Culver City Observer -

Have Kitties, Will Travel

Something New From Adopt & Shop


August 18, 2016

Don’t miss the opportunity to visit the Catty Wagon (, the first custom-built, mobile adoption vehicle created just for kittens in order to enable thousands of shelter kittens to find homes by bringing the concept of curb service to pet adoption.

Failing to take advantage of this unique experience would be a cat-astrophic oversight, especially since it couldn’t be more convenient to check out the yellow truck that looks like a giant cat with ears, whiskers and a tail and is full of adorable kittens. Mark your calendar, as it is coming to Culver City’s Fiesta La Ballona located at Veterans Park, 4117 Overland Avenue, at 11 a.m. on August 27 and 28.

This “food truck”-inspired venture owes its existence to the Michelson Found Animals Foundation (, an independently funded nonprofit organization working to help save the lives of shelter animals.

More cats than dogs are euthanized in U.S. shelters each year and the recent launch of the Catty Wagon is a step in the right direction to educate the public on the importance of fostering, adoption, or becoming a volunteer.

The Catty Wagon’s purpose is tied to Found Animals’ mission of “Saving Pets, Enriching Lives” and is an extension of its brick and mortar store, Adopt & Shop (, an adoption and retail facility where every dollar spent goes back to saving more pets. A branch of this one-stop pet store offering pet adoption, dog daycare, training and more opened in Culver City on May 2014 at 4235 Sepulveda Blvd.

Found Animals’ Executive Director Aimee Gilbreath stated that “although there’s definitely a ‘kitten season’ where we see an influx of kittens in our shelters there is a need to educate on the importance of feline adoption year round.

“As part of our mission to save as many pets as we can we’ve launched the Catty Wagon as a fun and engaging way to bring our kitties directly to consumers.”

The inside of the Catty Wagon is equipped with six individual condos where the adoptable felines are housed, two “meet and greet” rooms, and an array of fresh and fun cat products. From the outside of the parked vehicle the cats and kittens are visible from windows looking out into the world, a world that hopefully contains loving, adoptive homes for them.

"Our food truck-inspired ‘cat on wheels’ is the first of its kind and an innovative approach to mobile adoption and retail,” said Dr. Gary Michelson, Founder of Found Animals.

“It raises the bar on the concept of adoption vehicles and our commitment to saving pets and enriching lives.”

Dr. Michelson, a retired surgeon and committed philanthropist, and Alya Michelson provide support for Found Animals and its initiatives.

Each adoptable pet on board the Catty Wagon will be vaccinated, spayed/neutered, and microchipped, an important component in assuring that lost pets return home and not back to the shelter. To learn more about the free microchip registry and the many innovative tools that are making it easier to connect lost pets to their people, check out Additionally, information regarding the foundation’s spay/neuter technology research can be found at

A collection of starter supplies for new adopters will also be available for purchase from the Catty Wagon itself. Because adoption fees and point-of-sale proceeds go back toward saving the lives of area pets, purchases from the Catty Wagon will also directly impact the area’s shelter animals.

On August 5 the Catty Wagon had its initial outing in Westchester during Westchester First Fridays, a community-based event featuring top gourmet food trucks augmented on that occasion, by the Catty Wagon, enabling those attending to feast their eyes on cuddly kitties – and a happy connection was made.

The kitten’s name was Zeb and the adopters were Norma Ahlf and her boyfriend. They had recently moved to Los Angeles from Brazil and were described by Cass, the Catty Wagon Manager, as “very sweet and informative pet owners.”

Ahlf had also rescued cats in Rio de Janeiro, so adopting Zeb was right in character. She and her boyfriend are considering changing the kitten’s name to “Champion” in celebration of the Olympics, a choice that would be quite fitting since their furry companion has now won the ultimate prize – a forever home.

“If you adopt from the Catty Wagon, not only are you saving the life of the pet adopted but you’re also enriching your own life in so many wonderful ways; it’s a win/win.” said Gilbreath.

To borrow an expression from 1920s slang, this project can definitely be described as the cat’s meow. And your purr-fect match may just be truckin’ in at Fiesta La Ballona, so be sure to visit and meet the whole kit and caboodle of kitties coming to Culver City.


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