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Who and what is Sunshine's Friends Cat and Dog Rescue?

Sunshine’s Friends Cat and Dog Rescue (SFCDR) has been involved with helping animals in need since 2003. We incorporated and became a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization in October 2014. The number of animals we have rescued or aided has grown every year since then. We were first established under the name “Sunshine’s Friends Cat Rescue and Sanctuary”. The name and mission have changed to include dogs due to a growing need to provide most of the same help for dogs as we do for cats. Our non-profit public title is thus called “Sunshine’s Friends Cat and Dog Rescue.”

Sunshine’s Friends’ mission (the 5 R's) is:

  • To RESCUE abandoned community cats and dogs in desperate situations;
  • To REHABILITATE the sick, the injured, and the abused;
  • To REHOME cats, kittens, dogs, and puppies ready for permanent placement with a suitable guardian;
  • To provide a loving REFUGE for cats and dogs that are not adopted; and
  • To REDUCE local shelter intake by promoting spaying and neutering.

We are an all-volunteer organization dedicated to serving helpless animals. Our goal is to stop the unnecessary euthanasia of all cats and dogs and to give them a second chance to live a good life with a loving family or companion.

This Standards of Care document provides both current practices as well as future goals. It is intended to be read in its entirety so that information is not taken out of context and misunderstood. This document was created based primarily on:

  • Title 15, MD Department of Agriculture, Subtitle 01, Chapter 11 “Animal Shelters – Standards of Care”, Agriculture Article §2-1701 at seq., Annotated Code of Maryland (April 23, 2018);
  • Association of Shelter Veterinarians, “Standards of Care in Animal Shelters” (2010);
  • Humane Society of the US (HSUS), Shelter Advocate Toolkit “The 5 Freedoms” (2010).

Last revision: 20190228.

Felines, just like humans, are happiest when they have choices.  Some of Sunshine’s Friends prefer being outdoors, some like in and out, a few enjoy looking out but never going out.  We strive to keep everyone happy, safe and warm.  Our outdoor kitties stay in insulated, heated outbuilding cat quarters when the weather is inclement.

Outdoor Areas: The "Catio" and Cat Condos

The sanctuary residents come inside, but they also have the run of the catio whenever the weather permits. Some cats are free to roam, but they sleep in the insulated and heated outbuilding large condo.


Cats free-roam throughout the sanctuary, interacting with other cats, shelter volunteers, and potential adopters.  We have temporary isolation rooms for cats that are recovering from spay/ neuter surgery and for mothers who are nursing kittens.

Coming Soon.

I got my first glimpse of Sunshine at the edge of our yard about a year after we moved to our new home in Jessup. I had never seen such a sad animal. He was so thin and looked so hungry and sick. I approached him with some of my cat’s food as gently as I could. I watched him wander back into the woods and he must have watched me put the food down. That was the beginning of our relationship - one that was as rewarding for me as it was for Sunshine. One morning about a week after the first encounter, I saw him on the deck licking grease that had dripped from our barbecue grill. I started putting food there for him twice a day. Soon every day when the sun came up my new friend was there to greet me - he was my Sunshine.

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