Meet Furball Farm Cat Sanctuary, A Place Where Every Unwanted Cat Gets Love

A Reddit user shared a sweet photo from one of the most wonderful places in the world: a sanctuary of "unwanted cats." R/aww is running to adopt the sweet animals after u/Tymarvy93, real name Tyler Marvets, shared a photo of cat Milo, who only has one eye.

But Milo's story, and the stories of his adopted siblings, go far beyond the Reddit post. From just the one photo, Milo's home, Furball Farm Cat Sanctuary, has received over $4,000 in donations in less than 24 hours.

Pumpkin
Pumpkin lives at Furball Farm Pet Sanctuary along with dozens of other "unwanted" cats. Furball Farm Cat Sanctuary

Milo is just one of dozens of "bad a** cats" that was days away from being euthanized because no one wanted to adopt him. For Milo, it may have been that he is missing an eye, as the photo shows. For other cats, who don't get along with humans, or who don't pass muster in some other way, the end of the road comes early, plagued by days alone in adoption centers.

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That's why Julie Marvets started Furball Farm: to give those bad a** cats a home.

"We lovingly call them bad a** cats," Marvets told Newsweek. "I take pee cats. I take cats that hate humans. I take cats that poop on beds. And guess what we do? We clean that up all day long. And we love them."

The sanctuary doesn't accept kittens, just healthy, adult cats who are at risk of losing their lives due to a lack of demand.

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Marvets lives in Minnesota with her husband, a restaurant owner. They met while serving in the army, and have five children. Buying the farm that became Furball Farm was an impulse and started as a joke. They were looking for a simple townhouse when a friend sent the listing. And that listing opened the door to a whole new passion.

While Marvets is a former Vet Tech with a soft spot for unwanted animals, a personal reason leads her to gift kindness to the cats. "With this opioid epidemic—that has hit my family. I really, really, really believe that God put this in my life to help me handle the opioid crisis that's in my family," she explained. "God said, 'you can't save your family member, but you can save these cats.'"

Reddit users sent digital love to the cats via the Reddit thread. Lists of people wanted to adopt from Furball Farm, while others pledged to donate money to help the mission. The general theme of the Reddit conversation saw dozens of users praising elderly or misunderstood animals, and nearly all conversations turned to praise Marvets for her hard work and brilliant idea.

But Marvets doesn't want the credit. "I don't want it to be about me," she said. "It's about Furball Farm and all the volunteers. We've got 35 volunteers. It's not me. I founded it. I'm blessed to be able to say this is my dream that's coming true. But that's the only thing you can say. Cause it ain't me."

Ginberry
Cat Ginberry relaxes at the Furball Farm Pet Sanctuary in Minnestoa. Furball Farm Cat Sanctuary

Tyler's post has now gained nearly 82,000 upvotes at the time of publishing. It's also given the sanctuary a financial influx during two major events. The Marvets' restaurant currently has no income, due to temporary Covid-19 closure. Meanwhile, Furball Farm is in the middle of a giant expansion, one that will take the cats out of the garage and into a giant palace of their own. They're still $50,000 off from their final goal.

Even without knowing these things, Reddit users stepped up to show their support. "It's my quietest son in the whole wide world. All of a sudden he calls me and says 'Mom, have you ever heard of Reddit?'" She hadn't, Marvets explained.

"When I woke up, I had $3,500 in our PayPal. I've been so worried about getting into our new building because we're in a garage. For three years I've been dreaming of putting up a new building, especially for these unwanted cats. And my dream is coming true."

You can follow Furball Farm on their website or Facebook.

Meet Furball Farm Cat Sanctuary, A Place Where Every Unwanted Cat Gets Love | Culture