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The Friends of Cats Society of Iceland was established on February 28, 1976. The goals of the society are to work for the better treatment of cats, to see that cats get the protection they are entitled to under the law, and to see that all cats have a real home, food, and good care.

The formal opening of Kattholt was July 27th, 1991, and two days later, July 29th, the society began running the cat shelter Kattholt at the address of the society:

Stangarhyl 2,
IS 101 REYKJAVIK,
ICELAND
org. nr. 550378-0199
Phone: 354-567-2909
Fax: 354-567-2964
Email: kattholt AT kattholt.is
Website: http://www.kattholt.is/

The society takes in stray cats and will contact the cats' owners, if they have owners. Otherwise, the society finds new homes for the cats. Kattolt runs a registery of cats that have an ID number tatooed in their right ear by a veterinarian. (Veterinarians do this tatoo for free.) If a cat is found with an ID number, the name, address, and phone number of the cat's owner is found in the registry, along with other information about the cat.

In 2003, Kattholt was written up in the Swedish periodical Aktuellt från Djurens Vänner (no. 3-4 2003). (Djurens vänner = Friends of animals) by Christina Öhnell. Mr. Haukur Henderson of Kattholt kindly translated part of Ms. Öhnell's article for us.

She wrote: "During my vacation I travelled to Iceland to visit the shelter Kattholt and our contact person there, Haukur Henderson... I felt it was most important to be able to meet Haukur and see the cat shelter Kattholt.

"The shelter is divided into five different departments: 1. "Hotel cats", 2. Kittens, 3. Found cats, 4. Sick cats, and 5. Cats that had arrived most recently.

"When I was there, there were 80 cats in Kattholt, of which about 25 cats were "Guesthouse" cats. Katthold has the capacity for about 200 cats, but there are very seldom so many, according to Haukur. You have to take care of the cats and they must have a good time.

"To take care of these 80 cats there were 3 trained people. There is 24 hour a day veterinary help available, if needed.


Bjartur recovering at Kattholt

"To be able to have your cat as a "hotel guest" in Kattholt, you must show a veterinary certificate that states that the cat has its vaccinations and is in good health. This is obligatory."

Later on in the article, Ms. Öhnell wrote, "We walked into the other rooms in Kattholt and Haukur told me about what you find there. The cages for the cats are cleverly and practically made, with three cages in a row, in two sections. If you have to move these, you take all six of them at one time. They are placed on a special wagon, which is a part of this system... This system in Kattholt was made in the USA and bought from there. Practical but expensive. Every cage had a record with the ID of the cat and if it was a stray cat. A record for the "hotel cats" was also required."

Kattholt runs a telephone and online service for lost and found cats. You can also get some advice from Kattholt about cats and behavior problems, too.

A very handsome kitty named Emil is the mascot of Kattholt. The annual meeting of the Friends of Cats Society of Iceland is held at Kattholt, and Emil has attended -- because he wants to -- each of these meetings ever since he came to Kattholt. Last time he was on the table near the chairman of the meeting, while the meeting was going on. Before and after the meeting he greeted most of his friends there! Emil is one who wants to know what's up, because he never tires of being a curious cat.


Keli in his younger days, when he needed the services of Kattholt