Three Little Kittens



Anne’s neighbors found a stray cat and her three kittens under their garden shed. The kittens appeared to be about five weeks old. Thus began the Great Cat Rescue. The mother was the first to be trapped.  Anne had her spayed, vaccinated, and treated for fleas and ear mites. Anne’s laundry room was the recovery center.

It took three days to catch all the kittens. I brought them home to the Five Star Kitty Hotel, formerly my guest bathroom. I didn’t want to put them in the large foster cat room because there are too many places there for a tiny kitten to hide and these were not yet socialized. My bathroom has radiant heat, and the kitties love the warm floor.

Because Anne did all the trapping, she got naming rights to the kittens. The grey one with blue eyes, the only male, is Whittaker, because of his climbing abilities. The tiny, agile black-and-white one is Nadia. We believe she has a future in cat gymnastics. The grey and white with longer fur is Tippy because of the white tips on her ears. Even when I am mixing kitten formula at 3 a.m., they are adorable.

They went to the vet yesterday to be treated for ear mites and get a blood test – and Whittaker didn’t come home with me! It was love at first meow for one of the vet techs whose mother just happened to be looking for a kitten to adopt.

This morning a friend of Anne’s brought her nine-year-old daughter and six-year-old son to see the kittens, and took both of them home. I am so happy for them to stay together, and I know they are going to a wonderful home. When I offered to foster these kitties, I anticipated it would take a month or more to find homes for them. Instead it took only three days. Lucky kitties!

New Fawn

NEW FAWN  6/14/12

A fawn was born here Sunday afternoon. I watched as it wobbled to its feet. Then the mother licked it clean while another doe ran in circles all around the back of my property. I think she was the proud auntie, celebrating – or maybe she did that to distract any predators until the fawn was steady enough to toddle after his mother. I feel so privileged to share my piece of Earth with wildlife.

Cat Fence

car fence


For many years, I have wanted to enclose a portion of my yard with cat fencing. This is a special kind of fence that cats can’t climb over. It allows the cat to be outdoors while removing the dangers of coyotes, getting hit by a car, fights with other cats, big dogs, cruel people, and more.

Some cats are content being indoors all the time, especially if they’ve been raised that way since they were kittens. My new cat, Dillon, had lived outdoors for eight years before I adopted him and he made it clear that, while he appreciated a warm bed and staying out of the rain, he also wanted to sniff the wind and feel the grass under his feet. The time was right to fulfill my cat-fence dream. My son-in-law, Kevin, offered to install it for me, and he was ably assisted by my daughter, Anne, and grandson, Eric.

There are several brands of cat fencing. I chose Purrfect Fencing because the company sponsors a fund-raising event each year for a rescue organization that I support. I also installed a cat door in the window of my office, with a ramp that leads down to Dillon’s enclosed yard. Dillon has learned how to go out the door flap, but not how to come back in. We’re working on that.

I am so excited to have this!


Memorial clinic for Molly

molly-in-grass.JPGI spent this morning at the Feral Cat Spay/Neuter Project in Lynnwood, Washington. Today’s clinic was a memorial to Molly, my special cat friend for more than sixteen years. It was a full clinic, with rows of cats in cages being spayed or neutered. I know that many, many litters of unwanted kittens were prevented by today’s surgeries and I feel it was a fitting memorial for Molly.  My friend, Karrie, who stays with my animals when I travel, went with me.


sweetpeasmall.jpgAfter I said goodby to Purrlie, I decided to take some time off from doing foster cat care. She’d had so many health problems that I was tired from the constant worry. I’ll give myself a month to rest, I thought.

Four days later, my friend Christine called. She was in a Fred Meyer parking lot next to a busy four-lane road, and she had just found a frightened little cat. Chris’s husband died two weeks ago, she’s caring for her mother, she works out of town a lot, and she already has a house full of rescued animals. She asked if I could possibly foster a cat. Of course I said yes.

Chris and I took Sweetpea to my vet the next day. She had no microchip. She did have fleas, ear mites, and diarrhea. Unlike Purrlie’s problems, all of those are easily treated and Sweetpea is doing fine. She’s a petite, silky cat with a squeaky meow. She lets me know if I’m too slow in serving her meals, and she also purrs and rubs on my ankles every time I enter the cat room.

No, I don’t plan to keep her. If I start adopting the foster cats, I’ll have to quit fostering. I broke that rule with Purrlie only because she had no other option. Sweetpea gets her first vaccines next week (she was so skinny that the vet wanted her to have good food for awhile before she got vaccinated) and then she’ll be ready for a permanent home. And I will be ready for a (brief?) rest from foster care.

Goodbye, sweet Purrlie

purrlie-rug.JPGI only had her for five months. For two of those, she was a foster cat; I adopted her when her medical problems were so severe that the Humane Society had to remove her from their adoptable list. I tried my best to help her, and thanks in no small part to the dedicated staff at Buckley Veterinary Hospital, she did improve in many ways. But at 1:30 a.m. this morning, I was at an emergency veterinary clinic, making the difficult decision to have her euthanized.

I am comforted by knowing that in Purrlie’s last months she was well loved and cared for, something she had not had for most of her thirteen years. My pet-sitter, Karrie, went with me to learn how to give insulin injections. My vet, Dr. Dennette Wood, made many after-hours calls to help me know the best treatment. Purrlie had much to purr about until the end.

I wish that end could have been several years in the future but, even though my heart is breaking today, I would do it all again.

Welcome, Purrlie

purrliebed.JPGI’ve had a Humane Society foster cat for ten weeks. Due to her health problems, she was taken off the adoptable list about a month ago.

On Monday, I adopted her. She’s been to my vet for X-rays and an ultrasound, and I got good news. Her problems are not as serious as originally thought. The big hurdle now is that she’s scared of Lucy and is reluctant to move from the foster cat room into the house. I’ll be patient. She is a sweet, 13-year-old cat with a deep, rumbling purr.