Barn Cat Buddies

Will Mouse in Exchange for Room and Board

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Wagging Tails and Happy Trails

(Happy Endings)


I wanted to update you on Levi and Noah. They have fully grown into their big personalities. Noah got his first bath after he rolled in some powder eyeshadow. Levi will eat anything, while Noah has more distinguished tastes. They both love tearing apart any paper towel rolls they can find. Any time we bring something home they expect something for them as well. Just too wonderful!

Thank you BCB!


ms1 "Thank you, BCB!"
From: Susan and Ivanna. The sisters adopted Hedy aka Sugar in January. She joins Zen now Cooper in their home. Here is the story that goes with the photo: Two of my dogs are on pretty complex pain regimens so last thing at night they get their last doses, hidden in treats. Miss Hedy has learned that treats are involved. So despite the "no cats on the counter rule" this is our nightly routine, and since she feels safe above the fray I caved and let her break the rules. P.S. For perspective the dog in the background weighs 90 pounds ;-)

ms1 "Thank you, BCB!"
This is Lolita who went to her new home last month. Looks like she's having a hard time settling in, doesn't it?!!

A Blast From The Past! Here are Tiggerford and Decker. They were adopted from BCB in 2012, and we just got these updated pic's of them. See more of them below.

ms1 Cooper says, "Life Is Good! Thank you, BCB!"
This is Zen who was dumped by Vita Zen in Westlake as an 8 week old and is now enjoying his new life as Cooper in Maywood, New Jersey with his mom, Susan and several feline sisters!!

Jax Home sweet furever home!

Jack & Jeddi are very inquisitive.!

We love our new additions. They have settled in well!! jack and jeddi are already spoiled!!



Jax Just make yourself at home, Jax!

Jax is getting some loving!

Here are some pictures of Jax. He is doing so good. He loves everyone.



3 kids
Lolita joins the other kids for a day at the bath!
Lolita sound asleep

Hello. Just wanted to update you and send you a couple new pictures of Lolita.  She is still doing wonderful!  The 1st picture is of her sleeping on me.  She usually comes and lays with me in the morning when I'm fixing to go to bed.  The 2nd one is all 3 of them on the edge of the bathtub.  Blaze and Serina have taught her how to take baths which is hilarious but it's gets complicated taking a bath with 3 of them LOL.

So today is her "gotcha day" 1 week anniversary and we couldn't be more pleased.  I really think she was the perfect addition to our family. 

Again please let me know if I can be of any help to Barn Cat Buddies. 

Thanks so much!

Jessica (& Bob)

smokey and ranger
Smokey and Ranger
isaac and kam
Isaac seems pretty attached to his new buddy, Kam!

The kitties are doing great! They have really settled in to our house and have even had some fun playing with both our dogs. It's been interesting to see their personalities develop, even in the short time we've had them. Kam is our curious girl, she is always exploring the house and finding new places to hide. Smokey has been content to stay right in someone's lap. If you're sitting down, Smokey is right there on top of you! They've been great and we are so happy with both of them. Molly and I couldn't have gotten a better fit for our house. Here are some pictures that we've taken of them. Thanks so much for everything!!

Ben & Molly

Rich and Diane
Rich and Diane of Smith Mountain Lake
in Franklin County with their new girl,
Annabelle adopted 9/4/15
A close up of Annabelle

Sylvester and his girl
Ken and his new boy


After wrapping the kids around his finger, Sylvester made friends with Buttercup
who was missing his late pal, Willie

Ben is enjoying a sunny nap with his new friend
Jerry explores a new friend and a new lap

Ben & canine friend in the Ferris household. 
Jerry on couch. 

toby and tucker
Toby & Tucker in 2014
Toby now

Toby as a youngster with his canine friend Tucker
and now at one year old – this boy was last year’s kitten
and resides very happily with the Hinton family
at Smith Mountain Lake.  

Lego enjoying outdoor time
Lego enjoys a lap

A new indoor/outdoor home for Lego with the Johnson family of Roanoke.

Momma Leah (now Mia)
Mia at her new home

Leah (now known as Mia) and her three babies were rescued from the 45 cat and kitten hoarding case out of Botetourt, Virginia, in the summer of 2013. Leah gave birth to three babies at Angels of Assisi while awaiting spay surgery. This first photo is of Momma Leah and one of her babies en route to being fostered with Diane. The other two are with her new mom, Cathy Blank and her husband in her home in Northern Virginia. Many thanks to Jess Gallus of the organization Friends of Homeless Animals in Aldie, Va. who often helps BCB place the cats and kittens we find in SW Virginia.

Josie Joins Astrid & Lisbeth

Josie & Janet
Josie & Tom

Josie has already licked my hand, kneaded on me, purred, and used the nose under the hand move to get me to pet her. And that was all within five minutes after you left.  Tom was holding her in the kitchen a little while ago and Astrid and Lisbeth both went in the bathroom and were checking out the carrier.

I predict the three of them will be good friends  (note: these are last summer’s kittens).    I am so pleased we were able to adopt her. I know she is going to make a fine addition to our household.  

Purrs and Hugs,


Extract from Lisa's blog at:


I need to start off with a confession. Remember that sweet little cat we tried to adopt last spring as a barn kitty? Well, after her 3 week transition, we let her loose outside, and she ran away. We never saw her again. I felt really badly about this. So after some time, we decided to try adopting from Barn Cat Buddies again, only this time we wanted to look for friendly cats, who could be enjoyed by the whole family and might become attached to us.

I emailed Diane from Barn Cat Buddies to let her know we were interested in trying again, so she could be on the lookout for some cats that might fit well with us. Last week she took me to visit some, and the boys and I found two that we loved.

The trip home proved to be quite interesting. One of the cats, who we renamed Willie, completely freaked out in the carrier on the drive home. He actually tore apart the carrier and busted out. The boys were all "MOM!!! Mom, he's getting out!!!" I had to pull over and reassemble the carrier, and I moved Willie to the front seat so I could hold the carrier together, as it was now busted on one side. Well he pushed and clawed and yowled. Fur was flying out of the carrier, and claws were flying around too. He was panting rapidly and then all the sudden he rolled onto his back, put all four feet up in the air, and closed his eyes. I was all, "OMG, he's having a heart attack!" I pulled over again, but then he jumped up and started clawing to get out again. He tricked me! I have never seen a cat act like this before!

We went through this routine one more time before getting home forty-five minutes later. My front seat was covered in claw sheddings and fur, and poor Willie had bloodied up several of his claws thoroughly. Thankfully, Willie was just fine once he was out of the carrier and happily installed in the master bathroom. And Baxter did just fine the whole way - he seems very laid back and has even been sleeping with me at night.
Pierce and Baxter

This is Pierce with Baxter. He seems to love all three boys already, and relishes the attention they give him.

And this is the crazy Willie, who is also very affectionate with the boys, and extra playful - he loves when the boys toss his ball and enjoys giving chase.

Word is that he is a very efficient mouser, so after his transition I'll be eagerly awaiting my first gift of death on my doormat.

Better Willie catch the mice before they climb into my minivan, right?

We're already attached to these two cats and they already seem to be a great fit for our family. I'm so excited that we found such sweet kitties! If you're in the Roanoke region and are looking for a cat, definitely check out Barn Cat Buddies - they are a great resource for rehoming cats and kittens in this area.


Cindy Rawlins

Oscar and Cujo enjoying their new couch
Wanna play??

The kitties are doing great, they've adjusted well.  Here are some photos of them enjoying their new home. We've grown very attached to them.

One is of Oscar and Cujo relaxing on the couch - their favorite nap place. Oscar likes to bury his head under a pillow while he lays on his back.
Thanks for all of your help, Diane.  We'll stay in touch with  updates and photos!


Sarah McDonald

A Barn Cat Buddy Livin' The Life

Here’s a great story about 5 lucky cats who were recently given a second lease on life by a caring community of volunteers here in Southwest Virginia.

It truly “took a village” to save these cats. The call went out from Vicki at Roanoke Regional Center for Animal Control and Proctection (RCACP) that 5 skittish/feral cats needed help or they would be euthanized. She contacted our founder, Diane Novak, for help. Diane went into high gear with emails and phone calls trying to find a place for these cats.

I'll be home soon!
A stroke of luck! Diane found a barn that would take all five cats. The next hurdle to overcome was the coordination involved in picking up the cats, getting them to Angels of Assisi to be sterilized, rabies vaccinated, and ear-tipped. This first leg fell to Diane on Tuesday morning.

Dr. Spangler and her staff  at Angels were able to create a hole in their busy schedule and work them into surgery Tuesday afternoon. Sara , our president, then took over, picking up the cats and taking them home overnight to recoup from surgery.

I picked the kitties up Wednesday morning at Sara’s place of business and headed down to Blacksburg. There I met Betty, of Animal Hope Alliance . I followed Betty to Julie's gorgeous farm in Montgomery County where she had generously agreed to provide a home for these fortunate felines.
Whew! 8 Lives Left!!

Four of the cats were released that morning to their new barn home. The fifth cat was taken by Betty to her home for an extra night of recuperation. This last kitty was pregnant and the surgery was a little harder on her. Tomorrow she will be released to her new barn home.

Thank you everyone for your hard work and dedication to save these cats! Excellent job! Volunteers and dedicated staff make these success stories.

The animal rescue groups involved were:

Sarah McDonald
Barn Cat Buddies Volunteer

Robyn Hoskins


Hi Diane,

Thank you...we are just over the moon with these kitties...

Max (Timber) is so long...OMG...when he stretches out on the couch he takes up 3/4 of it and he doesn't move, for anyone...ha-ha everyone in the house just moves around all of the kitties...they definitely 'rule the roost' it should be!!!

Max is definitely a 'daddy's boy' - he and my husband are inseparable when we are at is the cutest thing ever.


Nyxie (Tango) is the most 'lovey' of the three. She is a little talker too...she likes to be picked-up and you would burp a baby...that is her favorite position. She snuggles and cuddles...just loves all the attention.


Lexie (Tabitha) is the smart one...she sits back and watches...she is also very lovey...but still doesn't like to be held while you are standing...she will come up and just lay on your lap and go to sleep. She likes having her belly rubbed and will just expose her belly to you and tilt her head to the side in an inviting little way...she still nibbles on toes too! She has her favorite spots, but is really easy going...she is soooooooo silky soft........her fur is amazing!

Thank you again.

Robyn Hoskins

The Cox Family

timber and remy
Timber & Remy

Hi to all at BCB.

The boys are doing great! The transition has been smooth and they seem to be very comfortable in their new surroundings. They are eating well, playing hard and sleeping through the night.

I swear they have both grown an inch or two in length and have round full bellies. We started them off in the kitchen, and now have expanded into the den, they love to run from one room to the other.

Timber has already mastered the phone answering machine and loves to push the buttons and playback messages. Remy is more athletic and figured out how to breach the safety gate dividing the kitchen and den on day 3!! He is a true explorer, and will probably be the first to climb the drapes and/or make it to the top of the kitchen table and counters.

As for us, every spare moment has been spent with the boys. They are so much fun and provide great entertainment. Every day is a new adventure!

timber's progress
Timber's Growth and Recovery

Allee added, "Timber is the most affectionate cat ever, and Remy can jump higher than any cat I've ever seen!"

Thank you for taking such good care of them (especially Timber!).


The Cox Family (Fred, Cyn, Allee, Remy, and Timber)

Janet and Tom Blue

tiggerford and decker
Astrid and Lisbeth

Diane with Barn Cat Buddies was great to work with in the adoption process. I fell in love with a kitten on, sent an e-mail inquiry, filled out an on-line application and met my kitty in her foster home.

Diane communicated during the entire process through e-mail to make the adoption possible. My husband and I wanted to meet her and so went to an adoption event she was working. We were really impressed with her friendliness and dedication to taking care of the kitties and finding good homes for them.

Our Barn Cat Buddy will be a house cat. She and another female kitten adopted at the same time are adjusting wonderfully and we couldn't be happier with them, Diane or Barn Cat Buddies.


Janet and Tom Blue

Webmaster's Note (August 2012): We recently received an update from Janet which included a link to her delightful blog. Click HERE to enjoy Janet's wonderful stories!

Carter Glasgow

tiggerford and decker
Tiggerford Pocket and
Black N. Decker

I thought you might like to see these.  Tiggerford Pocket is all boy, loves to instigate wrestling matches.  Decker is so sweet, they are sleeping well in the bed, as soon as I turn off the light, playing stops and they go to sleep. 

They are fine with dogs and FrididdleyBeamer is fine from a distance.  TeeGee is scared of them right now.  Another week and we should be all good.  They are lots of fun.  Obviously, Tiggerford and Blu are getting along quite well.

Will you be my friend?
Tiggerford and Blu

I am glad I got both…

Thanks, Diane


Keshia Saul


UPDATE from Keshia August 2012

Hey, I just wanted to let you know that we recently got chickens to add to our "farm."

The barn cats, Bibs(nee Tux) and Puma have been great with them. Sometimes I think that they are more of a rooster, who hangs and protects them from harm. Here's a picture of Bibs with them, they really are something else.

Both are very curious, as you can see from the picture, but live very well together.

My new cats are super sweet and doing really well! The solid black one, which I think is going to be Raven, hangs all over me. She is probably the sweetest cat I've ever known.

Lucky Clover
As for Clover, she is doing great so far. She had an accident on her bed so I washed it and moved her litter box where she had gone. Today when I checked on her, so had used the litter box, so that worked out pretty well.

When I was playing with the new ones (still unsure about names) she did come out of her box and eat while I was there. Of course they are all hissing at each other but will soon be great friends. The exchange went well with Katharine Leigh. 
She had bought all kinds of supplies for me to take home, which was really sweet.

Thanks again, Diane, for getting all of this set up.

Here's a couple of pix that I took this morn. Please don't fault my photography skills with these pix, I haven't taught then how to walk that cat walk and pose yet!


Buster's Lucky Journey

barn cats and kipper 008
Buster and Teddy

It will be hard to fit Buster's dramatic story into 200 words but his story must be heard.

Buster did not have a big chance at life since he was feral , but through a series of small and large miracles, today Buster lives out life with his best friend in their own barn.

After being attacked by either a coyote or a dog, Buster required surgery to remove the ball of his femur that went into the hip socket. After a volunteer trapped him, he was taken to Angels of Assisi where he was altered, given his shots and later his surgery was performed.

Diane Novak knew I had built a new barn and was willing to take care of Buster while he recovered. He had his own space for the winter and healed beautifully. He accepted his new home with joy and appreciation.

It wasn't long before I could rub him and tickle his back side However, he seemed to prefer the company of another rescue cat, Teddy,  and bonded with him almost immediately. Teddy was also feral and placed as a barn cat.

The two of them are inseparable, running and tumbling in the summer and snuggling in their warm hay forts in the winter. Buster and Teddy continue their lucky and happy journey and show their appreciation everyday for their lives.

Thank you, Diane Novak, and Barn Cat Buddies!!

Kimberly Moore

Trouble in Paradise

“Promise me that when I die, you will take care of my cat”. Those words echoed in my mind as I heard the news that my grandfather had passed away.

A mountain man who loved nature and all of its creatures, this was my grandfather's only request. I promised my grandfather that I would find a suitable home for this cat, and we even imagined a large farm with rolling hills and plenty of room for play and exploration, which my grandfather said would be perfect. How fortuitous that vision would be.

A stray, the cat had made quite a name for herself. Considered a nuisance, neighbors complained and the property manager even threatened to terminate my grandfather's lease if he continued to feed the stray, so my grandfather moved to a more remote unit and fed the animal at 4:00 each morning, for he could not bear for this animal to go hungry.

He spent considerable time with this animal in the outdoors that they both loved, and the ravages of neglect and suffering were soon reversed with veterinary care, love, and lots of patience. The cat eventually ended up at the local SPCA. My grandfather, who had been searching for days for the animal, officially adopted the cat and declared the stray off-limits to all concerned. My grandfather affectionately named the cat "Trouble", and Trouble was his faithful companion for the remaining years of my grandfather's life.

Following my grandfather's passing, I called around and learned that Angels of Assisi, the only no-kill organization in the area, had a "Barn Cat Buddies" group that places outdoor/feral cats near barns or warehouses. This  sounded ideal.

sara holding trouble
Sara with Trouble "in Paradise"

Diane, touched by the story of my grandfather and this stray, arranged for volunteers to leave food and water, and the first night, a volunteer named Ted left food, water and a sleeping box near my grandfather's unit. Diane also gave me the name and numbers of veterinarians, to whom my grandfather could have taken Trouble, so that I could obtain vaccination and sterilization records, which were necessary for placement. Trouble was still faithfully waiting for my grandfather when members of Diane's group finally found her. Their dedication and commitment eventually paid off. Barn Cat Buddies found the most idyllic setting that was strikingly similar to the one that my grandfather and I had imagined: a large farm with acres of land and a heated area with food and water for feral/outdoor cats - a true paradise for a cat who had been through so much.

This story is deeply personal to me, because for years I have supported animal rights and rescue groups, and in the one moment that I desperately needed the help of such a group, I found this most amazing group of people at Barn Cat Buddies, who came to the aid of a total stranger and a helpless animal. The help of Barn Cat Buddies made it easier to celebrate my grandfather's life, and his commitment to all of God's creatures.

A last wish honored, a promise fulfilled, and one very lucky girl named Trouble has found a new home.

Sara Morris, Steadfast Stables, Roanoke

Just a note to thank you so much for all of your help! The Barn Cat Buddies are doing a great job at my stables! All three cats have adapted well to life here and, as you said, "They are fabulous Rodent Control Technicians." I really appreciate all of your advice concerning the adoption process - it all went so smoothly !

Take care and I look forward to talking to you again soon.

Katy Holbrook, Roanoke, VA

 Hey.  Clyde was around today-yay!  I was beginning to wonder if he had defected to the neighbors and just stopped by to eat once in a while.  I think Linda did.  I haven't seen her since we let them out, but our neighbor sees her at his barn, which is good because he used to have the same mouse problems, but they seem to be gone now :) 

Yeah, Dodger is just happy to have something new to sniff at and run around the house behind.  I think Genevieve likes it because she can taunt him.  She seems to have figured out that if she goes racing by him really fast, he'll jump up after her and get hyper.  Then, because he is so big, we calm him down before he breaks something in the house, while she gets away with it.  I'm pretty sure she does it to get him in trouble-haha. 

You know retrievers though, once you are part of the family, it doesn't matter what you do to him. He'll keep coming back.  He really does love her.  Anyway, I got this pic of Clyde this afternoon with my cell.  He was just perched so perfectly like he was guarding the door, I thought it would make a great promo, so here it is :) 

Also, we have NO problems in the barn with mice and my kids spill the grain in the floor every time they help feed, so I know it would be mouse heaven if it weren't for the cats.  Blair hangs in the barn most days.  When I get a great shot of her like that, I'll send it on too.  Thanks again!


Henry & Shirley Fairtrace, Moneta, VA

When my wife, Shirley, first told me we were getting some new friends, Barn Cat Buddies, I wondered how this would end. She said they would stay in the barn, catch mice, and be virtually unnoticed. I'm a skeptic, but agreed. In the past, I've run a salad bar for animals that included horses, pigs, goats, donkeys, you name it. We have had our buddies for about six months now, and they are a delight.

Alwin and Smokey

Sam, the tom cat, does exactly what he is supposed to do. I watch him creep about doing his own thing with an occasional visit to the back porch where we keep a constantly full food bowl. Alwin and Smokey rarely leave the back porch except when I forget to fill up the food bowl.


Meka decided shortly after we got her that she didn't want to be a barnyard cat. She separated herself from the rest of the kitties, sat on the front porch at the door, and ran in the house every time the door opened! She now lives in the house, has her own toys and a bed that she rarely sleeps in (ours is softer), and waits for you to turn on the kitchen faucet to get a drink.

Would I do it again? Sure would!! And if you are reading this, I suggest you try it too. You won't be sorry.

If you read this site regularly, then you'll recall our recent article about

Starsky and Hutch. Well, good news. Both of the boys were adopted by a barn cat home in northern Virginia. Details will soon follow.

Photo Credits: Vicki Holt

Michelle Gilbert, Shadow Ridge Stables

I just wanted to extend a thank you to Diane and the Barn Cat Buddies program… We adopted three cats (Cinnamon, Flora and Inka) a few months ago and are loving every minute with them.

Flora(front) Inka(rear)

After not having any cats in the barn for a while, I was definitely glad to hear the pitter patter of paws around again!


All three are adjusting well and love their new life of running the rafters looking down at all of the horses and spending cat naps curled up in the hay! So far they’ve been great workers and continue to leave ‘presents’ at the office door let me know of a job well done. Cinnamon even helps control the bugs and loves catching flies! Thanks for such a wonderful and pleasant experience…we would definitely adopt again and certainly recommend this program to anyone.

Shane, Tamara and Isabella Evans

Evan's Farm Barn Cats
Tinker, Brianna and Jada
I can't say enough how wonderful these felines actually are. Not only do they do their job catching countless mice before they get into my house, they are also willing to participate in our Halloween festivities.

Jada and Brianna turned out to be so affectionate and loyal it warms your heart. There nothing like coming home to these guys. As soon as they see me they come running over for their loving time while on guard for critters. Since we've had them, lots of moles and mice have met there demise. If anyone is having any doubts about there effectiveness doubt no more. They are God's perfect little exterminators.

Elizabeth and Ken Bygler, Maryland

Ken and Eliz visit Panther
Elizabeth, Ken & Panther(Abby)

Velvet and Panther are visited by their new pet parents, Elizabeth and Ken Bygler from Maryland.

The kitties who were being fostered by Diane originally came from theFranklin County Pound and Angels of Assisi. The couple is such a fan of the show NCIS that Velvet's name will be changed to Ziva and Panther's to Abby. The Byglers promise to send us updates and lots of photos!!

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