Our Story

Happy Jack Cats, Inc., (HJC) is an Idaho Non-Profit Corporation (EIN #47-5455805) and 501(c)(3). We are a limited admission, foster home based, feline rescue and adoption group. Since we have no store-front location, most of our animals are in foster homes.  However, as a Petco Partner, we are able to showcase available cats in two local Petco stores: 3548 S Findley Ave, Boise, ID 83705 and 3006 E State St, Eagle, ID 83616.  

HJC was founded in November 2015 by individuals concerned with the welfare of "throwaway" kittens in the Boise and Meridian areas. We have no employees, but we do have a five-member Board of Directors and a strong volunteer foster program. 

One member of our board, Missy Gurnett, had been working to save the lives of kittens for about four years, but as it became known in the community that she was very good at rehabilitating and homing young kittens, she was flooded with animals; orphaned, abandoned, lost, abused and  unwanted. Because of the obvious need, she created an organization to fill the void; recruited two like-minded people to form the board; and Happy Jack Cats, Inc., an Idaho Non-profit Corporation and 501(c)(3), came into being.

HJC saves kittens from euthanasia that have treatable conditions which would prevent them from being adopted.  At times, we offer adult cats for adoption, often mothers that have raised their kittens or animals that have been returned to us. (We require by contract that previous adopters who are no longer willing or able to care for one of our animals, return that animal to HJC .)

What We Do
• We provide clean and loving environments in foster homes for homeless kittens until their adoptions.
• We house cats in cages only for special purposes: quarantine, injury care,  special needs, and display at Petco stores.
• We promote public health and safety by encouraging vaccinations—including rabies.
• We educate the community about animal welfare issues.
• We take in and find homes for kittens—including neonates/newborns—in order to reduce the need for euthanasia. 
• We strongly support and promote spay and neuter.
• We do not euthanize to free up space.
• We applaud and support the efforts of other shelters and rescues.
• We proudly partner with Petco stores and the Petco Foundation.

What We Don't Do
We  are not licensed or practicing veterinarians. All opinions are our own and obtained through our own experience. We encourage you to seek out and speak with professional veterinarians about your pet's medical concerns.

Board of Directors

As per Idaho law, a nonprofit corporation requires a minimum of three board members. We have five, plus our mascot; Jack the Cat—a non-voting number six.

Melissa Gurnett

Meet Melissa (Missy)—the founder, who had the bright idea.

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Emily Sullivan

Meet Emily: founding member, foster mom, administrator, and tech wiz.

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Susan Hamilton

Meet Susan—a founding member, with a background in graphic design.

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Deborah Phantana

Meet Deborah: world traveler, cat owner, and accomplished business woman.

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MerriDee Copland

Meet MerriDee: entrepreneur, business owner, mother, and animal advocate.

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Jack: non-voting member of the board of directors, mascot, and good boy.

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Advisory Board