Unsettling Phone Call

Received a phone call this morning from an elderly woman who had gotten a kitten so her dog could play with it. As we talked, the hairs on my neck just kept raising up as she described how she was keeping this kitten (since it ended up scratching her dog up ) She was keeping it on a leash in her living room- other than that she was keeping it a cage that sounded less than adequate.  She sounded almost like she was punishing this baby for not being “nice” to her dog (who turned out to be a hyperactive older Chihuahua and not at all nice). Something told me to get over there quickly and when I did, it was a horrid place.It smelled so bad inside her house, it was hard to breathe.

I got the kitten home, she is terrified. She had a collar on. I took the collar off. She had another collar on! Took that one off.What? Another collar? Started to take that one off and it was becoming embedded. We had to  soak her neck underneath where it had started cutting into her. She’s 3 months old for pity’s sake!

She is here, she is safe but she is having a hard time eating, so I am giving her baby food right now. I suspect swallowing is hard for her after having to endure three friggin collars around her neck. I am calling her Hissy, because that’s what she is currently doing a lot of. She was crawling with fleas- so we flea-treated her, de-wormed her and put her in the bedroom. She’s in the warming cage with the door open. She was ice cold and her temp was subnormal.

I know someone who is looking for a kitten right now, so once she goes to the vet, gets tested and spayed, she will go to a great home. During that phone call even when I told the woman that I couldn’t take her, something else was telling me to get over there fast. I am glad I listened. Her eyes, they are stunning- they are an emerald green color.

I decided to give her a more user friendly name and am calling her Hollister. She is so funny- all the time she is hissing at me now, she is also smelling and licking my hands. I guess she’s wondering why I smell like so many other cats! I just gave her regular wet kitty food and she ate a bit of it. She is still hunkered down in her corner but she’s not on a leash and having to deal with a yappy, snappy dog.

Kota Needs Prayers

His growth on his leg is not going away. He has been to two vets thus far- one is leaning toward mass cell 🙁 He just turned a year old! I took him for a second opinion and was told that it is not cancer, it is an infection. Something stuck into him and now it is heavily infected. We got him an inflatable surgical cone collar. But on the second day, he ripped it off his neck and tore a huge hole in it. So I went out and got him the hard “cone of shame.” I put it on him last night and he just froze. He was terrified. He stayed in one place for over an hour. I tried bribing him to like it, lectured him into liking it- comforted him into liking it, but when I discovered that he was shaking uncontrollably and had peed all over himself- I quickly discarded the idea of putting anything around his neck to stop him from removing bandages and licking off the medicine. To see this huge beast who intimidates most people because he is a German Shepherd, he is BIG and he is Black reduced to a piddling puppy broke my heart. Not worth it to have him so terrified. I have never seen such a reaction to these cones in a dog before.

So I just change his bandage three times a day (every time he has to have the medicine put on his leg) and he is on pain meds and they gave him an anti-inflammatory shot. If it doesn’t go away in a weeks time, they will surgically remove the growth (but not the leg).

It has not changed his behavior. he and Cooper still run together daily- he still goes for walk when the weather permits. He is eating and playing and I just hope it vanishes within a week’s time. He has eaten so many bandages off his leg. I have used all sorts of deterrents to stop him from licking the bandages and he embraces them all. Tobasco Sauce? Loves it! Bitter Apple? Yum! No Chew Em- loves the taste. What a weird dog. I even coated his bandage with Vaseline and sprinkled ground pepper over the ointment- he licked it all up! Yes, I am feeding him (he is 95 pounds now) he is not starving- he is just weird. LOL

I really don’t want him to have surgery. We would have to keep him heavily sedated to keep a cone on him. He just won’t stand for it. It scares him too badly.

You Can’t Save Them All

This morning, with a lot of tears and prayers, we let Fletcher go to the Bridge. He suffered from unpredictable and unprovoked acts of aggression and this cat was not kidding around. He put Molly in the hospital for two days, he attacked Magoo and Gadget. He would rush the fence and try to get to Kota, he has attacked me over a half-a-dozen times. I could pet him, sure could do that, but paid for it in the end. As I would walk away, he would charge me and bite my ankles. I had to start wearing boots and tucking my jeans down into my socks for extra protection.

I kept working with him, hoping I could step into his aggression, but there was no tell on when he would attack. No tucking of the tail, narrowing of the eyes, pinning of the ears, no posturing, nothing to alarm anyone. He was on you in seconds- and out for blood. No sound, just a silent attack that left several victims (including me) shaken in the aftermath.

A few days ago, he got out of the enclosure he has been in for months and returned two days later covered in blood and carrying a dead chicken! I know he killed this chicken, there is no doubt. I have done all in my power to get him to merge with the group without bloodshed- never worked. I covered the end of the tunnels with wire so he could meet the indoor kitties safely and he would charge the wire until he was bloody. It broke my heart, but I called my vet this morning and explained the situation and that I couldn’t in good conscience adopt him out without believing that he would harm another person or an animal. He is a drop-dead gorgeous kitty and would normally have flown out the door as orange kitties are all the rage here. But I couldn’t save him from whatever broke him in the first place, so we put him to sleep. That’s the only way I could save him from himself.

Wish List

Instead of waiting for Amazon to get ahold of me, I asked Google instead. I believe it is now fixed and the food has been added to the wish list. If this is not the case, please post here and let me know and I will again try to fix it.

Thank you-

Playing Catch Up

Mike’s youngest son left this morning and I have to say that the visit went much smoother than I thought it would. He does not like cats. He wouldn’t hurt them, but he just doesn’t care for them. But, just like cats will, they knew he didn’t like them so they were all over him! LOL He tolerated the invasion quite well and in the end of the visit, admitted to really liking Pita and Pigeon. He fixed some things around here that seriously needed attention and he saw a different side to his Dad than he remembers. He and I had a long (almost two hour) cleansing talk on this fourth day here. He asked me to tell him all- and so I did. I wasn’t going to- but I have been carrying all this for so long and to finally let it out to someone who knows Mike was quite the relief.

I told him that initially, I thought he might be coming to check up on  how I take care of Mike and then would report to his brothers and sister about how the care fell short. He just looked at me when I said that, and hugged me and said nothing could be further from the truth. He came because he wanted to see for himself, all that was involved in taking care of his Dad.

He is on his way driving back to Denver (a 20 hour drive) so if anyone is just checking into this blog and could say a prayer for Dennis to get home safe- he is headed into some pretty nasty weather after he leaves Ogden Utah that would be appreciated.

Kota has a growth on his leg and I took him to the vet. They suspect it is mass cell but he is only a year old! I will take him for a second opinion on Weds. They did a scraping and said that the growth wasn’t like anything they normally see on a dog- and there were so many inflammatory cells that it causes them to suspect cancer. We just want a second opinion before any other action is taken.

This morning, when I went to pick up cat food, we got two small bags of fancy feast and one pack of canned ff. Won’t last too long I am afraid. We have the low protein stuff in storage Meow Mix, Kit-n-Kaboodle but the cat chow and kitten chow is long gone. Just one foot in front of the other is how we are playing this now. I have called the recipients who are getting our old donations and they always tell me they have no cat food available. It’s frustrating and bit scary at times.

Still haven’t caught one-eyed kitty or the new gray long-hair but will keep trying. We are not quitters-

Everybody be safe on New Year’s love and hug those around you and practice acts of kindness when you are out and about. So many are hurting right now- so many broken souls wandering around.

Saying No is Not Easy

Especially when the request comes from the police department. Call earlier from an officer who told me he was at Bi-Mart and there were nine cats inside of a car in pretty bad shape and could we take them?

I told him I was incredibly sorry but there wasn’t enough room here for one cat, let alone nine! I just wonder when they are going to realize that we have a bad stray cat problem in this town and there are little to no resources available to help out. Something needs to be done, with us out of the picture now the future looks pretty bleak for the strays. Only two rescues left in the area that might be able to help out.

Just a Head’s Up

My neighbor (the only one who likes cats) told me this morning that she recently lost her 12 year old kitty. The kitty presented with a bloody nose and wheezing. The cat was also vomiting. She rushed Pretzel to the vet where the cat died. The vet cited the cause as the new lightweight kitty litter by Tidy Cat. She was devastated and wanted to let me know that if we were using this litter to be careful.

I went online and checked and found all sorts of comments (some controversial) about this issue. So far what I have established- is that seven cats have died over using this issue. There are some harmful chemicals in this substance that can cause breathing issues in cats (not sure about humans). Other people stand by the product as not being harmful. You can research it yourself- there is a long debate on FB and you can read the reviews on Amazon- although sometimes those reviews aren’t always truthful or accurate. Just wanted to give a head’s up and we have 8 of these boxes donated and they will just stay unopened. I did read that one woman who paid $500.00 and her cat lived after extensive care, she was compensated by the manufacturer but not for the full amount.

Safe Travels to All and Merry Christmas

 

 

Every year, I make it a point to publish this poem whose author so far remains unknown. It speaks to the heart and carries with it hope that God is still in control despite everything going on-

Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays, however you say it, however you spend it. Thanks for spending the year with us-

If you look for me at Christmas time
…you won’t need a special star –
I’m no longer just in Bethlehem,
I’m right there where you are.

You may not be aware of me
amid the celebrations –
You’ll have to look beyond the stores
and all the decorations.

But if you take a moment
from your list of things to do
And listen to your heart, you’ll find
I’m waiting there for you.

You’re the one I want to be with,
you’re the reason that I came,
And you’ll find me in the stillness
As I’m whispering your name.

-Anon-

The Kitty in the Narrows (Dang-It this got Long!)

I have been so distracted with Mike (his leg has started flaring up again) plus been pretty upset about an incident late night a few days ago that I didn’t explain much about the kitty in the narrows. I saw him being dumped. I say that because it is an orange kitten and around here, female orange cats are pretty rare.

The van that I saw,  was parked at the side of the highway in an inaccessible area- no emergency flashers and it was right after dusk. It just looked out-of-place and I was heading into town, so I slowed because I didn’t know what they might do. As I neared the van, it pulled away and I looked over on the shoulder and there was a little orange kitty! I couldn’t stop there. I was in Mike’s truck- and the shoulder is narrow and I would have been blocking traffic and being a danger to other motorists. The place where I could safely turn around  was up ahead a few miles, and by the time I did the U-turn and went back the kitten was gone! I did pull into the turnout and put food out (22 degrees that night) and I called till I was hoarse but he was gone. There is a half of a trail leading up into the hills and trees and blackberry bushes and all kinds of bushes up there- but no kitty.

I went out the next morning, drove the Narrows looking for him. I didn’t see him (made several passes) So I went home, got an insulated cat box, plastic dishes (no water dishes the water would have frozen in 5 minutes with this really bad cold snap we seem to be in at the moment. I did add water to the cat food and left out a trail of dry as well leading to the cat box.

I started searching again at night- and saw him each time, only at night. Because the turnout isn’t visible until you were right on it, and before you get there is a blind curve. I missed the turnout several times. Going up to the street where I could do a safe U-turn- same result, by the time I got back he was gone. A few nights I saw him just headed down the side of the highway- unfortunately, he was on the other side of the highway then me. It was frustrating. I knew he was out there- I knew he was scared and I knew he needed help. I couldn’t use a trap- it would be dangerous to park there and monitor the trap and just leaving it there, no matter what we did to insulate it- once that wire started to freeze that kitten would be in dire straits.

Three nights ago, I got a call from a woman who faithfully donates two bags of cat chow to our sanctuary every month since our other source dumped us. She had found a kitty who was pretty sick and she didn’t have the funds to help her (guess what?Neither do we!) and wondered if we could take her to the vet and get her fixed and evaluated. I told her yes and left in five minutes.

Approaching the Narrows, I said “God wouldn’t it be nice to see the kitten tonight on the right side of the highway so I could try and grab him?”

Well, sure enough, I saw him sitting by the side of the road in the weeds in a place where you don’t have a buffer lane to get off the highway (it’s near a guardrail) So, instead of going up to that street and doing a U turn. I pulled into the Center lane, went back a bit and figured I could safely turn the truck around if there was no traffic and not end up in the ditch. I figured wrong! I was headed for the ditch, and so I braked reversed prayed and then I hit my emergency flashers and was off the highway enough to be able to creep up to the turnoff which was a little bit ahead.

Then I looked over to the center lane, and there was a car there. It was keeping pace with me. And I am thinking, Oh, God he must have come around the blind curve, seen my brake lights and reverse lights and had to do evasive measures to not hit me. I was afraid to get out of the truck-figuring he was going to road rage against me, so I just sat there- watching him and watching the kitten who was still sitting in the weeds ahead of my truck.

Finally, I was getting ready to just go to the turnoff when lights, blue and red flashed from this car in the center lane, he reversed whipped behind me. He comes roaring up the truck “What the devil do you think you are doing?”  So I told him the story and when I was done, I looked over (kitty was STILL there!) He looked at me and said: “You did ALL of that over a CAT?” (I didn’t appreciate how he said Cat either) But I told him, “Yes I did!”

He asked for my license told me to stay in the truck, put the windows up and keep the engine running to stay warm because he didn’t want me to freeze and he would be back in a few minutes. I am sitting there, the kitten, God, he was right there. I could of opened up the door, gotten out scooped this baby up and got him safe. And I couldn’t move. So what I did I took my seat belt off- slid over, opened the passenger door. I had canned food on my seat, I popped the lid and I called really loud my kitty call hoping he would jump into the warm truck. I also turned the engine off. The kitten didn’t move. 🙁

The cop comes back, this time on the passenger’s side asking why the dickens (I’m softening the language a bit) 🙂 my passenger door was opened in freezing weather. I turned on my lights pointed ahead of me into the weeds where the kitten was lit up like a snowball with his spotlight and said “That’s why.” He looked at me like I had just crawled out from under a rock and this is what he said he to me:

“You did all this for a cat! You almost caused a multivehicle collision. The driver behind you had to slam on his brakes, when he did, he almost slid into my patrol car and I had to go into the incoming traffic lane to get out of danger!”

I was stunned, rattled started to cry apologize. What I didn’t say is that I didn’t see anything. No lights, didn’t hear brakes slam on, skids going on all that. I have really good hearing. I would have heard something, but I was in tears and all I wanted to do was scoop up the kitten and go home. When I asked him if I could- he looked at me like he wished he could burn me to the ground and said:

“What you can do, is drive into town to a brightly lit establishment and make a legal U-turn and go home. But, I leave you with one thought. What would it feel like for you to have to go see my wife and explain to her that I was dead because of a cat? I am an animal lover, but I will never sacrifice human life over a cat!”

So I drove away, he followed me leaving that kitten in the cold and berating myself for being so stupid. Haven’t seen the kitten since and have been out so many times at night looking. I hope and pray that what happened that some of the looky loos that night also saw the kitten when they passed “the bust” and came back and got him. Because I had spotted him every night and now he is not there. That’s what I pray happen and not that he figured out he had help so close and another human harmed him and he went up into the forest to sleep. I don’t know.

I was feeling pretty low about myself and I found out a few days later that what he told me- never happened! It NEVER happened. He made it up- the woman that I told used to be married to a cop and when I told her the whole story she just started laughing! She said, if I thought about it- had it been true- I wouldn’t have gotten just a warning. I would have been hauled off, or given a ticket. She said he was trying to scare me (he did a good job of that).

She said if it had been her, after he told me he was going to just warn me, she would have told him that she was going to get out of the truck, telling him first she was an unarmed female. She was going to go over to the weeds, pick the  baby up and get him safe. If he wanted to slap handcuffs on her and then explain to his superiors why she was in handcuffs- more power to him. Gee, I wish I had the backbone to have done that very thing.

So I abandon the search. It’s just not safe in that area to try and pull off without something bad happening. And yes,  the cop lied, but he was also telling me how it could have happened.We are not in summer or spring- we have a Arctic front that has hung on for weeks.  Plus the kitten isn’t there anymore.

(Sorry this was long-winded it was pretty convoluted if you think about it.)

God Bless All of You This Holiday Season. Mike’s youngest boy is coming to stay for a week to surprise his Dad (should be interesting he doesn’t like cats) So it has been a bit of a stressful week so far. I just pray the kitty came out ok and all of you have a safe, sane, lovely Christmas and New Years!

I Got Her!

A few days ago, a beautiful, long hair gray kitty showed up at the feral feeders. She was heavy with kittens and I was so afraid that she was going to have them in this frigid cold. It took some time, but I finally coaxed her into the shop with food and once there, a welcoming fire in the wood stove and some warmed food and heated water must have convinced her that life here is pretty nice for cats. She is now sitting by our front door in a carrier, covered in a blanket on her way to get spayed (if it isn’t too late that is). If it is too late, at least she will have these babies in a warm room with humans at attendance to see to her needs. I am calling her Ghost because when she came out of the ice fog to eat- that is what she reminded me of. I am thinking we have time because although her nipples are visible, they are not yet swollen with milk. She has a bad URI though- this cold weather has been hanging around for weeks now. It doesn’t usually get this cold until after Christmas. Right now we are sitting at 25 degrees.

I had to take Fletcher and put him in the main enclosure. He is my porno kitty 🙂 He is also the strongest Alpha kitty that I have met in years and he is bouncing off my other outside kitties, running around like a terrohist and when I am feeding in the morning- he is gobbling all the wet food. He is plump and furry and the others are hiding way under the house and the food hasn’t been touched for days. So I sealed off the tunnels to the house and put him in the main and will be working with him to further socialize him. He’s a gorgeous kitty but he likes to bite hands and ankles and as stated his strong alpha tendencies are still roaring despite being neutered months ago! I’d love to get him into a barn somewhere and that will be my goal after the holidays are over. But for right now- he has a huge enclosure to prowl in, heated beds and heated water.

There’s a kitty I have seen a few times (again in the narrows) who does not have this and I am trying like the dickens to capture this orange kitty and get him/her safe as well. I sometimes, I wish I didn’t have the eyes to see what I see- but I have been this way my whole life.

Mike loves to tell the story about my first trip to Denali National Park in Alaska the summer I went to visit him. We boarded the shuttle bus and it goes around the park because at that time, cars were not allowed beyond a certain point. The bus driver aka “Guide” was supposed to point out wildlife- it wasn’t happening. I looked out the small window, and up on the mountain, I saw a small shape. I asked Mike “Is that a fox?” It was indeed. For the entire ride, I was the one shouting out the location of the wildlife that I saw including something rarely seen a wolf! People were running to our side of the bus to take photos and see the wildlife that the “Guide” missed. It was weird and kind of funny. When I left the bus, the Guide hissed in my ear “Don’t come back on my bus EVER again!” I assured him I wouldn’t. Anyway, these are the eyes that God gave me along with  the daunting mission to help those in distress.