Things to do, pets to support

Turtle & Tortoise Care Society, CTTC Long Beach Chapter: Friday, March 15, 7:30 p.m., University Baptist Church, 3434 Chatwin Ave., Long Beach, free.

Biologist Ed LaRue, board member of the Desert Tortoise Council, will speak on his advocacy for conservation of desert tortoises to avoid impacts of conservation projects, his work with tortoises as a consulting biologist, and other aspects of his work.

St. Catrick’s Day: Sunday, March 17, noon–4 p.m., Long Beach Creamery, 4141 Long Beach Blvd., Long Beach, menu prices and adoption fees apply.

Lap up all the Irish Whiskey Vanilla ice cream that your belly can hold as you check out the kitties up for adoption at this fund-raiser. The Little Lion Foundation will be there with paddy-paws you can take home—all cats have been vetted and either spayed or neutered. Pet Food Express will have a booth showcasing the best in cat food and treats and will answer all your cat questions. Best of all, 50 percent of ice cream sales will go to Little Lion to help them with their bills and to help the new Kitten Nursery raise up the wee ones.

Helpful Honda Pet Adoption Event: Saturday, March 23, 11 a.m.–3 p.m., concrete launch area of Rosie’s Dog Beach, 1 Granada Ave., Long Beach, adoption fees apply.

The Helpful Honda folks want to remind you that as of Jan. 1, pet stores in California have been required to only sell dogs, cats, and rabbits that come from shelters or nonprofits. [Author’s comment: Yay!]. This will help reduce the number of pets who wind up in shelters and help more of them find their forever homes. To continue helping our four-legged (and some three-legged) friends find forever homes across the Southland, the Helpful SoCal Honda Dealers and the Guys in Blue are hosting their eighth Helpful Honda Pet Adoption events with local shelters and rescue groups throughout the month of March. Helpful Honda Pet Adoption partners include City of Long Beach Animal Care Services, Rescue from the Hart, Foxy and the Hounds, German Shepherd Rescue of Orange County, Southern California Bulldog Rescue, I.C.A.R.E. Dog Rescue, Los Angeles City East Valley Animal Services Center, Inland Valley Humane Society & SPCA, and Ventura County Animal Services. For the family dog, the Helpful Honda Guys will be providing free dog washes, a fun pet-photo booth, complimentary leashes, food bowls, and doggy bags to those who visit and adopt! A supplies donation will also be made to each participating local shelter or rescue group.

Mayor’s Animal Care Visioning Task Force meeting: Tuesday, March 26, 3:30 p.m., details to follow.

Agenda details to follow.

Fix Long Beach Free Spay/Neuter Clinic: Saturday, April 13, 9 a.m.–3 p.m., Ramona Park, 3301 E. 65th St., Long Beach, free spay/neuter for qualifying Long Beach residents, with appointment; free microchips, shots, flea-med doses, dewormers and nail trimmings $10 each—no appointment necessary. Appointments available for future clinics—come make one.

Feline Good Social Club Grand Opening: Saturday, April 27, 10 a.m., 301 Atlantic Ave., Long Beach, adoption fees apply.

We don’t need coffee to keep us awake for this event! Finally, feline-ally, Long Beach is getting its own permanent cat café! Three entrepreneurial, passionate cat ladies have pounced on this opportunity to place rescue cats in a permanent and loving home. The Feline Good Social Club will have its grand opening in the heart of Downtown Long Beach and will offer a unique opportunity to socialize with adoptable cats in a playful environment supplemented with unlimited gourmet coffee and tea. The grand opening will feature a VIP Package with exclusives perks for those who would like additional time with the cats in a luxury setting, and merch bags filled with cat-themed gifts are sure to tickle your whiskers. All of the cats are rescued from the local rescue group Long Beach Felines.


The following pet-related businesses regularly feature cat, dog and rabbit adoptions. If you’re a Long Beach-area rescue and don’t see your adoption event listed here, please email [email protected].

Chase Bank, 5200 East Second St., Long Beach

 Gelson’s Market, 6255 E. 2nd St.

Kahoots Pet Store, 18681 Main St. #102, Huntington Beach

Petco Animal Supplies, Marina Shores, 6500 Pacific Coast Highway, Long Beach

Pet Food Express, 4220 Long Beach Blvd., Long Beach:

PetSmart Cerritos, 12741 Towne Center Dr, Cerritos

PetSmart Compton, 1775 South Alameda St., Compton

PetSmart Garden Grove, 9835 Chapman Ave, Garden Grove

PetSmart, Long Beach Exchange, 3871 N Lakewood Blvd., Long Beach

PetSmart Signal Hill, 2550 Cherry Ave., Signal Hill

PetSmart Seal Beach, 12341 Seal Beach Blvd., Seal Beach.

Unleashed by Petco, 600 Redondo Ave.

tiny gray kitten sleeps in someone's hand

Long Beach Little Paws Project needs donations

The most vulnerable animals in the public shelter system are kittens under two pounds. These fragile babies, especially those not yet eating on their own, are typically euthanized on intake at most public shelters. In an effort to change the fate of far too many kittens, two non-profit rescue organizations, The Little Lion Foundation and Helen Sanders CatPAWS, have launched a joint effort to create and operate a kitten nursery. This nursery will give kittens too young to be adopted or those who need medical care a safe place to heal and grow. Newborn kittens are fragile and vulnerable. You can tell by those photos—if you look closely, you’ll see the beautiful cat that each of them will grow to be. Please read all about them here, and please, please donate.

Low-Cost Pet-Vaccination Clinics: For schedule, visit this link

Pet owners must be 18 years or older, all pets must be on leashes or in carriers, and only healthy and non-pregnant animals will be vaccinated. Please bring prior vaccination information with you to the clinic.

Free Pet Food Distributions

Pet food is available at Beacon for Him Ministries, 439 West Anaheim St., Mondays from 9 a.m. to noon and Saturdays from noon to 3 p.m. A dog-washing station with a stainless-steel tub is also available onsite at these hours. Donations and supplies such as shampoo, flea control meds and pet food are always gratefully accepted.

The Pet Food Bank is sponsored by Christian Outreach in Action, located at 515 E. 3rd St., Long Beach. Hours are Thursday from 9 to 11 a.m.

Pets of the Homeless provides many collection places across the country to help homeless people to feed and care for their animals. Please support them through a cash donation, or bring pet food to the Long Beach-area drop-off center, Trendi Pawz Grooming, 3726 E. Seventh St., Long Beach. Access this link for resources and donation areas in SoCal and across the country.

Shelter-enrichment supplies requested for ACS’s cats, dogs and rabbits: drop-off Wednesdays through Fridays, 10 a.m.–4 p.m., shelter side of P.D. Pitchford Companion Animal Village, 7700 E. Spring St., Long Beach.

Kitten food, yogurt, beef and chicken broth, pipe cleaners, toilet-paper and paper-towel rolls, catnip, canned pet food, wine-bottle corks (for cat toys) and ice cube trays all are needed. Donations are tax deductible.