Sunday, December 07, 2008

Don't start

Just so you know, 3 cats does not qualify me for "Crazy Cat Lady" status. So don't even start with me. This is a rescue of a lovely lady that would have died outdoors from the elements, starvation, or another animal.

This small cat that I thought was a kitten started appearing around the woods by our house about 3 or 4 weeks ago. She was pretty curious but skittish. There are all kinds of animals in the small patch of woods behind our house, deer, foxes, racoon, squirrels, possums, bunnies, chipmunks, and probably others that I haven't even seen, and occasionally we or the neighbors hear a scream of an animal being "dinner" for another. There are also a couple of cats whose owners let them roam despite the ordinance in this county that they must not be let out for their own safety and also for the prevention of disease, but she was obviously not owned. I'm not on a farm, I live in a townhouse in a residential neighborhood in the suburbs, so there is no need for "mousers" like if you had a barn on your property. Cats around here should be kept indoors, it's smart, and it's the law.
Long story longer, this kitty kept coming up on our deck and eventually she let me touch her, I found that she was skin and bones. I could feel not only the ribs, but between them. I started putting kibble out for her about a week ago, and she was ravenous. I put out some canned food that my kittens didn't finish and she loved it, she also was exceedingly thirsty so I put out water and tried to keep it from freezing. Her fairly long coat was sunburned and matted, and she had sores on her skin, and I finally was able to touch her enough to pull off a tick. (ewwww) I worried about her in the cold and last night it snowed so it really made me worry about her keeping warm enough. I couldn't stand the thought of her being alone and cold out there in the snow so I put out some blankets if she wanted to come back and sleep on them. I also got close enough to put on a dose of Revolution on her for the fleas and ticks.

I was very upset about her during the cold night and finally Mark and I decided that if I could catch her, I would take her to the vet to check. We certainly didn't want to pass along anything contageous to our kittens if we decided to take her in. She came back late this morning and I was able to grab her and get her into a carrier. Within 10 minutes she was in the car and on her way to the vet. Turns out she is a senior cat and doesn't have very many teeth any more. She tested negative for all the diseases they test for and got a shot for her flea bite allergic spots, and is pretty healthy despite being abandoned. She'd also been fixed so she obviously was someone's pet at some time. Dr. Benson said that people that get evicted or move are abandoning animals more often now with the economy being so bad. She might have been one of those abandoned pets.

I'm off to the pet store for some grooming tools and some senior food and she's going to spend a few days in seclusion in my office getting stronger and being smelled under the door by the other two. We hope to give her a comfortable and loving home to spend the rest of her days, and though she is smaller than our other two kittens who aren't yet full grown, we think she's going to be friends with them both. At least we hope so.

There's a special place in hell for anyone that would abandon a senior cat (or any animal) into the woods that can't hunt and even if she managed to catch anything, wouldn't be able to tear it apart and eat it for her lack of front fangs. Our first kitten, Belle, was found under our car.

We've decided to name her "Grace". Or "Gracie" for our grandson that calls the other ones "Bell-ie" and "Rosie". She certainly is graceful. And tired. It was all she could do to keep her eyes open long enough for me to snap a picture.


CrazyFiberLady said...

She's a beautiful cat. I totally agree on there being a special spot in hell for anyone who would turn out such a poor baby into the cold without adequate tools or defenses. Shame on them. Bravo to you for bringing her in. And no, 3 does not make you a crazy cat lady, not by a long shot. Says the lady with 3 of her own ;)

Jody said...

You break my heart telling that story. Unfortunately it is an all too common one. Thank you for being such a kind and caring person.

Habibe said...

She's a beautiful cat :)