October, the spookiest month of the year, is full of frights and chilly weather, so we need to balance things out with some heart-warming, soul-healing photos. Don’t you think? Our animal-loving team here at Bored Panda knows exactly what’s going to do the trick. Prepare to have your hearts melt, Pandas, because it’s time for our monthly feature of the most wholesome, cutest, and most adorable rescue pet pics of the month.

There are, quite literally, millions of companion animals up for adoption around the globe. The United States alone has around 6.5 million new animals enter shelters yearly, around half of which are cats and half are dogs. Roughly 3.2 million animals get adopted each year, which is around half the total. However, the ASPCA notes that, sadly, 27 percent of cats and 20 percent of dogs that enter shelters end up being euthanized. 

Those people who choose to open up their hearts and homes and rescue a pet are worthy of a medal (chocolate or gold, depending on their preference). Scroll down to meet the heroes and the pets they adopted. Upvote the pics that made you smile and let us know which ones you’re planning on sharing with your friends. You’ll find Bored Panda’s recent lists of the cutest rescue animal pics here: September, August, July.

Meanwhile, Bored Panda wanted to learn more about how to tell if our beloved pets are feeling fine and how to help them keep them fit for years and years to come once they’ve settled in at their new forever homes, so we reached out to the PDSA vet charity, as well as certified cat behavior consultant Ingrid Johnson.

#1 Adopted An Older Kitty Who Had Been Returned To The Shelter A Few Times. I Think We’ve Bonded!

Image credits: foxcat0_0

#2 My Cat Is Absolutely Obsessed With Our New Kitten

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#3 We Were Looking To Adopt An Older Cat Who Needed Spoiling. Ended Up With Gerald, An Fiv+ 5 Year Old Who Was Found As A Stray. Spoiling Commenced

Image credits: JMyers666

This time around, we’re delving deep into the world of cats. (Doggos, buddies, we love you, too, but you’re usually not as complicated as cattos.) Nina Downing, a vet nurse working with the PDSA, the UK’s leading vet charity, was kind enough to share with Bored Panda how we can recognize if our pets are feeling ill or simply a tad off. In this case, specifically how cats express this through their behavior and body language. Cats hide their weaknesses fairly well, so this is something that is important to keep in mind whether you’re rescuing your first pet or if you’ve been living together with adopted animals all your life.

“Cats are good at hiding when they feel weak, unwell, or have aches and pains, so the illness can be quite well established before we see more obvious signs,” PDSA Vet Nurse Nina warned.

#4 This Is Beau, I Adopted Him After He Came Through The Shelter I Work At. I Love His Ears

Image credits: BurningStandards

#5 Adopt Seniors! We Got This 9 Year Old Gent On Saturday And He’s Wonderful

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#6 I’ve Always Been Called A Cat-Person With Three In The Family Right Now, But I Recently Decided To Adopt A Puppy And I Think He’s Pretty Happy About It. Everyone Meet Disco!

Image credits: TommyRockbottom

As such, owners need to be able to pick up on subtle hints and sneaky clues. And that means, well, it means keeping your eyes and ears open all the time. Your pets aren’t pieces of furniture that blend into the background: they’re our bestest friends who we have to take care of, who we have to constantly check in with.

“Picking up on subtle changes in your cat’s behavior can give you early warning signs that something is troubling your cat. As their owner, you will know your cat’s personality—some are confident, loving, and sociable while others may be nervous.”

#7 Welcome Home Ollie! I’ve Waited For You For A Very Long Time Kid. We Have The Same Adoption Day, Just 32 Years Apart

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#8 Looking To Adopt A Rescue Was Told Black Dogs Are Overlooked Because People See Them As « Scary »…look At This Terrifying One!

Image credits: AntiSnoringDevice

#9 Hello!?!? A Friend Rescued Two Kittens From The Road A Few Days Ago

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According to vet nurse Nina, owners have to use their knowledge about a cat’s baseline behavior to then figure out if anything’s changed. This is actually why it’s incredibly important to learn as much as you can about a pet before adopting it from a shelter. The more you know, the more info you have access to, the quicker you can figure out if anything’s going wrong.

“If you see a change [in personality], it is important to look at why this might have happened. For example, if your cat suddenly seems less keen to go outside and seems to be staying at home more, this could be an indicator that he or she isn’t feeling 100%,” Nina said.

#10 Happy To Be Adopted

Image credits: Sirdares

#11 Meet Kiba, A Feral Kitten I Adopted

Image credits: grizzlyperthy

#12 We’ve Adopted Him 3 Days Ago. The Derp Is Strong In This One

Image credits: KwallieC

“When any animal is feeling under the weather, they will feel vulnerable as they’re less able to defend themselves or get themselves out of trouble. Hesitation in jumping up or a change in their favorite sleeping place can also be an indicator that something is amiss. They may have had a fall, or lost their balance and their confidence has been knocked, but equally, they may be feeling pain or discomfort.”

It’s not just sudden shifts in personality that we have to be aware of. Taking a sneak peek at our pets’ eating habits can yield a wealth of information about how they’re feeling. The biggest weapons in any good owner’s arsenal are keen observation (hello, Sherlock) and comparing new insights to past knowledge.

#13 She’s *officially* Mine Now. My Twelve Year Old Newly Adopted Lady

Image credits: kphld1

#14 Just Adopted This 11 Y/O Good Boi

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#15 Adopted This Senior Girl Yesterday. My Beautiful Lady

Image credits: LioraB

“If your cat starts to spill food when they’re usually tidy eaters, this may be because they’re experiencing discomfort when eating. If they’re choosing wet food over crunchy biscuits, this may indicate jaw, tooth, or gum pain,” PDSA vet nurse Nina gave Bored Panda a few examples of what this could mean.

Just like with eating, sleeping habits can also reveal more than you’d think. “Sleeping positions or resting positions can be telling too,” the animal health expert said.

#16 The Tiny Kitten I Saved. He’s A Thief, He Stole My Heart And I’m Adopting Him

Image credits: Koibetta

#17 My Partner And I Adopted Emma Today! She Is A 1yr Old Oriental

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#18 I Wasn’t Planning On Adopting A Kitten, But This One Stole My Hearth. Meet Frida. Her Favorite Toy Is A Shallot And She Farts When She Sleeps. It Smells A Bit Of Cheese

Image credits: Biche-tordue

“If your cat who usually tucks up like a little teapot starts sleeping in an awkward position, ask yourself why. Could they be sore in their usual position and this is relieving the pain?” Nina said that even sleeping positions can be telling.

“You know your cat and very often owners are able to pick up on health problems in their pets well before physical symptoms present themselves just by noticing subtle changes in their cat’s normal behavior.”

#19 Adopted This Sweet Pea Yesterday

Image credits: something_erroneous

#20 My Rescue Bunny I Adopted This Friday. She’s A Sweetheart

Image credits: ShootingMoon11

#21 My Boyfriend And I Recently Adopted This Big Boy. He’s 2!

Image credits: Ladadidadadida

Meanwhile, certified cat behavior consultant Ingrid Johnson, the founder of Fundamentally Feline, gave Bored Panda some insights into how cats age and whether there’s anything that we can do to help them stay fit as kittens as time goes on.

According to Ingrid, we shouldn’t have any illusions that our beloved pets will always stay young. The reality is that we all get older, pet and human alike. “Everyone ages and cats are no exception,” she said that we have to face facts. However, the quality of our pets’ lives and whether they age gracefully is still up for grabs.

#22 Just Adopted This Little Carbon Copy Of Our Gamora

Image credits: Rough_Design_4722

#23 I Found This Gorgeous Female Cat Today At Work. I Put Out Lost Animal Adverts But I’m Kind Of Hoping No One Claims Her… Because I Want To Adopt Her!

Image credits: Semyonov

#24 Here’s My Rescue Dog Named Princess, It May Be Hard To Tell, But Her Ears Are Cut Off

Image credits: ChocolateMilkmanTrue

#25 I’m A Trapper For A Cat Rescue And Sometimes You Just Can’t Say No. World, Meet Ranger

Image credits: FuckRedditMods23

#26 Mommy Just Got A New Pup. She Asked Me To Post A Picture On “Feddit” And Ask For Name Suggestions

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#27 I Adopted A One Eyed Dog, Everyone Said He Must Be A Pirate For Halloween

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The main focus should be on keeping our cats’ “brain stimulated” and helping them be as active as they can, both physically and mentally. This way, “they can stay well-muscled and conditioned to maintain their stealth well into their senior years,” Ingrid said. “Twenty-year-old cats can still really move if they need to!” the cat behavior consultant added. This means that with the right care and attention, any pet that you rescue can keep your heart and your home full of light for many years to come. But it takes a lot of effort and energy on the owners’ part. I think they’d say it’s all very worth it.

#28 Meet Tartuffe! Adopted This “Approx” One Year Old Buddy From A Shelter, He Has Been Abandoned “Apparently Not Mistreated”, No Microchip, Past Unknown. He Is Such A Good Boy. They Labelled Him As Pitbull Terrier By The Shelter Vet “Not Mixed”. What’s Your Opinion? Does He Look Like A Pure Pit?

Image credits: herge84

#29 I Was Adopted Today. She Hid Under The Stove All Day Till I Gave Her Some Wet Cat Food. It Was Love At First Bite

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#30 I Just Adopted This Beautiful Girl – World Meet Sooki

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#31 Adopted Fizz Today

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#32 This Little Guy Welcomed Himself Into My House The Other Day, I Took Him Back Over To The Neighbors. Well, This Morning He Came Back And I Asked If I Could Buy Him And They Just Gave Him To Me Lol. If Anyone Has An Idea Of The Breed Please Let Me Know

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#33 Help Me Name This Handsome Boi (Currently In The Process Of Adopting Him); So Far I Was Thinking Gandalf [because White And Gray]

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#34 Brought This Little Girl Home The Other Day. Anyone Have Any Name Ideas?

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#35 I Found This Cat In A Car Engine All By Herself. Any Name Ideas?

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#36 My Newly Adopted Goober Luna And Her Mini Luna

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#37 Somehow Adopted A Stray Kitten

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#38 I Adopted A Female Cat With Amputated Tail And Half Ear. She Was Found In A Car’s Engine While She Was Probably Looking For Warm Shelter

#39 Hi Everyone, Im Adopting This Sweet Deaf Girly Tomorrow. I’ve Never Had A Deaf Cat, Any Advice?

Image credits: ZealousidealGas3774

#40 My Boyfriend And I Adopted Our First Pet Together, Today! This Is Goose!

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#41 Beautiful Stray Cat That Adopted Owners At An Auto Parts Shop Is Employee Of The Month

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#42 Just Adopted This Proud Little Girl But Can’t Think Of A Name!

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#43 Two Of Our Cats Died Of Cancer Recently. And We Just Adopted This Cute Boy As A Friend For Our Lonely Cat. What Should We Name Him?

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#44 My New Kitten That I Adopted Today. He Fell Asleep Kneading And Purring. My Heart Is Going To Explode. I Love Him So Much

Image credits: Sunni-Bunni

#45 This Is Frito. Adopted A Week Ago. Still Hiding All Day. Advice Welcome

Image credits: papa_robot

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