Adopt, Don’t Shop – Help an animal in need!

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Tiger the cat

Hello dear readers!

I’m coming to you today while enjoying some much deserved time off in the middle of the tour season.  I’m home (Croatia home) getting in some quality time with our cat, Tiger.


Tiger is our rescue cat that we adopted from the streets.  You can watch his full story here:

I genuinely wish I could help all homeless animals – especially cats, as I feel they are really terribly mistreated by society.  If I ever win the lottery, there are going to be a lot of new animal shelters out there, let me tell you!

We first met Tiger when he was a little kitten – we would stop by the old abandoned hotel in town and feed the strays that lived there, including Tiger and his family.  The cats were always happy to see us, but Tiger was special.  After eating the food we brought, he didn’t run off – he stayed near us and just wanted to hang out.  We started bringing toys so he could play after eating.  It was as if he had already chosen us to be his human family.

Tiger as a kitten.

If we had had a permanent place to live at the time, we would have adopted him then and there.  But we used to rent seasonal housing and put our belongings in storage when it was time to leave for our work seasons.  So we didn’t have a place to take Tiger.  And of course, we couldn’t temporarily adopt him and then put him back outside when it was time to leave. But we eventually caught him and at least got him his shots and got him fixed.  We knew that as soon as we had a permanent apartment, that Tiger was going to come in off the streets and live with us.

We did finally get a year-round place to live, and we brought Tiger inside.  At the time, he was approximately a year and three months old.  He immediately took to the litter box (yay!) and eventually became a snuggly cuddly lap cat.  He’s now three and a half years old and you’d never know he used to live on the streets.  We also now have a better place to live, where we are all super comfortable and happy.


But it’s important to remember – once you adopt an animal, that animal is part of your family for its ENTIRE life.  If you move, you can only move places where you can take your pet.  (OR have very close family or friends decide they want to adopt them – people you know and truly trust.)  You cannot just “sell” your pet when you move.  If you are allergic to animals, DON’T adopt one and then decide you have to get rid of it!  Pets are family.  Period.  Take care of them like you would your own human child.  If you’re a first time pet parent, do your research ahead of time.  I’ve had pets since I was a child, so I knew what adopting a cat would entail.  If you don’t know, you can learn, but do put in the time to understand everything that goes into it.

When Miloš and I are away working on tours, my mother-in-law takes care of Tiger.  She usually just lives in our apartment when we are away, so Tiger gets lots of grandma time – with tons of snuggles and spoiling.

If you’re truly looking to add to your family with a pet, either go to a shelter (if your country has them), or look into saving a street cat who just needs a better chance at life.  Regardless of where you find your new fur baby, you will all be happier for having done so!


If you’d like to see more of Tiger, you can follow him on Instagram at: @tiger_the_croatian_kitty


Photo of author
Jennifer was initially drawn to Europe for two reasons: music and love.  She lived in Vienna for four years, and now calls Croatia home for much of each year, as she married a native Croatian. Since 2015, Jennifer has worked as a tour director and cruise director on European river cruises for a major American travel company, and has become an expert in all of the cities along her routes on the Danube, Rhine, and Main Rivers. She also has traveled to Disney World almost every year since 1985, and knows Disney World inside and out. As a travel agent, Disney World is her primary specialty, and she has helped many Disney newbies and veterans have amazing trips with her insider information.

2 thoughts on “Adopt, Don’t Shop – Help an animal in need!”

  1. This is such an important post. If I could make it go viral I would. I love what you said about adopting strays and keeping them FOREVER no matter what. My son adopted a stray when he was at college and brought her home at the end of the term. Patches was a beautiful calico with a grumpy-cat face. She lived with us for 5 years, but contracted feline diabetes – the vet said from years of eating out of garbage cans. My son took care of her and gave her shots twice a day until she passed. She was a sweetheart and we miss her terribly now that she’s gone.

    • Animals deserve our love, respect, and care. Thank you so much for sharing your own kitty adoption story. It sounds like your Patches was a wonderful girl who found her perfect family!


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