Thursday, February 21, 2008

The Beginning

I've got so many ideas for this blog, but I'm not sure where to start.

In the last few years, I have become increasingly active in the world of animal rescue. I foster cats and kittens. I help with mass spay/neuter projects. I'm part of a foundation that gives money to organizations that rescue animals.

I started out wanting to help, but soon realized that I needed to learn more about the organizations already in existence before I could determine how I could best be of assistance.

It didn't take long for me to figure out that one of the big problems is that while each rescue organization has the best of intentions, sometimes they let the differences in their particular mission isolate them from working together. I believe that getting those who care about animals to focus on their common goals will allow us all to accomplish so much more. So I keep branching out, trying to learn more, share that information and help to coordinate our efforts. This blog is a logical outgrowth of that.

So how did I get started helping animals? Well, I've always loved animals. I grew up with cats and dogs in my own home and more animals at my grandparents' farm. I got my first cat of my own from a shelter and the second was a stray who showed up at my door. The next generation was a pair of twin brother cats that my friend had fostered. They had grown up together in her home without getting adopted and neither of us could bear the thought of them getting split up.

Then on a Fourth of July weekend at the hobby farm of some friends, I was checking out the barn cats and discovered one very tiny kitten who was obviously the runt of the litter and now was being rejected by his mother. The mother and siblings were all completely feral, but not this little one; he was as friendly as can be. He was half the size of his siblings and it was obvious he wouldn't make it on the farm, so I decided to take him home. My friends all wondered why I would choose the sickly scrawny kitten instead of one of the healthy ones, but I felt that I had to give the little one a chance.

I wasn't sure he would survive the ride home or the first night, but we got to the vet the next day okay. The kitten had an upper respiratory infection, fleas, lice, ear mites and intestinal parasites. Since he was only 4-6 weeks old and weighed only 1/2 of a pound, most of the common medicines were too strong and would have killed him. He had to be nursed along very carefully and kept separate from my other cats until he was well. There were lots of ups and downs, but he had a good appetite and he really started to improve when he could come out and play with the twin brother cats, Rudy and Baloo. Rudy wasn't so interested, but Baloo loved the kitten. It was so funny to watch 16-lb Baloo lay down and let this tiny kitten attack him. He was his little buddy, I always said, so I finally named the kitten, Gilligan.

My success with Gilligan, made me want to try fostering other cats since I had long admired people who did that. My friends feared I would never be able to give them up, but after five years and over 100 foster cats, I've kept just one. Fostering was my foot in the door to animal rescue and future entries will share more about what I am doing today and as well as stories from the past.

1 comment:

kevin said...

Hmmmm. "CatPurrson"
How about KrazyKatLady?
Kevin's Komment
(Good luck with the blog - and keep up the good fight!)