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One night in June 2000, I happened to turn my head and there she was, this little imp. She was sick, had a gooey eye, so I scooped up all 1.5lbs of her six weeks self and off we went to the emergency vet. The vet gave her a really big shot and asked if I planned to keep her. I said I would think about it, but would definitely keep her through her meds. Ha! Abigail had other plans and already decided she was staying. She easily won over the rest of the human family. She was so small and so cute. My dog, Phineas fell in love, Katina my other cat (her story is here too!) was not thrilled, but eventually came around. And Abby, well, she was running around like a little fireball when she came sliding head first into me. She looked up, I looked down and I swear if that little twerp could talk, she said, "You're my Mommy now!" I am indeed. Today marks 17 years to the day I found her. She is still going strong, has lots of adventures and is my little twerpy-twerp. I always tell her she won the cat lottery the day I found her, but I know I hit the jackpot.
We heard a small cry from the dumpster, the only indication that she was alive. She was motionless.
She had an obvious head injury, and was bleeding badly.
I knew a little about head injuries, and I knew that supportive therapy was about the only treatment option.
Poor Spike was just a tiny little thing! She couldn't stand at all, couldn't eat on her own. I started with fluid by mouth, water at first, then adding canned food mixed with water. I had to support her so she was upright. I knew I was fighting an uphill battle.
She needed to be fed every few hours, so I took her to work with me and kept her under my desk.
Injury to one side of the brain leads to problems on the opposite side. Spike was weak on her right side. She still couldn't stand, but if I propped her up in the cage on her right side, she could manage to eat on her own.
Little by little we were able to entice her forward with treats. Just small steps at first. She continued to go to the right. I remember her trying to navigate the hallway, which she conquered because she always had a wall to her right! But put her in an open room, and she would continue to spin in circles. She was still just a little thing, but gaining strength and balance day by day. When she would try to jump on anything, she would still go to the right, thus missing most of the time! (She still jumps a little crooked.)
We found Spike in 2002 and she is now the oldest member of our cat family at 15 years.
At the end of January, a very pregnant stray cat was living outside and struggling to survive in the bitter cold. A kind person found her and brought her to the pound. The shelter staff knew that it wasn’t a good place for newborn kittens who are susceptible to disease, so they called CARE and we immediately rushed over and took the pregnant tortie into foster care. The very next day, Mimosa’s five tiny kittens were born - as if she were waiting for a safe place to have them.
Mimosa was a wonderful mother. Even though she was thin and exhausted from being out on the street, she gave her babies everything she had - cleaning them, cuddling them, keeping them safe and warm and fed. Mimosa’s kittens grew strong and healthy, and when the time came, they were all adopted quickly.
Taking care of the kittens had exhausted Mimosa. She was thin, tired, and started to lose all the hair around her neck because her immune system was so weak. We had her spayed and worked on building up her strength, and something wonderful happened. Her hair grew in, and she became healthy and active again, re-learning how to play and be a kitten again.
Mimosa was a wonderful mother, and now that all of her kittens have been adopted, she desperately wants a human family to take care of.
Please share her story.
Adoption info http://care-cats.org/cat/mimosa
CARE Cat Adoption & Rescue Efforts, Inc (Looking for a home local to Richmond, VA)
Update on a Frozen Miracle
Praline: I have adapted well, very well indeed to my new life as a home cat. I have gained a healthy 2½ lb; I love to play with my siblings, especially with my elder Java; I think he sees me as rambunctious, but being the gentleman that he is, he plays along in mutual chasing and let me win the race sometimes. I love catnip; and my favorite toy is definitely the fishing pole with tinsels; the other poles are fun too, mind you; my jumps and somersaults are spectacular to my humans! I have already set rituals around the house, one being daily playtime with my mom in the morning before she leaves for work; and at night, chasing movements under her bed sheets. I remind her that not everything has to be serious in life ;)
Living in the country for 50+ years, we have had our share of feral cats. Some have gotten friendly enough to be considered pets and be named. I recall Banjo, Creamsicle and Yoda with fond memories. Our current outdoor cat is Red, so named because I thought Orange would not be a suitable name for a cat. He has had an adventurous life roaming the neighborhood. He was once gone for 10 days and I had pretty much given up on him. But back he came with a few new scars, but otherwise in good shape.
He is now about 11 years old and spends more time napping in the sun than roaming. But he greets me with head bumps and purrs at every meal. And he enjoys pretending that he doesn't like our German Shepherd, but they are really good buddies.
We cannot bring him in the house in winter because he has no indoor manners, but he has a snug house outside and is very content.
More about our other cats later.
In September ’14 our son and I stopped by our local Humane Society resale store. While #1 son checked out the store I checked out the cats available for adoption (even though we already had five rescue cats.) Two all black boys caught my attention with their antics. The tag on the cage stated they were five months old and had been there for several months. I was told no one showed any serious interest in them because they had four strikes against them; they were black, they were males, they were no longer cute little babies, and they were bonded and had to go together. They were named Heckle and Jeckle, appropriate due to their appearance and personalities. When we returned home I told my wife about them, and after some discussion we decided that while they'd not be put down if they weren't adopted, they deserved a loving home. My wife returned with me to the store and quickly fell for them just as I had. They were snugglers, purring at the first scratch, and we wound up adding two more to our cat clan. After their months of cage life they couldn't jump up on chairs or even a low ottoman when they arrived at their new home, but they quickly built up their muscles and were soon tearing around the house, often terrorizing the older cats. On their first visit with our vet she said they were the closest to identical twin kittens that she'd seen. They’re grown now and Jeckle is larger than his brother Heckle, but if you don’t know them they’re hard to tell apart. They're still vocal, playful, loving, often silly, and they’re great additions to our family. Their personalities and antics led my wife to claim they're a new species - bugger monkeys. I just call them the Beastie Boys.
Today I had to say goodbye to my baby kitty, Lindsay. She was 18 years old. Lindsay suffered from kidney disease, blindness and most recently seizures. I found Lindsay on my front porch 16 years ago. She had no claws and was too thin. Lindsay had a rough start after I brought her into my home of two cats & a turtle. They never got along so I tried to make peace the best I could. After losing my two cats Lindsay finally had full run of the house for about 6 years. I pretty much left her alone since that’s the way she liked it. Of course I would have preferred to have some kisses and snugs but I knew her all too well. Whatever made her happy, that’s all I wanted. Over the years Lindsay developed skin allergies and a sensitive stomach and arthritis. The worst was when she was diagnosed with renal failure. She went in every week for more than 2 years to get her fluids and was also put on a diet of KD food. Lindsay wasn’t the best patient at the Vet Hospital so after biting a technician twice, they told me I could no longer bring her in for fluids. She did well for a while until a few weeks ago she started having seizures. I treated her with Phenobarbital and Buprenex for pain. Needless to say her little body started showing signs of defeat and it was up to her Mommy to make the decision. One that I regret but in my heart I knew it was the right thing to do. After all those years, My Sweet Baby finally allowed all the kisses and snugs up until the end. I will cherish that time we had forever. You are so missed Lindsay baby. The house is so empty without you.
I need to send out a big thank you to this community. The support everyone here has shown us has left me lost for words. Thank you so much for your love and support and kind messages.
Several weeks ago I posted Marley's story (please see original post below for full story).
The last 7 weeks been the most trying up and down days of our lives. One day we would see massive improvements and then the next we weren't sure if we would make it through the day. Marley was diagnosed with a rare brain infection and underwent brain surgery. She has gone through complications with medication sending her into a state of toxicity. She lost her appetite and I was left with no other option than to syringe feed her for over a week until her appetite came back. Her ability to walk came and went as we weaned her off of anti-inflammatories. Yet through all of this, her spirits stayed strong and she never stopped fighting.
I am happy to say that Marley is doing amazingly well. She has so much energy and strength back. We are going on walks and playing fetch and enjoying life every day.
Marley will have to be on strong anti-fungal medications for the next 6 months to ensure we get all of the infection followed by another MRI to make sure everything is gone. On top of this, we just found out Marley will need to undergo one more surgery in the next few weeks. On top of her skull being cracked by whatever abuse she encountered in her young life, it also left her with several cracked/broken teeth in the back of her mouth which now have become infected. She will be monitored closely by the same top anesthesiologist that did her surgery the last time and will be in great hands.
We honestly could not have gotten through all of this without the support of everyone around us. From the bottom of my heart, thank you. You have helped save Marley's life and we will eternally be grateful.
One cold winter night approximately 17 years ago, a stray gray tabby cat crawled up onto the block of a truck engine to get warm. Not knowing the cat was there, the truck owner turned the motor over, which severely mauled the cat’s hind leg. The owner took pity on the poor animal and brought him to a local humane society, where the cat’s hind leg was amputated at the hip. ‘Bailey’ spent many months living in a cage while he recuperated.
Although he was a favorite of the humane society employees, Bailey was never adopted because most didn’t want a handicapped animal. The amputated stump seemed to frighten most people. Plus, Bailey didn’t adapt well to being caged and would yowl at the top of his lungs when transported to pet adoption events. After spending more than a year at the shelter with no serious lookers, the humane society decided to try listing Bailey on a relatively new website called Petfinders.com.
The rest is history. I spotted Bailey (renamed Hoppy) in 2000 and we’ve been inseparable ever since. Hoppy has the ability to run, climb, jump and do anything else a ‘normal’ cat can do. Of all the pets I’ve owned in my life, he is the most loving and devoted.
My mother was looking for a companion after her husband's death. We looked around on the internet until we saw a small little dog who was described as a complete lap dog. "That's all she does!" Her trainer said as he narrated her video. Just sitting there, next to her foster Mom--two little round eyes staring out between her foster mom and the edge of the Lay-Z-Boy. "This would be a good dog for an older person." Her trainer continued. Also, we learned that this little dog was a rescue from a puppy mill nearby. About five years old, her name was "Peanut." Peanut had to learn potty training, how to drink out of dish, how to walk on a leash, how to get used to night-time, and other difficulties, because she was kept in a cage all her life. She was greatly blind and she lost most of her teeth as well. Undaunted, she was cute Chiweenie--Dachsund and Chihuaha mix. She turned out to be a special companion for all of us,a not just my mother. Our favorite was the little "food dance" she would do. Spinning around and letting her tongue fly and her nails tap out a rhythm on the kitchen floor. Now she has all the lap time she could ever want!