Friends of the Alameda Animal Shelter has lots of wonderful cats waiting for adoption. A few of our favorites are cats known as "Secret Admirers." These felines need a little time to jump into a close relationship after being adopted. Sometimes it takes a few days or weeks, or in some cases it may take months before your Secret Admirer is committed to you.

Once they make that commitment, they'll shower you with so much affection you'll wonder what just happened to bring on all the purrs, head-butts and interest in sitting in your lap. Secret Admirers are very special cats! While they are hanging out in their own special place, they'll be watching you and admiring you from afar.

There are many things you can do to help your Secret Admirer become the lovable cat he or she wants to be. When your new cat arrives home, find a quiet place for her/him to stay for as long as he or she wants. Minimize the foot traffic in the room, but you'll want to go in frequently and talk softly to your Secret Admirer so you can build your relationship with each other. If your new pal prefers to hide, don't worry about that. She or he will come out when they are ready.

Please don't try to force it to come out of hiding. If you put its litter box in the room along with some food and water, it'll get used to coming out of its hiding place on its own. Take some treats in with you when you're visiting. Your Secret Admirer may want to come sniff your fingers and even take the treat from you. Slowly but surely, your kitty will warm up to you and begin wanting soft pats on the head and scratches under the chin.

PET OF THE WEEK: MAIBE is a sweet, sensitive, black-and-tan border terrier. She is about 5 years old and very social.

DOG ALLEY: There are 15 dogs available for adoption at the Alameda Animal Shelter. GILLIGAN, 4 months, and SKIPPER, 2 years old, are two super-cute applehead Chihuahuas.

CAT LAIR: There are 19 cats and kittens available for adoption at the Alameda Animal Shelter. BUNKER is a very handsome 3-year-old boy with an independent spirit and lots of love. SOCKS, a gray-and-white male about 1 year old, is one of our Secret Admirers.

RABBIT ROW: MARTIN is a neutered agouti, and SPECKLES is a neutered English spot. SMUDGE is a handsome pink eyed Himalayan. JOY is a pretty gray rabbit. DULCE is a neutered black New Zealander. All are very friendly and affectionate.

Upcoming Events

Tip-A-Cop! Police Chief Paul Rolleri and his officers will raise funds for FAAS at Otaez Mexican Restaurant on March 13 from 6 to 8:30 p.m. All tips received by the police officers will go to help homeless pets at the shelter. Visit the FAAS website at http://www.alamedaanimalshelter.org or call 510-337-8565 for more information.

Mim Carlson is executive director of Friends of the Alameda Animal Shelter. Visit the shelter at 1590 Fortmann Way at Grand Street, call 510-337-8565 or visit www.alamedaanimalshelter.org to view the animals.