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Six years ago I had just come out of a bad relationship and was having a hard time. One day while I was out feeding the stray cats along came Hunabuna. He was dirty, hungry and his fur was all knotted up against his skin. It took us over a month to comb and cut out the knot balls (yes, he helped me). I love him so much, he is a real friend. He really helped me through a rough time. Every time I look at him I am filled with so much happiness. I can't imagine my life without him.

Salt Lake City, UT


Boots (the name we gave him) showed up on my patio in September. I had 3 cats already and was not sure he was a stray because he had a collier. He would sit outside the door looking in at us with his front paw up in the air as if it were hurt. We let him in our home when it started to snow. Took him to the vet the next day and had him fixed. They said Boots was about 3 years old and gave him a clean bill of health. About a month later he came to the back door with his foot hanging, bleeding, and leaves all stuck to him. I wrapped him in a towel ran him to my vet. I could not put him down without a fighting chance. He broke his leg in 3 places, broken ribs, lost his front fang, etc. They put pins in his front leg but didn't know if it was going heal. I didn't want to cut it off without trying first. Boots came home on Christmas Eve with a cast on. This went on until Valentines day when the cast came off and his leg had healed fine.

Boots is worth every penny I spent. Every night he will come on my bed and get right in my face for attention or maybe it is his way of thanking me.

We believe Boots was in a fight with the Great Dane next door. I am just thankful that Boots had the strength to make it back home again.

Hope Brady
Dix Hills, NY

Neko Leaves the City and Takes Possession of an Aircraft Hangar

I'd been taking Japanese lessons in the city for years. After two weeks absence, I pulled into the parking lot, noticed plastic dishes by the cultural society's front door.

"You will see," said a teacher when I asked.

Sure enough, a lean young tiger cat dashed up the sidewalk, as if on cue.

For two weeks, he'd stationed himself by the front door patiently waiting for visitors, begging food and entry. I knew he might not survive another week, given the heavy traffic just yards away. So, he rode home to our orchard fly-in neighborhood 30 miles away, that evening.

In short, for eight years he has faithfully guarded our home's 3,600 foot aircraft hangar as if it were his own. He's fought off raccoons, attacked intruding dogs regardless of size, and delivered to our doorstep a great assortment of rodents (intact but always missing ears and scalp).

At the same time, he loves children. Recently, when we brought him an understudy and got our first dog in 20 years, he slowly grew to accept both as playmates. He is a glutton for both human and animal companionship, it turns out. And, a fine part of our family!

Andy Shane
Granbury, TX

Hop Along Cassidy- my three-legged hero cat!

I rescued Cassidy from my apartment complex in Texas where she was born out in the wild. She had a birth defect and the vet recommended amputation of her front left leg. She was suppose to take it "easy" for 3 weeks but after only 3 days she was running around, in her baby onesies, with her brothers and sisters... like she had all 4 legs. Cassidy teaches me everyday that you don't have to be perfect in body to love and appreciate life to the fullest. She has truly rescued me and made my life so much more fun and exciting with her funny three-legged antics! She is my Hop-Along Cassidy.

M. Stelter
San Antonio, TX

Saving the Paws (Sammy-Sassy-Chloe)

I have saved 3 kitties and Sammy is my newest. He is 7 months old. His mother dropped him off at my back door when he was 3 weeks old, so we took him in and he is now a part of my family, along with Paws. Sassy is my oldest. She is 7 years old (on top in the photo), and I have Chloe. She is 5. I also have 10 outdoor cats I feed that are neighborhood outcasts.

June Sprague
Flint, MI

My dog Blue

When I decided to get married a second time around I followed my husband to America. He was in the Army stationed at Fort Irwin CA at the time, and, being born in Germany, I needed a Visa to stay and work here. The paperwork took about 8 months, and during this time I was not allowed to work. After cleaning the house for the 5th time I got very bored and lonely. I looked through the local paper we got here on Post and I found a dog that looked like a wolf.

The Paper advertised him as his last chance before euthanizing would occur. My heart melted and I spoke with my husband that night. He said we have 2 kids, are you sure you want a dog? Yes, I am sure. I grew up with dogs and I have always worked with German Shepherds. When we looked at him at the Foster Parent's home we could not resist and so we took him home. Were we in for a surprise? He was a very aggressive dog who wanted to be the Alpha Male. We then found out that we would be his last home, he was already returned twice after he bit the other owners. The Military Police caught him in the desert after he was abused very badly from a Soldier. I was not about to give up and we worked a great deal with him. He helped me overcome so many different things living in a new country that I am very thankful he came into my life. He has helped me become a professional Dog Trainer and he is the best trained dog you can wish for. He is about 12 years old by now and still very spirited. He is my dog Blue.

Manuela Connatser
Rancho Palos Verdes, CA

The Boys

The last puppies out of 11 in the litter, we were abandoned at 8 weeks old because we are not pure bred Labs. We lived in a horse stall awhile before a nice lady came along and took us to the country to live with our new owners. They have 300+ acres in Northern California where we are allowed to run, play, chase birds and bark at the cows. We turned a year old this past Christmas and all weigh over 80 lbs. Our names are Hank, Jake and Sam. We are very, very spoiled by our new parents and very thankful for being rescued. :]

Kim Bisceglia
Flournoy, CA

Me, Too?

They were going to the pound, but I convinced my housekeeper to bring them by our house first.

They came to us in a box. When opened, one black kitten ran out and yowled and my husband said he wanted her because she was a spitfire. The other hid in the back of the dark box. Then I heard a tiny voice say, "Me, Too?" and louder, "ME TOO!"

I pulled out the tiniest little bundle of black fur I'd ever seen - the runt of the litter. He flipped over on his back in my hands and purred. "Please, Hon, can't I have this one?" I asked.

We took them both and that's the beginning of the most wonderful cat I've ever had.

He has been with me now 12 years and he monitors my every moment. He has guided me through cancer, COPD, AVN, and numerous nasty surgeries.

He wakes me in the morning with a kiss on the lips and a purry "Mum, Mum, Mum." He lays with me when I hurt and walks to the bathroom with me at night. He knows when I am tired and nags me to nap. He knows when I have insomnia and he sits on the pillow by my head and strokes my face with his paw.

He is my guide, my guard, and my soul. I have never been as cared for as I have by this cat. My MeTu.

Kjysten Drew
Ferndale, WA


I kept hearing a kitten cry for hours and then it would stop. At first I thought it was the kitten I recently rescued. It went on for a night and started to get weaker. I finally decided to keep my kitten with me, but then I heard the crying again. It wasn't him. I listened closer to hear where it was coming from. It sounded like it was coming from the right side of my building. So I grabbed my coat and flashlight and followed the cries to a lot next door. Inside the engine of an abandoned car I found these two little girls perched on a little ledge. They were so tiny, cold and hungry. I took them home, nursed them back to health and named them Delaney (on the right) and Chelsea (on the left). I kept Delaney and adopted Chelsea to a veterinarian tech. Chelsea had neurological problems and would need medical care for the rest of her life so adopting her to a veterinarian tech was best for her. Delaney's persistent crying was what saved these little girls. Her will to live and save her sister was amazing. She's now a shy loving little girl who likes to cuddle with me.

North Hollywood, CA

A Friend For Life!

We got Lady at 6 months old when my daughter, Erin, was 1 and a half. They were best friends until we had to put Lady down at 15 and a half. She lived a long and happy life. She was loyal and loving while always being protective of her human family. We always trusted her judgment over our own and she was never wrong! She loved the small and unfortunate ones, like animals that I rescued and brought home to rehabilitate. One in particular, Freeway, was so timid that Lady would stand and walk over him to make him feel safe. It worked! She loved our cats, and they loved her, and she would often give Erin's hamsters rides on her back!

When I went to the shelter I had a small, low-to-the-ground dog in mind. At 6 months Lady already sat near 18" high! But they had no small dogs and, once in my arms, it was love! Only once did I think of re-homing her, when I didn't know if we'd have a place to live. But thankfully the area I was in told me they'd put her down since she was part pit bull as they had a lot of dog fighting problems. She never failed to reward us for my choosing to keep her! She was a dear love right to the literal end!

We miss her...our big Lady Bug!

(Lady was Pit Bull-Great Dane-Shepherd. Pix was playing dress-up around 1988.)

Jane & Erin Dean
Los Angeles, CA
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