Cat House on the Kings: It’s Very Hot Here, We Have a SoCal Angel, (22) Kitten Tails

Jul 28, 2018 | 2018 Articles, Animal Rescue Adventures, Jackie Dale

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.

The July heat has been brutal and unrelenting. Cat House cats are kept cool with fans and misters. The cats, of course, have the option to go into the air conditioned house, but many prefer to be outside. The cats are out and about when it is still cool, but once it starts to get warm, they retreat to their favorite cool spots.

In the afternoon, you will see cats lounging in the coolness of the shrubbery. Many of the cats spend their day down by the river’s edge. Ideally, it is best to bring all pets indoors during the heat. However, realistically this may not always be possible.

cat house cat

Penny. A successful adoption. From coyote busy to living the good life!

If you have outside-only pets, or stubborn pets who refuse to come inside, it helps to wet down the surrounding area for them which will bring down the temperature several degrees. Dogs can also be wet down with the hose, but an absolute must-have is a kiddie pool for dogs. Not only is it a refreshing dip for your dog(s) but it provides a source of emergency water should they inadvertently knock over their water buckets.

The New Beginnings Shelter Challenge is finally over. It was a very long contest, and we appreciate your diligence in voting every day. We have yet to receive the official news, but at the end of the voting period, I believe we were in second place. So many deserving charities to compete with for the prize money. Regardless of where we place in the contest, it is gratifying to see so much being done for the good of animals. Thank you for voting!

The Clovis Chipotle restaurant fundraiser is right around the corner! The Burritos for Purritos fundraiser to benefit The Cat House on the Kings is an amazing opportunity to get some great food AND help The Cat House on the Kings raise some money. You can show the flyer, either in print or on your phone, OR you can just tell them that you are there to support The Cat House on the Kings and 33% of your order gets donated to us!cat house

Thursday, August 9! 1840 Hearndon Avenue, Clovis 4 p.m. – 8 p.m.

We Had No Water!

cat house

The water pump has been repaired!

I know, I know, it seems like we are always asking for donations. That is because we get no money from anyone except YOU, the people who love and support The Cat House mission. It is expensive to run an operation of this size. Not just to feed and maintain a thousand or so cats and kittens, but to pay staff, maintain the structures and grounds, etc. It is especially devastating when we experience a catastrophe of epic proportions. Our very large, very expensive water pump went out. No pump means no water and the daily temperatures are into the triple digits. Then Tammy was informed that due to the many rusting and rotting pipes, the repair would be costing far more than the originally quoted $6,000. At this point, I can only imagine the thoughts running through her head. She just stood there no doubt already trying to figure out where to find the extra money. At that very moment, a gentleman named Chris pulled in to the parking lot. He had driven all the way up from SoCal to hand-deliver a check for $6,000! What an amazing gift! It is gestures like that that helps restore one’s faith in humanity. Mere words alone cannot describe our level of gratitude for this incredibly generous donation. Along with the other donations that were made, there is now enough money to fully cover this unexpected expense. Thank you, thank you, thank you so very, very much!

(22) Kitten Tails
Every year you hope it will get better. However, each year it actually seems to get worse. Everyone is full. I currently have twenty-two kittens at my home. I have turned away many more because I am only one person and have a limited amount of room. I have an additional thirteen, give or take, in foster homes. It gets hard to keep track of them all sometimes!

rescued kitten

Bottle baby

Kittens are time consuming. Their care requirements include cleaning, feeding, and cleaning again. Particularly when the kittens reach weaning age and begin solid food. They basically swim and crawl through their food. So they get bathed and blow dried. Then they poop and walk through that, too. Another bath and blow dry. Then it is time to eat again. So repeats the process that fortunately is only temporary.

cat house

Bottle Baby kitten now

I have my kittens divided into seven groups based on sibling groups, size, and health status. Every room except my bedroom has kittens in it. The puppy play pens and tent catios have been a godsend. Most mornings the kittens go outdoors at 6 a.m. to enjoy some fresh, cool morning air. Then I feed everyone and administer any meds. While they are outside, I scoop all the litter boxes, sweep and mop up all areas, and wipe down all washable surfaces. Everything must be very clean. I use a lot of disinfectant wipes! I try to keep my house clean and odor free. I also use Febreeze air spray, it works really well on odors. I have fans in every room plus A/C, so everyone is cool and there is plenty of air circulation. I also make sure that the master bath is free of kittens and spotlessly clean for the hubby’s arrival home from work. A happy hubby is a kitten-tolerant hubby. No one wants to step on kitty litter to get to the shower. I’d like to offer up a little shout-out to my hubby, Frank, for his extreme patience with all these kittens. We recently celebrated our twenty-seventh wedding anniversary, which we both forgot. Nothing like mutual forgetfulness to bring you closer together.

cat house kitten

Kittens must be socialized and friendly before adoption.

The kittens that arrived this month came from a variety of situations. Some came from a local shelter, three from a friend who found three kittens in his boat, and three came from a lady in Clovis who was waiting for me to have an opening. Then I took in a six-month-old ginger and was convinced to take three additional kittens. The kittens were healthy looking despite being in a near hoarding situation. One kitten had been given to a neighbor whose children proceeded to put glue on it and throw it into a pool. The woman took back the kitten, and I took the three siblings plus a Siamese I spotted in the photos she sent. The Siamese was adopted right away which is almost always the case. The adopter wanted a “chatty” cat, and what’s chattier than Siamese?

This cutie has a tail that points at his head!

This cutie has a tail that points at his head!

Another group of three kittens came from behind an abandoned restaurant on the outskirts of Kingsburg. The kittens were very friendly meaning that they had clearly been dumped there. Unfortunately, one of the kittens had fallen down into a storm drain. A woman named Angie happened by and heard the kitten’s cries. She turned to Facebook for help. Another woman saw the post and asked her husband, who worked for the city to help. He removed the grate but had to return to work. The resourceful woman lowered a basket baited with food into the hole and waited. Soon enough, the kitten crawled into the basket and was successfully brought out of the drain. Kudos to Angie for her resourcefulness and for going the extra mile to save the kitten.

cat house kitten

Drain Kitten Saved

So as I sign off until next month, I will say that I hope to have far fewer kittens here by then. Six are supposed to leave soon and hopefully more to follow. Spay and neuter, put out water for community animals, and please share my column wherever you can. Peace On!

Learn more about the Cat House on their website and you can donate here.

Check out more animal rescue & pet related articles, including more Cat House columns, in our Pet Perspective section and remember that if you buy an ad in KRL you can designate 10% of the ad price to go to the Cat House. Join our Pets Facebook group to keep up with all of our pet articles.

Jackie Dale is a freelance writer who lives in Reedley with her husband of 25 years, Frank, and their 2 children. Jackie currently writes for The Cat House on the Kings Feline Rescue. A former ballerina, Jackie now teaches yoga and fitness classes privately and at local area gyms.


  1. Thanks for all your efforts on the kitten’s behalf. Your reward may not be now, but it will be in Heaven, for sure!

  2. Wow – Go Angle thank you for think outside the basket for the kitten and, yeah, I agree, my cats will sit outside (in te shade) rather than be cooler indoors!

    Thank you for the update.

  3. Thank God for that generous man from SoCal! May he be blessed with the affections of ALL cats, may all cats come up and rub against him in friendliness!

    The heat is worrisome for the feral cats I feed, water (and had spayed/neutered before releasing them back). I hope the shade of my covered front porch and covered back deck is sufficient as well as fresh water every day. (along with their food). If there is anything else that can be done to make their lives more comfortable in this horrible heat, I’d love to know about it (bearing in mind I probably cannot set up water misters, given the City of Fresno’s nasty water restrictions)

  4. Thanks for all of your very wonderful work and everybody at the Cat House. I will send my donation. I donate yearly and I know every bit helps and will be used for whatever needs there are, which are never ending.
    What a wonderful man Chris is to drop off a check for six grand and drive all the way there on top of it. I hope he enjoyed his tour. That’s the kind of man every woman should have in her life. Sounds like you have one named Frank!
    Just saw something on Vet Gone Wild about a woman in Costa Rica with over one thousand stray dogs she looks after with the help of her volunteers and gets them spayed/neutered and their health up to snuff so they can be adopted. It’s a problem all over the world and what we need is to educate people about kindness; i.e. children putting glue on a kitten and throwing it in the pool! and to spay/neuter. The animals can’t do that for themselves so people need to really start pitching in and helping out. Why is all of this left to the very few of us who are there to pick up the pieces. It takes a village and I wish those that are brain-dead and uncaring would just snap out of it. Maybe they should be treated the way they treat animals and change will come. WE can only hope.

  5. As usual Jackie, you amaze and inspire me! Thanks so much for all you do for these little angels. You are a BIG angel!!

  6. Thank you for all you do! I don’t even live in California but I help out The Cat House when I can. Thanks to Frank too!!


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