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Great news!

Our friends whose house burned down in the November "Tea Fire" have seen their kitty, after two months! He's returned to the property and is hiding out under the foundation in what used to be the basement...He came when the husband whistled for him yesterday, although he is super skittish and did not come very close. They left him some food.

The not-so-good news about this...Now they have to make up their minds what to do next.

They don't really get that he's at high risk of being coyote food. :( The cat shelter folks said that later when the wild coyotes have puppies in the Spring there will be intense pressure on all the surviving prey animals - the remaining rodents, feral or semi-feral cats, etc. I am trying to convince the husband that it is not really okay to just leave him there, even though he was an indoor/outdoor kitty before. They are totally into the idea that their guy is a "survivor", which is true but not great for his long-term prospects! Unfortunately, the rental situation they are in will not be great for their kitty (small, urban, downtown with cars versus quiet, secluded canyon), and they are months away from rebuilding the house, a process which in itself will be totally disruptive to their cat. We would offer to foster him for a while at our house but I think it would be a disaster for Gracie if we did. Maybe someone else can help.

I hope our friends make the right choices for their kitty - the eldest of the two sons really misses the cat, and I know the wife was really distressed. They are just so muddled themselves after the fire that they are having a hard time making good decisions....

Fran
 

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My sister's house burned down in the Tea Fire too. She's been overwhelmed with the help and support she's gotten from friends . . . you name it and they've given it to her or done it for her. . . so I've got to believe someone in town would take their cat.

I remember her saying that no one lets cats outside in their canyon area because there are bobcats, mountain lions, coyotes, foxes, even wild boar in their remote area. So I agree ... all cats in that area have to be inside cats! It's just not safe for that kitty to be out there alone.
 

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Our house was completely gutted because of a fire years ago, and I had four cats and a dog. I also still had three children at home. The new landlord would not even allow us to tie the dog on the back porch for Thanksgiving Day. The neighbor helped him so much, even taking him in the night of the fire, as he was very upset.

We lost a half grown kitten to smoke, one cat went through a closed basement window, the fireman resuscitated one, and the other found her way out. The dog was outside, and the neighbors took him into their home and cared for him. I stopped at the house every day after college, (winter time, and dark) and fed the cats on top of the stone mantel in the living room. We had lost everything, so I didn't even have a flashlight at first, but I felt my way around the charcoal 2 x 4's and found my babies waiting for their food and daily love. Of course, on weekends we were able to spend much more time with them, and somehow, we all made it through. I remember very fondly the day my little boy and I sat on picnic chairs in the family room to wait for the furniture to arrive for the rebuilt home. It was such a special day when we were all home again. :) I guess we all had more resiliance than we realized.

I am so grateful that our cats stayed home, and I am so pleased that your friends' cat found its way home. I hope it will tolerate the rebuilding as well as mine did. When there is a tragedy like that, we find out how good people are. I'm sure their friends will help them and their pets through this trauma. God bless them.
 
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