Amberly's kittens are SIX WEEKS OLD! Time flies! Can you believe they were found in a nest under a tree? If you missed their AMAZING RESCUE, you can read about it HERE. Are these the SAME kittens? Is it possible they are NOT SICK? I don't even know what it's like to not have a kitten with upper respiratory to battle or something worse:::KNOCK WOOD::: anti-jinx!!!
I'm SO grateful that the kittens are doing so well and to make it even better, I swear EACH of them is more lovely than the last. Amberly made some very special kittens, that's for certain!
Today, instead of blathering on and on, let's just enjoy a multitude of images from a few weeks ago and more I just got yesterday-including some adorable videos! Grab a cup of coffee or tea and sit back and smile. It's a good day to smile!
Here are the babies! (make sure you scroll ALL the way to the end for the funniest photo, ever!)
Our intrepid foster mama, Maria got up early to hit the local tag sales. It was a hot Saturday just southeast of Atlanta, Georgia. Maria was taking a break from a long work week. Tag sales were an enjoyable adventure since she could save some money and find something fun to bring home while she was at it.
This weekend Maria got far more than she could have expected when she saw a cat LAYING in the middle of the street. Maria stopped her car and got out; worried the cat would be hit by a car. The cat came over to her and rubbed on her leg. She cried to Maria and within a moment, it was obvious that this cat was very thin. Maria, of course, had cat food in her car and offered some to the cat. She gobbled it up right away.
©2011 Maria. S. A stray cat makes a new friend with Maria.
Maria took a closer look at the cat and saw that the cat's nipples were enlarged, a sure sign the cat was either nursing or pregnant. She sent me a text. It was not even 8AM. She wanted to talk to me, so I got out of bed and went into the foster room so I could talk to her without waking Sam up.
She didn't know what to do and I can't say I blamed her. She didn't know if this was someone's cat, but if it was they weren't taking care of her at all. If the cat had kittens, WHERE WERE THEY?
I encouraged Maria to ask anyone in the neighborhood if they knew the cat. She found one person to tell her he'd seen it before but didn't know where it belonged. I told Maria to get the cat to the Vet. If she did have owners, they didn't deserve this cat, who seemed to have no fear and who kept "talking" at Maria. Too bad she didn't speak cat.
Her tag sale plans disrupted, Maria went to her Vet. They weren't busy and offered to do an ultrasound of the cat FOR FREE. They didn't see anything unusual inside her so either she had already given birth or she was not far along enough for them to see anything. Maria spent her tag sale money to have a "snap test" done to determine if the cat had FIV or Feline Leukemia. She did not. She had some flea dirt on her, as well as two ticks. Her belly fur was bare, possibly from being itchy, they weren't sure. The cat only weighed FIVE POUNDS. They couldn't tell her if the cat had given birth.
A few hours had passed since Maria took the cat to the vet. She noticed the cat's mammary glands were more enlarged. I told her to go back to where she got the cat and let her go. See if she would take Maria to where the kittens were located-if there were any. Surely she would need to feed her babies soon.
A severe thunderstorm hit just as Maria arrived at the drop off point. There wasn't much she could do, but wait. She was able to let the mama cat out of the car, but all she did was cry, then run into the street. Maria wasn't going to let this cat get hurt and it was clear the cat wasn't going to feed any kittens-if they even were alive. It was late. Reluctantly, Maria headed for home, the cat crying next to her in the car.
I quickly designed a flyer, hoping against all odds someone would step forward and help us find the kittens and I told Maria to just get the mama to her house and we'd sort it out the next day.
I don't know much about finding where a mama cat might hide her kittens. I asked all my rescue friends and most of them said that since the mother was only 8-10 months old herself, that odds were she had abandoned the litter and was not going to care for them-IF they were alive. It's hard not to give up hope, but we knew that between the 95°F temperatures, rain, predation and starvation, these kittens might have 24-48 hours left to live.
Maria skipped Father's Day with her stepdad and her day off and got back into her car with the cat she named, Amberly. Amberly had a good night's rest, drank a bowl of water and had some food. She was in much better shape than she was the day before.
Maria let Amberly out of the car and she strutted off into someone's yard. Maria followed and saw the cat go into a storm sewer. Her heart sank. If the kittens were inside it would be very tough to get them out. A mament later, Amerbly returned and decided to look around at another drain. A neighber saw Maria and she told him what was going on. He offered to help her look. Then, Amberly dashed out of sight.
©2011 Maria. S.
The neighbor called out to Maria. “I see something!”
©2011 Maria. S.
Maria ran to his side. In the base of a tree, they could barely see Amberly's eyes. Being black let her disappear easily. They walked up to the cat. She didn't move, but something else near her, did.
©2011 Maria. S. If you look closely, to the left are two kittens.
Maria could see a tiny kitten nursing on her mother, Amberly. It was a miracle. The kitten had been found. Maria let Amberly nurse as the neighbor, who admitted he didn't even like cats, went to get her some gloves so she could dig into the base of the tree to find every kitten that was there. I can't imagine how scared and excited I'd be if I was Maria. I'd be scared to find dead kittens, but excited that some might make it.
©2011 Maria. S.
Slowly and carefully, she lifted a tiny calico kitten into the sun. The kitten squinted her eyes and let out a small cry. She was alive, not near death, but alive.
©2011 Maria. S.
Maria looked again and found a second kitten. This one a little gray guy wiht white paws. He wriggled around in her hands, but seems all right, too.
©2011 Maria. S.
Maria continued to remove kittens from their nest. Another gray and white kitten, then a tortie.
All said and done, there were FIVE kittens rescued. Each one was alive, but after barely being fed for 24 hours they needed a lot more nourishment.
©2011 Maria. S.
First things, first-they needed to get to Maria's house, away from all the dangers they faced and into a safe, loving environment. From looking at them, we estimate they're barely 2 weeks old.
©2011 Maria. S.
There's much to sort out. Names to be given-perhaps something from the Hobbit since they were found under a tree? We'll need to do an emergency fundraiser to provide for their care and get them over to the Vet for a checkup to make sure they're all right. We didn't plan on rescuing any families since funds are tight and foster homes are tough to find, but we'll make it work somehow.
We'll see how the babies do over the next 24 hours. Will Amberly feed them and give them the care they need or were the kittens left alone for too long and Amberly will reject them?
Yesterday we hoped we'd find these precious little ones and thankfully they were found. Maybe, just maybe, the worst of their troubles are over and now the fun can really begin for them all.
And to Maria, who missed going to the tag sales, I'm sorry about that and I know you got more than you bargained for this weekend. I can't express fully how completely over-the-moon-happy I am that you gave up your time and money and kicked ass and rescued those babies. My hat's off to you, Maria. Way to go, baby. Way to go!
Last week I posted a photo on our Facebook page of a lovely orange persian/mix kitty. Some folks thought it was Phillip, who I rescued not long ago, but they were wrong. Phil is NOT quite so orange and Phil is not a female!
This is Tiger. She was rescued by a very nice lady named Deb P. Deb must spend a zillion dollars a year funding the rescue of many cats and kittens in need. Deb helped with the initial funding for Cara and her family, the fosters I STILL have at my home. The other day, Deb contacted me to see if I could take this lovely lady and find her a forever home.
Deb already had Tiger vetted, shaved down because her fur was badly matted AND Deb paid for Tiger to get her teeth cleaned, too! Tiger is a few years old, declawed, spayed and very sweet. How she ended up in a kill shelter is beyond comprehension.
How could I say NO to her?
So I said, YES!
Tiger will be here in a few weeks. Being that “ginger” females are somewhat unusual-only 1 in 3 ginger cats are female; I think Tiger will find a good home easily.
Tiger will enjoy a diet change, which will help her slim down and allow her coat to grow back in beautifully, too. I think she'll be a knockout and whoever adopts her will be very lucky, indeed
We just gotta come up with a better name for her! What would you name her? Okay, and not Lucky, either, even if that's true!
On April 21, 2011 another pregnant feline was brought to Henry County Care & Control, dumped by her owner, no longer their problem or responsibility. This cat's fate, along with that of her unborn kittens, was unknown. Many mamas never make it out of the shelters alive. The shelters are simply too overcrowded and the kittens too fragile to make it. If they pick up a URI, they are all euthanized. If they don't get sick, but they don't find a rescue in time, they will get euthanized. The odds are just not very good for a happy outcome.
This mama gave birth inside a steel cage, on newspaper, next to a litter pan. Not a very dignified way to bring life in to the world, but certainly better than she would have been if left abandoned on her own. The mama had four kittens. She cleaned them and began the task of providing nourishment-nothing unusual or special about this, just as so many other mamas have done before and since. Her babies were all chubby and healthy. One had a charming spot on this chin that looked like a goatee. They all squirmed and writhed, still blind and uncoordinated-reaching for their mama's warmth. The mama did what she could to keep them safe, placing her front leg protectively over them.
©2011 Henry County Care & Control. This very young mama hopes for a miracle.
Last month, I posted a plea about this “cow mama” and her “cow babies.” They were among the MANY mamas and kittens that came to Henry County that needed help. Many of the families got a rescue, but many MORE families arrived over the past few weeks needing help. The cow mama and family did not get rescued. The clock was running out, as they ran out of space at Henry County.
This morning, this family was slated to die. They were at the shelter the longest, so they would be first to go. The folks at the shelter did NOT want to put them down, but their hands were tied. There are SEVVEN other families that also need rescue, too and there wasn't any more room left to keep all the cats. It was time.
©2011 Henry County Care & Control.
Keep in mind that over the past month I, along with Dorian Wagner of Your Daily Cute, have been trying to find a way to rescue this family. Dorian and I both have a fondness for cow kitties, but neither of us were finding a solution. Last night, just before I went to bed, I got an email from Jennifer at the Humane Society of Forsyth County. I'd contacted her a month ago and at the time she couldn't help. She had not forgotten about this family. She said they had an opening and did we still need help?
ARE YOU KIDDING ME?!! YES!!!! I could NOT believe the timing. Here I was about to give up. Jennifer saved the day! I got to work right away-banging out emails since it was too late to call anyone. I contacted Betsy, at Henry County. I pleaded with her NOT to put that family down. I wrote to Gerri, the Director and asked the same thing. I contacted our dear, Bobby and asked if he could transport the cats. My heart was beating so hard I could barely breathe. I contacted Jennifer and said I get the transport set up and get things sorted out and gave her information on who to call at Henry Co. to confirm they were going to take the cats.
©2011 Henry County Care & Control. Look at the spot on the chin on that baby!
This morning I got up early. I felt like I was going to jump out of my skin. I heard back from Henry Co. They would NOT put the family down. I called Jennifer and she was very sweet. She was completely calm. I'm sure she does this every day. She had just left a voice mail for Gerri and things were getting settled. In another hour of phone calls and emails it was worked out.
As of 12:30 PM EST, Bobby has picked up the Cow Mama and her babies and will be driving them to the Humane Society of Forsyth County. They're a NO-KILL shelter, so this family won't have to worry again about being put down. Now all they have to do is thrive, play and wait to be adopted when they're big enough.
©2011 Henry County Care & Control. It IS a miracle these babies got out ALIVE!
This could not have happened if it wasn't for Warren Royal, who offered me Jennifer's contact information when I was first trying to find a rescue to take this family. Forsyth is the same shelter that took in Warren's foster cat, Buddy who had FIV+ and who found him a great home.
This could not have happened if Bobby wasn't willing to drive 2 1/2 hours to deliver this family to their new home.
This could not have happened if I didn't stick my nose into this situation. While I didn't rescue this family, I did network my butt off by making phone calls and writing e-mails and blog posts.
Guess what? YOU can do this, too. You can get involved with animals at kill shelters and make a difference in their life. You don't have to foster them or even run a rescue group-you just have to be willing to stick your neck out and find those puzzle pieces until you get the right fit. I'm not saying it's easy and it certainly is stressful, but those times when it works out, it's completely worth it.
There is a lot more work to do. Those other mamas aren't going to rescue themselves. Let's get to it!
If you're as thrilled as I am about the Humane Society of Forsyth County stepping up to help this family, then please be sure to visit their web site and “Like” their Facebook page, then check out all the animals they have for adoption. If you're not looking for a new companion, then please consider making a small donation in honor of the Cow Mama's Family to help offset the costs related to their care. Saying Thank You to them is great, but during these tough times, saying it with a donation makes a big difference.
I love all cats, okay except for those nudie-ones. Yick. Cats need to have fur if at all possible. Sorry! Although I may struggle with loving cats equally, I admit being a sucker for a few things. 1) BIG CATS, 2) FLUFFY CATS, 3) CATS WITH BLUE EYES, 4) TUXEDO CATS.
Meet cat ID# 5/19-1791. He lives in a cage at Henry County Care & Control.
©2011 Henry Co. Care & Control. Waltz, anyone?
Cat ID# 5/19-1791 goes beyond being just big-boned. He could be your dance partner he's so tall or he could keep your entire bed warm at night. He will chat to get attention, but has a tiny tiny “meow.”
©2011 Henry Co. Care & Control. Big hugs for a big lug.
ID likes other cats, but is not too keen on dogs. ID is chill. He likes to hang with his human friends, too. Apparently, ID enjoys a good meal every so often, maybe a few times too often.
ID# 5/19-1791 has lovely blue eyes and a nice, fluffy tail. At Henry County Care & Control they say he might be part ragdoll. I think he's 100% fluffy-esque.
©2011 Henry Co. Care & Control. That is MY kinda cat!
After yesterday's loss of Big O, I felt a strong desire to do something life-affirming. I read the plea about cat ID# 5/19-1791 and I looked at those big blue eyes and I thought, why not? We can always make room for one more, right? I'll sort out the details later. For now, this cat has been at the shelter too long and we know what that means...every day is one day less he has to get out alive.
In honor of telling Death to go suck it (see yesterday's POST for more on that), I made arrangements for this gigantic love bug to get busted out of his steel cage and into temporary foster care.
©2011 Henry Co. Care & Control. No more cage for you!
He is FREE as we speak. He's getting vetted, then going to Aunt Bobbie's house to be fostered until his quarantine period is over. After that, we'll put him on a bus or something and get his big fluffy butt up here to Connecticut where we'll find him a super-awesome home.
In honor of one of our supporters, we're going to name cat ID# 5/19-1791, Phil. Yes, Phil.
Meet Phil, our latest rescue. Welcome to the family Phil. Chapter 1 of the story of your new life starts today!
©2011 Henry Co. Care & Control. You may begin to adore him in 3...2...1
UPDATE: Phil is neg/neg for FIV+ and Felv!! YAY!!!! And he only weighs 15 pounds?!!! Must have big bones!
Mazie went from having a strangely, rather shockingly elevated white blood count (53,000-when high normal is 19,000) and a high fever (105+°F) last week, to a NASTY upper respiratory infection. Her WBC went down to almost normal after hospitalizing her and giving her IV antibiotics. Her temperature went back down as of a few days ago, but she came home with the sniffle and each day Mazie seems more seriously afflicted.
©2011 Robin A.F. Olson. Mazie, mid-sneeze.
Mazie IS eating, though much quieter than usual. She's found a place on the corner of the bed where the angle of the wall creates a comfy, almost hiding place. I put some towels and a pillow there for her. She's been taking it easy for a day.
©2011 Robin A.F. Olson. Runny eyes and a spot of ringworm that's healing. Sweet...NOT!
I called the Vet and was given a message to get the kittens OUT of the room. That incubation is 7-10 days and that they should be in another room for that period of time. The problem is: I HAVE NO ROOM to put them into and we still don't have any foster homes.
©2011 Robin A.F. Olson. Mazie has to constantly lick her face because her nose runs.
I begged a favor from a good friend. She's going to take Cara and Chester and maybe Polly, tonight. I hate to separate the cats, but it must be done. I think Polly could stay behind because she sneezes all the time and has watery eyes, but is really not in bad shape at all. I wonder if what Mazie has is something else, entirely and if so, then Polly should go, too. Mazie will have a quiet week, but I'll make sure to spend time with her. My biggest fear is transmitting what Mazie has to my other cats, especially BOB DOLE.
Bob could die from a cold. I've been furiously washing hands, not touching Mazie, changing clothes. I don't know if it will be enough. I just heard Nora, one of our other cats, sneezing. I am very worried.
©2011 Robin A.F. Olson. My how Cara has grown, yet she is still tiny compared to her siblings.
Little Miss Cara is STILL tiny. One of the cats vomited, but I don't know if it was her. Having her live away for a week will help me find out if she's still getting sick. I see her do her "I feel queasy" mouthing where she licks at her mouth and twists her head a bit. Her appetite is good and she's bright and fairly playful. I think she's very close to being considered ready to be adopted-after she gets spayed, of course.
©2011 Robin A.F. Olson. Polly. Our little girl has grown up.
Polly needs to see the Eye Specialist. I'll have to do a fundraiser for that. Her left eye is still cloudy. She may have some blindness from being sick, so young. She's grown into a beautiful young lady. Even with all that she's suffered, she's very sweet and LOVES to escape from the foster room, run down the stairs with her tail held high and visit the other cats. If she wasn't rapid-fire sneezing so often, I wouldn't mind her being out, but she can't go near my cats until she is all better-IF she ever gets better!
©2011 Robin A.F. Olson. That's “Mr. Handsom” to you!
Then there's the most Handsome Young Cat in the world-Chester Cheesetoes. He still has a runny eye, but it's very subtle. All the cats are getting a big dose of Lysine to help boost their immune system. Other than his eye, Chester is awesome. He loves to get onto a high perch and watch things going on, below OR run after the laser pointer like a crazy-cat. He is so soft and sweet and stunning. He's grown into a very big boy.
©2011 Robin A.F. Olson. Polly and Chester boldy go where I don't like them to go!
The cats have been here too long. Kitten Season is in full swing and I haven't saved one Mama or kitten. It's driving me crazy. I must get these cats well and adopted. I'm also so attached to each one of them, that it will be very hard to say goodbye-much harder than usual. The only comfort I can take in all of this is to remind myself that I've felt this way before and over time the pain softens. Over more time, I get to a place where I need a minute to remember their name. That's when I know it's okay to let them go. I have to make room for more. So many need help. Whether or not I cry about the ones I have makes no difference. I need to do this. I need to rescue more cats.
©2011 Robin A.F. Olson. Who loves Cara? Who doesn't?
The Vet bill for Mazie came in a just over $700.00. It's a heartbreaking amount of money for us to come up with and thankfully, many of you have used our ChipIn to help out. We still need about $200.00 to get to our total, so if you can offer a dollar or two, we appreciate it VERY much! Thank you for helping Mazie!
(You can use the ChipIn for Maze on the right sidebar if you wish to donate. Your donation IS tax deductible.)
I reported a few days ago that 5 mamas at Henry County in McDonough, GA, were in dire need of rescue. The shelter was getting overwhelmed with mama cats giving birth. I hoped that one or two mamas might find a rescue through my efforts, but feared none would make it out alive. Truthfully, it doesn't even matter if my post had anything to do with how the cats got rescued as long as they GOT OUT!
I'm very glad to say that while not all made it---some are FREE! WOOOHOO!!!
©2011 Henry Co. Care & Control.
I do not know which group/s rescued these cats. If someone wants to let me know, I'll be glad to post a link to their web site so folks can donate to help with their care while in their foster home.
©2011 Henry Co. Care & Control.
I'd love to THANK whichever groups were able to step up. Whoever you are, you ROCK! All I know is I have the news confirmed that THREE mamas found rescue.
©2011 Henry Co. Care & Control.
©2011 Henry Co. Care & Control.
©2011 Henry Co. Care & Control. This mama is hoping for a miracle.
Help spread the word to all Cow-Cat lovers! We gotta get this mama (above) and the gray mama out!
WARNING: GRAPHIC PICTURES OF CAT VOMIT IN THIS POST. YECCH!
Mama-Mazie, our foster cat, is a sweet girl. Just barely older than her own kittens, Chester, Cara and Polly, she's been waiting for her forever family to find her for months. No one has asked after her. No one wants to adopt her. I couldn't understand why because she's a VERY sweet cat and loves to “talk” to me. Her eyes are sparkling green and full of life-that is until yesterday afternoon.
I'm still struggling with constant headaches after a car accident I was in last year. Yesterday I had to have Trigger Point Injections followed by Physical Therapy. Basically TPI means, stick LOTS of needles into your muscle to “tenderize” the meat (muscle). It's not so bad until they find a knot in the muscle. That feels like a hornet sting. The Doctor did A shots into my upper back and into my NECK. Unhappy camper, was I.
I raced home to attend an online web presentation about Public Relations for shelters. I sat down for about 5 minutes, then realized I needed to feed the foster cats. I got their food ready and ran upstairs. The second I walked in the door something was wrong. Mazie was resting on top of a pillow. She looked uncomfortable. I went over to her and petted her. Tried to lift her down to the floor to see if she could walk. She CRIED when I touched her.
The kittens were clamoring to be fed, so I got them fed, but Mazie didn't want to eat. Bad sign. She is ALWAYS ready to eat. She was also unusually quiet. It's not the end of the world if a cat misses a meal. I ran down stairs to take part in the presentation. Meanwhile I started to fret about Mazie...I had a flashback that she had very loose stool on Sunday. Was she brewing a virus?
I couldn't concentrate on the talk so I ran back upstairs. That's when I saw it.
The wall, the bed, the cat tree, the floor was covered in vomit. It looked like a crime scene. My first fear was that it was CARA, but I had no way to know who did it. Mazie had moved to the floor and was laying on a cat bed, looking miserable. She started to lick her mouth, got up and went to a corner of the room and vomited. It wasn't much. Looked like the stomach contents after everything else had already come out.
I started to get really upset. I called Connie. Thankfully, she was on her way home from work and said she could stop by. I went back to Mazie. I petted her again, this time trying to feel for injury, but she didn't want to be touched. She hissed and cried. She was in a lot of pain.
I thought about the morning. Mazie and the gang were playing in my bedroom. She did see Nora and hissed at her, but that wouldn't make her get so sick. She ran around the room chasing the laser pointer light. Maybe she twisted a leg, pulled a muscle? No...she could walk, but it was very slowly. She kept trying to get away from me, searching the room for a place to hide.
I called the Vet. They were about to close. Now I faced taking Mazie to the ER Vet when we just don't have the funds to cover that sort of visit. Connie got to my house in record time. I was so glad to see her. We spoke about whether or not to take her to the ER. We knew they would charge a lot more for the same tests that Dr Larry would run, but if Mazie could get through the night it would be better on all of us.
I really felt like I was getting kicked when I'm down. I've always found a way to come up with whatever I need for the cats, but now I found myself just shaking my head. I had to chose to keep Mazie home. We'd have to make it to the morning. Maybe she'd even feel better by then?
I checked on Mazie every hour until midnight. She refused to eat or drink. She did pee and poop (though that was not completely normal). She did not seem to be in pain in the litter pan, so that was good. So what WAS wrong with her?
I tried to leave Mazie alone other than the quick check on her. I put my pajamas on and hoped I wouldn't have to do a middle-of-the-night drive to the ER. I couldn't clean up the linens from her vomit without moving her off the bed. It was only on the end of the bed, so I carefully set a place for myself to half lay down next to Mazie and not be in puke. Was that fun? No.
With my bad neck and back it was not good. Polly came over and laid on my shoulder, then moved to next to my face. She purred and looked at me, seemingly delighted that I finally was going to sleep with them one night. Mazie was still. Her breathing was shallow, but not too rapid. She was not open mouth breathing. Just laying there.
At 2 AM Mazie used the pan again. After that I was so tired, I dragged myself to bed. Set the alarm for 7am and fell into a nightmareish sleep.
This morning Mazie refused to eat. She was no better and no worse. I packed her up and took her to the Vet. She cried at the Vet's office. I told her it would be ok and that I would be back for her. They're going to give her fluids and do some bloodwork, probably a few x-rays, too. Hopefully I'll have some idea of what happened, fairly soon.
Mazie was so bright and sunny barely 24 hours ago. Now the light has gone out of her eyes and she's in terrible pain.
If you'd like to help Mazie get the Vet Care she needs, please use the ChipIn widget below. Your donation IS tax deductible. Thank you for helping her. I am going to set the goal total high enough to cover a day at the ER Vet if it comes to that. I'll lower it if she stablizes later today. Remember, every dollar helps!!
Please be okay, Mazie. We're rooting for you.
Henry County Care & Control is getting filled up with pregnant cats giving birth. One just gave birth this morning. I don't even have a photo of her yet. Every one of these cats is at HIGH RISK of losing their life-just due to the fact that kittens can easily pick up all sorts of disease in the shelter. To keep the other cats from getting sick, at the slightest sign of illness, the cats are put down-yes, even little kittens.
Now take the numbers at Henry County and multiply it by the rest of the state of Georgia-where so many other shelters are in crisis. Now add all the other shelters across the COUNTRY. Yes, it's a big number and there's no way we can save them all, but it doesn't mean we just sit here and do nothing but feel sad.
©2011 HCC&C. Let's save this beautiful baby and her family!
This is a trying time for anyone who does rescue. You know if you can help even ONE family, the others may perish. Right now, I don't even funds or a place to put any of these cats. I wish I did. I don't know if it's more heartbreaking to know that I COULD save some of these cats, if I could get a foster family in GA and one in CT to step up, then find funding to support them until they are big enough to be adopted. I look at the calendar..it's May..I STILL HAVE cats I rescued in November of LAST YEAR and so far their Vet tab is WELL into the thousands, probably close to $6K by now for all their bills. If I pull another family and they get as sick as the last bunch, it will ruin me, but how can I sleep knowing they need help? I know it's a risk to get these cats out, but if we act fast, they won't get sick.
This is what we need:
©2011 HCC&C. Here's Mama! She's a doll and a sweetheart.
I have someone (my dear, Bobby) who can pick up the cats and get them out of the shelter for you and we can help arrange initial vetting and transport if you need that done. Just contact me if I can be of help: firstname.lastname@example.org
©2011 HCC&C. What a pretty blue Mama and look at those little ones!
These are the faces of the cats I wrote about in my Mother's Day Wish post. These are the cats who for no other reason than their owners never spayed them, are now facing death.
©2011 HCC&C. Let's save this Cow-Mama with amazing eyes and her family, too!
©2011 HCC&C. This girl has already been at the shelter too long. She's STUNNING! Won't someone rescue her?!
It's been a long week of Vet trips. I think Cara's getting used to being in the car, as long as I don't go faster than 70 mph. The faster I drive, the more distressed she gets, so I try to go easy, though if any of you have driven I-95 through southern Fairfield County you'll know the motto is: “I survived 95.”
I find that the longer I have cats and the more often I go to the Vet, I find myself questioning their choices and pushing back on the test or medications they prescribe. I know these cats medical history better than the Vet. They have many other patients to tend to. I can't expect them to remember everything. I find, too, that it's a good idea to make the most informed decision you can. Sure, I'm not perfect, but I can tell you if I had gone along with some recommendations to feed Cara dry food, that she'd be dead by now or at least in very serious shape.
©2011 Robin A.F. Olson. Cara, chillin.'
I found myself doing that, again, regarding giving Cara antibiotics even though I knew she had an infection of some sort. I wanted more answers before giving her ANYTHING. Two Vets said, Convenia. Well, I've heard too many bad things about it and even if all if it was false, the fact that it's injectable and lasts for two weeks, means you can't STOP giving it if she has a bad reaction to it. Also, she's been on almost EVERY antibiotic there IS and I do NOT want to give her more unless her life is at stake.
So I compromised. Two days in a row of a single shot that lasted one day. It may have been enough to get Cara over the edge. We repeated her blood work and the white blood cell count was back to normal, but her Eosinophils were quite high-indicating either infection or allergic reaction to something.
Again, you must remember that blood work is a snapshot, not the full picture. Often times you have to repeat blood work to make certain there's a problem. I know we'll have to repeat Cara's again at some point.
Cara vomited a few more times. Once at the Vet (good timing so they could witness what was going on) and once a day after that for two more days. I knew Cara was facing something major-another endoscopy or exploratory surgery. Surely this darn cat was going to bankrupt all of us!
I was slated to meet Dr. K in Norwalk, abut an hour drive from here, Friday morning. I knew I was going to have a rough time with the drive because I HAD to get up at 4AM to watch The Royal Wedding. I'm not a nut about weddings, per se, but I did it because it's part of history and I like to be part of things, even if I'm in my PJ's eating scones and watching it on TV. I also did it because my Mother and I watched Charles and Diana get married and it was a nice memory to have, now that my Mother has long since passed away.
I saw the monumental “Kiss,” then ran out the door before the shocking second kiss occurred. No sooner than I got in the car, I realized I was really tired. The last thing you want to do is drive I-95 when you're sleepy, but that's what I did. I decided I'd take it slow, just stay in the right lane-be mellow.
Once I got on the highway, it was clear, you can't be on 95 and be mellow. That doesn't work. You're either stuck behind a diesel belching dump truck doing 45 mph or you get tailgated going 80 mph. Even the middle lane was full of nutty drivers, so I sucked it up and got in the left lane. Better to get it over with.
At one point I decided I HAD to wake up so I slapped myself! HARD! I've never done that before and I must say it did help my face sting. but I felt like I was going to shut my eyes and go to sleep, anyway. I opened the window and let the fresh air slap me, but Cara didn't like the extra noise, so I shut the window.
I got to VCA VREC right on time-alive, so that was good. I didn't have to wait long for the appointment. Out came Dr. K. She's awesome, but very speedy. She just cuts to the chase and goes over what she feels needs to be done, talking 100 words a second. Fortunately, I was able to keep up with her or in my sleepy-mind I fooled myself into believing that was the case. She decided she wanted to take a quick look at Cara using their ultrasound machine-even though we just had it done by another Vet at a different hospital. Before I could start my mental adding machine, she said she was just going to take a peek-don't worry about any charge.
©2011 Robin A.F. Olson. Cara was VERY popular with the ladies at the front desk.
This is when I was sure I was sleeping, because I must have been dreaming. Dr. K whisked Cara away and I went back to the waiting room and got a “free” cup of tea, hoping it would revive me. Everyone in the waiting room had a dog-purebred. I was definitely in the wrong place. I ended up impressing a woman by identifying her dog—a schipperke. The lady next to her challenged me to guess her dog's breed. Without missing a beat, I said; Clumber Spaniel. She was surprised I knew it and said most people got it wrong. I told her I watch Westminster Kennel Club dog show every year, which I do, but I didn't tell her I knew it was a Clumber because I really don't like that breed at all.
Another lady brought in a Scottie. He was carried in the door, wrapped in a towel. They rushed the dog into the back where the Vets do their secret things. The woman had been crying. The other dog owners were telling her they knew what she was going through and they were so sorry. I didn't want to know what was going on. I'd rushed my own cat, Stanley, there many years ago and he came home with me, in a cardboard box. It was too late for them to help him, too.
Dr. K came out of the exam room and motioned for me to join her. She said that (BIG SIGH HERE), there was no need to do endoscopy on Cara, nor did she feel there was a need to do exploratory surgery-just yet. She repeated the x-rays we just did two days ago and DID see evidence of a small amount of corn-based cat litter in her intestines. She didn't see anything else that was alarming, but did feel Cara could still have some sort of parasitic infection or allergic reaction to her food.
©2011 Robin A.F. Olson. They let her answer the phones, but she wasn't good about writing down messages.
Oh no...her food. Here we go again. She better not tell me to feed Cara dry food. Thankfully, she only asked me to feed a unique protein in a canned food and she had to write a prescription for me to get IVD Duck & Peas formula. I asked if it had grain. She assured me it did not. I grumbled about the food, but told her I would get some. She told me to de-worm Cara for three more days using Panacur and she also gave Cara an emedic to keep her from vomiting for a day or so. Other than that, we'd just wait and see.
Of course, if Cara DOES continue to vomit, we're looking at endoscopy AND possibly surgery. I wasn't going to start worrying about that. I wanted to focus on getting Cara better.
It's been two days since we saw Dr. K and Cara has been keeping her food down. Last night her energy level was jaw-dropping. She could almost fly on her own she can jump so high. This morning there was a mishap, a step back. I discovered one of the cats had broken the light bulb in the lamp in their room. Broken bits of glass were all over the floor. The cats were right in the area with the broken glass. I acted quickly to get them out of the room, but the next thing I envisioned was yet another trip to the Vet. What fun would it be...four cats with glass in their paws?
©2011 Robin A.F. Olson. Cara doesn't like “Love Triangle,” but I can't help watching it.
That Vet bill is not math I care to do. The cats seem fine, but Cara got so badly frightened by the vacuum cleaner, even though it was quite far away from her and she couldn't even see it. She started to viciously hiss at me, then ran and hid. She's never ever been even the slightest bit nasty with me or her siblings. She's doing better now, but I think we all need a nice quiet evening with NO MORE VET TRIPS and perhaps a restful nap.
Yes, a nap. I could go for that, just not a dirt-nap.