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Animal Rescue Stories

Read heartfelt stories of rescue, and share your rescued animal stories with others.

PEPPER FOUND US

PEPPER FOUND US

We weren't planning on adopting another dog as we had a 15 year old beagle, a 10 year old yorkie, and a 2 year Papillon - all rescues. I always follow and am subscriber to many animal rescue sites. I saw Pepper on a beagle rescue site, and then he appeared on Channel 9 Petsaver. I just knew we had to save him. He was purchased as a baby by original owners, then at the age of 15 surrendered because he was left alone most of the time. He also has some health issues, which he is on meds for and doing well. Our 15 year old beagle was blind, we also had her from a baby as well, she had dementia and her muscles were failing. The rescue brought Pepper to our home to meet and it was instant bonding for all of us. We adopted him in January 2020, and he was like a seeing eye dog for our Delilah and she would follow him down the steps and outside. He is such a good boy; we just love him so much and are so happy we can give him lots of love and attention for as long as he is with us. Sadly we had to euthanize our Delilah in May and it was so very painful and heartbreaking. Pepper has shown so much love and has helped ease the pain of losing our Delilah. He is constantly by my side and comforts me when I am sad missing Delilah. We believe he was sent to us because we would be losing our Delilah a few months later. He is truly a blessing.

Maryrose Hosier
NEWTON, NJ

Cuz Kitty

Cuz Kitty

Cuz was found in the front yard of a friend of mine who is allergic to cats. She was feral and obviously a Trap, Neuter, Release cat. I went and trapped her in a "have a heart" trap. Brought her home and she was so wild she hissed and wanted to attack me. Cat rescue said to put the litter box etc. outside and let her live outside, that she couldn't be tamed after 3 weeks of trying. I did that, but I was persistent and after about a year she came when I called her, and even one chilly December she rubbed against my legs and I picked her up and brought her inside. She is now the most loving, cuddly kitty going and lives with 2 other cats and 2 Dobermans.

Susanne Sweney
SCOTTSDALE, AZ

Our Mensa Cat

Our Mensa Cat

I grew up as a "Dog Person." We began rescuing homeless stray and feral cats when our son found a 3 week old abandoned kitten who had 2 dislocated front paws, who we took in and took her to the vet to treat. She grew up with splints on her legs. The next year, we found a feral cat who had 3 kittens in our garage... and we became "Cat People" .. We kept feeding the homeless and feral cats in our backyard, and one day a young Russian Blue showed up to eat. While the cats usually had a pecking order on who got to eat first, second, third, etc, our intrepid guy would hiss and spit and chase the others away from the food dish so he could eat. I named him Pike after the fish that takes over lakes, since that seemed appropriate. One day my wife let him into the house, and he sat on her side of the couch. Not wanting to get attached right away, she would put him out at night, but he would wait by the door in the morning to be let in and he eventually became an indoor cat. As soon as he knew that he was safe, he would cuddle up next to me and chose me as his "person" ...which continued for 12 1/2 short years. Pike was very inquisitive and was able to open all of the kitchen cabinets even though they had childproof locks on them. He opened sliding glass and screen doors, so we learned to keep those locked at all times and had to put a box of weights in front of the attic access door in the bathroom to keep him out of that as well. He took all cabinets and doors as challenges and became our "Mensa" cat for how smart he was. Pike was wary of other people but loved my wife and me. I was his person; he would cuddle up in my arms several times a day and sleep next to me at night. Of course it was me that he would talk to early in the morning when it was time to be fed as we learned the word "Crepuscular." He would also leap onto the counter to ensure that his food was being prepared to his specifications, as well as for the occasional treat. Eventually, as he got to know who our regular friends and relatives were, he became more trusting and would allow others to pet him. Pike had an older "sister"; one of the original 3 kittens that were born in our garage and was half his size, and he bossed her around as his namesake indicated. He didn't like anyone else getting his attention. One late evening just before Valentine's Day,I noticed that he wasn't well and had begun mouth-breathing. I rushed him to the emergency vet where we discovered that he was suffering with Congenital Heart Failure, a blood clot on his left ventricle, and had to have 600 mls of fluid drained from his chest. He had to have more drained in the morning as he fought for life and for the first week it was touch and go. He had such a sweet personality that he would let the vets insert the needle to drain the fluid without fuss (except for one new tech who made the mistake of shaving him first and he let her know how indignant he was at that). He began a regimen of having to have numerous medications 3 times a day, which he took without complaint, so we could dissolve the blood clot. His head vet was so impressed with his calm demeanor and began telling parents of other cats with the same disease that if they were as good as Pike was they would be better. As we got to know 2 of the 164 pet cardiologists in the world along with his other specialists, they all grew to love him and kept trying new treatments as he came down with Inflammatory Bowel Disease. He got his own Walgreens Prescription plan and we took pains to limit his ability to exert his heart by blocking off stairs etc, and monitored his breathing so that we would know when it was time to get fluid extracted again. The average life expectancy for this disease, not to mention the clot, is 122 days . We were able to enjoy his company and love for 2 additional Christmases and then some. Late in February we took him in for an Xray and to have fluid drained and dark spots were found. It was found to be cancer. He had beaten back the heart disease, but couldn't beat this. Unfortunately, his valiant vet Dr Sue Marshall, who had been a true hero in his treatments, passed away from cancer exactly 1 week before he did. We miss them both to this day, and they will always be in our hearts. RIP Pike and Dr Sue.

Ken Peterson
RENO, NV

BlueFeather Sanctuary

BlueFeather Sanctuary

The unicorn that started it all: BlueFeather. We first met Blue at an auction, July 1 2013. Our first wedding anniversary. Blue was in the back of all the pens, head in a corner, defeated, depressed, and skinny. I knew he needed love and patience. When he was finally brought into the arena to be sold, he was bareback with a little girl on him and 1 adult on each side. He just stood there, head down. The man to his right pulled his front hoof up, we thought to show how well he pick up his feet; no we were wrong. The girl on the left started hitting him with a rope repeatedly, harder and harder. Blue quietly and carefully laid down for his rider to dismount and remount, showing how "easy to get off and on" he was.. Our hearts sank as bidding started at $200 then went down to $50. I raised my number and bid. The bids started raising higher and higher. I stopped when he reached over meat prices, hoping he had been bought by a kind person, sad that he wouldn't be coming home but knew other horses were still due to go through. We lost every bid to them as well. As the auction ended we prepared to leave, then my husband handed me a handful of cash and said "Go pay for your pony hunny." HOLY MOLY!!!! This man is the absolute most wonderful man on the planet. ♥ You will always be our "Warden Blue" he must "approve" of newbies and he keeps everyone behaving, always making sure the older guys eat first and no one misbehaves. He has come to my aid numerous times. We LOVE you Blue, floppy ear and all!!! We now rescue horses and provide lifelong care to them. ♥

Rebecca Flowers
LOVELOCK, NV

Wilson survived the virus

Wilson survived the virus

Most of the animal shelters were tightly closed in the Denver area due to the corona virus. A lot of places were closed. March 16 I put my cat of 20 years and one month to sleep. He had been having strokes. I immediately wanted another cat, but the animal shelters were closed for adoptions. Being confined myself, I really needed a companion. I found a shelter that had not closed: a very small and very poor shelter, depending on contributions of money and food and kitty litter and toys. My Koloha was yellow and white. When I saw this cat with a bashed-in looking face of yellow and white, I had to have him, but he was just surrendered there and I'd have to wait 72 hours till I could pick him up. I had not seen the body; it was in a carrier. Wilson is 7 yrs old, 8 lbs and 9 inches tall, and a foot long. He is a flame-point Himalayan. They had shaved places on him for the mats in his hair, so it needs a good beautician, when the hair grows more and the yellow is coming through the white. But so loving and friendly to greet every person who comes to visit. We are inseparable. Older people need the companionship of animals. They live longer and have fewer ailments with a pet around. Please give to animal shelters. They are caring for people who cannot afford to feed their animals during this epidemic. I looked at Cat Care Society and Angles With Paws. I donate what little I can spare to ASPCA and Humane Society and Roar and Heifer. They need more help.

Donna J Morris
ENGLEWOOD, CO

Riley Roo

Riley Roo

We were visiting my parents in Maryland for Christmas and my mom informed me that a stray cat had given birth to 4 kittens in their garage. I didn't even want to look because I knew once I saw them that I would want to take one home and I already had one dog and two rescue cats. But I looked anyway and I saw 3 of the kittens were healthy and snuggled together in one of the cat beds. Then I saw a little gray kitten all by himself on the garage floor. So I went to pick him up and he clung to me. I saw that he had blurry crusty eyes and his breathing was raspy. I brought him into my parents house, wrapped him in a blanket and brought him home. We took him to the vet that same day and they treated his eyes and sinus infection. He doesn't have 100% vision but he runs around my house like a tornado. I can't even tell you how much I love him. We have formed such a bond and I can't imagine my life without him. My Riley Roo ♥

Julie
GLEN COVE, NY

Our Little  Hero!

Our Little Hero!

In 2013, a ragged, sick little stray black cat meandered into our back yard, and after a month of feeding him, we made him family. He stole our hearts from "meow." Named Rico, after my dad, he was sick and wanting love. During the next 7 years, he gave and received love, and fought with us and our heaven-sent vet to come back from many asthma attacks, bladder blockage, and upper respiratory infections. But he loved and trusted us, and we never gave up on him until it was absolutely necessary and he just could not bounce back to enjoy a quality of life any longer. Years of steroid relief had taken its toll, and finally, just a few days ago, July 18, 2020, we had to give our exhausted little guy relief. He had developed heart disease in addition to his COPD. Rico was 9 y/o, and we will never regret the years of precious life and joy and care we were blessed to share with him. We are devastated by his absence and the joy of that little boy's big personality. Rico, run and play with endless energy! We are rejoicing with you and for you. We love you to the moon and back!

Elaine DiAntonko
SUN CITY CENTER, FL

Henry Our Hospice Foster

Henry Our Hospice Foster

On March 25th, just days after our "safer at home" order, we got a call from the Corgi rescue group we volunteer with. Would we go get a dog who was being relinquished? Of course. His previous human had tried three shelters that weren't taking any animals due to the PANDEMIC. Henry is now 13 and after multiple trips to the vet, it was discovered that both of his back legs are bad and he has cancer. We can't imagine what would have happened to him at a shelter. What a blessing he's been. What better way to spend time stuck at home than spoiling a senior dog. He is now our "hospice foster" and we are more than happy to "walk this sweet boy home." He's with us for however long he has.

Sue & Jim Kenosha WI
KENOSHA, WI

Hiss Majesty the Black Scallion

Hiss Majesty the Black Scallion

13 years ago, I brought my little Rascal home from the shelter. He spent 7 months there after his former owner died, overlooked because (I was told) “he is big, black and older,” the very things I liked about him. My friend knew I wanted a cat, and sent me a picture of one like hers who I would cat sit in my apartment when she was away. He didn’t appeal to me, but I scrolled down and saw Tucker, his original name. He wasn’t the friendliest at first, but I spent hours with him over a few weekends at the shelter, and I realized he felt lonely and abandoned after his owner died, and hopeless as he watched all the other cats come and go for months. I had recently relocated and I too was lonely, and I too fear abandonment. It was 7/7/07 when I filed the adoption application and 7/14/07 (Bastille Day) when I brought him home. I was told the shelter staff cried with joy when they learned Tucker was finally going home. They said he danced around happily, as he knew what was happening, having watched so many before him. The dance continued when he arrived home with me. I had everything prepared for him, and I soon got him a water fountain, as I observed his fascination with a waterfall wall at the shelter. I also got a leopard stroller for him, and we’d go for walks up and down the hill to parks at either end of the street where we lived to watch the fountain, the birds, the little brook, and sit under the shade of the beautiful trees. When I was at work, he had access to the terrace, where he could watch birds and the passing scene on the street below, sometimes on a little patch of artificial grass he could lie on. He was so happy every day when I returned from work, he’d rear up on his hind legs like a little black stallion! His nickname became “The Black Scallion.” I let him run back and forth after a ball down the long hall in my apartment building late at night. He became my loyal and incredibly loving and affectionate companion, my best friend and the love of my life. We had family cats before, but Rascal was the first cat who was only mine. Our bond grew so strong over our 12 years together. He brought unending joy to my life and helped me battle loneliness and depression and change. He taught me even more than I knew about love and caring and kindness and compassion. He helped me as I navigated a new town, a new job, a new life, then all over again when I lost my job 6 years later. We moved to my mother’s home in California, where we have large decks and a garden. He watched the water and the boats on the bay below, the birds, squirrels, foxes, deer, quail and raccoons. He sunned on the deck, often splayed out on his back. He romped in the garden. When I lost him at 17 1/2 a year ago, after a heartbreaking battle with CKD, my heart was shattered. I still cry for him every day. But I know he is always with me, and I am always with him. He was a blessing in my life, an angel sent to me. Our ashes will be commingled under a weeping willow tree on my brother’s property in upstate New York, where we can be together again for all eternity.

Evan Jane Kriss
SAUSALITO, CA

I Pick You

I Pick You

Six years ago my mother expressed she wanted a cat for her birthday. The Sunday before mom's birthday, my friend and I went out for lunch. Since there was a long wait for a table, we decided we would take a look in the nearby pet store which usually featured rescued cats. As we were going in we noticed a woman putting some crates with cats and kittens in her car. Not giving it a second thought we went on inside. Like a moth to a flame we were drawn to the lovely glass enclosed area where several kittens were playing. Immediately the one owl-like kitten came up to the glass and looked directly at me as if to say "I pick you!" It was love at first sight! Every time we came back to the area the kitten would come right up toward me. We inquired about the kitten, only to find that the lady who had just left was the person to talk to about adopting this insistent little bundle of joy. Within four days he was our kitty! Even though he was supposed to be mom's gift, the kitten named Sabastian bonded to me quickly after I nursed him back to health! To this day he comes running to me or calls out for me with many purrs and rubs, saying "I picked you!"

Sandy McGrady
TUXEDO PARK, NY