Yesterday, a good friend called me and said she had a situation she needed help with. At first I thought she was going to tell me about a cat in need of rescue, but as it turned out the rescue involved a dog.

This poor dog had lost her owner unexpectedly when the woman died on Mother’s Day and for whatever reason, the dog was stuck inside the home all by herself for 8 weeks! Neighbors who were supposed to be feeding and caring for her, fell short of their responsibility and now, no one in the family wanted the dog. Midge asked me if we could take her. Without hesitation, I said yes and later that day Trista arrived.

This poor dog is an pile of issues. She is so traumatized at the loss of her owner (poodles are extremely bonded to usually one person) She shakes, she pants, she drools. She acts completely terrified of me but thankfully she is bonding with Mike. She is 8 years old, she has cherry eye- she won’t eat and although she will lay next to me, if I move she flinches and she trembles the entire time. I can’t even begin to imagine what she has been through- 8 weeks all by herself inside the house- from what I have heard she wrecked the joint and pooped everywhere.

She completely ignores the cats but that may change once she adjusts to her new life. She is really a cute girl and I hope she will calm down soon and start eating. I went out and bought her a thunder shirt and a calming collar to help her get through all the changes. She has no leash manners and when we do go for a walk (she is quite overweight) the owner used to feed her from the table all the time) she keeps trying to jump into my arms like “Lady carry me please?” They have not been long walks, so I just tell her no and we just keep going. I don’t think she led a normal dog life- acts like she has never been anywhere out of the trailer where she was found. I feel really sorry for her- her world has been completely rocked.

Report from Gretel’s New Home

This was on my answering machine this afternoon:

“Mary Anne this is Beth. I wanted to tell you that first of all, we have changed Gretel’s name to GiGi. Second, she slept between us all night and the only time she woke up was when she would headbump me so hard, I couldn’t sleep! Then I had to wake up and pet her!! We would go back to sleep until she wanted more pets. She is walking around our bedroom this morning as if she owns it. She is incredible and thank you for blessing us with her!

I was so thrilled. I  had hoped that deep down, past the trauma and the pain this cat was exhibiting, there was a beautiful soul looking for the right home. She has not growled, she has not nipped, she has not chased anyone’s ankles. She is loved, she is home and that is as it should be.

Grumpy Gretel has a new home!

We just got back from a beautiful mountain home the other side of Junction City. Gretel was making herself at home when I left. True to her personality, as I was telling Beth about how grumpy Gretel really can be, as if on cue (Gret was on my lap) Gretel reached over and bit my hand and then growled at me. She didn’t draw blood, she was just warning me and letting her new owner know that sometimes, she does mean business.

The house is incredibly beautiful on 44 acres and her only companions will be two lovely white German Shepherds that run the property. I can tell she will be well cared for and loved. Beth was feeding her out of crystal bowls when I left!

I had eight inquiries about her and spent a great deal of time on the phone with each caller and one by one, dismissed them all until Beth called. Beth is an answered prayer. Someone who has the patience of Job and the understanding of a Saint. She is indeed the answer to the prayers that were flying in the last few days that God would lead me to the right companion for Grumpy Gretel!

Tomorrow morning

Pidgeon, Drew and Digit go in for their neuters. There are still 5 more in need of fixing but they are all underweight. Three arrived yesterday, they are 7 weeks old- two mack tabbies and a black female. Their mom was killed by a neighbor’s dog and the people who found the kittens were clueless as to how to help them. They gave them cow’s milk to drink so they have horrible bloat at the moment. We have switched them to goat’s milk and I am giving them a combination of baby food and pumpkin to try to get things going again. They love to hiss, but I wouldn’t call them feral- just scared and wondering why their world has suddenly changed so drastically.

Do we have room for them? Nope- but will find room. Right now, because they are so little, I have put them in with the other kittens and after a few hours of hiding, they have come out in the open and being more visible. We also wanted them in with the others because activity will also get those clogged systems working. The bloat is concerning because of the hardness of the tummies. I have named them Hobbit, Tangie and Pebbles.

Grumpy is up for adoption but one of the photos I put online also show her kittens. Sadly the people calling are asking to adopt her babies and not her and she is only 7 months old! I said in the ad that the kittens were not available, but apparently some people can’t read. Hoping to find the perfect home for her as she is a real beauty but she will be a challenge at first until she realizes the person who has adopted her can be trusted.

Hard Lesson learned

This week was pretty traumatic regarding some of the kittens that I had placed into a foster home. I did manage to get them out of harm’s way and I have had to rethink my process of finding help when we are overwhelmed by the numbers. I guess it’s like Mike says, no one takes as good of care of these high-risk babies like I do. I’m still wrestling with certain decisions I made that left two kittens who are almost 3 months old, underweight and pretty sickly. Again,it was a hard lesson learned- harder on the kittens overall though. I will recover, but I will not trust as easily as before.

But now, I would like you to meet Skya she is being up close and personal!

Here is Pickett her brother:

Pigeon a sweet marbled tabby boy

And then Digit and his brother Pirate


Again, like everything else in rescue, there is a learning curve and lessons to be remembered for the next time. I was beating myself up for being so trusting but have stopped because it served no purpose. Next time we get overwhelmed by numbers- the lessons learned in the last three weeks will be on my heart before I make any decisions regarding the care of these sweet babies.

Quick Update

After a few days here, I did manage to get the rest of my kittens out of foster care and they are now here with us. There are two of the meth babies Drew (way underweight for his age) and Digit his brother. Also in the mix are two gray babies: Pickett and Skya and one marble tabby – Pogey. Skya is a beautiful dilute gray with calico highlights- her bronter Pickett is a mack tabby dilute and Pogey is a marbled mack tabby with beautiful eyes and underdeveloped testicles. He likely won’t be neutered for quite awhile unless the second testicle drops soon.

They will be here until their neuter and then hopefully off to forever loving homes.

Grumpy Gretel is still grumpy but her high fevers are finally behind her. All that is left is for her to dry up on her milk and gain some weight. Although she is eating like a little piglet she has stayed steady at 7 pounds which is worrisome. She has been dewormed twice now- another concern is the amount of urine this girl is pumping out on a daily basis and it has been discovered she has a heart murmur that is pretty substantial.  I really want to bring her into the house, but I know that won’t work because once she hears the kittens crying in the bedroom she isn’t going to dry up and it will compound her problems. I feel mean, but she is staying by herself inside the deck enclosure.

Molly doesn’t like the kittens and she won’t sleep with me any longer which makes me sad. I hope when they move on to new homes- there will be a reclaiming of my bed on Molly’s part. Time will tell I guess.

Fresh Steps Paw Points

First off, thanks to all of you who have been donating your points to CATS Inc., I have been informed that Fresh Steps is doing a split giveaway. If you have 25 points and you want to mention CATS Inc., in the sweepstakes, we are eligible for the sweepstakes currently running. $10,000 (which would allow us to cat proof our acres with a cat proof fence!) Anyway, they say that $5,000 is for the person who entered and $5,000.00 is for the shelter of their choice.

The link they gave me to post on social media et al doesn’t seem to be working at the moment, so I just thought I would mention it here. I did manage to enter one time- but again it is a drawing so who knows who will win. Fresh Step calls it the 10K split contest. 25 points gets you an entry into it- if you so desire to do this for us.

Today we find out when Mike’s surgery is to be scheduled (if they can even do it for him) It is all dependent on what the ultra sound of his leg looks like. I will know by tonight and tomorrow the rest of the kittens in the bedroom will travel to their new place MeowVillage where I understand there are several foster families waiting in the wings to take these darlings and care for them. All have made it to the almost 2 month mark and Draco has stopped having seizures. We did find out that the seizures were from a passel of round worms and not the meth exposure! That’s how wormy this baby was-

Polliwog, the kitty with the dislocated toe is doing great now. Those young growth plates heal extremely well on their own and she is running and playing along with all the other kittens as if she never fell in the first place.

Grumpy Gretel still has hardened milk sacs. I have her on warm compresses and an antibiotic so she won’t get mastitis, but she is uncomfortable to say the least. Her belly is so bruised that massaging her teats is out of the question- she will bite me every time. I’ve decided to do the warm damp compresses while she is eating and I put the microwave into her cat enclosure so heat is closer. I wrap the towel around her belly and hold it there while she eats. I know if feels good on her- but again, I need to massage the teats and dispel the milk and she won’t allow that without getting snarky with me.

The Lost One

Here is Templeton, the brown kitten that Grumpy Greta tried to ditch in the weeds. He found his way onto a neighbors porch near where the family was originally found.

Mike goes in for an ablation this week so I put out an SOS to local rescues to see if any of them could help me lighten the kitten load here. Thank God that one shelter just took 5 kittens and Meowvillage is going to take the other nine. I could not find anyone willing to watch 14 kittens for two days as we go through this next medical journey. Imagine that? LOL

I did tell Meowvillage that once this surgery is behind us and Mike has recovered, I would be happy to help them with their feral cat load. I just can’t do it right now. I told them “I’m in your back pocket, just don’t pull me out until July. ” God Bless these people, both are full up with kittens but recognize that we really need the help. The shelter has 195 kittens in foster care right now and Meowvillage has 125!

For the Briefest Moment

Yesterday, I stopped by another rescuer’s home and we were just chatting a bit before getting on with our day. In a covered cage, I hear all this squawling and screaming and found out that three tiny kittens had been delivered to her a few days prior. Much like Pinkerton and Silverton, these kittens also had been attacked by field rats. One had already passed. The screaming grew louder and it is not in my DNA to ignore the screams of the babies, so I asked if I could hold one and try to nurse them. Apparently, they were hard to nurse, fighting the bottle and once you tried to feed them- poop just poured out the poor bums.

I was holding this little boy not even two weeks old and sure enough, when he tried to eat- it just instantly came out the other end. The gal told me that the kittens were screaming non-stop and she was so tired, she needed some sleep. That’s when I suggested we try letting Grumpy Gretel nurse them. If they had an intolerance to the formula or any dairy products, then Gretel seemed to be the answer. After all, she had accepted ALL the kittens currently under our care here at the house (14 in total). The gal gratefully accepted my offer and off I went.

I noticed, when I put them in the truck, that although they were both on top of a heating disc in a heavily blanketed carrier, both kittens were cold. I rushed them home, temped them 89 degrees! I called my vet and switched my Cooper dog appointment of the day to a 2 critically ill kitten appointment. Then I took them over to Gretel’s cage.

I had them cuddled in my hands and I told her: “Gretel, I know you have been through a lot, but I really need your help. These babies, their mom was poisoned and they are so hungry but nothing fed to them, stays with them. Please, help me one more time and take these babies under your care.” Then taking a deep breath and praying- I slid them into her.

She instantly went for the kill! She was not kidding. She was not going to have anything to do with these two precious babies. I got her away from them, checked for damage, there was none. How she showed me these babies were in greater danger than originally thought is she dove for their throats. She was going to carry them off and finish the job (that’s how smart this snowshoe is!) I just kept the babies warm, snuggled and tried to feed them- switching from KMR to goat’s milk- but it didn’t matter. They screamed and pooed the entire time. I couldn’t wait till that vet appointment.

Off to the vet we went where it was decided that because of the age, the severity of the low temp that wasn’t coming up and other factors (such a mom who was poisoned by rat poison) the wounds etc.. that the best thing to do was just let them go. So 45 minutes after they were presented to us, they were gone. No more pain, no more trauma, on to a better life where they will thrive and be all they should have been.

I asked my vet if I made the right choice? We could have gone with a feeding tube or something- but he just looked at me and told me that he had no problem with complying with my wishes, And he gives every cat or kitten who has a chance, a chance to live. So I knew that Gretel was right- she wanted these babies out of pain and she was going to do the job for us. Like I said the smartest cat I have had in a very long time.

Rest in Peace Badger, and Franklin- two kittens who really never stood a chance at a normal life.