By John Lauritsen

By John Lauritsen, WCCO-TV

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — A sanctuary that saves more than 400 animals a year may soon find itself without a home.

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Gentle Touch Animal Sanctuary, located in Brooklyn Center, is a no-kill shelter. But the business complex it is located in faces mortgage default and property owners recently informed them that the building may no longer be an option.

Every cat at Gentle Touch Animal Sanctuary has its own bed and seemingly its own story. Take BJ for instance, who prefers to sleep in the sink.

“When he was a kitten he needed to have two blood transfusions. And he was so tiny and he was really, really, really sick,” said assistant director Stephanie Mraz.

Gentle Touch has found homes for more than 5,000 animals since 2003. They get money through adoptions and donations and work with PetSmart to get cats like BJ adopted.

The sanctuary’s lease is up in July and unless they are able to raise $10,000 by then to move to a new location, their future is uncertain. Especially for the animals that have made the sanctuary their permanent home.

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In reality, that’s about 20 cats who are known as the house residents. Because of various health reasons, they can’t be adopted. So in a matter of speaking, volunteer Suzanne Thompson says this is their lifeline.

“These animals already came from an euthanasia list, so this is it. Their future is bleak … if we cannot find a spot,” said Thompson.

And that’s where the $10,000 would come in. Volunteers believe that’s how much it would take to relocate and sign a lease with a place that would allow this cat community to move in.

“Without these things falling into place, it’s doubtful that we would be able to continue,” said Thompson.

Gentle Touch will be holding a Valentine’s Day sale at their Brooklyn Center location on Saturday and Sunday. Proceeds will go towards re-location.

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The Valentine’s Day sale runs from 11:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday. There will be also a craft sale as well. Gentle Touch Animal Sanctuary is located at 4900 France Ave. North in Brooklyn Center. Click here for details.

John Lauritsen