Wednesday, October 21, 2009

I went to the library today...

...and got a library card. It's been a long time coming, but when I had no license, it was a pain to ask to go anywhere, so it wasn't a priority.

I took out seven books, all on animals. Feral cats, animal emotions, animal rights, dog behavior, etc. I read "An Unlikely Cat Lady" in one sitting. Basically a memoir focused on how one woman became a "cat lady" through a pregnant stray showing up at her door. It was interesting, mainly because most people are encountered with stray animals in their lives and it really makes a difference what that person decides to do regarding that animal. Do you ignore him? Do you shoot him? Do you scare him away? Do you take him in? Do you try to find a home for him? Do you feed him? Do you sterilize him? One person can make an incredible difference in the lives of these abandoned animals, even if it's just those three kittens they found in the backyard. Or that dog on the highway. Or that cat that has been roaming the streets looking for something to eat.

I like how the author emphasizes that feral cats cannot be ignored into non-existence, they can't be starved off, they can't even be killed off. Though it does not make much sense at first, the only way to stop the population explosion is to sterilize them and take care of them.

Anyway, it was a good book. Interesting to read how an every-day person can get caught up in the plight of feral and stray cats and make a difference. Honestly, I feel like I am the same way. Yes, I've always loved animals, but I am not a collecter. Though I feel for these animals that must survive through horrible winters, little food, and no shelter, I cannot and will not take them all in. People assume I want to "rescue" every stray cat. I do want to help them, but I know my limits. I know I'll end up with more cats/pets in the future, but I am not going to take every animal in that comes my way. I want to help sterilize them, I want to make sure they have food and shelter, and if possible, I will help find them homes. But I do not fool myself in thinking that I can save them all. I know that I have many sad experiences and times of trial ahead of me, but I still want to do what I can. I expect to shed many tears throughout my life on the behalf of animals, but I hope to find kindred spirits who will help me through the pain.

On another note entirely, I am filling out job applications and sending in resumes. I have an interview tomorrow at the emergency animal hospital - we'll see how that goes. I don't expect they'll be able to pay me my minimum (which is still quite low) but we'll see. Otherwise, I'm applying for any sort of job at the people hospital. Honestly, I just need to make a little more money so I can support myself. Wish me luck, b/c otherwise, I'm going to be wheeling people around in the hospital...

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Hooray! *does a little happy dance*

KB's calico girl is being adopted today!!! The woman who came over Friday evening was just wonderful. She brought a friend with her, who fell in love with the little grey and white guy, but she's not sure how her resident cat would feel about a newcomer. (Maybe she'll change her mind, haha)

E (girl adopting calico) had two cats who were very bonded. One died about a month ago from congestive heart failure. She had actually brought her cat (Stinky?) to the animal hospital where I work, and Dr. R misdiagnosed him with an asthma attack, so he gave him steroids. Which sped up the process of killing his heart, and Stinky died two days later. You could just see how much she cared about her cat, and how horrible it was for her to go through this. I guess I had helped with the cat, b/c she told me that she recognized me, and that I was very nice to her. (Haha, good thing, too, right?) I vaguely remember handing over a grey cat to a woman, saying "Don't scare your mommy like that."

The other cat (Azrael?) is now very lonely, very needy, and probably wondering wher his brother went, poor kitty. So E decided to try Craigslist for a kitten, as she didn't feel like going through the whole adoption process through a rescue or shelter. Lucky for me! She found the post about the LV's kittens, but as they have decided to adopt all of them out through their friends and family, I pointed her to KB's calico. (They have more time, money, and patience than me, too, so I don't feel too bad.)

So on Saturday, I took both kittens to the Pet Saver Superstore in Greece/Rochester for their vaccinations. I got lost multiple times, but fortunately I made it there and back safely. = ) The kittens did great, and both got rabies and distemper shots as well as another deworming. I am so glad that the little girl is being adopted, because the vet assumes them to be around six months old, perfect time to start mating.

*update* E's friend, T2, decided that she really did want to adopt the little grey and white boy. I was really hoping that she would, as she really fell in love with him on Friday night. So, both kitties seem to have found *wonderful* homes and I hope they do great! I plan on emailing them in a couple of weeks to see how they are doing. E named the little girl "Bella" as she is petite and dainty. T2 named the little boy "Ichabod," which I think is the cutest name *ever.* Both like to take pictures, so do hope they'll keep KB and I updated. I'm still so excited that we finally found these guys homes! One less thing to have to agonize over! (Poor Onyx, though. I think he's a bit lonely now, without the kittens there to keep him company. When she's in a more stable position financially, she'll have to get him a friend.)

Wednesday, October 14, 2009


I have caught two skunks so far. They were both so cute, too, and boy am I glad that they did not spray me. They're all just, "Hey, how'd I get in here? Hey, how do I get out? Oh hey, look! A way out! Cool!" *waddle waddle waddle away*

Every time I mention the skunks, people tell me "Oh be careful! They can be angry creatures!" Granted, I know little about wildlife, but these skunks are so chill. Let's just hope they don't start spraying me, b/c my parent's would *kill* me if I came home smelling of skunk. (I might myself, haha)

What is it about skunks (besides the smell, of course) that makes people so concerned? Are they really that vicious?

P.S. What a great word, "waddle." I like it very much.

Wendy's Colony

First cat I caught (don't think I ever posted pictures.) I think Mrs. L has her own names, but I call this one Cabbie. Because of that trucker. And she's a tabby. I'm original, huh?

Second cat - she was too smart for me. Mrs. L can pet her, so she scruffed her and deposited her in the cage quickly. Unfortunately, she is not socialized, so that made it a bit of an issue while trying to anesthetize her for surgery. I'll just have to transfer the cats into traps beforehand if a similar situation occurs.

Close up. Oh, and I named her Wednesday (b/c that's when she was trapped).

Third cat. I named her Ghost, b/c Mrs. L hadn't seen her in a while and thought she was the tabby cat that had been killed on the road.

I trapped another cat last night. A tabby with some white. She's supposed to be spayed today (or neutered, I don't know the gender for sure), but I guess the Dr. is behind, so it will take place later than usual. If it's much later, I may just leave her there over night to recuperate.
The recuperation part is something I'm not sure about. The doctors all tell me that when they are fully awake, they should be released. I just feel conflicted about releasing them when they are in pain (I know they get pain meds, but I'm sure there's still some pain), but I don't want to stress them out by keeping them. If they were socialized, it would be different, as they could go into a cage with food/water/litterbox... Not that I have the set-up anyway to provide that for them, but I still feel bad that they just had surgery and now have to go fend for themselves again. I'm just a softie. = ) What do other people do? I guess I should look that up.

That grey and white cat is still out there. She did have babies, and let me tell you, I am irritated that when Mrs. L had her in the cage, she let her go. THESE BABIES COULD HAVE BEEN PREVENTED. I think this cat is also too smart to go in the trap. Mrs. L tried to get her to go in the cage one night, but no luck. And now that she found that she has babies, she doesn't want to try again. Fortunately, she is not asking the LV's to take the kittens in. They have spent so much time and money on their eight kittens that I'm sure they want to simply find homes for these guys and be done. Or at least just not have to deal with Mrs. L anymore. Unfortunately, Mrs. L probably intends to just find homes for these guys without taking them to the vet or anything. But whatever. I can only do so much. I'll find a way to get that grey and white cat, though.

Adoptions and such...

The two people who were supposed to visit KB's two kittens last week never showed. And never called. I hate when people are so rude and inconsiderate. Fine, change your plans. But call and let me know so I can change mine.

In a way, I'm relieved, as I did not feel perfectly comfortable with either through email and on the phone.

There is a woman coming on Friday to visit with KB's calico. She seemed great through email, so I hope it works out.

I'm trying to work it out so I can take KB's two kittens to the Pet Saver Superstore on Saturday for their vaccination clinic. Both kitties need their vaccines, and though I would love to take them back to the animal hospital, I can't afford 2 vet visits of $47. I think it's great that they have vaccination clinics, and I might as well take advantage of them. Just have to figure out how to get into KB's house and such. I think she's working that day...

Lots of pictures for today!

The shyest little calico cutie. I took these first pictures just a few hours ago. She has gotten to the point where she'll come out of the tree house, which is good, but she's still very shy. She'll tolerate some petting, but not much.
This little man is hilarious. He *has* to play with everything the others play with. Simply needs to be the center of attention. He's perfectly socialized, loves attention, fine with being picked up, etc. He's such a sweetie.

This girl will let you pet her if you have food, but she's not that big on physical attention. She's slowly coming around, though.

Little corker.

This little one is doing the best behind the black and white male. She loves to be petted, but doesn't like to be picked up.
These cages are the best. They've got shelves, hammocks, blankets. The doors are open 24/7, but they love lounging around in them still.
They love their hammocks. = )

Top of the tree house.

Those little mice are their favorites, especially the black and white one.

My mousie.

That's right.

These next pictures are from last week. Little Cujo (grey feral one) stays in the tree house when humans are present. The LV's have seen him scurry back in when they enter, but have seen him on the windowsill, eating, playing, so at least he's out when it's just the kitties. If he does not become socialized, he has a home with one of the LV's daughters as an outdoor cat.

Little girl hiding.

I think the blue hammock is a bit bigger. It's the favored one.

They love that feather wand as well. I think this girl's ears are so cute! They look so big compared to her little head! Or maybe they're just rounder.

Silly face.

I love her coloring. She's super cute.

This girlie has gotten a little better. She still swats at me when she doesn't want to be petted (which is 80% of the time). She spends most of her time on top of the tree house when people are in the room, but has felt comfortable enough to come down a few times to play and eat.

Hi there.

Cutie on the windowsill.

Thursday, October 08, 2009

Bud Bud

This is Bud Bud. His "real" name is Ian, but I only call him Bud Bud. He's the hospital cat. He lost his eye to an infection (I believe) and was a stray, which explains his tipped ear. He's the sweetest thing ever and really just wants to be someone's lap cat and sleeping buddy. He's older and has to eat UR food b/c of blockages. The people who had him didn't have the money to feed him a special food or get the surgery that makes it so he doesn't get blocked. So Dr. R made him a hospital cat.
Which is great, b/c I love him, but he doesn't get the attention he deserves. He has a limited area to explore and except for me making sure I spend at least 15 min. a day with him, he gets very little attention. So I bring him with me to print pictures for the report cards and I spend my breaks with him. And if I don't get a break on a certain day, I spend time with him after work. It's not fair that such a loving cat gets hardly any attention as a HOSPITAL CAT in an ANIMAL HOSPITAL. It's something that frustrates me, but except for spending my own time with him, there's little I can do.
He's such a great cat, though. He doesn't mind other cats and most dogs at all. He could cuddle with anyone for about 17 hours straight. It was a great idea to make him a hospital cat and not put him to sleep, but I hope we can find him a home at some point.

Little Torti has a home

I feel bad I never got any other pictures of the little torti - but guess what? She all of a sudden had no problem with petting, being picked up, she was playing and just doing great overall. A great family (so I'm told) decided that they wanted her. I heard she's doing great and that the family all loves her. She was such a cutie. I'm very happy that she was able to go to a good home. = )

The other two in this picture are doing not well at all. The little grey one has been nicknamed "Cujo." He is not socialized whatsoever and may not ever be. The LV's daughter will take him to her house when it is warm again and keep him as an outdoor cat. For now, he will stay with the LV's. The other little calico tolerates petting and will eat from your hand/fingers, but she hides all the time - and with Cujo, so I don't think they're sending the right messages to each other.

Personally, I think that if they're not good candidates for adoption, they should be sterilized and returned. They've already been in a home for a month - will that affect them negatively when/if they are returned? And it's not as if it will happen any time soon, so they will probably have been in a home for a good six months when/if they are returned. But the LV's want to give them time, and that's certainly their decision as it's their time and money.

Wednesday, October 07, 2009

Prospective Adopters

So we have two (possibly) people coming to look at KB's kittens today. The girl was recommended by Mrs. L, the guy's mom found the ad on Craigslist. I already called the girl back to tell her that the calico is not ready to go to a new home yet unless she (the girl) feels comfortable spending a lot of time with her getting her more socialized. She still runs away when approached, doesn't like to be picked up, etc. (Note: the running away is not something that I think is easily fixed. Some cats are like that. Smidge, my little black kitty, has been with me since birth and still runs away from me when I walk towards her. But she lets me pick her up and do pretty much anything to her. I want this kitten to be able to be picked up, have her nails trimmed, be given meds if needed, etc. I don't want her to be scared out of her mind when approached/picked up.)

Also, this girl said she thinks it's cruel to spay/neuter. That's a big thing to me, so it's most likely not going to happen, but she can still come visit if she wants. When I spoke with her, I told her it's very important to KB and I that the cat is spayed because of health reasons. And indoor living - nobody wants to deal with a cat's constant heat cycle, spraying, male cats trying to find your kitty, etc. I hope I kind of made myself clear that if she doesn't spay, the adoption's not going to happen. Overall, she doesn't seem like a good fit for this cat. She doesn't have any experience in cats, doesn't want to spay. Who knows, we'll see.

The guy seems like an okay guy, but once again, who knows. He wants a male kitty playmate for his cat (whom he adopted from Petco), said he can get him neutered. Bert (male grey and white cat) is doing *great* per KB. He approaches her, snuggles with her, loves Onyx, etc. So we don't need someone as experienced for this little guy, b/c he's the kind of kitty almost everyone feels comfortable with. But I don't trust myself with this kind of stuff - I'm afraid all of these people secretly want to torture and breed and perform weird tests on these kitties. (Heard too many horror stories, I guess.) Do you just *know* when you know? I hope so.

There were two women that I felt great about, really wanted them to adopt. But the one wanted kittens who were already vetted, the other had a crisis with her dog and felt that it wasn't the best time financially to bring a new pet into the house. But I felt they were perfect, and that was just over the phone. So I guess I'll just try to listen to my instincts.

Wish me luck!

Thursday, October 01, 2009



I wanted a picture of Stranger on the header, but none of the ones I have seemed to fit right. That is actually Pickle at the top of the blog. When I get a good picture of Stranger, I'll switch it over, since he is the reason I started getting into stray and feral cats.
A couple of weeks ago, a woman who works at Quiznos brought over a dead cat in a plastic bag. She said she had found it in the road and wanted to know if we could cremate it under the "Good Samaritan" label. Didn't even know we had one, but we do. She was also wondering if it was one of our cats - it was a grey/brown tabby with some white on its paws. It was too difficult to tell, though. So I told everyone to be on the lookout for Tricky and Pickle, our two tabby and white cats.
Turns out, both Tricky and Pickle are still alive and well. I still regret that the cat had to die in such a way.

The Two Girls

Well, the tabby and white cat and the black cat are indeed females. Wasn't really expecting otherwise. They both do not look like they've been pregnant recently, the Dr. said. (Very good) They'll get rabies and distemper vaccinations, Advantage, and their left ears tipped.