by Jackie Dale
Jackie is a part of Cat House On The Kings in Parlier and does a monthly column on the Cat House here at KRL.
Poker for Paws is Coming!
This is my final opportunity to remind you of an important upcoming fundraiser for The Cat House on the Kings. On Saturday, February 18, Club One Casino of Fresno is hosting a fundraiser to benefit The Cat House on the Kings. For $40 you buy-in with 3,000 chips. There are unlimited re-buys until the end of the first break. There will be prizes and raffles! Club One is generously matching the proceeds of the fundraiser $1 for $1!! For more info text “clubone” to 95495, call 559-497-3000, or visit www.clubonecasino.com. While you are at your calendar, in the spirit of advance planning, put a big “X” on Saturday, May 6, the date of the Spring Open House.
To The Rescues
January weather here in California has been cold and rainy. Cats tend to not come into heat as frequently in the winter months. However some do and as such, we have already received our first batch of bottle baby kittens.
Fortunately we recently had the opportunity to send out cats and kittens to other rescues. People frequently ask me why these other rescues come and take our cats. They are astonished to learn that in some areas, there are often shortages of available, adoptable cats and kittens. “These areas” I explain, “typically have mandatory spay and neuter laws and that is what creates the shortage.” The cold, wet winter months also serves to dampen the mating rituals of cats thus making the shortage even more acute. It’s hard to believe, right? Well, it certainly works out well for us as the Central Valley has no such law and a huge segment of the valley populace does not bother to spay or neuter their pets.
Thanks to Tammy Barker, my four adorable kittens were fortunate enough to go to a Bay Area rescue. They were a lot of fun but also a lot of work. With a total of six kittens in-house, it was a lot like having a house full of toddlers. They raced around, they climbed on everything, they knocked stuff over, they broke things, they ate like there was no tomorrow, and boy, oh boy, did they ever poop a lot! But I’ll do it all again in a heartbeat!
One weekend we had a rescue group from So Cal come in and relieve us of many adoptable cats and kittens. They are a small group, but they do an amazing number of adoptions. I was fortunate enough to meet Tammy, the rescue’s head honcho. It was obvious that she is passionate about her work.
I happened to be at The Cat House that day with a large ‘tortie’ cat that had appeared at my Walmart feeding station. She was very friendly, and I brought her to the Cat House for shots. I pulled her out of the carrier and was surprised to see that the cat had a tipped ear. This was not by any means, a feral cat. I held the cat up and asked Tammy if she wanted an already fixed tortiseshell. When Tammy found out she was living behind a Walmart, she took her in her arms and said that she would NOT be going back to live at a Walmart. A lucky day for both cat and myself as well!
Tammy has offered to help me with info and tips on securing grant money for TNR projects. I look forward to that because without money to fix the feral cats, I sometimes have to use my money or forego projects.
This brings to mind a conversation I had recently with the young man bagging my groceries at the market. I was buying dog food, so he asked what kind of dogs I have and mentioned that he had a Pit Bull Terrier. He said he wanted to breed her. I asked why he wanted to do that. He said something about preserving her bloodline because she was such an amazing dog. I told him his dog probably wasn’t as special as he thought and that Pit Bulls are one of the mostly frequently euthanized dogs in this Valley. I told him that every puppy born sentences another dog to death. I asked him what he would do if he couldn’t find homes for the puppies. I asked him if he had any idea how much work taking care of puppies would be. He replied that maybe breeding his dog wasn’t such a good idea after all, and he actually thanked me for talking him out of breeding his dog. All in a days work.
It is with deep regret that we have to report that poor little Latte lost her fight for life. Her injuries were just too much for her body to bear. She fought the fight but ultimately she was called to cross the rainbow bridge where she now runs and plays, free of pain and fear.
I also lost one of my beloved dogs, Collette. She was a 13-year-old Anatolian Shepard and an excellent dog. Anatolian’s originated in Turkey, and they grow thick coats during winter. When the weather warmed up, Collette’s outer coat of fur would fall off in big chunks all over the yard. We really miss our “chunky monkey.”
Special Cats Need Special Homes
On a brighter note, Holly, shot with a BB gun, is recovering nicely. She did lose an eye, but is otherwise good as new.
If you can’t adopt, you can always have the option to donate to help offset the medical expenses of these poor innocent creatures. While it is expensive to treat these babies, we can’t turn them away when they are in such dire need of treatment.
By “Challenging,” I Mean, “A Pain in the Ass”
The guy feeding the stray mom and kittens in Selma was challenging. First he waits over a month to return my call. When I show up, there is a pregnant mom and three, now older kittens, two were semi-friendly and the third one, not so much. I caught one of the friendlier kittens right away. However, the man insisted they “all go together, so they don’t get lonely.” I tried to convince him that I could not do that, but it escalated to the point where the man was screeching at me in a high-pitched voice to let the cat go. So I did because I was a little freaked out. So for the next month, after making it clear that we would, from here on in, be doing things my way, I attempted to trap the kittens to no avail. The man at one point attempted to grab the wildest one and got bit for his efforts. I never saw a man carry on so much. He threatened to stop feeding “that #%&!# cat because it bit me!” I told him if he withheld food, I would withhold my help. During this time, the mom cat disappeared. I had already secured homes for the kittens in Bakersfield, but the people were growing tired of waiting. Finally I gave the guy a carrier and a net and told him he had one final chance to catch these kittens, or they would lose their chance at a home. I gave him one day. Lo and behold, he calls and said, “Oh, I put food in the carrier and they just walked in.” “Holy cow,” I’m thinking, “why didn’t you do that weeks ago instead of jerking me around all this time?” The adopting family initially wanted only two kittens, but upon learning the third kitten would be alone, they took all three cats.
Lynea’s Birthday is Coming!
Lynea’s birthday is coming up in February. I’m sure she would enjoy and appreciate your birthday wishes. I can’t think of a better way to honor the birthday of this incredible woman than to make a donation in her name. She doesn’t need stuff. All she needs is the certainty that The Cat House on the Kings remains open for business for as long as the need exists.
Wrapping It Up
I’m out of space, so I will sum the rest up as briefly as possible. This month I have trapped and homed a cat dumped at a car dealership in Selma, and I’m working on three more across the street at another dealership. They are okay with TNR if I can’t place them. I picked up a senior cat whose owner died and the inside-only cat was locked out of her home in the mountains and left to fend for herself. I adopted out the cat that I found stuck to the rat glue trap. Took in two cats from Second Chance in Selma. The Cat House kept one kitten, and my Fresno friend will foster the older one. I will be transporting more ferals to Bakersfield soon. Till next month………….
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