Checking In-

Aurora has decided that since Monday she is going in to be spayed, she might as well be in heat! Nights are now noisy around here. My one older kitten Slater answers her call nightly. She is in the bedroom, he is in the living room. He trills and tries to seduce her to come closer but thankfully, the cages keep them apart! Mike just removes his hearing aids and goes to sleep. I don’t have that luxury.

What I do have is 12 girl kittens and 6 male kittens to be spayed and neutered soon. With the exception of London and Paris the two female calicos- all the ringworm has cleared up. It was a long battle of dips and ointments and it really did impact the bonding time with these kittens and myself. But hopefully, with the fungus under control and on the run, the kittens will soon start to trust me again.

The difference in Pumpkin is like night and day! She is full out healthy, her eyes are opened all the time, she is running and playing with the others. She does still have ulcers in her one eye which will be addressed as she gets older, but her fur is no longer oily and coarse looking. The best thing is she has finally forgiven me for all the meds I had to give her of late.

Hope is failing. She is still eating and drinking and using the litter pan, but you can tell she is starting to get the feel bads. The cold weather is pushing its way back in and she spends the majority of her time just laying on the pet heating bed.

Alaska ended up not being a good fit for the home we thought would be her forever place. They have three hyper-active jack russells that stay mainly indoor (in crates) so the energy level of these dogs is over-the-top. When I suggested that they might do better letting these jacks outside in the backyard a few hours a day- well, lets just say that the news didn’t go over well. As far as walks go? You might as well forget it although the occupants of the home could do well with a bit of exercise. Some people just shouldn’t own pets.

I brought her back home and we keep her cage door opened during the day. She will venture out and find our laps but she is yet to really relax around the other cats. She will hiss and warn them off if they do get brave enough to jump on my lap with her. She doesn’t share well with others.

We had what I thought was a new arrival in the yard, however, when I went to check out this cat, it was Malcolm! He has come back from his adopted home! I called Mikal and Mikal said he vanished a few weeks ago- They live about a half an hour driving time from us and I guess Malcolm decided he didn’t want to be a ranch cat. The other cats are still with Mikal and his family and doing good. The reason I know it’s Malcolm is because Malcolm had this odd behavior of darting in between my legs and then sitting on my foot. This cat does the exact same thing. He isn’t as stout right now as Malcolm was before, but it is a long walk for a kitty to make it back here. I guess he is here to stay. I took him to the vet, he was anemic and dehydrated but otherwise fine. He is eating like a horse!

Mike has been dismissed from the home care system and it now falls on me to once again take care of his legs. Right now his legs are doing okay, but that can change in a moment’s time. But Medicare won’t cover the cost of in-home help unless he becomes completely bedridden and that isn’t the case. It was nice while it lasted though, to be relieved of the responsibility of taking care of his legs.

We are going to have a quiet Christmas. No tree, no gifts, just no fuss. The kids are all involved in their own lives this year so no visitors. Just us and cats and that’s okay. Christmas is so much more than the expensive gifts that seem to be the focus anymore. Besides, like I told Mike last night- “All I want for Christmas is our 17 kittens to be neutered and into loving homes!” LOL

I just wanted to share this poem that I hold dear, especially during this part of the year. It doesn’t have a title and the author is Unknown but it is a beautiful poem

If you look for Me at Christmas
You won’t need a special star-
I’m no longer wandering Bethlehem
I’m right there where you are.

You may not be aware of Me amid the celebration
You’ll have to look beyond the stores and past the decorations
But if you take One Moment from your list of “Things to Do”
And listen to your heart, you’ll find I’m right there next to you.

You’re the one I want to be with,
Your the reason that I came.
You’ll find me in the stillness
as I’m whispering Your name.

 

 

 

 

Hope’s setback

Hope is rapidly losing weight- she has lost four pounds in the last week. We are wrestling with what to do next for her. She is an old kitty with possible cancer. She is highly aggressive to the other cats and if you pet her for a long period of time, she will nail you. Do we put her through the additional stressful tests to confirm the cancer diagnosis adding to our financial responsibility- or do we just let her live out the rest of her life on her terms and take her in when we know that she can no longer cope? It is not an easy decision to make. She is eating, drinking and using the litterpan but she will not come out of her cage on her own and should another cat jump up to greet her-she aggressively will attack.

Pumpkin continues to improve daily. Manchester is keeping close to home and we are working on his earmites yet again. Alaska may be going to new home next week- the woman is still trying to sway her husband. She is another one of Mike’s caregivers and she has fallen deeply in love with this Siamese beauty.

I fell the other day in the mud and injured myself to the point of being unable to do a lot right now. No breaking of bones, just a heavy sprain and bruised shoulders. I fell against the west side of the barn. I can’t even scoop litterpans at this time so my volunteers have graciously offered to help out.

When we were down to one can of canned cat food, miraculously cat food began to arrive through Amazon- so THANK YOU those of you who are helping these cats. Right now, they need a lot of help as the weather is getting pretty dicey. Sorry I haven’t posted, but it kills my shoulders to sit here.

Mike is coming along great- his one leg no longer needs to be wrapped and they are only seeing him twice a month in Portland instead of four times a month. That pretty much catches you up with our life here. I would appreciate your thoughts about Hope and what to do. IF she does have cancer, she will have a life here for as long as she is comfortable. I can’t adopt out an older cat with so many issues. But just as Blake-she is a victim of early neglect and apathy and so how far do you go to let her know that life matters? Do we keep them both in comfort, or do we¬†add to the stress and the financial burden here and risk their lives to give them one or more years with us? It’s a tough call because neither have teeth¬†so age cannot be determined,¬†and both are pretty old cats who never had a chance at a decent life in the years that really matter.

I Got Attacked by a Pumpkin this morning!

I stepped inside the kitten room and turned around to flip the switch on. I felt a kitten climb up my leg and slowly turned around to see this orange furrball quickly move up my leg to my chest. She clambered onto my shoulder, turned around and bit my neck, then she jumped down!  Before she moved off to join the others, she turned back to look at me as if to say:

“If you stuff another pill down my throat, put any more ointment in my eyes or on my fur, well buddy¬† you are history!”

Then she turned tail and went to join the others in play.

It was a totally glorious early morning moment!

 

Alaska at the vet

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Turns out this poor kitty has colitis brought on by a huge invasion of worms. She also has explosive diarrhea because of all the inflammation in her bowels. They put her on medication and we are in a wait-and-see mode to see if the meds will help her. He has her on Amferol and Metronidazole. She did really well at the vet’s but only because she was feeling punky. She is Siamese after all!

 

Alaska

She is getting worse instead of better so this afternoon we get to go to the vet! I know this is going to make me sound like a lunatic, but after she uses the litterpan there is a scorched smell in the pan? That’s the only way I can explain it. What I do know is this little girl is telling me in every way possible that she is feeling pretty punky, so I need to find out what is going on with her.

Cat Hypnosis- 101 and other thoughts

By 3:00 a.m. Alaska still hadn’t eaten a thing. With her refusal to take fluids, I was so afraid this was going to turn out to be an¬†¬†intussusception (blockage) and the only way out of that is surgical/medical to take over. She was trying to use the litter pan and I was force feeding her laxatone to get things going. No sleep for the wicked last night (me) Every time I turned the lights off she would yowl as if demons were chasing her. She was pushing her litter box all over the cage and was clearly miserable.

I decided to hook up one of those child night lamps we have here. This one is a pretty broad based one with fish swimming around the rotating belt inside. We used it years ago when our grandchildren were small. I hooked it up and set it to the side of the cage. Turned it on and shut down all the lights. IT WORKED! She went over to the side of the cage probably fascinated by the fish swimming and fell asleep. This morning, her dinner plates were empty, her litter pan full! Perhaps it wasn’t just the parasites that were making her so uncomfortable, maybe this Siamese has a fear of the dark. We were able to get a few hours sleep after all.

This morning, she looks better. That haunted look in her eyes has vanished. I put out food but she doesn’t seem interested. In time, I think she will eat and in time, she will be okay without having to have seen the vet again.

Thank you to ALL of you for your prayers and support through this year. I don’t know how else to say this- our gratitude is overwhelming. NONE of this would be possible if you didn’t believe in what we are trying to do here. If you guys shared the same small-town attitude of folks around here and just swallowed the rumors that we are hoarders- we would have never been able to help as many cats and kittens. All if them: Jedi, Stumbles, Licorice, Matilda,¬†Roscoe, Jetta¬†, Jordan (the list is endless) all cats whose futures looked so bleak now have forever loving homes. We may be the first step to their new life, but you ALL are the windows that open up to new opportunities. Thanks for taking the pressure off with prayers, donations of food, caring personal emails¬†and monies and other supplies. Even one box of trash bags sent to us, drives us down on our knees in thanksgiving for your belief that we do make a difference.

Our thanksgiving dinner this year will be sparse (our choice not to over-indulge) but our hearts will be full of thanks to all of you for EVERYTHING. Even when I felt I was walking a very short plank and going to fall into the water below- someone would elevate the situation and show me that HOPE is always possible.

God Bless ALL of You!

Mary Anne

Please pray for Alaska

She has not eaten one thing since the de-worming. I hope it is just that the nausea of the last couple of days have caught up with her and not something more serious like an obstruction. But, she was so full of worms it was insane. It isn’t that she isn’t eating- it is the fact that she back-pedals away from the food as if it is going to poison her. Most cats after being dewormed are so hungry because their bodies were being¬†robbed of essential nutrients. If she hasn’t eaten by tomorrow night- it will be another trip to the vet for us¬†One other concern I have is the litter pan is empty. She should be dumping tapes right and left but nothing- dry as the Sahara.¬† Hopefully tomorrow morning when we wake up and check on her, she would have eaten everything in sight and my concerns can be laid to rest.

The Great Pumpkin

Her eyes (both of them) have been fully visible since Friday. No squinting (as of yet) You can see a bit of puffiness on the lower third eyelid, but she looks so good compared to what she used to look like! She is still not very hungry, but this URI has really wacked her. She still will eat a bit of Dave’s canned food but not much else. Even the AD has lost its attraction.

You can see Pumpkin in this photo. Her eyes are still sensitive to the light so she closes them every time. But here is some of the clowder chillin out this morning:

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Here she is celebrating her eyesight! She was a whirling dervish all day but I managed to get one photo of her before she scampered off to the next toy!

 

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When Alaska got sick the other day, I assumed it was the antibiotics that were making her ill. But last night, I was up and down with her all night. She has got what is possibly the worst tapeworm invasion I have ever encountered on a cat! Because she is Siamese, she is very vocal about not feeling well and whatever place those parasites were coming out of last night- she damn well told me far in advance. Poor girl- she was in so much pain passing the adult tapes (something I have never seen before) I just have always seen the segmented tapes, she was moaning before morning.

 

I just dosed her with profender and gave Slater a worming pill as well. Now her appetite is HUGE and Slater also passed a passel of worms.He is now asleep snuggled down in Mike’s arms. It was a rough night here for Alaska.

The Craftiness of Kittens

Woke up about 2:00 a.m. to the sounds of one of the cats getting really ill. I scrambled up out of bed, grabbed my robe and turned on the lights. Every one in this room peacefully asleep. Then I heard it again coming from the living room.

It was Alaska, the medication they put her on for her URI had made her so nauseated. The cage was a mess and Slater (Slate) was huddled in the corner looking at me like “Mom, get me outta this mess please?” I picked him up and carried him over to Mike. Mike sleeps through anything, so I woke him up and asked him to please hold and cuddle Slater while I attended to Alaska.

My job done, kitty and cage now clean, I turned around to bring Slater back to mom and Mike had fallen asleep. Slater was no where in sight!

I blocked off access to the kitchen and looked high and low for this grayness. I found him up inside the gears of the hospital bed and when I went to reach for him, he skeedaddled and by the time I wiggled out from under the bed, he was gone.

Once again the search was on- an hour later, my living room was clean but Slater wasn’t in sight. I knew I had looked everywhere= but like Mike said, if I had looked everywhere, I would have found him. I decided to try my last move and plugged in the vacuum turned it on, then flipped it off and waited for all the cats to do their fly-by out of the room to safety. Slater was not among them. So, once again, I turned on the dreaded machine and ran it around the room. When I flipped it off, I could hear faint meowing coming from up above my computer. Slater had found his way into an old heating vent. Thankfully, when we remodeled years and years ago and moved the wooden stove- we plugged up the vent to prevent squirrels, bees, whatever to come inside. He wasn’t in very far so I was able to grab him. Now he is back in another cage just in case Mom’s sickness isn’t caused by the meds.

I think what amazes me is we had also sealed off the front of the vent with a decorative plate, but he had managed to pull that aside and find a safe hidey hole. Neither he or mom are feral cats. They are just neglected and unsocialized but when you get your hands on them (getting past all their posturing and swearing at you) they are starting to enjoy being petted.

I’m so grateful to have found this little scamp.