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Little Minnie

I have been fostering for several years now. So it's not unusual for kittens to come my way. One morning I got a call asking if I could take in a mom and 3 kittens. They had been picked for euthanasia and would not be alive tomorrow if someone did not take them in. I just sent my last litter in for adoption at a local Petco so I had room.

I was shocked when they got here. It was not the fact that all where thin and had worms, eat mites and the starting of eye infections and kitty colds. It was this one tiny tiny kitten! In all my years of fostering and bottle raising kittens I have never seen one so small and so perfect. Everything about her was tiny, but I could see a spark in this little girl. I nursed all of them including their mom. Lots of good food, a warm home, a few nasty meds they did not like and tons of love. It did not take long for all to gain their health and grow in size, except Minnie. Her health was great, but she contued to remain tiny. Her siblings all grew and in no time they where ready for their first shots and adoption. Minnie had to stay because she did not weigh enough to give her her shots.

Minnie is now 6 months old and weighs 5 pounds. I do not see her getting any bigger. She will never leave. This is my baby. She is a spoiled baby that has no problem telling me when it's dinner time. She gives me kisses and pats my face. She is really good at telling me I need a break and it's time to love on her. She knows when I am depressed and will come make me happy. She has made herself at home and there is no way I can ever give her up. She is my tiny little kitty and will always be here to help me take care of the next littler to come my way.

Angie Brewer, Angie's Furry Foster Home
Princeton, TX

Memoir of Vincent Van Gogh, the cat.

My name is Vincent. I've been a good resident of the Rainbow Bridge since November 6, 2014 after I had the time of my life for 6 months with my late mom & dad.

In April 2014, I was brought into a county pound by someone sweet. Yes, it was very nice of him because my previous owner left me locked in the bathroom when s/he moved out. Someone was supposed to feed me, they said. After 16 years of being nothing but a loyal kitty, I found myself alone, hungry and confused in a locked bathroom. 3 weeks without food and water. I know, quite harsh.

At the pound, I spent 2 weeks in a cage watching people pass by. Then they sent me to a pet shop but I was sent back to the pound because I had bad poop. They examined me and I heard them say I might have to be "HPTS." Still don't know what HTPS means. But the next day, everything changed. My new parents, they came for me. They said they didn't care I had a tummy problem. And I did have big poop emergencies in the car on our way home! But they bathed me gently and prepared a comfy bed for me. I knew I was in a safe place when Dad started scratching my cheeks. He never stopped petting me and I never stopped purring until the very last moment of my life after that. Even when I became immobile, even after I stopped using the litter box, they both loved me like they had known me for 16 years. Today, I watch over them as they rescued their 4th kitty from the same pound. I heard Dad tell people I was the best pet ever. Love you, Dad.

Chikomaru & Co.
Phoenix, AZ

Reynolds & Snowman

Snowman (black) and Reynolds (orange & white) - they appeared as a pair of strays at my door 7 years ago. Reynolds was incredibly friendly; Snowman a pure feral. They were obviously "together". There was no question they'd adopted me almost immediately. Reynolds happily switched to being an indoor / outdoor cat. He got on fine with my 4 indoor cats, and even seemed to love going to the vet. Snowman stayed firmly feral (thankfully, she had been part of a Trap-Neuter-Release program). I made sleeping nests for them on a back porch they could access but my indoor cats couldn't, and that's where they were fed every day and sheltered in winter.

Whenever Reynolds would come into the house, Snowman would wait for him on the back porch. If you were in the garden, Reynolds would immediately come to you, and Snowman would sit 10 or 20 feet back and yell at him til he came back to her side. If he stayed in the house overnight, sometimes in the morning he'd cry by the door to go out, and as soon as he checked Snowman had fresh food & water and was okay, he'd demand to come right back in again, and head back to the bed. Outside, they were inseparable.

Sadly, Reynolds suddenly passed away about a year ago. He was around 6 or 7, and had a heart attack in the night. Despite getting to the vet within 20 minutes, he had thrown blood clots and there was nothing they could do.

Snowman, much to my surprise, has stayed at the house. For the first 6 months, she cried for him every day, sitting by the back door. Now, she only does that very occasionally, and just hangs out in the garden and on her porch. In all these years, despite my many efforts, I have never gotten closer to her than 3 feet, let alone touch her. But I feed her every day, keep her sleeping areas clean and cozy, and I'm sure we both miss Reynolds as much as each other.

Ann Arbor, MI

My Precious Misha

In 2002, I wanted to adopt a kitty. An acquaintance's neighbor's Russian Blue just had a litter and needed good homes otherwise would be put outside in a not-so-nice neighborhood, so I went to pick my kitty-or so I thought. When they were 6 weeks, I went to pick up my little gray boy. When I got there, though, there was this lively blue tortie baby-girl who was stepping all over the three boys to frantically get to me. I picked her up and we instantly fell in love and were inseparable from then on. I’ve never known a kitty as affectionate-or attached-as her. Her normal spot was always curled up on my chest on the couch. She was my precious baby and I love her with every fiber of my being and I spoiled her like mad, always treasuring every moment of our time together. I knew from the day I took her home that she would one day break my heart when she left my life.

In August of 2014, she was diagnosed with diabetes. She was a hard kitty to regulate, but we were working on it and we’d been seeing some progress. But, right at Christmas she developed ketoacidosis. She spent 5 days in the hospital and was released, But, within just a couple of days, the symptoms returned. I had been syringe feeding her, administering subcutaneous fluids, praying that she just needed more time for recovery. But the ketoacidosis returned. She wouldn’t respond to insulin and it was clear that she was done fighting. We said goodbye to her January 5, 2015 and I am miserable and heartbroken.

I look forward to the day when I see her once again and can hold her in my arms. Sometimes, the pain just seems too much to bear. I am so glad that I rescued her that day, as I know she had the best life any kitty could possibly have but the truth is, she rescued me and she put so much love in my life at a time when I needed it most.

Elizabeth F
Marietta, GA

Cure All

About 2 years my mom was in the hospital, things weren't looking to good. Around that time I came across a 3 legged dog at the SPCA. I mentioned him to my husband and "no" we have two dogs was the response. I couple of weeks passed, I kept checking the website. He was still there - I had to fly to visit my mom and suggested to my husband, why not stop by the SPCA after you drop me off - it's close to the airport - NO - was the answer. (Of course I had been working on him this whole time..)

When I got my mom's I called home - My husband had been to the SPCA and said never again would he go there - he also mentioned he thought the dog was adopted. I was sad to hear that. I called the SPCA, they told me some guy had been there, but I could be next in line to adopt. I called my husband with the good news!

His response was "it was me, I just had to see how serious you were". Two days later we drove straight from the airport to the SPCA to home with Diesel - our beautiful 3-5 year old White Shepard - Husky? mix. It's as though he has always been with us - the girls (our other dogs) love him and so do the cats. My mom loves him too!

Grande Prairie, AB, Canada

Piper Gets A Friend!

I had one kitten, and was looking to adopt a second so that my current kitty had a friend while I was away at work. I went to over 5 shelters, and while there were so many cute kitties, I just didn't feel like I had found "the one". Starting to feel discouraged, I pulled up to my county's local animal control [kill shelter]. I walked to the cat room where there had to be at least 20 cats. Directly in the middle sat a medium haired (MESSY!), 5 month old stray. Her "meows" sounded course and rough, like she had been through a lot. I held her and she immediately starting purring and kneading. It was obvious this little girl had not had enough love in her life. I knew she was the one! I could not take her that day because she had to be spayed, but I picked her up 2 days later and named her Piper. When i first brought Piper home, I have to say it was quite rough. My other kitty was not a fan. I had to keep them separated for about a week. Piper had a horrible gas problem...and her hair was just dirty and messy. I made sure to get her on a good feeding routine, and cleaned her up a bit. Then, she got a horrible eye infection, almost to the point where it was completely swollen shut. I was so worried! After many antibiotics and eye drops, the infection finally went away!! Atfer that, everything has been up hill! Piper and Penny [my other kitty] are the best of friends! Piper loves cuddles and her favorite game is taking my high heel and hiding it in a new place every night. I am so happy I have my two babies :)

Jenn Asbury
Baltimore, MD

A Belated Christmas Gift

It was a frosty December morning when I heard a cry from outside my window. A scrawny wisp of a tabby was trying to get someone's attention. I went outside with some cat food. The hungry, kitty polished off two servings in no time flat. Tabby, with no tag or collar, was either lost or abandoned. Eager to escape the winter chill, tabby followed me inside.. I couldn't bring kitty to my apartment before a vet check because I didn't want my cat, Mai-Ling, exposed to any unknowns. My husband, Rick, and I brought tabby to the vet. Surprise, kitty was pregnant.. A scan revealed no chip. Rick and I were unable to care for mama and the future kittens, so I reached out to friends and family. My husband's aunt offered to adopt mom cat and provide kitty care until they could be offered for adoption. Auntie named her new cat Millie.and doted on her immediately. It was a few days before Christmas and Auntie declared that Millie was the best Christmas gift ever. Shortly after New Year's Day Millie gave birth to seven healthy kittens. The were less than 3 hours old when Rick and I rushed over to see them. There were two black kittens and five tabbies. The first born and soon-to-be leader was a pink-nosed cutie we called Sammy. We named them all, but knew the time there was temporary. Nevertheless, we doted on them, especially Sammy. He was fearless. Time passed too quickly and it was time to adopt out the kittens. We loved them all but knew they had to get homes of their own. We gave ourselves a belated Christmas gift and went home with Sammy. It's been several years now. Sammy, evolved from a cutie to a very handsome boy, is the boss of the house. Millie and Auntie are inseparable. We celebrate Sammy every day, and rejoice at Christmas time for our belated Christmas gift.

Abby Frank
Queens, NY

Hank the Cat

My best friend, Nik Beat, loved his 8 year old cat a lot. So, I knew when I found Nik's body after his sudden death from a heart attack, that he would be worried about what would happen to Hank.

I had climbed in Nik's window out of worry for him, and Hank came to the window. I let my cat Tarene down to keep Hank from going out the window. The two cats had met twice before, and liked each other.

I had to stay there after calling 911, while firemen, paramedics and then the police showed up. The police put a stool in the hall for me, and Hank had to be told many times to not come out there. He was very good, and stayed in.

I kept calling out to the police that I would take the cat! Finally, one said, "Good! Someone is taking the cat!"

A bit later, an extra policeman came along, and he was told that he would be the one to question me. They wanted Nik's family numbers, too. I told them that those were at my place

That meant that Hank, Tarene and I were getting a ride home in the police car. I had no extra carrier for Hank, so I carried him and Tarene out to the car.

I sat in the back with Hank. Poor Hank was very upset, and sat on the seat, yowling all of the way to my place! There was a sign saying that we'd be videotaped. So, now the police have a nice video of a yowling cat!

The policeman was nice enough to carry Tarene in her bag to my place, and I carried Hank. He struggled a bit, but was mostly good.

It is now 3 months later, and Hank has settled in well. Tarene is only a year old, and he is very good when she bounces on him. Hank has lost a bit of weight, which is good, playing chase with her. .

I am happy that I could help my best friend and his cat.

penelope smith
Toronto, ON, Canada

A Boy Named Matilda

Helping out a friend who had to move a small feral colony from a parking lot turned into me taking the colony to my own house in the country. After relocation to my home, 2 kittens and 1 adult remained, using the feeding and sheltering huts that my husband had built for them. I named them Spook (because she was scared of her own shadow), Punk the brother, and the adult whom I assumed to be the mom, Matilda. However, on our first trip to my vet, it was discovered that she was actually a "he", although he cared for the kittens like a mom. By this time, he knew and responded to the name Matilda, so it stuck. After 9 months, Punk would allow me to pet and hold him, and would sit in my lap on the porch. Matilda took 13 mths to socialize. Once I did however, he decided that I was his, and stayed with me constantly, even jumping up onto the window ledge in the morning when he knew I was awake to be let into the house, where he would remain during the day, leaving at night to be with Punk.

Matilda, being still a feral, friendly to me only, was given his choice to come and go as he pleased, so whenever I went outside, so would he. He spent long hours being my best buddy and most faithful companion, even "guarding" me as I sat outside at night watching the wildlife. He was also the most polite cat I've ever known.

One horrible, heartbreaking day, a woman texting and driving well over the 30mph speed limit, ran over and killed Matilda as he was crossing the street to come see me as I worked outside on an art project. Although she did have the decency to stop and find out where he had lived, in my heart of hearts I will never forgive her carelessness that stole away this wonderful, beautiful love of my life. I will miss him always. He was with me for 8 loving years.

Livonia, NY

Terrified and alone

I have 4 rescue cats and this last one, was the most challenging and most rewarding; I named him Sawyer (from the TV show LOST) He came to me two years ago. He would hang out on my deck, would not come to me, ran when he saw me; he was very mangy, matted, thin and filthy, I left food out and he ate. I have a cat door that I put in for my other cats, after about 3 months, he would come inside my condo and sleep on towel by fireplace, when I would come home, he'd run. I would talk to him, do the eyelash thing they tell you to do slowly, to help calm him, but, he was so terrified, he would shake. Winter was coming and it's very cold, I built him an igloo out of styrofoam and he used that. Then in January he disappeared until first of March. When I saw him, I was so excited, but he turned to look at me and he had blood all over the front of him and was so weak that he fell off my deck. For the first time, he let me pick him up and I rushed him to the vet, thinking he would be euthanized if he was this badly injured. I was in tears, this poor cat, he came back to me so I could save him, I couldn't let him down. I felt he trusted me now. The Vet said he had gotten trapped in something and his whole right leg/paw was very infected and she wasn't sure it could be saved, he is also FIV positive (AIDS virus), so odds were against him. She kept him over night, IV antibiotics, a bath and the next day, he was a whole new cat. One surgery, lots of antibiotics and he's fully recovered and has been an inside cat ever since. He looks me in the eye and just talks, follows me where ever I go, he's my shadow. Constantly wants to be petted and loved....and he is. What a joy.

indianapolis, IN
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