Tiger and Becker, two cats at Catmandu, used to lived with a woman who recently passed away. One of her main concerns before she died was for someone to take care of the cats.
Linda Buchanan said there’s not much recourse for cats like Tiger and Becker in Carson City. That’s why in March she opened Catmandu and Carson City Cares, an adoption center and sanctuary for felines. They adopted their first cat March 21 and now have a total of 59 cats, 37 of which are kittens.
“I’m one of those people always finding strays and trying to find good homes for them. So I decided to do just that,” Buchanan said.
Buchanan is a middle-aged widow who wanted to do more with her life after the death of her husband two years ago. With her love for cats and eagerness to help and nurture them, she decided to open Catmandu for homeless cats and kittens.
“I’m going to do this,” said Buchanan. “I want to do this, I’m in the bonus round of my life, what have I got to lose?“
Buchanan said she rented a 3,900-square-foot building on a half–acre property that was run down and a “God-awful mess,” with garbage strewn about the property, and damaged flooring and walls. However, with many donations, recycled materials and volunteers, the facility was cleaned up and became the cat sanctuary.
Catmandu is a nonprofit, cage-free group home for homeless cats and kittens. There are many rooms to make the cats feel comfortable, including a “newbie” room with large kitty condos for new guests to warm up to the environment from the comfort and safety of their own space and are free to join the general population when they are ready. There’s also a kitten room furnished with playpens, and a big room, known as the lounging area, adorned with “kitty perches” and “hidey-holes” for the cats to climb, scratch and play in. Buchanan said they plan to build a “catio,” an outside area for the cats.
Twelve-year-old Rhiannon Hughey enjoys playing with the cats, bathing them, and cleaning and organizing their toys, beds and play areas.
“I like that most of the cats here are friendly,” said Hughey. “They show emotion differently than humans, but they are very nice. I am friends with all the them.”
Hughey is one of 10 volunteers who spend a few hours a week at Catmandu. Buchanan said she and the volunteers treat sick kittens and cats, take in abandoned ones, guide them back to health and trust, and nurture them. They also provide information and advice to cat owners on how to care for their pets, how to provide safe and loving homes, types of vaccines, house training and more.
Catmandu holds rummage sales and events to help keep it open and accepts donations of any sort. For instance, Buchanan said, one little girl donated food and toys. The girl was celebrating her 9th birthday and instead of gifts for herself, she wanted her guests to bring cat items so she could donate them to the shelter.
Buchanan said the center appreciates all donations and volunteers.
Catmandu is located at 1829 Brown Street in Carson City and is open 11 a.m.-5 p.m. Wednesday through Sunday. For more information, visit catmanducc.org, or call Linda Buchanan at 775-297-3419.