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.
Successful Open HouseOur Spring Open House was blessed with wonderful weather and a fantastic turnout. Thanks to Tammy Barker and team of her relentlessly dedicated volunteers, the Cat House on the Kings made a very nice chunk of change and additionally, we received a ton of donated food and cleaning supplies. The silent auction brings in the bulk of the money and as always, the selection of items was amazing! There was some furious bidding when a trio of Coach purses were spotted, just sitting there, all nonchalant, on one of the last tables. It was amusing to watch people bid, circle around and check the sheets, bid again, hang back and wait. I know, I was one of them. I won the bidding on two of the Coach bags, a vintage Bally bag and a soft-as-a-baby’s butt, Brighton wallet. I ended up acquiescing one of the Coach bags to a teen girl who had been bidding on the purses but was outbid at the last moment. She was so happy and that made it totally worth it.
Fosters: Tarzan Leaves, Milton Arrives
In last month’s column I wrote about tiny Tarzan, sole survivor of a litter of kittens born in a tree. Tarzan was taken in by a rescue that specializes in newborn kittens and last I heard, he was doing well. Taking care of a newborn is a bit of work, but their cuteness factor overrides most negative aspects. Tarzan had barely been gone a week when I got a call from an acquaintance. She had a kitten that appeared to be alone. She knew the taxicab company across the alley from house had been feeding some feral cats so she went over to ask about the mother cat. They told her that the mother cat “had something wrong with her face” and had not been to the feeding station in over 24 hours. They speculated that she might have died. My friend then called me and asked me to foster the kitten. She said she had four young children and the task of caring for a kitten was just too overwhelming.
I met the woman in town and she handed me a box containing a tiny black and while fluffy ball with a huge head. His eyes had just opened putting his age at about 10 days. I flipped him over and, whoa!, it was more than obvious he was a boy. The following day I was going to the funeral of a friend’s father. The name of my friend’s dad was Milton. It seemed right to name the feisty little guy, Milton. Milton is now five weeks and will be looking for his “furever” home once he is old enough and of course, neutered. In my estimation, Milton is going to be a big guy. Remember, the Cat House is always in need of foster homes.
Facebook-Not for the Faint of Heart
Facebook has tons of heartbreaking stories of cruelty, neglect, abuse and abandonment. Some have happy endings while many others do not. The video of the cat rescuing a child from a dog attack has gone viral with millions of views. Caught on a home surveillance camera, a neighbor’s dog attacks a four-year-old boy who is riding his bike in his yard. The dog has the boy’s leg in his mouth, and is dragging the boy across the yard. The family cat attacks the dog, does a kind of flip in the air, looks back at the boy and proceeds to attack the dog again, chasing the dog down the street. The poor child had to get 15 stitches. The cat quite possibly saved the child’s life. Unfortunately the dog will be euthanized. I blame the dog’s owner. As noted dog trainer Barbara Woodhouse always said, “There are no bad dogs, only bad owners.” Dogs must be trained and controlled. In the event you elect not to do this, bad things are bound to happen. If you have an aggressive dog, it is your absolute duty and responsibility to make certain your dog is confined at all times.
Last week I ran across a Facebook post, a local woman was looking for a home for a kitten. The woman’s cousin was walking his children to Citizen’s Park in Reedley when a car drove by and a bag was thrown out of the window. The bag contained four kittens. Without going into the graphic details, only one kitten survived the resulting trauma. It rolled out of the bag before, well, you can figure out the rest. The man rescued the kitten and it was quickly adopted. I contacted the woman who posted the kitten’s picture. I thanked her and her cousin for helping the poor kitten and offered the new owner a free neutering. This sort of “disposal” is becoming disturbingly more common, fueled partly by animal controls refusal to accept cats. Much of the blame lies with those who refuse to spay and neuter their pets. With the Cat House offering $15 spay and neuters, there is just no good excuse to not be a responsible citizen and pet parent. Call for an appointment now. 559-638-0490.
Another story making the Facebook rounds was a kitten stuck in a tree in Texas. Found lying in the street, a Good Samaritan tried to help the kitten when it suddenly jumped up and bolted up a nearby tree. The kitten was now clinging desperately to a small branch while high winds swung the branch wildly from side to side. The local fire department and animal control both said there was “nothing they could do.” People from all over the country were making pleas on the post for someone to rescue the poor kitty. Along comes some random guy with a bucket lift on his truck and the kitten was saved. You could almost hear the applause and cheering right through the computer! The lesson here: never underestimate the power of social media!
Fixing Up the Cat HouseThe Cat House on the Kings is blessed with many dedicated volunteers. One of these volunteers is Charles Schaeffer. Mr. Schaeffer has spent countless hours on his mission to make the main house more updated and inviting to potential adopters. He is currently refinishing, and installing new hardware on the cupboard doors in the kitchen. A recent donation allowed for the installation of a new floor in the kitchen area. A floor improvement fund has been established to help pay for the much needed replacement of the deteriorating linoleum in the living room and the two adjacent rooms. Or perhaps someone might want to donate some commercial grade linoleum flooring? If you want to make a donation, please specify that your donation is for the floor improvement project. You can read more about our wonderful Mr. Schaeffer who will be featured in our upcoming summer newsletter.
Hot Weather Readiness
With hot weather already here it is vitally important to make sure all of your pets have adequate shelter from the sun and plenty of fresh, cool water. If you have homeless or feral cats near your home, please put out some water for them along with some food. Remember, the Cat House can loan traps (with a deposit) and you can fix the strays/ferals in your area. “Why should I do that?” many people ask me. “It is not my cat, not my responsibility.” I tell them that their sense of social responsibility should at least be telling them that unrestricted breeding only compounds the current problem. We must all do our part to prevent the birth of animals for which there are no homes. Spay & Neuter!
Remember, you can advertise your business with Kings River Life Magazine and designate the Cat House to receive 10% of the ad fee.
Check out more animal rescue & pet related articles, including more Cat House columns, in our Pet Perspective section.