We Want You to Foster!

Sunday, February 28, 2010

Weekend Adoptions

Beautiful Qadira was adopted yesterday.  Her new mom and dad are going on vacation next week so she'll stay in her foster home until March 10th. 

And a family came by the adoption event today and adopted Emma. Emma didn't even make it to the website yet. 

So, only two adoptions this weekend, but when we adopt out a cat, we can rescue another cat.  So two adoptions is a  great thing.

Friday, February 26, 2010

Meet Pierre - friendly cat trapped as part of a TNR project

Pierre spent the winter living in a feral colony in downtown Raleigh. He was trapped as part of a TNR project and his sweet personality was not discovered until after he was neutered the next day. He came out of the trap purring and has not stopped since. Most likely abandoned (no one responded to the found cat ads), Pierre found his way into the feral colony because of the steady source of food, but he was not accepted by the other cats and was very skinny when he was trapped. 

Pierre is very grateful to be indoors and is not afraid to show it. He loves to give sweet hugs and kitty kisses. He is very cuddly and wants nothing more to be around people. But he’s also very playful – he loves toys and has a blast chasing them around the floor. Pierre gets along well with other cats and is great with cat-friendly dogs.

Pierre does have a cropped ear because he was trapped at night and neutered the next day as a feral. But it does not distract from how handsome he is. He has a perfect white tip to his sleek black tail, it almost looks like someone put a cotton ball on the end of his tail! Pierre is approximately 2-3 years old.

Jasper featured by local artist

After falling in love with Jasper's fat cheeks, Olga Wagner - a talented local artist - created a wonderful painting of him, which is now featured on her blog.  Check out "Corner Cat" - the wonderful painting of Jasper.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Spay Day 2010 was a great success

It was a lot of hard work but our spay day was a great success.  Alley Cats and Angels (AC&A) and Paw Prints Animal Rescue (PPAR)  partnered together to sponsor a spay day on Tuesday, February 23.  Dr. Farmer of Greystone Animal Hospital hosted the spay day at her clinic and performed the surgeries.  AC&A and PPAR paid for the surgeries, vaccinations, and all medical supplies so there was no cost to the people that had appointments for their animals.  Our spay day was targeted towards lower income households. Very nice people that want to do the right thing for their animals but not currently able to afford to do it, especially since many of them are currently unemployed because of the economy.  Some of the cats were abandoned cats that people were feeding but not able to vet.  Approximately 85% of the cats and dogs participating in our Spay Day were female and in heat.  That is a lot of puppies and kittens that will not be born in the spring.  Our smallest was a 5-6 month old cat weighing about 5 pounds and the largest was a Mastiff/Boxer mix weighing 105.6 pounds (it took 3 people to get Bear up on the table).  We had appointments for 10 dogs and 20 cats, but we did have a couple last minute cancellations, no-shows (or couldn't get all of the cats), so we did 9 dogs and 16 cats.

Volunteers from both Paw Prints and Alley Cats were there to do intake and discharge, paperwork, surgery prep (shaving bellies, clipping claws, cleaning ears), monitor the animals after anesthesia (pre-surgery) and post surgery monitoring.  My job was intake and discharge and paperwork (health records, preparing rabies certificates for vet signature, etc.) -- that's really all I'm qualified for but I am the queen of paperwork and it was a very necessary job.  I did do some post-surgery monitoring of the cats in short doses to when someone needed a break - which entails watching the cats in one of the recovery rooms very closely to monitor their respirations, check color of their gums, etc. I could have done more post-op monitoring except I'm claustrophobic and couldn't be in those rooms with the doors closed for very long.

AC&A and PPAR have worked closely together for several years and it's a partnership that will continue as we make a great team and we have already had some preliminary discussions about Spay Day 2011.  This will be an annual event where we can further carry out our goal of helping stop the pet overpopulation crisis and saving lives through spay/neuter. 

Below are just a few pictures, but more can be found at

This is one of the cat rooms before surgery (there were 2 rooms for the cats).  After surgery, paperwork folder gets moved to bottom of cage so the cats can be closely monitored with nothing obstructing the view.

Dog surgery - I think this was the huge dog but not sure

Surgery prep - belly shave time!

Pre-operative monitoring in the dog room

Post operative monitoring of one of the dogs that required extra TLC.  This dog required fluids, etc. and so she was not moved back to the dog room to recover after her fluids, she recovered seperately and had one person sitting with her and monitoring her very closely

Dr. Farmer preparing to spay one of the younger cats

One of the cats recovering after surgery

Monday, February 22, 2010

Meet Zander, cute little guy

Look at this little guy -- his name is Zander.  We took him in Friday night. He is such a little cutie pie. He's about 8-9 weeks old.  He's getting used to humans but is still a bit scared, although will relax fairly quickly in your arms. Most of the orange is on his head. He does have an orange tail and two little orange spots on his back.  He had one abscess that burst but another that hasn't and so he's still at the vet.  They had to anesthetize him and put in a drain but it was late in the day due to an emergency surgery so he's spending the night at the vet.  My poor little boy.   He'll get his face cleaned when he comes home and then we'll get a better picture of him.

Weekend update and new cats

Well, unfortunately, after such a great Valentines Day adoption weekend, we didn't have any adoptions this past weekend.  Although there was quite a bit of interest in Usher and Qadira.  Except Qadira doesn't seem to care much for children.  But then she has Siamese in her, what do you expect?!

And we had three returns.  Andy and Angie were adopted on Valentines Day weekend and we knew there was a possibility they would be returned because of a history of allergies and they were returned Friday.  We also need to update Angie's profile as she isn't particularly fond of children.  And big Rascal (the bed hog) cannot go to a home with a dominate male cat because Rascal is dominant.  I felt so bad, the family tried everything and tried for more than three months to make it work.  Rascal does fine with female cats after a couple days of growling and will sleep next to them and be their buddy.  And he does fine with passive male cats (which I guess is why he does fine with my Bailey boy - poor Bailey's a wuss). 

We took in two 4-5 month old kittens last week and they are currently in need of a foster home.  They are super sweet and very friendly.  Eclipse is a shiny black female and Emma is a pretty light brown tabby.   I'll get pictures this week.

We took in a black male and an orange tabby male last week also, they are about 4-5 months old.  I believe their names are Dominick and Darren.  One of our vets rescued them from a storm drain and we took them in.  They are sweet boys but still need more socialization before they can go to adoption events.  They are currently in a foster home with older children.  This foster home does a great job socializing kittens.  We'll get pictures soon.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Spay Day 2010

We have a few appointments left for spay day next Tuesday (Feb. 23). If you need a cat spayed/neutered or know of someone that needs their pet cat spayed/neutered and you/they are financially unable to afford it, email us at It is by appointment only at our vet in Raleigh; appointments are filling up fast, so contact us ASAP.

The spay/neuter surgeries and vaccinations are sponsored by Alley Cats and Angels so there is no cost to the cat owner. 


New volunteers

We would like to extend a super huge thank you to our newest volunteers, Kate and Chris.  Kate is two time adopter from Alley Cas and Angels (Justina in the fall and Isaac in December).  And Chris saw our banner last month while we were in the adoption center and contacted us about volunteering.

They both shadowed the Petsmart Knightdale adoption center duties tonight and are excited to take their own nights.  Ok, no one is ever really excited about litter box duty, but you know what I mean.  Cleaning actually doesn't take that long.  The fun part is visiting and playing with all the cats and making sure everyone gets out of cage time and play time.

Chris, Kate -- thank you very much.  We very much appreciate you choosing Alley Cats and Angels.  And the kitties will love some new servants, er I mean playmates.  :-)

Monday, February 15, 2010

Meet some more newcomers

Not a newcomer (well, been with us three weeks but I've been remiss on taking pictures; I have to borrow Marie's really good camera to take pix since the iphone doesn't cut it for website pictures).  This is Qadira, the friendly cat we took in last month after she was brought into a free roaming spay/neuter clinic (primarily for feral cats).  She's much prettier than her picture, but oh she did not want to model for us at all!  Qadira is a Siamese mix (with a pretty tabby tail) and is about 6 months old.  Her eyes almost switch between sea foam green and really light blue depending on the light.

Shannon Rose, on the other hand, was more than happy to sit and look beautiful for the camera!  Shannon Rose was found in the middle of a busy road and was extremely hungry.  She's a sweet and pretty lady, about 1.5-2 years old per the vet.  Shannon Rose does not think to highly of dogs (well, they drool ya know).

Finally, this is "paw kitty".  We must name paw kitty, so maybe Paulina.  Paw kitty was trapped behind a business but the caregiver did not want to put her back out because of her paw.  Paw kitty has a leg and paw that is either under developed or has atrophed and her paw curves so the claws grow into her paw which explains why the caregiver always saw little blood droplets. Paw kitty is now declawed on one paw (it was the most humane thing to do for this situation, otherwise paw kitty would always be in pain and that's worse) and we would help the caregiver find a super, extra fabulous barn home for paw kitty.  Well, paw kitty isn't hard core feral. She's super shy, scared, but doesn't tense when you pick her up.  She's got loads of potential.  She needs a lot of socialization and one on one, but we're up to the challenge.  Once she's ready, we'll find her a wonderful forever home, cropped ear and all.   Paw kitty is about 5 months old. 

Look at our new babies....

Odessa's (the little kitten we took in the last Sunday of January from a spay/neuter clinic for ferals) siblings were trapped by their wonderful caregiver this weekend and are going to their new foster home to be with their sister today.  They were tested for FeLV/FIV last night and are negative. 

  • One is a pretty little golden tabby - positively striking coloring
  • Major fuzzy butt kitten alert. Looks Maine Coon mix based on hair, shape of nose, eyes, and ears.  Brown/black long hair -- so pretty. Poor little thing was all matted so we were going to get a "cub cut" (ok, a lion cut but we figure a baby lion is a cub so cub cut sounded cute), but Marie was able to comb out the mats last night.  Fuzzy butt was not thrilled but didn't put up too much of a fight. 
Odessa was caught at round 8-9 weeks old, so she's had a few more weeks of socialization but these new babies will do just fine.  It just takes patience and love. 

I saw them at lunch today and ooohhhhhhhhh..  So "fierce"!  Ha -they hiss but are easily picked up, although they don't quite seem to enjoy it yet.  Babies, you will have a great life now, you'll learn to relax and enjoy it. 
I was prompty shot down on my name suggestions (Ooga-booga and Ootzsietootsie), but I think Ozzy Pawsborne might still be a contender if either of them are boys (or maybe not). 

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Papa's in the House!!

For those of you that read last weekend's post about trapping cats at the beach and how only mama cat was caught, well, this story has a happy ending -- which you can guess by the title of this post. Amy, the caregiver, went back to to the beach Thursday and no luck. But she went back yesterday and came home with papa! YEEHAW - Papa's in the house! Literally. Mama cat even got on Amy's bed today. Great progress. Amy has been caring for the mama and papa feral for a long time so the cats accept her. I hope they'll be happy inside now that they are safe and sound.

Since I can't speak or understand "cat", I don't know for sure that my inside ferals are happy but they really do seem to be. And they won't go near an outside door for anything, it's like their thinking "hey, we're inside now, uh uh - we're not going back out!!". And they never will. They are my babies even if they won't let me tickle their tummies or rub their heads. Although revax time each year is a nightmare. Except for Katie Lou - that poor girl isn't that bright. Every year - put some tuna in a trap and every year, she goes in! The rest have to be corraled and snatched and put into carriers (this task is not for the faint of heart - my friend Marie does the lions share of cornering and putting in carriers).

Great work Amy. You're a pro trapper now!

Oh my gosh - what a weekend for adoptions

So there were the adoptions yesterday that I blogged about (Tipper, Varjak Paw, Vittles, and Optimus Prima).  Today was another fantastic day for adoptions:
  • Violet, Velcro, and Vodka - the last of the V kittens were adopted
  • Basil and Beamer were adopted
  • Rippa was adopted by her foster mom (another "foster failure"!!)
  • Andy and Angie were adopted (WOW!!  they were shy but doing much better).  Now there is a good chance Andy and Angie could be returned because of allergies but a great family and they really like the Andy and Angie (younger children and mom and kids liked older kittens instead of the 3-month old ones - double wow!!), so we're hoping it works but are prepared in case it doesn't (not putting any new cats at their foster home just in case)
  • Uma has an adoption pending
It has been a great weekend -- twelve adoptions plus the adoption pending on Uma.  This also helps because we have quite a few cats on the waitlist but had to wait for foster homes to free up.  

Now my wish list is for Carmen and Cleo to find homes.  They were adopted once but returned because of job loss.  They are such sweet girls (not the most photogenic at all but so sweet) and they would really love a forever home of their own.  They would love to go together but they would also do fine apart. 

And of course for our featured cat, Tiger, to find a home of his own.  He's been in foster care for quite a while and it's his turn to shine. 

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Wow - Our Blog Won an Award

Wow...Our blog follower and fellow rescuer – meowmeowmans - has bestowed on us our very first award for blogging. We use the blog to provide updates on our newly adoptable cats, our adoptions, fundraisers, and other items about the rescue – in addition to a few miscellaneous ramblings here and there. Thank you meowmeowmans, we’re glad you like our blog. We love providing the updates on the rescue.
According to the rules* for this award, we have to pass it on to five of our blogging friends and with so many fantastic blogs out there, it was hard to pick just five. Well, one of our picks would have certainly been Animal Shelter Volunteer Life but since they gave us the award, I don’t think we can pick them, so after much though, below are our five picks:

ild Run Blog:
Possumlady Blog:
Black Cat Rescue:
Cats of Wildcat Woods:
50 Kittens:

* Rules for Superior Scribbler Award:
• Each superior scribbler must pass on the AWARD to 5 friends who are also SS.• Each SS must link the author and name of the blog from whom he receives the award.• Each SS must display the award on his/her blog and link to the post which explains the award. (we couldn't find this post or the one where you have to add your name to the Mr Linky List.• Each SS is asked to visit the post which explains the award and add his/her name to the Mr. Linky List• Each SS must post these rules on his/her blog

Adoptions and Foster "Failures"

This is my last post before I go back to bed and hopefully wake up migraine free tomorrow.

We had four adoptions today but one of those was extra special (Tipper), read below and you'll see why.

Varjak Paw and Vittles were adopted today.  They are 13-week old kittens that have been in a foster to adopt home since they were 8 weeks old.  They were vetted Monday and so the adoption was done today. Obviously, we planned on that adoption this weekend.

Tipper was adopted this weekend.  Tipper!!!!  Ok, the reason for all the exclamation points is that Tipper has been in the adoption program since December 2008.  Tipper was found living in a storm drain near a pizza shop and would run under cars as they parked to stay warm.  When he was rescued, his ears and above his eyes were singed from the heat of the cars.  For a long time, Tipper didn't "show well" at adoption events but lately he has started to blossom at the events. I'm sure it is very bitter sweet for his foster mom.  She was the one that rescued him and has had him until now.  But she really liked his adoptive parents and that makes a huge difference.  Tipper, we are so happy.  It might take a while to get the adult adopted, but no matter how long it takes, we are dedicated to finding them a great home.

And last, we have another foster "failure".  Instead of bringing Optimus to the event today, his foster mom and dad came out to adopt him!  Apparently, they couldn't let him go.  We lose more foster homes that way - they adopt one or two of their fosters and can't foster anymore.  So Rebecca and Derek, welcome to the club.  I've been there, well kinda.  About 5 or so years ago, my dear friend Debbie fostered for the SPCA while I did independent rescue before I founded Alley Cats and Angels.  She had 13 kittens at one time and they all had ringworm so I was up there most nights visiting them with her for several hours and then we did the twice weekly baths with anti-fungal shampoo, nightly meds (oral and topical), bleaching the room, etc.  But from the second she brought the kittens home and I saw one of them I cried "that's MY LOVE MUFFIN"!!  Funny thing, she was on the L's (she named each litter she fostered by letter of the alphabet) and the name Love Muffin stuck.  And then I also fell in love with "lots-o-fluff" who we named Lambchop. When the time came for them to go to the center to be adopted, I couldn't do it.  I helped Debbie write descriptions for all the cats and she knew I would be adopting Love Muffin and Lambchop when she saw the pitiful writeups I did for them.  I couldn't bring myself to write great things about them because that meant they could get adopted.  Of course I adopted the two furry monsters (they literally climbed the curtains at my house!), oh but I love them so.  So even though those two weren't officially my fosters, I really am a foster failure too.

Meet BB

Let me start out this post by saying please excuse any typos or horrendous grammar.  I've been fighting a terrible migraine since yesterday morning. 

BB is not his permanent name, just his temporary name - it stands for "bitey brat".  BB was found wandering around a neighborhood before the last snow.  Apparently, he was wandering around for some time before we were contacted to take him in. 

BB is super friendly at about 9-10 weeks old so I can't imagine he was born to a feral; but you never know. He bites something terrible (I have the marks all over my hands) and we're working on that -- if you have any ideas let me know, my way of tapping the nose (lightly) and saying no doesn't work because it makes him mad and I get bit harder.  I have to be very careful scruffing him because I noticed that it seems to bother him so he'll be getting to the vet next week to get that checked out. 

He doesn't know how to play with other kittens and is very possessive with toys (growl, hiss, slap, bite, scratch).  He got ahold of a catnip toy and wow, that's all she wrote.  And I'm not sure he's ever been fed anything other than people food when he was fed because he goes nuts when I open the fridge. 

So our little boy needs to go to kitten finishing school to learn some manners, but he's bound to be a great boy. 

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

The Purrfect Cat

It's time to start the hunt for Oscar's forever home.  We pulled him and his mom, Meena, from a high kill shelter.  He's been with us for over 7 months  because poor Oscar has IBS (irritable bowel syndrome), but that took a while to be diagnosed so he was not available for a long time.  He is now in a foster home with no other fosters and is on Purina Overweight Management (OM) food available only at the vet.  Now the thought of feeding my poor boy (he was my foster for quite a while and would sleep on my pillow so he's still "my" boy) OM food made me cringe because he's was a tiny bit thin anyway.  Purina OM is a low residue food and Oscar seems to be doing much better.  He seems to like the food and he gets Purina OM canned food twice a day.  We're now talking to the vet about predisolone and B-12 injections for Oscar to see if that will  help more.  Oscar is quite a lovebug and a constant companion.  He keeps his foster mom, Karen, entertained with his antics.  Karen captured several great pictures of him -- which is quite a feat because he typically won't hold still long enough for a picture because there is attention to be had!  But I really love these pictures of him.  Also, a big thanks to Karen for taking on a special needs foster.  She's experienced in cats with IBS and is great at giving meds.  It's thanks to her careful care of him that he's doing this great.

So even though he has IBS, Oscar still is the purrfect cat.  Honestly, Purina OM really doesn't cost much more than Science Diet, Nature's Balance, EVVO, etc.  He really does need to go to a house with no other cats or a house that does not free feed but has scheduled meal time.  His tummy is pretty good when he's only fed OM.

Sunday, February 7, 2010

Finally - a picture of Jasper

You probably remember my post about Jasper, our first FIV positive cat in the rescue (although I do personally own [or she owns me] an FIV positive cat).  We did send his blood out for the FIV antibody western blot test since it tests several antibioties whereas the combo SNAP test only tests one and it confirmed that he is indeed FIV positive.  And that's ok, we can still find him a fantastic home.  In the meantime, he's in a great foster home.

Well, anyway, we finally have pictures of Jasper.  His nickname is "bear cat" because he's a big ol' bear of a cat and super sweet. And very handsome.  Since he was not neutered until he was 2 years old, he has the big fat cheeks pretty typical to tomcats.  Many times the face will slim down several months after the neuter surgery, but not always.  Either way, he's good looking -- but I kind of like those fat little cheeks.

Saturday, February 6, 2010

There's got to be a better way... keep warm while trapping cats in the winter.  I'm trying to thaw out from sitting in the cold for about 7 hours trying to trap two cats to relocate them from their current location (the beach) to their caregiver's house in Raleigh.  The cats are not welcome where they are and there is no regular caregiver now.  Amy, the caregiver, moved from the beach to Raleigh and has been trying to get them for some time.  I went with her today and brrrrrrrrrrr, it was cold!  The cats were previously TNR'd and are very trap savvy so I brought my awesome folding drop trap.  But that means you have to be within eye sight of the trap  (I think the rope is about 100-150 feet) so when the cats go in, you trip the trap.  So I laid on the ground slightly downhill and almost out of sight of the cats so they hopefully wouldn't see me and would go under the drop trap.  I think I need a ghillie suit for camoflauge.  It would help me blend in more. 

Well, we caught mama, but papa is still out there.  We stayed for hours trying to catch him, but to no avail. It was getting too dark for us to have any success so we made the almost two hour drive back. 

While we were there, we were all but harrassed by the North Carolina Wildlife Control.  As we're trapping the cats, we get yelled at to stop feeding the cats.  I come down after hearing that thinking it was one of the fisherman and was surprised to see it was a NC Wildlife Control Officer.  I am dismayed to say that our wildlife control officers are quite uneducated about feral cats.  The cats will surely bite someone or get too close to a human and give them some disease. Whoa, seriously?  Wow, kind of scary that these guys know diddly.  And then we were informed that the ramp is for boating only.  We weren't on the ramp, we were in the park side.  But the officer was fine with all the other non-boaters there. At which point I was asked for my ID and to come with the officer.  I thought he was going to write me a ticket or haul me off in handcuffs (too bad, that would've made a great picture!!).  I did get the officer's name and his supervisor's name and contact information.  I'll be writing "strongly worded" letters this week. 

Amy has to work tomorrow and I have to trap some ferals some place local, but Amy  is heading back down there Monday with her sister and sure do hope she can catch papa.  I hate the thought of him there without mama, they are used to snuggling together.  But he does have a very well concealed shelter.  I sure do hope she can get him Mondayy.  Between work and adoption events, I can't go back down there for a few weeks.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

I think I'm in love...

I just discovered Kuranda now has cat towers.  Towers come in heights from 2 to 9 perch levels to fit your area and maximize floor space. The tower is designed with more weight at the bottom to keep it secure from tipping.  But what's really important (to me) is the PVC frame and solid vinyl fabric is non-porous and can be fully sanitized with bleach or disinfectant.  Petfinder members get a discount but still...I'll have to save my pennies so I can buy one or two for my fosters.  Obviously, I want the 9 perch tower.  Simply sublime.

Our new traps are on their way

I'm excited! Our new traps are on their way.  Part of our feral cat education and assistance program is loaning out traps for TNR projects, but we've had limited traps to loan out - just the personal traps that Marie and I each own. 

We just ordered 12 Tomahawk deluxe transfer traps -- the traps with the great rear release door.  We ordered 6 of the 26-inch traps (my favorite unless the cats are huge, and this size is great for catching kittens too), and 6 of the 32-inch traps.  The big ones are great for trapping long cats or fat cats.  They'll be here by the end of the week.  Now, we just have to find a good way to engrave them. 

Monday, February 1, 2010

Snow Day Adoption

Fidget was adopted tonight.  It would have been a weekend adoption except for the snow.  That leaves only one of the F "kittens" left -- Fallon (they're 9.5 months old now). We're so happy the family came to Petsmart last week and spent time with several of the older kittens before finally falling in love with Fidget.

Fidget was one of seven kittens that came to us from Hickory.  The kittens were born into a feral colony with no regular caregiver.  The former caregiver has MS and was no longer able to care for the colony.  When the kittens came to us, they were in very poor health.  They were covered in fleas and suffered severe flea anemia. Most of the kittens were dehydrated and severely malnourished. Over half of the kittens had eye problems. Fuzzle and Fairfax had such bad ear mites that the inside of their ears were so caked with blood, all you saw was red. Little Tabby was in the worst shape, he was so painfully thin that it was hard to pick him up without feeling like he would break as soon as you touched him – he was literally skin covering bones. The cats came to us on a Saturday and went to the vet on Monday. With medical treatment and proper food and fluids, the cats were getting better and gaining weight. All of the kittens were getting subcutaneous fluids twice a day and special food/supplemental feedings.  Little Tabby was given extra supplemental feedings and was doing better. Unfortunately, he went downhill one morning and passed away almost a week after we took him in. Several weeks later that we lost one more of the kittens.   It was a long and hard battle and losing two of the kittens broke my heart.  But the remaining five kittens thrived and grew big and strong and healthy.  So while adoptions always make us happy, these adoptions are especially satisfying. 

I'll miss you little Fidget.  Ok, you're not so little now, you've actually gotten chunky.  I'll miss you chunky monkey!  I give you 2 hours before you are spoiled rotten!