The mission of Thundering Paws Animal Sanctuary is to offer a safe haven for cats who are homeless, neglected, injured, or abused. We help other animals when we have a foster for them.
We have two cats who didn’t tame early enough to be shown at adoption events, are friendly now, but who have lived here all their lives. We would not ask Jennifer and Ariel to move.
Skweeks, tentatively friendly with some of us, came here because his human died. An inside kitty all his life, he was very tame with his late human, but we wouldn’t bet on his success as an adopted kitty.
Sansli has misshapen kidneys and the pain probably is the reason she’s grumpy. Stitch is another grumpy cat with three legs. She had a dreadful injury which we had corrected with an amputation. Each of these girls came from a rural shelter where their owners surrendered them to be euthanized rather than deal with their medical issues.
Beauregard was thought to be feral until his ectropion was corrected. Incredibly painful, ectropion is the condition of the eyelashes turning inward and rubbing against the eyeballs. An easy operation corrects it.
Feral Phoenix shouldn’t have to dodge traffic and predators with only her three legs. She has kitty friends here.
Bijoux has been shot with BBs and chased off with water hoses. These are only the abuses we are aware that he suffered. He also has a badly healed ankle break from we know not what injury. A man called because Bijoux was having incontinent diarrhea on the man’s deck. “I tried chasing him off with the hose, but he just comes back.” Another cat thought to be feral, once his diarrhea was totally corrected with a food change, he became a loving pet.
Tossing a pregnant cat out to fend for herself and her kittens is serious abuse, not only of the cats but of the entire community! Newt, Yuri, Uschi, Marigold, and the mothers and grandmothers of Tina, Marilyn, and all of the other cats here were all left to breed outside.
Since 2001, Thundering Paws has operated a no-kill, non-profit 501(c)(3) animal sanctuary located in Dripping Springs, Texas. We are home to an ever-changing number of animals, mostly cats, sometimes a dog. We provide our beloved residents shelter, food, filtered water, spaying/neutering, vaccinations, veterinary care, and a lot of love and attention.
In addition to the sanctuary, we support a network of foster families and animal advocates which helps expand our reach and care for many more animals than can stay at the sanctuary.
We know you care about animals because you’ve taken the time to visit our site—that alone shows a good heart. Though all of us have heard stories that pain animal lovers, we at Thundering Paws want you to know that there’s good news, too—and lots of it!
All donations to Thundering Paws are tax-deductible. We rely on our volunteers and generous donors to keep us going, and appreciate any help you can give. Visit our donation page to make a contribution.
Diversity, Inclusion, Equity, and Belonging
To our Thundering Paws community: In the same manner in which we welcome, embrace, and support kitties regardless of their background, fur color, or gender, we welcome and support a diverse community of human staff, volunteers, donors, and adopters. Through our continued commitment to diversity, equity, inclusion, belonging, and empowerment, we strive to ensure all kitties and all humans feel recognized, heard, and loved for all that makes us beautiful and unique.
What We Do
Thundering Paws Animal Sanctuary is home to dozens of rescued animals. Our residents receive:
▸ premium food and filtered water
▸ health tests, vaccinations and veterinary care — we test all cats for feline leukemia virus (FeLV) and feline immunodeficiency virus (FIV); all dogs for heartworms
▸ clean and temperature-controlled housing — many of our cats have access to screened outdoor areas
▸ spay and neuter surgery
▸ lots of love and attention
Fosters: Twenty-six fosters and foster families watch over and love our kitties. We value those people! We will not give a foster any kitty with issues beyond their capability, nor will we leave them stuck with unadoptable cats.
Our Foster Coordinator, our Assistant Director, and our four veterinary technicians rotate their availability to answer calls, field suggestions, observe symptoms and behavior, and dispense and administer vaccines, medications, and other therapies that don’t require a vet. Four veterinary hospitals, a traveling veterinarian, and two low-cost spay/neuter clinics work with us to give our babies the best health care possible.
We disclose everything to our adopters that our fosters disclose to us. This keeps the kitties in their forever homes and provides them with long and happy lives.
Foster Hospice: There are kitties with terminal medical conditions that prevent them from being adopted but haven’t yet diminished their happiness. We’d rather these cats be in homes where they are cared for and adored. Kind fosters who will give them the love they deserve while not prolonging life when there is no longer quality take on these cats while Thundering Paws pays their vet bills.
Forever Foster: Similarly, people who cannot afford a cat may take those single kitties who are hard to place while we pay the vet bills. Forever Fosters’ conditions can be eclectic: chronic upper respiratory problems; special diets or cat aversion requiring being in a single cat household; or other issues.
The Sanctuary: We have three cats here whom we hope to adopt. Spirit, from Kerrville, and Meeta, from South Austin, came here biting and scratching. We are training them with kindness and both are doing very well. They want to be sweet, but they’re frightened, of what we don’t know. We learn more every day.
Then there’s Beauregard. Assistant Director Scott Haywood set out traps for eight months before finally capturing him. We had him neutered, rabies vaccinated and corrected his entropion, a painful condition in which the eyelashes rub against the eyeball. What we got back was an FIV positive, lovable, big “wumpus,” the darling of everyone here. People ask to adopt him all the time, but he’s a TNR cat and this is his territory. He would be miserable being inside all the time, yet so far he has deigned to come in at night and sleep on our bed. Just as we return other community cats to their homes, we let Beauregard live in his home—here at Thundering Paws.
Adoptions: Our cat adoption service is the heart and soul of Thundering Paws and we had as almost many in 2020 as in 2019. We’ve adopted out kittens, half-blind kittens, skittish kittens, shy cats, FIV positive cats, a feline leukemia positive kitten, deaf cats, cats with various life-long conditions, Foster Fusion cats (formerly known as Foster Failures, such a derogatory term!)
Adoption Center: Tomlinson’s Pet Food Store in Belterra Village has a HUGE, fun, cat adoption center, and our kitties are showcased there. Their caring staff keeps the environment clean and, when there’s a lull in business, they pet and entertain the kitties. We are so very grateful for that space!
TNR DS: Thirty cats were trapped, neutered, and returned this year, more if you count the traps that we have loaned out for a refundable deposit. Many more turned out not to be feral and came into our foster and adoption program. TNR DS is growing by leaps and bounds!
Advice to the Lovelorn: Cat-loving people call and email us with problems with their personal cats, feral cats, community cats, cats and kittens they have found, and we answer them. We take some homeless who have no other recourse, and when we can’t, we try to suggest other solutions.
For owned cats, we have solutions to many common problems, yet rather than publish these on our website, we prefer to communicate directly. So many nuances can be lost without that communication.
Monthly Giving: The solution to many of the ills of modern society is service to others. We give people a way to give that is easy yet makes them feel good.
Mewsings, Our Weekly Newsletter: Our weekly email newsletter keeps our supporters in the know about what’s going on at Thundering Paws. Subscription is free, of course, and we keep it entertaining with pictures and videos.
Our animals come from shelters, from our TNR program, from other rescuers, from people who contact us for help. Everyone gets a home!
Community or feral cats who are doing just fine in their territories are returned spayed/neutered and vaccinated. Kittens are brought into our adoption program.
We sometimes bring in feral mom cats who have kittens or are too far along to be spayed, and allow them to raise their kittens. We then spay the mom, return her to her home, and get the kittens adopted.
Our sanctuary houses four feral-ish cats who didn’t tame as kittens, yet have no territory to which to return. We have a three-legged feral cat. We’ve had one-eyed, blind, and deaf feral cats. Some tame, some don’t, but they have a life here no matter what.
Some cats arrive fearful and cannot be adopted until they learn what it’s like to be touched by gentle hands. Others need time and veterinary care to recover from injuries or illness before they go to their new homes.
While spay/neuter is the only permanent solution to the overpopulation of companion animals, Thundering Paws wants animals who are already born to have full, happy lives. That is why we are a no-kill facility.
Shelter Animals Count is an independent 501(c)(3) with broad collaboration from the animal welfare community. By creating standardized reporting and definitions for shelter statistics including intake, adoptions, return-to-owner, transfers, euthanasia and shelter deaths, we will increase live outcomes. The board is dedicated to furthering more transparency with anonymity through sharing of animal shelter data to increase lifesaving opportunities.
Thundering Paws is a proud participant in Shelter Animals Count. Click here to view our 2020 Data Report from Shelter Animals Count.
|Our Lifesaving Percentage* for 2020 was 95.4%.|
|Total Live Outcomes|
|Lifesaving Percentage 226 / 237 = 95.4%|