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Discussion Starter #1
Hello,

Here are some images of kittens we rescued this summer. It was somewhat crazy - we had three groups of cats and kittens at one point (four if you count my mother's adopted kitten), and couldn't mix them because they haven't been tested. So we were rotating them through a house and one-bedroom apartment that are 2 hours apart.

Three were recently adopted, one we kept (the calico shorthair) and one is with my mother.

The original kitten that led to this is Tiki. You can see her eye ulcer has gotten markedly better. She's a sweetheart.

We originally found Tiki dying outside on the pavement. Hot day, abandoned by her mother, etc... I had thought we'd have to put her to sleep. Kind of funny now - the first day we thought she was so diseased that I was scared to go near her. Now she greets us every morning by rubbing faces and purring.

Unfortunately, we still have many feral/stray cats around, and after spending hundreds of dollars on vet bills, very little resources or time to rescue the rest. :( We've contacted local groups, but everyone seems overburdened. :(

(all pictures are copyrighted, pls don't redistribute or use without permission - thanks!)

Tiki, the original sick kitten that led us to the rest:



Pigpen (we named him Pigpen because he was a big litterbox sleeper)



Jack (who was really sick one night, he's since been named Jake by the new family)

 

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Discussion Starter #2
Amber - this kitten was taken in by my mother after we retrieved Tiki from her temporary care (the rest are one litter, Amber is from a separate litter).









 

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Discussion Starter #3
Audrey is the calico longhair. She was part of the original litter and taken by a family separate from the two boys.

 

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Hello Scott,
I am so impressed with your work. So much caring and patience! The kitties look wonderful!
 

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Scott, let me commend you for your wonderful work! Just one question---poor puppy----aren't you afraid that monster kitty will beat him up? :wink: Our 75 lb. collies used to just stand and look helpless while kittens clung to their legs--and wrapped themselves around their long noses. (Our collies raised two abandoned kittens.) No damage done, though! :)
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Thanks,

We have two Great Danes at my mother's house - if they get too playful, the kitten lets out a spit and a swat. They back off pretty quick, and 10 seconds later, she's stalking them again and attacking their tails. :)

It hasn't been a problem. We keep an eye on them - but the dogs have little or no interest in harming the kitten and you're right to suggest that they're the likely victims. Since they're about 160 lbs., we watch them to make sure she doesn't get accidentally stepped on by overstimulated dogs. One dog patently ignores the kitten - "Kitten? What kitten?" The other is pretty good. The kitten is about twice as fast as both put together.

:)
 

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Congratulations on looking after those kittens. They look so much happier and healthier in the 'after' photos.
 

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Scott--I think what you have done for these kittens is wonderful. They are so lucky to have you. May I ask where you live? I was just wondering why there seem to be so many neglected animals in your area.

I have seen so many people decide to get a cat and then leave it outside without getting it fixed. It makes me so mad because they never know what to do with the kittens once their cat gets pregnant, but still they don't fix the cat after she has those kittens. It is a continuous cycle--and I wish that something could be done. I loved that article that Bean posted awhile back about the kitty birth control shot, which may be approved for use very soon. I wish they would make a huge batch for free, and let people bring in their pets so the world isn't over-populated with homeless animals. That is such a wonderful thought....going to a shelter and finding it empty! :D
 

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Discussion Starter #11
We live in Nyack, NY. The scary thing is that there was actually an article in the local paper (I'm attaching a link to the online version below) for a woman who is handling lots of ferals and strays, completely unrelated to our situation:

http://www.thejournalnews.com/newsroom/ ... 6cats.html

So obviously it's a problem. I'm guessing we've got about 20 cats floating around. I started taking pictures to document them and separate who-is-who, with this grand idea of having them all neutered and released, but we live in a one-bedroom apartment with two cats and a rabbit, so there's no place to keep them. I also am out of the house 12-14 hours a day for work because I commute to Manhattan. I started taking time off work to deal with the cats, but I am officially freelance - so I lose money every day I do and management really doesn't want to hear about it.

Here's some of the pictures from earlier this summer:

The litter before the litter we rescued (different mother):



Pigpen seen here before rescue:



I think this tortoiseshell is now a grown cat which still hangs around:



There's others that I have pictures of...

One woman basically offered to help us catch the animals, but since she's already taking care of many others, she won't (or can't) take them until they're already neutered, for recovery. That doesn't do us much good, since we burned through around $700 on the first group of cats and we only have a small balcony on which to put the ferals while doing rescues.

We intially kept the kittens on the balcony with fans, etc..., and we'd change clothes every trip because we didn't know if they were diseased and didn't want to infect the other cats/kitten. It's such a small space they'd get into their litter box, the food, UGH....

We eventually split them between two residences - some at my mother's place, but she's two hours away, so my girlfriend would do four-hour round-trip visits to care for them, take them to the vet, etc...

The only positive aspect of that is now Tiki is excellent about riding in the car. :)

I'd like to help the other cats (there's one old grandaddy or very sick male who is wasting) but there's no straightforward solution in our scenario.

When you speak to people, they say, "Somebody [i.e., somebody ELSE] really needs to do something about that..."

:(
 

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I totally agree with the article that we need more education and tougher laws to prevent overpopulation. There is no way that a few people can fix this problem. I feed every cat that comes near my apartment--but I can't afford to spay/neuter them, unfortunately. :( I hate to see animals that are neglected and in need of homes--I wish that there was something we could do to help solve this problem. It is such a terrible thing when people have outdoor cats that aren't fixed--then they complain about the strays that hang out near their house. I hear this all of the time at work. I just want to grab these morons and ask them if they have any clue how and why this happens.

If they could get this kitty birth control shot approved and make it affordable (or in my opinion--FREE), the heartbreaking over-population of cats could be ended. Wouldn't it be wonderful to no longer see homeless kitties?
http://www.catforum.com/viewtopic.php?t=1153
 

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Oh those poor kitties! They looked just horrible :( What was wrong with their little eyes?? You are such an angel, if only there was more people out there like you! Feral cats are hard to deal with (ive caught around 7 feral kittens, and 2 stray cats). Was the kittens feral or stray??
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Well, I don't know that we got a formal diagnosis, but I guess it would be considered an upper respiratory infection combined with an eye ulcer, either from being poked in the eye, a symptom of the virus or maybe feline herpesvirus. We talked more about the ulcer itself with the vet than the underlying cause.

The kittens were feral - we have many cats around that are feral or stray - it's hard to say which-is-which at this point, but I think it's safe to say that this generation is fully feral.

Thanks for the kind words....
 

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You have no idea of how kind you are! Many people would just be angry at a poor stray and kill it if it came on their land :( My cousins hubby is like that and it just angers me! But then again, I'm the only true animal lover of my family. Glad to be the outkast lol.

Where are you from? Have you posted in the New Members section yet? I dont remember! :?: :?: :?:
 

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I have two questions :
1)Which is the best way to catch ferals? There are at least 20 roaming around here and all I have done so far was to help at feeding them.
2)What would be the estimate for 1 neutering?
I am afraid that one of these days animal control will just pop up and clear them up. I cannot stand the idea. Nor can I stand to see them hurt. I have found a cat in the middle of the driveway with an eye popped out. I had only seen her the night before when I went out to feed them. I just went and burried her . I named her Maoui, wrote it on her box and planted a flower at her grave..it is so heartbreaking
My kitty was also born around here as a feral - Frosty with his brother, Little Mo that died in pains in my arms due to a malformation apparently caused by inbreeding.
Kittygirl, I long for the idea of going to a shelter and finding it empty ...and also streets with no injured animals on them. We just have to keep on fighting
 

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Where are you from? Have you posted in the New Members section yet? I dont remember!
Nope! Just saw the site today and thought I'd post. I'd wish I'd known about it when we started the whole feral-kitten adventure! We were starving for help and information. We're from Nyack, NY, north of Manhattan. :)

1)Which is the best way to catch ferals? There are at least 20 roaming around here and all I have done so far was to help at feeding them.
There are a few sites which give detailed instructions on catching ferals. Here's one:

http://www.neighborhoodcats.org/info/trapping.htm

We used a regular box cage with a string tied through it for catching the kittens. It wasn't a real trap. The string was set up so that when the kittens entered the cage, it would just pull the door closed. Tiki wasn't hard to catch because she was essentially dying when I found her, though she did almost try to escape between two fences (she could barely see) and I never would have been able to catch her.

We fed the older kittens for a few days and I'd go and talk to them in a soft voice until they got used to me. When we put food in the cage, they were quick to go for it.

Ferals tend to freak-out a bit when they're first caged - even the kittens did. Kittens can be tamed from about 4-8 weeks but the older they are, the harder they are to tame. There was a BIG differene between our 4-week-old (Tiki) and her 6-week-old siblings. The older kittens were much more scared of humans and took two weeks to really calm down.

Another top resource:
http://www.alleycat.org/

Regarding neutering, I think it varies from $60-$100 (some vets might even do strays for free). The trick is to find a clinic or organization in your area that sponsors "spay day" or something similar.

Our vet wouldn't do anything for free, but basically treated the litter as one visit for one cat for each time we went in. We still had four different cats to take care of (the eye meds for Tiki were $100+ alone) in two groups, so it ended up being some money, but that was a small break at least.

They actually don't look quite as sick in this picture, but they had upper respiratory infections and their noses were oozing, they were sneezing, and Jack had an apparent fever in the time during and after. Tiki (not pictured) was the worst-off because of her eye ulcer(s).

 

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Thank you, Scott; your suggestions are much appreciated. Jeanie helped me also with a few links. I wanted to actually see how it was for you since I was following your case so up close. There is a lot of hard work with a lot of patience involved but you were up to it to the very end and that is admirable. As for the expenses... It was quiete a bit but I guess it was a good thing they were treated as one. I was wondering (before your last post) how you managed to keep it only at $700 for so many kitties since for me it has been more than that not to mention the time when I took care of Little Mo.
The progress of the kitties' state of being is so striking. I am really touched by their stories. I hope everything will go perfectly for you and them :) .
ps your dog is gorgeous ( I am sure the other one is just the same) ..I had to mention it since I am sooooo fond of dogs ::))
 
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