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questions about rescuing 2 kitties

post #1 of 13
Thread Starter 
I need some advice. My parents have 2 cats which are being neglected. I want to take them in, but I don't have any extra cash. Both cats need spaying. Meggie (who used to be mine, got her from a local no-kill shelter) has a lot of health problems. She needs all her teeth pulled, probably has a lot of gum problems. She can't eat dry cat food because of her teeth. The only thing she eats is trout (my dad loves to fish, so no problems there.) My parents won't take her to the vet, and I don't have the money. The other cat, Boo is healthy, she is just constantly in heat, and extremely destructive. Hopefully getting her fixed will take care of that. Both cats are constantly locked up in the basement, they get little to no affection from my parents. My dad does change the litterbox about once every two weeks (non clumping litter, it's an old drawer from a dresser so it's pretty big) I really want to rescue these babies! And I'm not sure what kind of quality of life Meggie could expect with no teeth. It may be a kindness to put her down, although I hate to do it. She was my baby before I went to college. Does anyone have any suggestions?
post #2 of 13
I don't have any advice for you, but I'm going to go ahead and move this to our Health and Nutrition forum where you can get some advice on the medical condition.

Good luck.
post #3 of 13
Myste, it is clear you care about these kitties.

I feel they must be rescued from that terrible sounding situation. Are you saying you can't keep them yourself? I still think they're better off in a no kill shelter. There they will get care and the potential to be adopted out. But if you are willing to take them, but are just financially constrained, there are some steps you can take. Also, the spaying/neutering will help alter aggressive and destructive behaviour.

Please check out this link, it should help you find low cost services. You should also consider contacting the closest local ASPCA, Humane Society, or Shelter (kill or no-kill since you are looking for services here) - many have low or no-cost sterilization programs. You can also contact your Vet, who may know who runs these programs in your (or your parents') area.


It is also worth trying all those same institutions to see if there is some way to find cheap food for rescued kitties so you can bring them home with you! In the feral forum, there was discussion of costs. One of the replies (by Hissy) was: "Also on the food issue. If you take the time to visit all of the cat food sites on the internet and go through the somewhat boring process of filling out their email forms then ask them if they have a program for discount food in rescue efforts that are not a business,but private, they are kind enough to send you coupons to get either free food or discount on what is already there. Friskies, Purina, Hills, Iams, they all do it but you have to inquire and you can only do it one at a time." (The discussion starts on page two of this thread: http://www.thecatsite.com/forums/sho...threadid=10531)

I also recommend calling your Vet, Humane Society or local ASPCA to see if there are low-cost health care services available for the medical care these kitties need.

If you decide to rescue them yourself, there is lots of advice in the ferals forum as to how to socialize scared kitties. There is also lots of advice in the Behavior forum as to how to integrate new cats into a household that already has cats. (They should be separated initially).

PLEASE keep us posted. Hopefully you will get more advice here.

Good luck!
post #4 of 13
One last thought. About Meggie's teeth. If her teeth are that bad, she is probably in terrible pain. If you cannot afford to have them fixed, or if you cannot find funding to get them fixed, I do not know what is best.

I do know that if you get them all pulled, she can still live a wonderful life. My grandmother had no teeth and was missing part of her jaw (due to cancer). She simply ate mushy food. We didn't have to put her down, and she lived another happy 10 years! :tounge2:
post #5 of 13
I real feel for the cats and you, as it must be a very difficult position you are in.

Could you not sit your parents down and tell them your concerns about the cats. I don't know how your parents feel about the cats, the fact that they shut them away and don't offer much affection would indicate that they do not actually want the responsibility of being cat owners. If this is the case would they consider taking both the cats to a shelter (no kill) at least then they will get medical attention and the chance of getting a home providing the love they need
post #6 of 13
Thread Starter 
It's not that my parents don't love our cats. They just aren't really cat people. It's partly my fault, as I had to leave the cats with them when I went to college. I had a cat growing up (I miss my Patterns!!! The most beautiful Calico bobtail you've ever seen.... *sniff*) She was also kept in the basement, but got let up a lot, and I was there to give her lots of attention. But between Meggie's health problems, and Boo's constant yowling, destructiveness, and always being in heat, my parent's can't deal with that. They do make sure the cats are fed, have water, etc. They get some affection from my mother when she does laundry. I just called the pet clinic where I took the kittens, it's only 34.95 to get them spayed (plus $20 for the pre-op checkup, plus $20 for the painkiller shot before going home...). I certainly can't afford $200-300 vet bills. And I am more than willing to take them in (and to heck with what my BF has to say about it)but I'm afraid to bring them here because I don't know if they're infected with something, and I don't want my kittens to catch anything. I can nurse most things myself, like Jorin and his concussion, but I can't treat diseases.
post #7 of 13
Please check out some of the resources I posted earlier. You may find low cost treatment options - were you able to ask the Vet about that? It sounds like they'd get a check-up before being spayed/neutered, so you'll be able to find out if they are sick.

I'm sure we all agree, you should not bring them home before you know if they are sick or not!

But if they are sick, it means they need care and haven't gotten it. I still feel they'd be better in a no-kill shelter where they'd get care and a chance for a healthier, if not happier, life.

One last thing to consider. Can you pay your Vet in installments, if that would be an option for you if there is a larger bill involved (for teeth or shots or medicine?) We have gotten involved with a lot of feral cats and have racked up more bills than we can afford right now. Our Vet was aware of our problem, and has allowed us to pay in installments. Would that work for you?

Just trying to help find a happy solution for all!
post #8 of 13
Thread Starter 
Thanks for the suggestions. I hate doing installment payments, I'm already in debt to my neck, but I'll do what I have to. I have to find out first if they're going to try to take away all the unemployment I've recieved, apparently the last place I worked (same temp agency I'm working for now) appealed my unemployment. If they do that, every penny I make working for the next three months gets to repay that. *sigh* I hate money problems. And why can't any vets just post their prices on their website? It's not THAT difficult...

We're going out of town for a few days next month, and I'm taking the kitties to my parents house then. Maybe next weekend I can at least get the other two their shots, so they can socialize there, and bring all four back when we get home (my parents only live 45 minutes away) Not sure about Meggie's tooth problem. I don't think she'll even eat regular cat food, even wet stuff. She's gotten used to trout. Won't even eat salmon or steelhead (is that stuff even good for her?)

Another thing. I've heard that adult cats sometimes don't stop going into heat even after they've been spayed?
post #9 of 13
There is a false pregancy, so I presume there is a false heat as well. I doubt it is common. I have heard of this only in instances where rescued kittens are with an adult mom who gets a false pregnancy and begins lactating (for the kitties!)

...about the trout. It isn't so much that the trout is bad for her/them, it's just that it isn't nutritionally balanced and not a healthy diet. Many cats do not like changing food. You would have to try first chopping the trout, then mixing the trout with other food, and increasing the amount of other food over time. Especially when cats get attached to "stinky" food, strong smelling food, like Tuna or other fish, it can be a real problem to get them to eat other food.

Cats "meeting" each other should be done slowly. If there is some way where the pairs of cats can see and smell each other through a screen door that would help. I'm also not sure, but you might not want them to "meet" each other until Boo and Meggie are spayed. Cats are VERY territorial, spayed or not. Your kittens would be on strange turf, so, unfortunately, I would not recommend leaving them all together unsupervised. Someone could get seriously hurt.

One option to consider is helping with the "smell" issue. Take a cloth or paper towel with some vanilla sprinkled on it and lightly rub it on ALL the cats. Then they'll all smell the same. But your two kitties would still be invaders. It might get rough.

I'm so sorry to hear about your financial troubles. Many of us are having problems these days. At least my hubby and I still have our jobs. I thank my lucky stars each morning. I REALLY hope you don't lose the unemployment case. Sending prayers to you and all your furbabies!

post #10 of 13
Thread Starter 
Thanks. Guess it'll have to wait another 3 weeks or so.
post #11 of 13
Like I said, sending prayers. And hugs if you need them!

Please keep us posted! Cats, financial, emotional or otherwise!!!!

post #12 of 13
Thread Starter 
Well, got to spend some time with the furbabies today. Meggie was being antisocial, refused to come near me. Boo was in heat...per normal. I'm taking them in 2 weeks, when I start getting my unemployment check. Boo has to get spayed as soon as we get her, as I can't deal with her constant yowling, especially in an apartment. But I was over there for 6 hours and she didn't yowl even once, after I let her up. I think she's just lonely. She's in desparate need of a bath, has incredible dandruff and is shedding like crazy, but she was all over me for attention! She was really skittish at first, but she calmed down and was playing with the dogs, and attacking my knitting before I left. I can't wait! I desparately wanted to take her home today, just don't have the money to get her spayed after losing my job like that ;( I could swing the money for the spay itself, but not for the exam, the painkiller, shots, etc that she needs. She needs all her shots still. Is it okay for her to still get distemper shots, even though she's an adult cat? and will it hurt her to get a de-wormer if she may or may not have worms?
post #13 of 13
Having lost my job earlier this year, and facing another round of layoff soon - I really feel for you!

check the SPCA website. I just found out this weekend that they have a voucher for $5 off any spay/neuter. Your vet or clinic stamps it and SPCA sends you a check in the mail. Not much, but some help.

Contact some rescuers in your area and ask them if there is a low-cost clinic. (The one here in Austin charges $20 for male cats, $25 for females + $6 for rabies if needed.) They are not always advertised well. Also, contact your local shelter or animal control. They often can advise you on local, city run programs to help people spay their pets. These might be based on your income level, or the part of town you live in...call and ask! (Again, they are not advertised...you will need to dig!) You might also find that there is a program to help you pay for the pain medication using donated funds.

As far as the vaccines and stuff go, I'd skip the worm pill for now. Worms are passed by fleas and if your kitties have been in the basement they seem a low risk. You can keep an eye on them and if they get it, you can dose them then.

You may be able to vaccinate your cats yourself. Here in Texas, a vet is required by law to give the rabies vaccine, but owners can give the combo shots, etc themselves. You can buy a FeLVCRP/C combo for as little as $5 a shot through Drs. Foster and Smith (catalog or online) http://www.drsfostersmith.com/. You can also try 1800 Petmeds, and I think Petsmart online? Also, any local animal feed store should have these vaccines.

$5 a shot sure beats the $15 my vet charges + the office visit fee. (Or if they 'forget' to tell you a combo is available...$12 for one and $15 for the other.) Of course you need to have the one kitty with the bad teeth looked at...so definitely get him evaluated!

Oh, and check around b/c some vets offer a 'first visit free' so you may be able to save a little $$$ that way.

Good luck! And remember, no man is worth losing a best friend over! Let us know how things go!
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