Nikki Linn grew up loving animals. She learned it early on from her mother, Arni, a dedicated animal advocate. Nikki always assumed that she would work with animals, but life can be a winding road, and after graduating from Princeton, Nikki became co-owner of a radio station. Interesting enough business, but she never forgot about the animals. After several years, she turned the basement of the radio station into a small shelter for animals. In 1999, when the radio station was sold, Nikki used her share of the proceeds to found the Animal Rescue Need and Intervention (ARNI) Foundation, a non-profit, no-kill shelter for cats and dogs with services that include low-cost shots and flea and tick medications and a spay and neuter clinic. On average, more than 200 animals a day have received care at ARNI.
All was going well until 2007, when Nikki, her husband Rusty Niedwick and the shelter got a one-two punch. One, the recession hit, and they had to come up with alternative means of funding. Two, an outbreak of ringworm spread throughout the shelter, and they couldn’t continue using carpeted trees for the cats to claw, climb, pounce and hide. They came up with one solution to the two problems: the Kitty Kasas, a cube-shaped cat home in fashion colors that can be stacked like toy blocks.
Kitty Kasas are constructed of low-density polyethylene plastic and measure approximately 15” x 15” x 11.” They can be used indoors or out and are extremely easy to clean—just wipe down with soap and water. The Kitty Kasa Bedroom Cube features a comfy, cozy bed for a cat to get some quiet “me time.” The Gym Cube comes with a durable sisal scratching post, and the Recreation Cube has cutout sides and a “mouse” hanging by a string from its ceiling. Each cube can be assembled in a few minutes, and the cubes can then be snapped together securely and stacked into a “cat condo” design of your cat’s choosing! Want to take it up a notch? Use the Kitty Kasa Wall Mounts to raise your cat’s game. Find a secure anchor point in the wall. Use the basic wood screws and the Kitty Clips to securely affix the cubes to your wall.
The Kitty Kasas have been wildly successful. Sales have provided funding for ARNI, and Nikki and Rusty are able to help other non-profit rescue and shelter organizations. With their “Shelter Redo” program, they choose one shelter a month and renovate the kitty facilities with the safe, fun and durable cubes.
Nikki and Rusty are very proud of the beautiful, cleverly designed and well-made products, but they see them as a means to a greater good—enabling their philanthropic efforts that go toward helping animals all over the world.