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Just Introducing Myself

post #1 of 7
Thread Starter 
Hi everyone!

I'm looking forward to moderating this forum. If anyone has any questions about feral cats, colonies or anything else, or has a topic they'd like to discuss, please feel free.

I am a volunteer with a rescue organization (as is Sandie) and have had alot of experience with feral cats. I've trapped them, had them spayed/neutered and released them. I have also socialized and placed them in good homes. I've had to deal with distemper in kittens that were only 4 days old. I tell you it's a very emotional. There are times when you want to give up but there is a part of you that just keeps going. Until I joined rescue, I never realized how many lonely, unwanted cats there are out there. Now everytime I see a cat wandering around, I want to scoop it up and find it a good home.

You cry, you laugh, you wonder if it's all worth it. Believe me, it is. But you have to keep one thing in mind. You can't save the world. And that is what it feels like sometimes.

To the people who are feeding those cats, I commend you and urge you to keep doing it. They didn't ask to be abandoned. And the trust that they lack is purely because of humans.
post #2 of 7
What you said has some real truth and lots of reality to it. I have not been rescuing very long, but after being bitten, scratched, and broken hearted I have learned they are all worth it. I have seen cats scared of their shadows turn around just from some love and patience. I have rushed a 3 month old kitten to the vet at midnight in the pouring rain just just in time. To place these guys in a loving home after being thrown away, is the best feeling in the world. All of the heartache, tears and anger are all worth it to save just one kitty!
post #3 of 7
Thread Starter 
Hi Sandie,

Yeah, I've been bitten and scratched too. It's not their fault. I remember the first time I fostered a feral brother and sister, Celia and Mousse. They were beautiful kittens with the best personalities. Everyday I couldn't wait to go home and work with them so that they would trust again. At last, they were purring and romping up a storm. Then one day, Mousse had diarrhea, vomiting and was very lethargic. I rushed him to the vet. He was gasping for air. I held him in my arms and drove like a banchee. The vet looked him over (by that time his third eyelids were showing). I was crying like a baby. I never had a rescue die on me. The vet suggested putting him down because he was suffering. It was the worst decision I ever had to make. But, it was for the best. As the doctor went to get the drug, Mousse "mewed", took a breath and died in my arms. My heart sunk. But I knew he was at peace and he didn't die alone.

The next day, I found his sister Celia laying by the water dish, gasping for air (same symptoms as her brother). Again, off to the vet. She had to be put down as well. By that time I was devastated. I swore I would never again foster another kitten. An autopsy was done and it was determined that they both had distemper. I was terrified to let my own cats in that room. I earned my angels wings that week. My halos are hanging over my rearview mirror in my car to remind me of my mission.

I miss them both and knew they would be great pets. But distemper is deadly especially to kittens that young (they were about 5 weeks old).

I had to close my back bedroom down, scrub the walls with bleach and have the carpets steam cleaned, in hopes that it would kill the virus.

I then did a rescue in Bolton where there were to mothers and two sets of kittens. Without realizing it, I put them in my back bedroom. Those kittens also contracted the same virus. All the kittens had to be euthanized. I was dumbfounded. That's when I learned that the virus stays airborne for up to one year, and no household cleaner can get rid of it.

It took over a year before I finally had the courage to foster again.

It's a realy heartbreaking lesson, but things happen for a reason. And I may never know what the reason is. I only know that they are all waiting for me at the Rainbow Bridge.

Thanks for listening.
post #4 of 7
Rescuing cats and maintaining feral colonies does earn you your angel wings, at least in my eyes.

I was fortunate enough to live in Tel Aviv during the past few years. They have a TNR program for all ferals. You don't have to pay anything and they come, trap them, spay/neuter and returm them the next day. I've had all the cats around my building fixed! It's a great feeling, knowing that they are so much better off. There is a wonderful lady there that has been feeding them for years, but she didn't know how to arrange the whole thing, so that was my humble contribution (and humble it was - she's the real kitty angel!)

Other than that we've just had a count and we have rescued 16 cats in the past couple of years or so. All went to good homes, except one that had to be put to sleep (the vet said he was far to ill). Every new cat that I take in scares me a new - it's so hard to find good homes for them and make sure that this time it's for life! I have made good use of my Hebrew cat site and it's mailing list, I can tell you that and yes, my 2 brothers and sister and all of our good friends now have cats
post #5 of 7
Hey that was my 500th post! Hooray!

I'm doing my best to stay the top poster, though Sandie is a tough competition !
post #6 of 7
Hehe, I guess I am pretty chatty!! How on earth did you know it was you 500th post??
post #7 of 7
Okay, nevermind the question I figured it out. HEHE, I guess I do talk alot. 416 now with this one. I guess my gift is the gift of gab. Hope I am not chatting everyone to death..hehe
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