Latte

The kitty has been christened Latte and she is now on Petfinders and Facebook looking for a permanent home. She is an older kitty (even missing a few teeth) but she is pure love to people but a bit unsure about cats and dogs.

On the homefront, it is still raining here. So much for getting our garden in this weekend! Most of the barn cats have settled into life indoors, but Riley, Squirrel and McKinley have been given day passes. Except for McKinley who I believe has a second place in the blackberry bushes where he stays, the other two will come to the window at night and be let in. We made some modifications to the window where they go in and out. I built a large covered ledge outside the window, where the cats can stay (or eat) until I notice them and let them in. I did spy a coon on the ledge last night- he was stealing tuna and a hard-boiled egg.

I recently tested a new e-collar from trimlineinc.com I didn’t have any injured cats (thank the Lord) but I do have one girl who was forced to spend two years of her life inside a dinky little bird cage outside. Because of the constant exposure to the weather and environment, Fiona has horrible ear mites. She has had four applications of the “once only” drops for ear mites with little results. So it is a constant battle to get rid of the mites but the collar worked splendidly! If anyone would like to learn more, please visit their website at Trimline

Distress Call

The call came late in the evening yesterday. A friend who owns a business in town had a cat come to stay. The cat had ducked underneath the stand and was living there. Food and water has been offered. My friend thought the kitty was a male- turns out he is a she and she is pregnant. “Can I help?”

I knew I couldn’t say no, but I also knew I couldn’t bring another cat (especially a Queen here) So I called the gal who is crazy to rescue and asked her if she might want to give this one a go. Turns out she did, and God smiled on me tonight, because after work, I swung over to the stand, set my trap and in 20 minutes- I had a pregnant mackeral tabby inside.

I took her over to Deanna’s and helped Deanna set up the room. Night lights were installed and the regular lights were turned off. We put several different cave-like sanctuaries into the room filled with straw so she can find a suitable place to feel safe.
All breakable objects were removed and when I mentioned that some cats depending on how strong their feral tendencies are can actually walk up the walls and run laps around your head- all the paintings were taken down without a question. I have to admit, I like this lady’s devotion to detail!

Then came time to let kitty out of the trap. I asked deanna to sit on the floor and be very quiet. We turned out all the bright lights and I opened the trap. She was crouched clear at the end, yowling quietly. I knew, that I needed to see her (normally I just open up the trap and leave the room) but if she had dropped her kittens, I would need to beat feet and get back to the stand and find her family. So it was imperative I get my hands on her, check her nipples and see if she is actually pregnant or just fat.

Using a long piece of straw, I gently poked her near her tail- she started, but she didn’t hiss or growl and I snapped my fingers. She came out of the trap cautiously and slid behind the toilet.

I managed to actually get my hands on her, scruff her and lift her up to the toilet seat and check her out. Yes, she is pregnant, she has not had any kittens yet. She is a mackeral tabby and her eye looks like she has been in a fight. But she has been handled by someone once upon a time because she didn’t react negatively to me touching her. I told Deanna that if she was at my home, the first thing I would do is get her to the vet, get her tested and get her spayed. But it is a personal choice and if deanna wants her to have the litter- I don’t think I could talk her out of it.Although, I did try. I did tell her though if she tests positive, she needs to just put her down immediately. That is the kindest thing she can do for the queen and the kittens inside of her.

I talked with her a few hours told her everything I would do with the cat until Monday and so there you go. I have passed the torch. I actually rescued a cat and let her go immediately to someone that I hope will be able to handle all that might be coming her way.

I Thank YOu God for smiling on me today and putting coffee kitty into the trap within 20 minutes. What a blessing!

Busy Day

Today was a major clean-up the litterpans day. Most of them were tossed out having provided months of service and being pretty beat up in the process. Also flea-treated everyone but ran out of Advantage. Sure do know that I have more than my share of cats as generally a 6 pack of Big Dog Advantage lasts me at least two months. I was unable to flea-treat Chappy, Mercedes and Cole. I will treat them tomorrow when I buy more Advantage from my vet.

When they smell the chemicals they do skedaddle quite quickly but opening up some smelly tuna cat food helped to mask my true intent. Although I am not that comfortable applying what is essentially poison on their skin, the damage that fleas can ultimately cause, far negates the risk of the topical treatment. In all the years using Advantage and Frontline, I have had only one cat respond badly to the treatment.

Thanks for the comments about the gal who wants to help me. I have left it up to this. I have told her that if she wants me to help her with any rescue that falls into her lap, I will be more than willing to do so. But, I can’t and won’t stop in my day to wait for her to find time to come over and scoop out the litterpans. I do this routinely, daily more than once- I have to or I would have a litter pan revolt on my hands. I have invited her over just to hang with the cats, ask questions, help with feeding that type of thing. It’s the best I can do under the circumstances and I understand that she only wants to work with bottle babies and not do anything older. That’s fine- because those kittens are at great risk if left unattended and outside. I guess I was hoping after her big pep talk with me that she actually wanted to step in and rescue regardless. It’s a big step and I understand she has made her choice.

It stormed hard here today, but I managed to hang up several of the bird feeders outside our big bay window. The cats were on alert and Phoebe, being tired of being teased about the prey outside that she couldn’t get to- picked up a favorite toy of my cats here- the SmartyKat Chickadee Chirp. She carried this toy around with her for hours, growling whenever another cat came near to relieve her of her treasure. It was funny how she made the transistion from just viewing the outside birds from the window perch to capturing this stuffie and carrying it chirping around the house.

Cyrus is outside and at night he will follow me into the hay barn so I can lock him up safely. He has a big bed of hay in there that he lays on, he has food water and litter pans. I have tried repeatedly to blend him with my group but his cat aggression is to strong. I am searching high and low for someone with no cats who would love to have a kitten that loves people and other dogs but who would eat another cat for lunch! So far, no luck- but I am hopeful that I will find one soon. I put a cat carrier on the wellhouse and made a waterproof roof out of an old dog kennel pad. He spends the majority of the day inside the carrier- I can see him from the kitchen window. The pad is large enough and waterproof that he has a nice patio he can step out of- but it is right near our largest trees and this is coon-central at night. That is why he has to spend the night in the haybarn. He is such a lovely kitty, it breaks my heart that I can’t figure out a way to stop his cat aggression. A friend of mine told me to put him on Prozac. I have some from my vet, and I could put him on it, but I hate what it does to cats over time. Charlie was on it for quite awhile till I just quit and decided to put up with the occassional spraying Charlie does when feels upset. I put Cyrus on Petfinders tonight- here’s hoping his new family is out there waiting for him.

“I Want Your Brain…”

That is what someone said to me a few days ago after she took a just days old kitten and began to bottle feed him. When problems occurred, it became evident that although she wanted to rescue, she couldn’t handle the loss of a kitten, and who can blame her? It is so hard to have a living, breathing creature in the palm of your hand in one minute, and the next have the life just whisp away.

She wants to help me, seems eager to learn. Wants to come over and scoop my litter pans and help out. But when a call came in about an injured cat with a hole in the neck, and I asked her if she would be willing to rescue- the end result was she wasn’t willing to take on such a task because she might get bit.

I have kept my distance from her since. Because it is with this mind-set, that these type of well-meaning people that they are the ones who get bit because they expect it. She may seem to be eager to learn what I know and do what I do in theory, but in application she isn’t going to go the distance.

I’ve done this for so long, been alone doing it for so many years that perhaps it is better this way. I use the time scooping the litter pans to evaluate the health of my clowder and to have that taken away from me doesn’t feel right. I have told her that I didn’t learn what I know from books, or schooling. I learned from the cats, by living among them, observing them and helping out as best I can when they get in trouble.

My phone rings daily of cats and kittens in trouble, but i am staying true to my word of leaving rescue. The hope of passing the torch to this other woman is fading. She may want to rescue, but only on her terms and that is not what is needed- not in a community where all stray cats are considered vermin and should be erradicated.

What is it they say…

You can’t escape your destiny? This morning, on my front porch, someone left a days old kitten in a shoebox! Thankfully, the left him in the sunshine early in the morning. He was a bit cold to the touch, but he has been fed and pooped and is asleep in the bedroom in my warming cage…….sigh- Guess I better put my rescue hat back on now.

It is an orange kitten, therefore more than likely a boy (too early to tell yet) his umbilical cord is still attached and wet not dry. :( I swear, people so suck.

Solo has been passed off to another rescuer who is new to this endeavor. I told her I would help her all I can with her questions and I even passed to her my snugglekittie who has served me faithfully over 13 years now.

Last Update from the Day in a Life

The kittens started fading last night and then rebounded. One then faded and came back. A decision was reached to bring them away from all the pain and stress and let them go.

I would have liked to have ended my career as kitty rescuer with a high-note but that is not to be. Rescue is just that rescue. We do the best we can with the tools and hand and hope that all we do pays off in the end. For these kittens, something was wrong far beyond what the vets could see.

Another day…..

I have contacted the manufacturer and they assure me that their expired formula doesn’t go toxic, it just loses its potency. There is a formula on the market today that is having problems with toxicity according to what I have been able to find out-but it is NOT the same formula I am using. So perhaps my vet misunderstood what brand I was using.

Regardless, I have made my own Kitten Glop and am combining it with canned kitten food and some canned pumpkin to get whatever is inside these babies out. Without being graphic, when I am stimlating these little ones, I smell it coming before it arrives- it it that rank. If their stool were bright yellow, I would suspect coccidia, but it isn’t yellow. I gave them a cocktail of sorts yesterday of worming medicine and Albon. There were no crashes last night or this morning- so I will just keep on going and pray these babies survive. The little calico has some blood showing now, but it is not bright blood and there isn’t a lot of it. It could just be from the water as it can chaffe, so I have switched over to warmed mineral oil.

With the bloat belly, I wonder if this might be FIP- or the bloat could be from early malnutrition.

I belong to a group of wonderful people who write about cats and I posted to the list last night. I heard from vets and specialists from all over the globe and this gave me more ideas about what might be happening here.

Timeline…

This is me trying to get the sequences right and creating a timeline of this affliction for the vets.

Mon- 1:00 p.m. Madi crashes. She is PTS at 3:00 too far gone to save.

Tues: 2:00 a.m. Mckay crashes- rushed to the vet for tubing, supportive fluids and check up. Taken home still comatose.

1:00 p.m. McKay revives fully.

Weds 1:00 a.m. Tansy crashes. Tubed, given supportive fluids, placed in warming cage. Revived fully by 6:00 a.m. eating and drinking.

Thurs- 2:00 a.m. Quigley crashes. Core temp. 93.2- placed in warming cage,given supportive fluids. He won’t revive fully until 7:00 a.m.

9:30 a.m. all systems normals. Kittens eating, peeing, pooping and playing.

1:30-all is calm on the kitty front

10:00 p.m. Monitoring their temperature closely- calico’s temp dropped after this hour’s feeding. I have put her by herself in the warming cage because if she goes flat her brothers may hurt her. I don’t know if I will stop the attack I see coming, but I have to try. Her temp is 99.2

Another crash

It is now 4:00 am and time for another feeding- I go into the room where I left 3 healthy three week old kittens four hours ago, and found yet another one flat, unable to move. Rapid heartbeat, pulse pounding in the throat. Core temperature 93.2. I have tubed Quigley, fed him, rubbed him, put him in my warming cage. He looks near death. I gave him supportive fluids and am just sitting here scratching my head. What is this thing? Where the kittens rebound, crash, rebound crash? How can I stop it? Are they in pain? Is this maybe not the formula-tossed away late this morning. Could it be something else, and if so what?

I would call my vet, but he has given me all his best options. I’ve given the reins to God and asked Him to take over. I am out of ideas. I just hope that Quigley has traveled past the point of pain and is in a place where nothing registers. I fear, I may lose him tonight.