CARCA Wants to Grow!

It’s great to hear from other people who share our vision and passion, and to hear about what they do help cats act on their deep compassion for humanity and love for cold, wet snow. It’s astonishing that cats don’t just do this on their own, but we’re happy to help them achieve what is obviously nature’s intended purpose for their species.

Very soon we will be providing interested visitors with more information about how to train their cats in avalanche rescue procedures, about CARCA’s validation requirements, and how start a local CARCA chapter. We welcome the input of those already training and using their cats in rescue operations, and we encourage any and all to share their experiences, photos, and videos.

For more information, or to submit your story, photos, and videos, contact us at

We look forward to your submissions!

5 responses to “CARCA Wants to Grow!”

  1. Feline Phobic says:

    Dear Founders of CARCA,

    I have had the opportunity to view the wonderfully pieced CARCA documentary. Whoever created that film must be truly committed to his or her passion for film making by staying locked in a dark cave in front of multiple monitors for days on end eating nothing but, cheesecake and mushrooms. I digress.

    I am an avid outdoor enthusiast and although I was inspired by the work done by CARCA, I have one question. How can those who suffer from feline phobia overcome their fears and embrace this new attempt at saving lives in the backcountry? (I don’t want to be a dog handler, let’s be honest, we all know what people think of dog handlers…). I understand that this question does not pertain to the work of CARCA but this Steve fellow seems to be quite acquainted with his feline friends, in fact one might call him a ‘cat whisperer’.

    Any suggestion on how one might overcome this phobia will be greatly appreciated.

    Kind Regards,

    Feline Phobic

  2. Commited to CARCA in Canmore says:

    Greetings from the Bow Valley!

    I’m writing on behalf of my 9 month-old, six-toed, kitty named Smudge (she’d write herself, however, she’s busy digging a snow profile in the backyard at this very moment).

    Ever since Smudge was wee, she’s had dreams of doing something great; Something to give back to our community. As she was a rescue kitty herself, she naturally followed the calling to becoming an avalanche rescue cat so she could return the favour. She draws her inspiration from the parallel between her being dug out from a wild life of eating rotten food scraps and dealing with dirty matted fur, and her ability to dig others out from the cold, constrictive, nightmare of avalanche burial.

    Although her training has been informal so far, she shows extraordinary promise as a potential CARCA trainee. Each morning she practices digging me out from under the covers, and pouncing on my head when she finds me. She never misses. Also, her polydactylism makes her extra-efficient during snow travel and allows her to dig with the speed of 1.2 cats! She is a true leader on the sharp end of the rope.

    Please consider Smudge in your selection for the CARCA team. We are also interested in learning how to start a local Bow Valley Chapter.

    Thanks very much,

    Smudgey Von Poofy Pants (and Liza)

  3. Can I enroll my daughter’s cat for rapid deployment to avalanche sites? Spaghetti is a long-haired cat that is above catching the squirrels colonizing our woodshed, but would blossom given a real challenge (or else). Her range would be excellent because her dreadlocked fur will make a perfect seal in the launcher barrel. Spaghetti is awaiting your reply. She’d be alright joining another chapter as long as she’s out of my house. Please let me know.

  4. Meghann Wills says:

    Hello from Northern California!

    I am so thrilled to see that an organization like CARCA exists. I think many times cats get a bad rap – from being lazy to headstrong. Thank you for showing those that only believe dogs can contribute that their feline friends can do their part too.

    I myself am an outdoor enthusiest and pet lover, and my fourth furry baby found me yesterday. I have to say, however, that all of my kitty rescues are black. I love this about my “kids”, although some still see black cats as bad luck or underdogs. Now I understand why – they are easier to spot in the snow! 🙂

    I would love to learn more about your training techniques and hopefully branch out with your avalanche efforts in the Rocky mountains so near and dear to my heart . . . and via car ride. Thanks so much for doing what you all do everyday.

    The proud owner of Reverend, Kairi, Pyewacket, and Isis.

  5. Fran says:

    Thank you for your efforts in utilizing our smarter feline friends in this worthy cause. I have always thought that particularly in the dark and low light, cats could ride on the backs of the search dogs and assist in guiding them through the terrain. And, of course, they wouldn’t have to get their delicate paws damp. It would also save time due to how they tend to shake each paw individually with each step in the snow. I’m currently working on a seat that would fit on fido’s back and hold our feline heroes. Gortex completely covers it and it has a battery warmed fleece blanket inside. My cat, Colonel Flagg, is the current model for this product. If he decides to lay in it for more than 2 minutes, I will let you know.
    Stay safe,
    Fran and The Colonel

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