Monday, February 23, 2015

Spring is Heating Up!

As February comes to an end and Spring is on the horizon, WIFCap is "heating up" for a very busy spring.

Kathy's garage can get quite full during trapping season!

Kathy has been busy taking calls from people with cat overpopulation problems and she has been spotting local kitties that need help too.

Lost or abandoned cats need help!

She is keeping a log of incoming and upcoming problem locations and to date, she has a wait list of 81 cats in the local area that need help.

Some of these cats are running in towns creating issues with mating, howling, fighting and getting in the trash.  We work with communities to get them fixed, vaccinated and hopefully to a location where they can be fed daily.  Our goal is to keep the cats in the area in which they are found because this is HOME to them and if we remove, others will most likely take their place.

Rural cats have a job, but population control is a must!

Some cats are part of a rural colony that is being fed, perhaps by the property owner but are creating a never ending supply of babies that struggle to survive.  Did you know that a tom cat can wander ten miles a day...?  Think all the places he can "visit" during that roam!

We are happy that some communities and many more individuals are coming forward, asking for help and offering to also financially back this effort in part or in full.

You can help by clicking our DONATE button top left sidebar!

We would ask that our supporters and those interested in what we do, to remember that we are not a shelter, or a rescue.  Our focus is on TNR...Trap, Neuter and Return or Release...we have no physical building or place to house surrendered pets.

We want you to keep your kitty - how can we help?

We would, however love to work with people for find ways they can keep their pet and in some instances, we can offer assistance in finding a new home for a cat that cannot be kept.

We are so fortunate to be working with Harlan Veterinary Associates and Referral Center in Harlan Iowa to help as many cats as possible.  We thank them for partnering with us and giving us quality care and kindness!

Dr. Matthew Sternberg and his team are awesome!

Please call  or email us if you have questions !

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Tribute to Buddy-Boy

I normally make a new blog post about every few months.  Who knew I would make two in the same day?.  My last post was about how we hate seeing kittens born into the feral world that end up with suffering and disease.

I struggled with whether or not to even post about the events of this afternoon, but I am because if I don't, they will stick in my head and I wont sleep. For that reason, I won't post this on our Face book page. If you've come here from there, expect to be sad.  This post is more for me to vent, than for you to be informed. I try very hard to post positive stories and keep everyone up beat and laughing.  So I will post here, where I can bear my heart and soul and cry a little. 

At around 4pm today I received a call from our City Clerk from City Hall.  I am on the city council and I am on the city committee for Animal Control and everyone within at least a 20 mile radius of Walnut knows I am the CAT LADY.  I have instructed City Hall to please call me if there is ever a hit by car  or dead cat found in town.  I want to know if it is one of the ferals from our colonies or someones pet that we can gently inform of its demise. 

Today was only the 2nd call informing me of a dead cat that Ive gotten...only this time it was "well, he's almost dead".  I flew to city hall to find "Buddy-Boy" laying at the bottom of a dirty cold plastic bucket in the back of the city pickup.  He had been found at the side of main street almost directly in front of City Hall.  Jim (city supervisor) picked him up  (thinking he would die any second),  and put him in the container, set him in the back of the truck and called me. When I looked in, Buddy encircled the bottom, but he was breathing and he was trying to raise himself.  I knew right away that he was most likely beyond medical help, but I could not stand to see him suffer.  Jim drove me and Buddy back to my house, we loaded him in my car and off to HVA I went.

Would he even live the 20 minutes it took me to get him there?  He did.  When I took him in, he was not only breathing but he'd uttered several "mews".  As we waited for help from Becky at the clinic, I had a chance to get to know him.  He was strong.  Even though his body was literally skin over bone, he was a large long haired male cat...looked like a Himalayan. His fur was matted and dirty...but as I reached into the bucket and stroked his head, he immediately raised it and said hello with a sweet meow and began to purr.  It was apparent to me that he had had no home for a long time.  His weight, the condition of his fur....and then they came to the surface.  The fleas.  There were hundreds if not thousands of fleas on this poor baby.   We were so fortunate that we could get him to a vet that could humanely end his suffering and help him go peacefully to the Rainbow Bridge.

I traveled the 17 miles to the clinic in a panic.  Worried that he wouldn't live long enough to get him there, Worried that he would live til I got him there.   My mind was spinning, wishing there would be a miracle that maybe he would not be as bad as I thought he was, but inside knowing that was a pipe dream.  

I traveled the 17 miles back home in a stupor. A mixture of anger, sadness and confusion.  Wishing I knew his story. Why hadn't I seen him in town EVER before?   How did he get where he was?  Who hit him?  Who left him?  It was apparent that he had known the love of a human before.  He responded to my touch with a purr...he relaxed at the sound of our voices.  He was not feral.  He was old...he was tired and he was gone.

I cant shake the sorrow tonight.  He touched me so.  He made me realize that what we do in TNR and educating people about spay/neuter is so important.  It matters and it works. What happens to lost and abandoned cats is horrific.  They do NOT fend well for themselves. You cannot put a cat out and expect anything other than starvation, infestation, infection and battle scars, let alone the loneliness and the fear.   Buddy is a testament of strength.  If not for that, he would have been gone a long time ago.  His suffering encourages me to keep doing what we do.  I will eventually sleep tonight, knowing that the last thing he felt was the warmth of a clean and caring clinic, the touch of a hand that wanted so much to hold him and love him and the last words he heard...."It's ok will be fine...we love you, beautiful boy...." 

Buddy-Boy -Rest in Peace Sweetheart!

WIFCaP Success Story

People wonder why we push TNR...and why we are so happy there are less litters being born.  Had it not been for WIFCaP and your donations to Figaro's Fund, this sweet little girl may not have lived to adulthood and if she did, she would have most certainly lost 100% of her eyesight.  This is WIFCaP kitty, Arwyn.   She was found during a trapping on a rainy cold spring morning.

The day we found Arwyn
I remember that day like it was yesterday.  Cold, rainy and about as nasty as a morning can be.  The yard where the feral cat colony was located was alive with adult cats and several kittens.  I went into this project with the vow..."Im not taking any kittens!  We cannot deal with kittens right now."  I repeated that mantra to myself until I stooped to look into the shelter housing made of a wooden box set on it's side. The box was filled with a cold damp layer of straw...and inside, sitting just like this was Arwyn.  It was apparent that she could'd see anything.  Had she sight, she would have scattered like popcorn like the rest of the kittens did.  It was immediate that my mantra stalled, replaced by a new one "we have to help this one..." I scooped her up and off we went.   AVC was wonderful to work with as we accessed her eyes and it was determined that she had a severe case of herpes.  It was doubtful that she would ever have 100% sight, but hopeful that some would be regained. Thanks to Figaro's Fund we were able to begin treatment (did I mention the flea infestation??).

We fostered her and it wasn't long before Becky and Don came along and fell in love.  They have taken her to many Vet appointments and have given lots of medicine.  The very best has been done for her.  She is now a sweet adult kitty with enough sight be a typical Tortie....tons of fun, spunk and mischief!  She is loved beyond belief!  And by the way, two of her siblings were also rescued that day and homes were found for them as well.

Arwyn - Christmas 2013
This is why the unwanted litters are so important to prevent.  No only because of the numbers of unwanted cats and the nuisances they create in the community, but because those unwanted cats suffer.  Things like eye infections or upper respiratory infections that we easily treat our pets for, go untreated and the resulting pain and suffering for the animal is sickening.

We thank our supporters for giving funds to our Figaro's Fund to help other kitties like Arwyn get a chance to live healthy and happy lives.

 Figaro was a sweet baby kitty that was brought to us very ill and unable to make it.  We were so sad to see him go, but happy that he was in the warm arms of people that loved and cared for him during his final days.  The wonderful couple that found him donated funds in his memory.  Thus, Figaro's fund was born.  We have helped many kitties make it through medically tough times with funds that are designated there.

Figaro -the sweetest baby ever!

If you would like to donate just hit the donate button at the top left side of this page and be sure to add Figaro's Fund to the memo line.  If you watched the story unfold on our page about little Jasper who passed away of FIP and incurred a vet bill of $1000 and you would like to help, you can also add "Jasper" to the memo .  Find out more about Jasper here...Justice for Jasper

Arwyn's is a happy story of recovery and health.  Sady, not all turn out that way.  But we can sleep at night knowing we do our best from the time we take that first peek into lives of a colony until they are released or rehomed.