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post #1 of 11 (permalink) Old 09-16-2010, 10:47 PM Thread Starter
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CaBoodle Ranch

Has anyone heard of this man in Florida who created a cat farm? It's something else!!

Here's how it started...
Caboodle Ranch was unintentionally founded in 2003, when a series of unfortunate events finally lead to its creation. The following is a true story that started with one man and one cat - who never really got along well with each other.

I was renting a two bedroom condo by the beach with my son. It had all the comforts and conveniences of home. Nice furniture, a short walk to the beach and close to work. Then my son moved out on his own for the first time. He left his cat, Pepper, with me because he couldn't take it with him. I didn't like cats but I agreed to keep him. I wasn't used to being alone and I guess Pepper wasn't either. We slowly began to get along. A couple months went by and I found out Pepper was pregnant. Oh great, now what? She had five kittens. I wanted to give them away because I didn't want my beautiful home destroyed, but my son told me they had to stay with their mother for 8 weeks. Over that time I learned that every cat had his own unique personality and it wasn't long before the kittens were swinging from my curtains. I didn't care. Something had changed... I didn't want to give them up.

But with six cats, complaints started from the condo owner and the neighbors. I knew I had to look for other places to go. They weren't safe in the neighborhood.

I found a B.B. lodged in the side of one of my cats and another was bitten by a pitbull that I know was set loose on purpose. Something had to be done.

I wasn't sure what to do at first, so I built a shed in my son's yard and lived in it for a while. Then I found an advertisement in the paper from a realtor offering five acre partials on a tree farm; owner financing, low money down and low monthly payments... the problem was that it was 100 miles west of Jacksonville.

I drove out to see it and I loved it. Over the next months I bought five more partials. I now have 25 acres.

I cleared a small area and bought an office trailer as a shelter for my cats. I put in a pet door and padded shelves for them. We moved out there in November of 2003, the day after Thanksgiving. By that time I had 11 cats. I had taken in abandoned and stray cats from the neighborhood and areas that I work as a contractor. I had 22 cats by the spring of 2004.

I moved the shed out to the property and made a little cabin out of it. I thought it would be for me, but many of my cats wanted to sleep next to me... so I moved back into the office trailer where we had more room.

I no longer have any of my old furniture; material items aren't important to me any more. My cats have made me happier than I've ever been. They truly are the best friends I've ever had.

Caboodle Ranch is now a permanent sanctuary for cats who have been kicked around by heartless people. There are many sad stories between all the cats I've taken in. Some almost starved to death, some of them wounded strays. I've seen many locked in cages for months in animal shelters and have taken in some of those too.

Cats should be able to roam free, and at Caboodle Ranch, that's what they do. We are in the middle of 100 acres of wildlife. The cats follow me through the nature trails that I put in and maintain, they climb in tree forts that I've built and hide in underground dens I've dug for them.

All cats have been spayed or neutered, all shots are kept up to date and I keep regular visits to the vet for each of them. I travel the 250 miles round-trip many times a week to work and back again to keep a safe haven for them to live. Every one of my expenses have come out of my own pocket and I do with very little so I can give them a happy life, but it isn't always easy.
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post #2 of 11 (permalink) Old 09-16-2010, 10:57 PM
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lol- I just read this on Yahoo news & was going to post about it!!
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post #3 of 11 (permalink) Old 09-16-2010, 11:02 PM
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It's a very touching story, so sweet how the one cat turned him into a cat lover.

But whenever I hear of stories like this I wonder what will happen when that man dies? All his cats will be trapped and brought to a shelter and euthanized. I have mixed feelings when it comes to this.

I would love to hear others thoughts on this.

There is an older woman around here who takes good care of her cats medically. She came in a few weeks ago looking for 6 of her 31 cats. We didn't have um. She said well I think a cougar and her cubs got them. And then she wanted to adopt another!
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post #4 of 11 (permalink) Old 09-16-2010, 11:14 PM
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Caboodle Home

Checked out their website. Now I think that even after he passes someone will take over that. He may even have someone in his will.
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post #5 of 11 (permalink) Old 09-17-2010, 04:27 AM
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What a wonderful man.

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Molly Brown December 2006- January 9, 2013
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post #6 of 11 (permalink) Old 09-17-2010, 12:29 PM
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That's an amazing story! There was a black and white cat near the beginning of the film whose white stripes were horizontal, not patches. I've never seen a cat like that!

Even if he died tomorrow, those cats have had a better life than they had ever known prior to the one he provided. And they really love him! What a kind man.


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post #7 of 11 (permalink) Old 09-17-2010, 01:44 PM
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You're right Jeanie, that's an interesting looking cat! He/she is at 0:31.

Holly and Murphy
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post #8 of 11 (permalink) Old 09-17-2010, 01:59 PM
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I wonder if he has a fence up, or how he keeps all those cats from wandering off into the forest??

Either way, what an awesome place!
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post #9 of 11 (permalink) Old 09-17-2010, 03:30 PM
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About a year ago he was taking up a special collection to build a fence around most (not all) of the property to protect them from coyotes. The last I saw, he had collected enough money and the fence was built.

Holly and Murphy
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post #10 of 11 (permalink) Old 09-17-2010, 08:27 PM
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After I went through the website, I was amazed. You guys should check it out.
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