We Want You to Foster!

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Adoption update, barn cat update, and Spring Hope TNR project update

Adoption Update
Parmesan and Pickles were adopted this weekend.  No surprise there - small kittens at 3.5 months old and super sweet and super cute! 

And Sweet Tea was adopted last night!!!! The reason for all the exclamation points after Sweet Tea?  Well, Sweet Tea was one of the Bojangles kittens (found behind a Bojangles on a TNR project last year).  Her sibings, Boberry Biscuit and Chicken Biscut, never tamed up for adoption and Sweet Tea was really shy but her foster mom said definitely not a barn cat.  Sweet Tea would flinch some as you reached towards her, but once you started petting her, she loved it.  But the flinching would make lots of people shy away.  But someone met her Sunday and fell in love with her.  We are jumping for joy about this adoption.

Barn/Garden Cat Update
Boberry Biscuit and Chicken Biscut (yes, I do get flack on their names!) were relocated to a great barn home on Saturday.  They went to a horse rescue barn and if this relocation is successful, we will get more requests for barn cats at other rescue barns (this is a test case).  Boberry and Chicken Biscuit were the perfect match for the barn and and we have a very high success rate with relocations - as we work to match the cats to the barn and barn to the cats the same way we do to match adoptables and families.  We're sure this will be a success.  And since we have about 30 cats on the wait list for barn homes, having more available barns for relocation would be terrific.

Spring Hope Update
We've trapped 49 cats (plus a bunch of others but they were "repeat offenders" - meaning already TNR'd but wanted the smelly food in the traps!!) in 16 days.  The cats are starting to get a bit wise so after tomorrow's release, we will take a short break (1.5-2 weeks) and then start up again.  Two little fat kittens last night were not quite old enough to take in (we have no more available bottle feeder foster homes), so we will wait another two weeks and then pull them in.  They appear to be about 3.5-4 weeks old but not eating on their own.

April 10, 2011
  • 15 cats trapped for TNR: 11 females and 4 males
  • Plus, 2 kittens taken in to adoption program

April 13, 2011

  • 11 cats trapped for TNR: 9 females and 2 males

April 19, 2011

  • 12 cats trapped for TNR: 6 females and 6 males
  • Plus 1 mama cat trapped for TNR at a later date and her 5 week old babies taken into adoption program. Mama will be TNR’d once her babies can eat on their own. While not idea

April 25, 2011

  • 10 cats trapped for TNR: sex yet unknown (not back from spay/neuter yet).  But report that one or two may be adoptable so will be evaluated for adoption program

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

More trapping at Spring Hope

Last night we trapped another 13 cats from the Spring Hope colony.  That makes 38 spayed and neutered since April 11th (not counting one of the cats from last night - see below). 

One of the cats trapped last night was a new mama and the caregiver was able to show us where her babies were.  So crawled in the back of my SUV with a carrier, towel, and the trap, locked myself in, and transferred mama to the carrier and then put her babies in it with her.  She'll stay in my hall bathroom until her babies can eat on their own and then she'll be sterilized, vaccinated, ear cropped and returned to her colony.  While it's not ideal to keep them out of their colony for that long before returning them, this is a front yard colony and we can let her go in one of the sheds where she can reacclimate for a little while before running loose again.  She has the five cutest babies who seem to be about a week old.  Mama gets scared and hides behind the toliet when I go in that room, but she's taking good care of her babies.

We are making great strides with this project in a short amount of time.  Next time we trap, though, we are taking several extra traps (even if we have to take two cars) because we had quite a few "repeat offenders" last night and we'll need to just put them in time out next time we trap.

The almost 100-mile round trip (it's 94.7 miles) makes it a bit hard to do on a weeknight but last night, both of us were able to get out of work a little early and since my SUV was already loaded with clean traps, drop trap, towels, tarps, and trapping kit, we were able to get to the location while it was still light out and had at least an hour of trapping with light.  Makes it so much easier to do when it's light and there are so many black cats that keep going in the traps.  Can see a cropped ear very nicely in the light!  Of course, by the time we were done, it was dark and although we tried to take pictures, we were more concerned with trapping kitties and then it was too dark.  But we'll get more pictures soon.

Last night, we trapped 6 males and 7 females (1 of them being the mama above).  Quite a few females were pregnant.  We have prevented 60-80 kittens from being born in just a short time, since over two-thirds of the cats trapped so far have been female and pregnant.

Monday, April 18, 2011

Bad storms, but good adoption weekend

With the predicted bad weather, I really didn't think we would have many adoptions this weekend, but I was finishing up the third adoption of the day at Petsmart, when the the power went out and stayed out until late that night due to storms.  Wilma, Kismet, Charlie Girl, and Luke Duke were adopted this weekend.

Poor Charlie Girl, everyone called her fat - or asked if she was pregnant (no, absolutely not!  We have a 100% spay/neuter before adoption policy no exceptions).  Honestly, I was about to make her a little tag for her cage that said "I'm NOT pregnant, I'm just fat!!!" because everytime someone stopped by, they would ask if she was pregnant.  Charlie Girl's foster mom told me she's muscular and I'd scold her and ask her to cut back on the amount of food she gets because Charlie Girl was overweight, not muscular.  Well, Charlie Girl was adopted by a couple that are both personal fitness trainers and one is also a nutritionalist.  Charlie Girl will be on a meal and fitness plan in no time!  They are already switching over her food to kitty weight loss food. 

The storms were frightening, and all I could think about while at Petsmart where my personal cats and the fosters at my house - I was so worried.  But all of our volunteers and cats are safe.  However, the damage in this area is devastating, many lives were lost, so much damage to property everywhere, and my heart goes out to everyone affected by this weekend's tornadoes. 

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Adventures in Spring Hope Trapping Project - Part 2

We received a call yesterday around noon that a local low-cost clinic has 12 spay/neuter spots available for today, can we fill the slots with ferals, and oh by the way, no cost - they were already paid for.  Um, heck yeah - free spay/neuter when we are working on such a large colony with very limited funds.  I don't care how late we're there trapping after work, we'll fill those slots.

Immediately called the caregiver and asked him to pick up food and not feed until we come by tonight.  That we'll be bringing back the 15 that were spayed/neutered and vaccinated and will be trapping again for spay/neuter.

After work, we rush home, changes clothes, meet up at my house, drive to pick up the kitties, and then drive to Spring Hope to return the cats. Open up traps to release cats and then start baiting and setting traps again.  Now, I've not had lots of luck retrapping cats, but this poor kitty that was just released keep going back into the trap.  Not so smart male kitty - you were given canned food while you recovered from surgery, you're not starving!  NINE times we let him out of traps - nine (we counted)!!! We had success trapping 12 in about an hour. 

It's amazing how the caregiver went from not wanting us to trap/spay pregnant cats when we were there on Sunday to cheering us on and hoping we'd get the pregnant cats last night.  I guess he knows how much worse the situation will get if they all were allowed to have babies.  10 of the 11 females trapped Sunday were pregnant or in-heat. 

Our next trapping is Easter Sunday, we are unable to get slots until then.  Well, we might be able to get appointments for one or two cats but it's about an hour drive each way to/from the location, so we really have to do the mass trapping because with full-time jobs and the other rescue responsibilities, we can't drive 2 hours to just trap 1 or 2 for spay/neuter and then after recovery, drive 2 hours back to return the cats. 

I think we'll be taking in many kittens from this colony.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Mama Mia!!!

Three new intakes and four kittens were scheduled for spay/neuter, rest of vetting today.  Loaded up the kittens into carriers, loaded up two of the new intakes (will go to foster home after vetting, at my house for quarantine and until vetted).

Went to load up the one cat who's about 10-14 months old and I thought was in heat since she kept me up all night since we took her in on Thursday night yowling.  Oh my, oh dear - what's that (quite frankly, not the real words that came out of my mouth).  She was in the process of giving birth.  I thought we scheduled her pretty quickly considering she was just taking in Thursday night.  And she absolutely did not look pregnant at all - let alone about to pop.  She had given birth to one and in the process of birthing another one when I had to leave for work.  Someone going by my house to check on her throughout day.  But now I need to find her a new foster home since the one she was going to typically just does adults or older kittens (yay - those are hard to find).

Monday, April 11, 2011

Spring Hope Trapping Project Update

We've been raising money for this large trapping project because our rescue doesn't have the funds to TNR a colony of approximately 75 cats, in addition to all of the other colonies we are currently working.  We are been fortunate enough to have wonderful donors and have raised enough money to schedule several half-day spay days (approximately 15 cats each).

We trapped yesterday morning and had 15 cats in about an hour.  We also took in 2 kittens who are approximately 4-weeks old.  There were seven brand new kittens (one litter of 4 and one litter of 3) born the night before but we were unable to catch the mama cats so we left the kittens with instructions for the caregiver to snatch them up when they are 4-weeks old and call us.  Fortunately, it's not a shopping center colony, but a front/back/side yard colony.  Started when someone dumped a couple of cats.  There are no real low-cost spay/neuter options in Nash County.  We heard about it from someone who adopted some barn cats from us.  And although Nash County isn't really in our TNR area (we can't do too many TNR proejcts that are 40+ miles away from us because we all also work full-time jobs in addition to working other areas of the rescue for Alley Cats and Angels).  There are many "fertile myrtles" out there and what was once a few cats has grown to a colony of approximately 75 cats.  And by the time we're done, I believe we'll be taking in many, many, many kittens form this colony also.

So, loaded up the SUV with 15 traps, a drop-trap, carrier with two kittens and headed back to town to drop them off in a volunteer's garage (soo thankful someone has a garage as 15 traps would not have fit in my hall bathroom - where I typically house the cats before/after surgery, plus the kittens were going to be set up in the bathroom).  This morning, got up bright and early, headed to the house, loaded up the cats (thank you Darren for doing all the loading) and drove into work bright and early to change cars so the cats would make it to the spay day on time and I could make it to work on time!

One cat has a very bad eye and is being sent over to another vet.  If it has to be removed, that's a huge hit to the budget.  Below are some of the pictures of the project.

Update - weekend adoption and barn cat relos.

Very slow adoption weekend.  Only one adult was adopted, but YAY for Percy!!!

We took Reba to a barn/garden home to join her partner in crime Rufus (who was relocated a week earlier but Reba needed a vax booster before she could go).  Rufus is a super sweet boy but sprays a lot so could not be adopted to an indoor only home.  These two hit the barn/garden kitty jackpot.  Their caregiver is an older gentleman who makes a lot of handcrafted wood items from reclaimed lumber and he put the confinement cage on wheels so he could move the cats over to the workshop when he was working, move them near him when he was working out front, etc.  These cats will be so spoiled rotten!

We also relocated three ferals to an almost two hundred acre farm and set them up in the breezeway of the hay barn - good crosswind for airflow, nice and shady, and then lots of hiding places for once they are released.  MG (Mean Girl) and Kiki (otherwise known as Evilina) and Rhonda were relocated together.  Rhonda is the only one that won't scare the barn owners as they take care of them.  MG and Kiki are pretty intimidating, even though they are caged, I'm sure the mice are scared!    When we relocate three cats together, we set up the cages a little differently than we do when it's just a two cat relo.  With a 2-cat relo, we use a 48-inch cage  with a carrier inside on one side, litterbox next to it, and food/water up front. 

But with a 3-cat relo, we use two 42-inch double door cages, open the front door of one and put it to the side open door of the other and zip-tie the heck out of it (really - there is no escaping we use that many ties!!).  We put a large carrier and toys (cats have to have something to do while confined) in one of the cages and the food, water, and litter in the other cage.  This is especially optimal when we relocate very fractious cats as the barn owners won't have to get their hands anywhere near the kitties!  They'll be caged for about 21 days and then the cage doors opened and cages left up for a week or two.  We have a 95% success rate at cats sticking around and we hope this is another success story. 

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Heartwarming, easy going, loving and fun - gorgeous single gal seeks forever home

Charlotte is a gorgeous female marble torbie just over a year old. Charlotte has big beautiful green eyes that would make most supermodels green with envy! She is affectionate, grateful, happy, playful, versatile, likes toys, getting brushed, scratched and petted. She’s great on her own and happy to play solo or snooze. Very easy care, gentle and quick learner with minimal direction. Charlotte is happiest in a monogamous relationship as she loves her people so much she gets a jealous around other cats.

Let's be honest, Charlotte just doesn't like other cats - she depises, loathes, hates, detests, etc. other animals!  But she's a fantastic lady as long as she's the only pet and she really needs a forever home. If you're a one pet house, this might be the girl for you.

Because she really does not like other cats, Charlotte becomes increasingly stressed at adoption events and therefore only makes a rare appearance. Please help us spread the word to help Charlotte find her forever home.

Sunday, April 3, 2011

What a fantastic day!

Sweet but shy Betty was adopted today.  Someone saw her earlier in the week at the PetSmart Knightdale adoption and came to the center almost every day this week to visit Betty.  Now, Betty is typically shy, but Betty wasn't shy with the person who wanted to adopt her.  Perfect case of the kitty picking their forever person!  That leaves just one Bedrock kitty left ande that's our sweet Wilma, our featured cat.

Also, Arnie was adopted.  ARNIE!!  The reason for the all caps and exclamation points?  Well, Arnie was over 10 years old and weighed over 18 pounds.  He came into the rescue when his only owner passed away.  Seeing as how most people are always so kitten crazy, we really didn't have big hopes for Arnie being adopted.  Imagine our surprise when he moved into the adpotion center on Sunday, had people inquiring about him as early as Tuesday and had several applications.  We couldn't be more happy about his new home - fantastic people. 

These two adoptions totally made our week!