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Tiger, the fighter!

On August 17, 2014, as I was getting ready to take my mother home from the cottage on the French River, I happened to look outside the window and saw a cat on the front lawn. When I told my mother that a cat was outside, she thought one of the other cats had gotten out. I grabbed a can of wet food and went outside towards the cat. I wasn’t very brave as I didn’t know this cat but he didn’t move as I got closer. His little meow nearly broke my heart. Sounded like he was asking me to help him. I set the can down on the lawn in front of his mouth and he jumped on it like it had been a long time since he had had a meal.

I couldn’t leave him outside so I picked him up and brought him inside the cottage. He was skin and bones. You could see his hip-bone and every one of his ribs. Before I left to bring my mother home, I laid him on the couch and when I came back he hadn’t moved an inch. I was truly afraid that he wouldn’t survive the night even though he was now in a safe place. He hid under my bed all night. Bright and early the next morning, I saw him coming out and going straight to the cat dish. He ate it all and drank a lot of water. He grew stronger and stronger every day.

The rescue shelters in the area had a no-kill policy for dogs but not for cats so I couldn’t bring him there after saving his life from starvation or another animal. I was going to keep him but already had too many rescues (my sister says if there is an animal in need, he will find me). I called my sister who lives in Scarborough, ON and basically burst out in tears when she said she would take him. He is now a beautiful healthy cat who is thriving and spoiled rotten.

Claire Larose
Jarvis, ON, Canada

Spock, the cat who chose me

I was finishing a late night Target run when I came back to find a kitten sitting on top of my car. He was adorable, but I knew I wouldn't be allowed to bring home a 3rd cat since I already had two. After talking to him for awhile, I said "Cat, I'm sorry, but I have to go home now." He looked at me, stretched luxuriously and flopped down.

So I said, "Okay, then I'm going to go get you some Meow Mix," and headed back into the store. I honestly didn't expect him to still be there and when I walked back to my car, I didn't see him and my heart sank. I said, "Cat? Are you there?" and to my surprise I heard a tiny "Meow!" and looked down to see that he had been waiting for me in the bushes.

I fed him and he immediately started purring and rubbing against me. I didn't want to leave him, but I couldn't hang out in the parking lot all night so I begged my husband to let me bring the cat home. He reluctantly agreed, so I took the kitty home and my husband made a midnight run for a cozy bed and collar. We tried to find his owners without luck. The vet told me he was likely a stray, since the tip of his ear was clipped.

My friend suggested the name Spock because of his ear, so Spock it was! We were worried about introducing a 3rd cat, especially with a toddler, but he's been great. He's extremely well behaved and they have become best buddies. He follows her everywhere, naps next to her crib and everyday they sit in the window together watching the world go by. Live long and pawsper, Spock!

Jennifer
Los Angeles, CA

Kali's Song

Kali's Song (Forever Home)

Eleven years is an awful long time

To go without love of the animal kind

We grieved so long, thought we’d not recover

Time does heal hearts, we have discovered

Our son and his girl adopted a baby

Four sweet little paws and a face full of maybes

Went for a visit, fell in love with her

Two pounds soaking wet, just a ball of fur

Got us thinking maybe it’s time

To open our hearts to our own little feline

So I started looking, spent days and days

Broke my heart, all the homeless strays

I kept searching, kept looking online

I belonged to her, when her eyes met mine

My head said “She has got to be gone”

My heart said “Try!” “This connection's so strong”

So I sent an e-mail to her foster mom

She said “Many applied, but they all were wrong”

“She’s a special little girl, gonna take the right fit”

“So tell me, about you, lets see if you’re it”

I told her our story, laid it all on the line

She said “When can you meet her? You’ll do just fine!”

I could not believe when she said to me

“If Kali chooses you, you’ll be a family”

Now 200 miles is not that far

Till you’re picking up your baby and you’re going by car

Then four little hours seem like forty days

Were nervous wrecks, unsure how it'd play

We finally arrived, we were in her world

Finally got to lay eyes on this beautiful girl

Upon first meeting, we extended our hands

She took in our scent and seemed to understand

We were there for her and her alone

That her journey was ending

And soon she would be “Forever” home

Inga Binyon
Gualala, CA

Baby Rollo

So, we already had a cat---- an adoption kitty that needed a home! However, we wanted a friend for her, since she seemed lonely. The shelter near us has Free Feline Fridays each first Friday of the month, so 10 months after we got the first cat, my boyfriend and I went back for another (they're like potato chips, you can't just have one!). We saw this adorable tiny diluted tortie kitten, and when I picked her up, she snuggled into my arms and wouldn't leave. She had been marked to leave with another person, but they decided on her littermate instead, so we got to go home with her! She's been our devoted bug killer and snuggle buddy ever since. So lucky to have her!

Jessica
Bloomington, IN

The story of Sissy & Jax

I had just relocated for work and was living away from my friends and family and without a roommate. I knew I wanted a pet around to help keep my sanity working in the stressful job I had. I got a shelter recommendation from a coworker and the next day I went down with my mind set on taking home one adult cat. The volunteer invited me to look around the cat room and let her know who I wanted to meet. The room was big and quiet. Most of the cats were sleeping or quietly watching me from their cages, except one. This grey fur ball with bright yellow eyes named Jax came right up to the door of her cage rubbing, dancing and "yelling" at me. I made my way around the room and came back to Jax and told the volunteer I wanted to meet her. Well, the volunteer told me that she came with a sister, Sissy. Sissy was the opposite of Jax sitting in her litter box with kitty litter on her face just looking down, very sad. I was unsure, but I said OK and took them home that night. As soon as we got home it was obvious that this was a relationship meant to be! Jax slept on the bed with me that night. Sissy was a little timid but eventually came out of her shell to show her sweet demeanor. These two kitties can not be separated, they are best buds. They are the smartest, sweetest, most playful, and most entertaining cats I have ever had. They each have their own personalities and antics that never get old. They greet me at the door when I come home and when the house I suspiciously quiet I can find them snuggled together in a kitty hug. Sissy is a sweetheart and very affectionate and Jax remains loud and crazy and lovey in her own way. I believe Jax chose me for her & Sissy, she was so excited for me. I lovingly refer to them as my "2 for 1 special".

Jessica S.
Clinton, MA

The Cat we didnt want...

Me and my wife had just got done putting down my beloved cat Bear, he suffered from from a rare gum disease that made it painful for him to eat, chew, move his mouth... After a hail mary full mouth tooth extraction, it didn't work. We were devastated.

Three or four days later, I am sitting at my desk at work, when my best friend pop's in and asks how I am doing and such, he says.. hey wait here. He comes back with a kitten that was found in an abandoned subaru, and he felt it was destiny to be since I work subaru's for a living.

The kitten was in bad shape, extremely small, sounded like it had a upper respiratory infection, among many other issues. I was beyond mad, I didn't think the little girl was going to live! We made an emergency vet visit for her, got her checked out, ear mites cleaned out, fleas taken care of, dewormed, etc etc etc... We couldn't get her FIV tested since she was too young and we had 3 other cats at home!!!

So over the next month, we kept her quarantined in our bedroom, and took care of her, but she kept sounding worse and worse, every week we took her to our vet and we had to try something different... Nothing was working she was still small, didnt eat alot, and labored to breathe. One day she just started choking and dry heaving for no reason.. so we get her in our car rush to vet, I was driving a bit crazy and at about halfway there she vomits her full stomach contents on my wife, starts breathing fine and starts taking a nap.

Turns out she had a huge cyst growing in her throat. We had it surgically removed, and almost overnight she grew into this beautiful cat.

When we got her, we didn't want her, we only wanted to foster her till she got better... By that time it was too late we loved her way too much!

And that's how we got Cali.

Peter Donato
allentown, PA

Smudge

My Smudge came to me through 4 Paws Animal Rescue while I was in hospital after having back surgery the lady that owns my place looked after her a few days until I got home as I already had an adult cat and had experience with lots of kittens from cats that I have owned in the past.The lady thought I could help this little one.Smudge was only 3 weeks old and all her brothers and sisters unfortunately passed away at the vet surgery during the same day they were found outside a local pound where they were offered to our animal rescue organisation.

Well I didn't have mumma cat to care for her so to the local library I go as I have always had a mother cat to look after her kittens. I needn't have worried my dog Jess was a great fill in mum, all I had to do is feed Smudge and Jess did the rest. As we also had foster dogs at the time Smudge loved being around them, not so much my adult cat Tigger at the time, but now Tigger is an old girl of 13, and has accepted Smudge as one of the family.

Smudge is now 8 years old and still thinks she is a dog. Smudge is such a character if she wants attention when I am sitting in my car she will jump up and tap my arm with her paw. Smudge also loves to go for a walk on her lead to our local park next door.Since I have had Smudge 4 Paws Animal Rescue have given me a few more young kittens to raise. They have all found their fur-ever purrfect homes.

The photo is of Smudge and Jess, when she approximately 4 weeks old.

Wendy Hardaker
Bli Bli, Australia

The Tuxedo That Could

~13 years ago, a little yearling kitten followed a kid home from school. It was very cold, but he was very vocal and cheery, trotting alongside me like he already knew me. The cat seemed desperate for help, even rubbing on the neighbor's dog and crying. Nobody knew who he was or where he came from. Knowing that it would get cold that night, my mom set him up in a dog pen in the basement and left him food. We already had 2 cats and weren't sure we could take on another.

He did not eat for 2 days, so we took him to the vet. He had a broken jaw, cracked ribs, all on his left side. They recommended euthanasia, but the cat was so lively we wanted to give him a chance. So the vet reset his jaw, gave us a thick nutrient paste, and we spent the next 6 months or so hand feeding and watering him. But what for a name? Well, the cat would climb up on your chest and meow right in your face when he wanted something badly, so we named him Chester.

Chester began to have seizures not long after his miraculous recovery - probably from being hit by a car before he found us, or worse... Luckily, there was a medication that could control most of the seizures, so for 13 years and counting, he has had it every day. In those 13 years, he has also survived: eating 3 ft of ribbon, the AC suddenly going out during a heat wave, and fibrosarcoma! He has paid it forward to us tenfold- he is quirky, calm and laid back, and very insistent that he sits right next to you when at the computer. He has a huge fascination with grass and loves to chase it. When he is feeling really affectionate, he seeks you out in bed and rubs his nose on your nose, over and over. He greets everyone at the door, and loves everyone he meets. How he found us or why, I'll never know. He is wonderful.

Anonymous
dayton, OH

Liang's 2 years of good life

She appeard one night when my friends and I were having a drink in a bar. I couldn't taker home with me, since I didn't have my own place, I could not bring another cat with me (allready had 6 cats). That night I couldn't sleep, couldn't take her off my mind. A one-eyed young feral cat that had the nerve to kick out 5 dogs from under our table. Call my friend that lived near the bar the next morning "if you see her, get her. I'm taking her with me". She said "she's just been hit by car, my neighbor has her". Drove right away! got her to the vet... jaw and 2 ribs broken. It was my fault!! I shoulded take her with me.

Ok, surgery, vet, pain killers, vet, more vet, one more surgery.

She became the most unbelievable, playfull, full of life cat. Had a a crazy temperament, anything could drive it off.

Liàng. Chinese word for "brightness", because she was.

She came out of surgery and hit every other cat I had, earned her place and forgot she was a feral cat. Became a house cat, never went out on the street again. Never tryed to run away. Two years I enjoyed her company.

One day, petting her, felt a bump on her ribs. Since she had those broken, took her to the vet for a check up. X-rays showed an overbone, nothing important... it seemed... Few days later, a nail fell off, blood everywhere. Vet again, blood check up, check the ribs again... There it is... Bone cancer. It took her from me in less than 3 months. Ribs, hand and jaw. That was it.

She was loved, is remembered with love. Tried to give her a good life. Hope I did it.

Juliana Calviño
Rosario, Argentina

Rock bottom to First Class! My furrever home finally came.

Hello, my name is Gracie and I am 13 years old. I had a long road finding my furrever home. My first 2 years were awful. I was dumped at the airport in Garden City, KS. l was there for almost a year! It was so hard to find water, and thunderstorms were scary! One day a friendly looking lady got off a flight and she had food! I was so hungry! The lady picked me up and took me home. I was safe and full for the first time in a long time! Good thing that I was in a safe place, because I was pregnant. After having my kittens, I thought this would be by furrever home, but my new mom had lupus and she could not keep me. It was sad for me because I like to sleep next to my human.

My pet mom’s friend had a daughter; I let her pet me once, although I was scared of anyone else. Her husband was not sure about getting a cat, but he gave in and I went to my new home. I ended up being a birthday present for my new cat mom, Andrea. I am sure that I won over my cat dad, Todd, by slowing coming up to him and sniffing him on the nose after work each day. Something I still do almost every day. It makes him happy.

I now have my humans trained to give me treats when I want them and wet food as a treat! I have a heated cat bed on my human’s bed for the winter! I have numerous kitty condos! I love my furrever home! I am a lucky kitty! I am so happy in my home and I snuggle with my pet parents every night.

Andrea Sandoval
Hays, KS
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