Thursday, July 28, 2011

Friday Food for Thought

Now you know that my every intention is for this blog to be a happy place. A place of cutie pie kittens, their antics and adoptions. I'm going to take a wee side road today. It doesn't happen very often, but now and then perhaps we all need a reality check.

Meet Andy:

He's scuffed up and stuffed up. He's a little raggedy.

Andy was surrendered to the shelter by a good Samaritan who had rescued him from a certain short life as bait for fighting dogs. I don't know the particulars, nor do I want to. His rescuer had kept him for a week, but realized he wasn't equipped to care for the little guy, so brought him to us.

I won't prattle on, but suffice it to say that July is the month when we take in the most cats and kittens at the shelter. I suspect that's the case everywhere. Last year our number was over 900. Staggering. Fortunately, with diligent spay/neuter education and promotion that number has decreased by nearly a third this year. A huge success that we are over the moon proud to share. But still..

Little ones like Andy don't stand much of a chance. There are simply too many others coming to us every day who are more likely to be chosen by an adopter. Difficult decisions need to be made. We simply cannot keep them all.

Though I was already up to my eyeballs in kittens, I wanted to bring him home. Of course, there were lots of other kittens needing fostering. I didn't want another kitten, only Andy. The thought that he would have spent his very short life knowing little else than fear that I can't begin to imagine was something I could not bear. After some discussion with our dear, overworked shelter vet, she loaded me up with medications, supplements and fluids and sent me home. Sent us home.

Fostering an animal isn't always flowers and rainbows. I know you know that. But the rewards and sense of simply doing the right thing are better than any bouquet.

If you've ever entertained the inclination to foster, please consider acting on it now. It's the height of the season when you'll be most appreciated.

And it's not all about babies. Adult cats often benefit from a week or two in a home to unwind and to allow another valuable space at the shelter for an incoming kitty.

If you've got an extra bedroom, bathroom, any room, it's all you really need. I know you already have the love.

Andy and I will keep you posted on his progress. He's already showing the sweetest, trusting personality. He purrs when he sees me and insists that I keep him company while he dines. His future is stretching way out in front of him, and it looks pretty darn good.

Thanks, Tanya. You were so right.

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Subtlety is Not Her Strong Suit

Hedda heard tell that there are three new boys in the kitten room and that they're stunners. She didn't let any grass grow under her feet in staking out a spot for the big reveal.

And by the by, I mentioned the other day that she was having the wrap changed on her leg. As it happens, it was looking pretty good so everything came off to give her little leggy muscles an opportunity to flex and bend.

But not before Jessica and Traci had a chance to autograph it.

She's a stitch, this one.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Monday, July 25, 2011

Okay, Now's the Time! Who's Ready For a Little Red Boy?

I know I've been remiss in the kitten introduction department lately. Gordy was never formally presented, but not for lack of enthusiasm on my part. He is a classic orange tabby in that his personality is the sweetest and he's got charm for days!

His surgery was today so he's available to his new family tomorrow! We just haven't found them yet. He does have a nibble that I'll confirm very soon. Nothing definite so far.

Hedda is his sister, but due to her needing extra time for her broken leg to heal, they won't be adopted together. But really that's okay. Really. While they do romp and play together as part of the "pack", they are not bonded to each other and will do fine being separated. However, I will require that Gordy be adopted into a family with another pet as he's a very busy little stinker and needs a playmate to distract him from certain mischief.

I'll keep you posted about his potential adopter, but by all means let me know if you're interested. He's a beauty of a beauty and the ultimate snuggle-purr machine.

Sunday, July 24, 2011

You Have Got to Be Kidding Me

Okay, I know there's a rather large space under the door from back in the day of shag carpet, but seriously. It's less than 2 inches. Just enough for determined little girl cats, apparently. Nary a boy has slipped through. Which is not to say that they don't find it intruiging..

Thursday, July 21, 2011

"Don't Cry For Me!"

The up is a little smoother than the down - for obvious reasons. But Hedda has mastered them both and is quite proud of her bad self, thank you very much.

Even so, all this stair work really tuckers a gal out.

By the way, Hedda's cast gets a new wrap tomorrow morning. A girl does need to look her best, after all. We can't wait to see what color it will be!

Sidebar: That meeping in the videos is Eleanor, wondering why in the world my attention has been directed elsewhere.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Gratitude. I Have It.

Something completely unexpected has happened as a result of this blog. I've had the great good fortune to develop friendships that could never have otherwise developed.

Some are people that I know I'll never actually meet; a few live at quite a distance but I think that just maybe it could happen; others are as close as right across town.

I'd like to introduce you to two - among several - who are particulaly dear to my heart.

The other day a small package arrived in the mail postmarked from Finland. Inside was a lovely personal note and the dearest little card - handmade as a gift. The image was one that I recognized instantly. Maybe you do too.

It's our dear little Maureen!

Isn't that amazing and sweet and precious?!

And it's not the first time one of these little packages arrived from that land so far away. Some months ago, Mari sent this as well. It's called a biscornu. Perhaps you're familiar. I was not, but I fell instantly in love.

On one side is a delicate little starfish. Some of you may know the reference. I think of my little foster kittens in relation to a parable/story I heard some time ago. (You can read it here.) The idea that Mari had taken it to heart made this gift all the more dear to me.

On the other side, Mari incorporated my name - Sue - on three of the sides and a little paw print on the fourth. It's a little difficult to see in photographs, but I think you can decipher them. Just lovely.

In the note included with the likeness of Maureen, Mari indicated that should I want to, it would be fine with her if I were to donate it for the IBKC fundraising auction for our Humane Society. She has also created some beautiful images for Laurie and they are currently available for bidding here. Please go see them here and maybe even place a bid!

But I've decided that as much as I love it, the rightful home should be with Maureen's new mama, Tina. I'll put it in a little frame for her. She and her daughter Lilli love Mo-Mo so much. I know they'll treasure it.

Mari and her husband are unable to have pets due to allergies, so she gets her kitty fix vicariously through her favorite blogs. I'm honored to be on that list, and to have received such heartfelt handiwork from so very far away.

I am truly touched. Thank you, dear Mari.

There is another gift I'd like to share with you as well. It comes from Laura. You know Laura. I've mentioned her and her husband more than once. Adopters of four of my kittens; donors of cartloads of cat food to the shelter; all-around groovy people.

Well then. On their most recent trip to the Humane Society with about a bajillion cans of Friskies - well, maybe not a bajillion, but darn close - Laura hands me a gift bag. Now mind you, I've been spoiled several times with her homemade treats that she generously doles out to both me and my felines, but this was something entirely different.


HA!! Can you believe that? It's an icon! Festively festooned with my image! The fact that it's a rather awkward photo of me decked out in a nun's habit makes it all the more fabulous, no?

And there are their four little boys.

A sweet little mousie.

And there again, the starfish.

There's nothing more I can say, other than this blogging thing has brought so much joy in ways I never would have foreseen. The people I've met, the tenderness I've experienced - sometimes sad, sometimes uplifting - and a good many laughs that have brought joy to my heart.

I have been blessed and have more gratitude and love than I can adequately express.

Thank you all for being out there and for sharing your joys and sorrows. We're all friends, really. We just may not know each other yet.


Monday, July 18, 2011

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Hedda Sez, "Broken What..??"

"I didn't even notice."

Rock on to your theme song, little Hedda! You're an inspiration.

Friday, July 15, 2011

A Whiskers Sampler

And now for your viewing pleasure, a random sampling of current residents - some named, some not.

The orange boy is here keeping company with his gorgeous little torbie sister. She's sporting a festively wrapped broken leg, but not to worry. She's quite adept at scrambling to perch on my shoulder. A very spunky duo, these two.

The super-poof gray tabby is Biff. You met him here. He and his sister Peggy are hanging out while finishing up some meds. She's his spittin' image in luscious black tabby form.

And finally, one of a trio of gorgeous little white females. Along with their very dapper black smoke brother, they arrived about a week ago. With the myriad of kittens and a very busy work schedule, I'm afraid names haven't been a priority. They're known around these parts as Smokey Joe and The White Girls.

That said, I'm pooped. Have a great weekend. I plan to spend a good deal of it recharging for another busy week.

Thursday, July 14, 2011

A Pitter Pats Rite of Passage

That's Ricky asking me to please pay attention. What perfect little kittens I have.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

The Boyzes Found Their Happily Ever After

[Thanks for the photo combo, Marguerite. This is one very happy beginning.]

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Okay, Here's the Deal

Things will be a little different for a while here at Pitter Pats Ranch. Oh, there will still be kittens. There could even be scads of kittens.

We all know that kitten season is upon us, so not only is the foster department at the shelter bursting at the seams, the vet area where I work part-time is also inundated with little ones needing some extra attention.

Maybe they're not gaining weight like they should, maybe they have chronic diarrhea, maybe they have a mama cat that just isn't into the whole parenting thing so the babies need supplementing.

There are only a few cages available for these kittens, so a week or so ago I offered to bring home a pair that had turned the corner. They were still on meds and needed just a few days before being scheduled for surgery. I still had Ricky and Brian, and Eleanor (of course), but I knew the orange boys would soon be adopted, and the two little puffies I was bringing home would be short-timers as well. Sure enough, Peggy and Biff will be neutered on Tuesday and returned to the shelter for adoption on Wednesday.

As it happened, Ricky developed a little stomach upset so he and Brian hung around a bit longer than I'd expected. Okay by me. They're no trouble at all. So that made five.

Then... I got a call on Friday from Lori, our vet tech. They were completely full and badly needed space. Would I be willing to take four more for a week or so? Yes. I knew this little family. They'd been under our care for some time. Mama hadn't been feeding them enough initially. She was pretty thin herself, so they had eventually been taken off her. This gave her a chance to fatten up for adoption and the kittens would be cared for by the vet staff.

Again, they need to finish up their meds and will most likely be scheduled for surgery on Thursday and available for adoption on Friday. And what a gorgeous group they are. A black smoke boy, and three white sisters! Two of the girls have a weensie gray smudge on the tops of their little heads. Not uncommon for white kitties, I've learned.

Anyway, that was a long way of telling you that while we're so busy at the shelter with kittens I will likely be taking them out of Vet Treatment and keeping them for just a short time. I won't be finding adopters for them myself - they'll be adopted out of the shelter. (Not true for Ricky, Brian and Eleanor. I'll find their homes myself.)

Given the quick turnaround, I may not be able to photograph and post them all. However, when I do if you happen to see one (or two, or three) that catches your eye, by all means let me know and I'll arrange for you to meet.

Now then. All that being said, here's a little play time featuring Brian and Biff. Have you seen these IKEA kitty tents? Hilarious! They're from a few years back, so I don't know if they're still available, but this one has been very well loved.

[That purring and mewing you hear is Ricky trying very hard to get my attention.]

I'll do my best to post at least one photo/video of each kitten. Now I must tend to them all, babies and of course my grown ups as well.

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Eleanor and Me

[Thanks for taking this sweet photo, Laurie. It shows her at her snuggly best.]

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Seeing is Believing

Well folks, I may as well hang up my blogger hat right now. There's no way I can top this.

[Okay, not really. But Eleanor has set the bar pretty high.]

Someone is Mighty Proud of Her Bad Self This Morning

I sat down at the computer for a quick check of things, shut the door so as to have no kitty company, and moments later discovered a certain little firecracker had apparently slipped in unnoticed.

I scooped her up, gently put her out, shut the door and to my utter amazement (and delight) she was in again!

It seems that Eleanor had squooshed herself under the door!! There's a gap between the door and the floor from back in the day of celery green shag carpeting. I ran to find a tape measure - it's 1.75 inches! You should have seen the determination on that tiny little face!

Oh my. I am completely and entirely smitten with Eleanor. And now I really must go to work. This is going to keep me smiling all day long.