Highland Park cat rescue in the works

The ongoing saga of the Verdugo Pet Shop has taken another turn after passersby have noticed that cats are living and possibly trapped inside the shuttered Highland Park shop.  Julie Hilden from Los Feliz went to the York Boulevard Store, which has been closed following the illness and death of its longtime owner, today after reading about the trapped cats. Here, via email, is what she found:

We saw at least one cat, maybe two (It’s hard to see through the very dirty window and the cat(s) are huddled in the back).  We also went to the parking lot in back and the door there is locked, so we do believe the cat(s) absolutely are trapped in there. People have been putting in cat food and pouring in water through a small hole in the front door.  We hope Highland Park residents will keep doing this.

Hilden said she is in the process of finding a no-kill group to take car of the cats. Meanwhile, David Fonseca of Highland Park Patch, which has been following the story, said he is preparing to call the owner’s family and fire department regarding the cats. “This is an unconscionable situation,” Hilden said.


  1. Hi, Just wanted to add that if anyone has contacts to or belongs to a no-kill shelter, I would be grateful since I haven’t found one yet.

    Thanks! Julie Hilden

  2. Thanks very much for the no kill suggestions.
    It’s possible things may be okay over there — a police officer is checking on it, and a commenter on Patch mentioned that the plan when the store closed is that a person is coming daily to feed/water the cats, which are said to be ferals.

  3. Hi everyone –

    I am a volunteer at FixNation and a Highland Park resident.
    I’d like to get involved in the rescue of these feral kitties.
    More about FixNation here:


    We can help trap them, fix them and get them medical services.

  4. I’m pretty sure the shelter in Glendale is no kill.

  5. It seems like the cats are ok for now. I’m a little concerned about what’s going to happen when new owners move in though. As the cats are feral they’ll probably be scarred off. It would be best if we could trap them, get them fixed, and give them medical care before that happens. If it turns out that the cats aren’t feral we can take them to Kitten Rescue or some other no-kill organization. I volunteer there so I could talk to them. If they truly are feral the best thing to do is to trap them, fix them through fixnation, and let them back out.
    Highland Park has a real problem with unfixed tame/stray/feral cats.

    If any of the care takers of the cats read this and you would like to have the cats taken to a no-kill shelter or given free medical attention through fixnation please contact me at the_sunsetflower@hotmail.com

  6. What better place for cats than an old pet store? The owner probably left the pet store’s birds, rabbits, and other tasty morsels to the cats in his will. When those cats are “rescued,” they’ll be nice and plump after feasting on all those yummy critters.

  7. Hi, I work with several 501c3 no-kill rescue organizations and can network these cats. I’d like to be involved in helping them. They may not be feral, they may just be scared. Please contact me at dpatinella@gmail.com and I’ll send you my cell number.



  8. We got the cat that was trapped in the store. It’s not doing great, but will hopefully recover quickly. The other cat had escaped a few weeks ago, so we will soon start trying to trap that cat as well.

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