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Fanny's story and a plea for money

post #1 of 11
Thread Starter 
This is a plea for donations. But first, you get Fanny's whole story!

On the morning of October 30th, one of my housemate yelled up to me to wake up. I stumbled downstairs and, not seeing him there, continued to the basement. He was digging in his toolbox for wrenches. I followed him out to the alley and saw a little black & white cat caught in the fan belt of a big old car. The elderly owner of this car was wringing her hands in distress, my neighbor who feeds stray cats was freaking out, my housemate was trying unsuccessfully to loosen the fan belt, and the little cat was wailing (and occassionally chomping on his hand).

The wrench broke, he went to our basement to look for another, I ran to the house of another neighbor - whose garage holds every tool known to man - to borrow another one. Not knowing the size needed, I hauled his whole wrench box into the alley (musta weighed 40 pounds!). But meantime, the lady had been so heartbroken by the kitty's cries that she cut the fan belt herself.

So the cat is in a paper ream box, the lady's car now has no fan belt, my household's car is off on a road trip, and neither of the neighbor ladies who were trying to help have cars. No cars anywhere! So, back to the tool-man neighbor. Yes, he can take us to the vet. But it's barely 9am, and none of the local vets open until 10. So, it's a half hour ride to the emergency center in Langhorne.

We get there, hand over the cat and wait for the news. I'm expecting the worst - internal organs damaged, broken back - but the doctor says that she has a badly broken leg - poking out of the skin, and scraped against the inside of a car, well, you can imagine how horrid that must have been. And she's young - only 6 months old! And they have an orthopedic surgon there that day, so they can figure out if there's a good prognosis for repairing the leg. The alternative is amputation.

Well, I've never met a three-legged cat and amputation sounded like a dreadful, last-ditch option. (Many days later I had a chance to look up info on amputation and cats and realized that wasn't so horrible, but my belief at decision-making time was that amputation was an outcome to be avoided.)

The surgeon said that since we had brought her in so quickly, they could start antibiotics right away and minimize the risk of infection, so she thought there was a good prognosis. Wow, it was expensive, though - the estimate was $1400, but the doctor said that the surgeon would donate time and they'd give us a donation from their stray fund.

I crossed my fingers and hoped that I'd be able to get donations from neighbors (and hoped that this cat would be a nice cat and not a feral) and told them to go ahead. Then I got to work with fliers and Craigslist and donations started to come in. The final emergency bill was $817.75. That's steep, but at least it wasn't $1400!

I borrowed a big wire dog crate from a phillyfreecycler and we set it up in the laundryroom - the only place where it would fit, and one of the warmer rooms in the house. She spent almost 4 days at the emergency center. I got a clear look at her for the first time on the night that we brought her home. She's so cute!!! And she's nice (what a relief).

The cast on her leg was enormous, as big as her body. It was actually a bandage to protect the pins that are holding her leg together. The doctor said we should keep her confined for a month, then they'd take x-rays and see how well it was healing. The x-rays (another $88) showed that healing had started, but the doctor said that it would be another two months before the pins come out. The x-ray really made me shudder. There are so many pins in her leg, and they're not much smaller than her bones!

This poor little cat! Three months of her kittenhood are being marred by this big thing on her leg, and frequent confinement.

She was going stir crazy in the laundry room, and badly needed more social time, so we took her to a local vet and got her vaccinated and treated for ear mites, rearranged our living room, and moved the crate upstairs. She likes it up here, she gets to come out because we can supervise her, and the other cats have adapted well to her. She is so frisky! We're always worried that she'll hurt herself, but she's only had a couple of mishaps. I'm anxiously awaiting the next x-rays.

I've had a lot of cat expenses this year... Jessie's (a stray) kittens - one had to be euthanized, getting Jessie an emergency spay, Lightning's end-of-life care, Bully's kitten vet bills, getting Momcat (another stray) and her kittens fixed and vaccinated, getting Shadow emergency care after Momcat clawed her cornea... we've cared for 16 cats this year!! So I'm in debt and Fanny's impending vet bill is causing very stressful household finances conversations.

Donations came in from some of my neighbors and several people on Craigslist, totalling $641.26. I think most of the cat lovers on the block have already donated, and it's a working-class neighborhood, so I don't really expect more.

So here's my appeal for money: I still need to raise about $400 to cover the rest of the surgery bill and the x-rays. I would be very grateful if you can spare anything.

Donations can be made by calling the Veterinary Specialty & Emergency Center (http://www.vsecvet.com/) at 215-750-7884. Say that you want to make a donation for "Fan Belt Cat" under the name of Confer. (They are kindly keeping my account open so that donations can be made directly to them.)

AND if you would like to adopt her, please let me know! She would do well with another kitten her age - she really wants to play more than even Bully is interested in. I have pictures of her at http://www.actionpa.org/kittens/fanny.html
post #2 of 11
Thread Starter 
Oh, excitement!

Fanny went in today, just for a bandage rewrap, I thought, but instead they took x-rays again and her leg is healing so well that they're going to take the pins out and give her a splint! This is almost 2 weeks earlier than the early estimate.

Of course, this means that she'll be restricted to the cage again while the pin holes in her bone heal, and she'll have to learn to walk yet again, but I think this is happy news.

post #3 of 11
Bless you for caring for the kitty! You definitely live in a caring neighborhood It is sad that such caring people are willing to share whatever they have, while much more well-to-do neighborhoods have no problem ignoring the sad plights of not only kittens but children in need as well - sometimes wealth is wasted on the cold-hearted; they can't take it to the grave, but they ain't gonna share it anyway Sorry I can't help out myself at this time, but I'm keeping you in my thoughts and prayers! Any updates or pics of Fanny to share??? Please keep us posted. Susan
post #4 of 11
Aww, poor kitty, but so glad she's healing well It sounds as if you have a very caring neighbourhood though to donate what they did. I'm really sorry but we can't afford to donate anything, we would if we could though She is really cute too! Keep us updated please
post #5 of 11
Thread Starter 
The camera is gone with my housemate on a 2 week trip, so I'm sorry I can't offer new pictures until next week.

She's doing great. She's allowed out of the cage again. She keeps trying to shake off the splint, but she's zooming around now like normal (sounds like pad-pad-pad-CLUNK, pad-pad-pad-CLUNK). The splint looks basically like a 7.5 inch long tube, so it's quite a bulky thing. She's a very adaptive kitty. She'll get another bandage change tomorrow, hopefully it'll be smaller and let her foot show.

She's on Petfinder now:
The local rescue agreed to post her info for me. I wish I could have posted it myself to correct small errors - people will have to read my description of her to find out that she shouldn't be with small children. Ah, well, at least she's

She really needs a young playmate though. I hope somebody with a lonely, frisky 7 month old kitten adopts her!

Have I mentioned that she makes amazingly cute sounds? (Any Myst players out there? She sounds like the squee.)
post #6 of 11
I sure hope she finds the forever home she deserves,and I'm sure she will
with all the loving people around her who care for her sooo much
post #7 of 11
Thread Starter 
The splint came off this morning, and no more bandages were put on. She's down to bare fur! She's also supposed to stay in the cage for two weeks. *sigh*

If I'd really understood how much time she would need to spend in a cage during recovery, I would have opted for amputation instead of saving her leg. She would have been healed and jumping around weeks ago. It's so pathetic to watch her spend her kittenhood in confinement!
post #8 of 11
Please,Don't ever doubt that you didn't do the right thing.
Please know that amputation also has it's problems and complications...having a limb off is a major shock to anybody let alone a small animal who doesn't understand
(they are more susceptible to blood clots),
You did do the right thing,believe me,
post #9 of 11
You could try setting up a First Giving account online to encourage donations; many of the resuces that i work with have used it with much sucess. Basically, they help you make a web page with the pet's photo & story; people can click on a link and make donations specifically for that animal. Check it out at: http://firstgiving.com/

You can see one recent success story here: http://firstgiving.com/sonyascare

They've rasied MORE than they needed for Soyna's care!
post #10 of 11
Thread Starter 
Thank you, furryferals, for the reassurance. And thank you, Seppolina, for the suggestion. It doesn't look like I could have donations go to the vet (which is a for-profit business). I will need to look into teaming up with a non-profit rescue to ask for donations.

Someone might be interested in adopting her. The haven't met yet, so I'm not counting my chickens yet, but I'm sure hoping!

(Have I mentioned that I took in a 6th cat? My neighbor brought a little orange & white cat to my door on a really cold night. She had an infected bite wound. What else could I do? )
post #11 of 11
Members, as much as we would all love to help everyone, please be cautious when responding to solicitations on the internet.
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