The Shenton Park Cat Haven has reported a marked increase in the number of people giving away their cats because they can no longer afford them.
The haven is at capacity, with close to 60 adult cats, ahead of the 24 cats they usually house at this time of year.
The haven's operations manager Roz Robinson said the haven has received up to 20 cats in one day because of financial woes.
She said the owners were either cutting back their costs or having to give up their pets because their rent was being increased and they could not find a rental home that allowed cats.
"One woman sat in my office for half an hour crying after she gave up her two 10-year-old cats," Ms Robinson said.
"The problem is that we cannot afford to keep them. Old cats don't get rehomed, people want kittens, and we have to put them down the same day."
The haven, which is dependent on public donations, has had a marked decrease in money coming in since the global financial crisis.
Ms Robinson said the haven was also struggling.
"More cats keep coming every day," she said.
"It's important that owners should find other ways of minimising their expenses and not delude themselves into thinking that their cats will find a second home through the haven."