Pet Events: Christmas Cat Cafe, holidays with the birds

Christmas Cat Cafe

Meet adoptable cats, including the “shop cat,” at the charming Animal Advocates thrift and resale shop in the West End. The rescue groups Holiday Extravaganza is from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. next Saturday at 35 Wabash St., Pittsburgh 15220.

A Christmas Cat Cafe has been set up in the two-story townhouse especially for the extravaganza.

There will be special sales and surprises, giveaways, door prizes, raffle baskets, a Secret Santa Shop.

“Paw-liday Pet Photos will be taken from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. by Chiara Fotografia. 

Holidays With the Birds

There’s an entire holiday season of special events at the National Aviary on the North Side, where halls and exhibits are festively decorated.  

First up is Photos with Santa and his penguin helper from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday and next Saturday, included with admission. Use your own camera to get a photograph of your child visiting Santa Claus and an African penguin. Kids can stop by Santa’s Aviary Workshop and make a craft to take home.

Friday is a Holiday Shopping Day. National Aviary members get 20 percent off all items in the gift and garden shops. Nonmembers get 10 percent off.

Space is limited and reservations are required for the Dec. 10 Brunch with Santa featuring Atria’s. Cost is $32 for adult members and $17 for children 4-10 years old. Nonmember adults pay $37 and $19.50 for children. That cost includes admission to the aviary, a special bird appearance and a children’s craft kit. Call 412-258-9445 to reserve a spot.

An African penguin will paint with his or her feet at 3 p.m. Dec. 10. You pick out two colors, and the penguin walks through the paint and then over an 11-inch-by-14-inch canvas that is suitable for framing and gift giving. The cost is $40. Call 412-258-9445 to reserve a spot.

Gift wrapping

Shop till you drop, then have your gifts wrapped by volunteers at three locations. Your donations will help the dogs, cats, rabbits and other animals at Humane Animal Rescue shelters in Homewood, North Side and Verona.

This service is available through Dec. 24 at:

• The Galleria, 1500 Washington Road, Mt. Lebanon, noon-8 p.m. Fridays, 10 a.m.-8 p.m. Saturdays, and noon-5 p.m. Sundays.

• The Mall at Robinson, 100 Robinson Centre Drive, during regular mall hours.

• Gift wrapping is available from noon to 6 p.m. Saturdays through Dec. 23 at 5533 Walnut St., Shadyside.

Adoptable cats will make visits at all the wrapping sites, and there will be Grounds & Hounds Coffee and pet items from the Rescue Retail Shop.

Pet Service

The pet ministry at Westminster Presbyterian Church in Upper St. Clair recognizes that the death of a pet is a reason to grieve, so tit has an annual Pet Remembrance Service.

This year’s is 2 p.m Dec. 10, in the gym. Your living pets are welcome to come with you.

People are invited to share laughs, tears and memories of pets who have died.

“We’ll acknowledge the loss and pay tribute to these cherished members of our families,” according to the announcement.

You don’t have to be a member of this church to attend the service at 2040 Washington Road (Route 19), Pittsburgh 15241.

— compiled by Linda Wilson Fuoco.