Monday, March 26, 2007

Here kitty, kitty

Meet Sadie Rocket (a.k.a. Sadie Rockstar).

She’s a feral cat (that's "wild" to those not in the know) who found me. She was born wild or abandoned very young in my community, gave birth to a litter and was smart enough to relocate her brood to my side of the street and a former neighbor who feed everything and everyone who wandered by. Once old enough, we found homes for the kittens and a local feral cat rescue; I trapped her, had her spayed at a non-profit hospital (BTW, she was already preggers again...yes, we have an overpopulation problem) and released her back. After that, she came around now and then for some eats (when working with a feral cat rescue, you agree to release and continue to care for/feed the feral as needed). Of course she hated me and everyone else; in fact I named her Sadie because she was “Satan” in a fur suit. Mean and hissy.

One very cold night, I found her curled in a ball on the front stoop, near delirious from the 9-degree-below temps. I made her up a bed from a pet carrier and some blankets and, after time, she came to trust me. It's crazy to watch a wild animal learn to trust. I’m no Dr. Doolittle, and have been scratched and punctured enough times since, working in cat and reptile rescues, for that to sink in. But when you have the compassion for animals, you just have more compassion as a human being period.

I'm amazed at the number of pet owners who abandon animals because the new boyfriend-girlfriend-grandchild is allergic or those who move away and leave their former companions behind. A larger percentage than is acceptable surrender because the grown animal is not good looking enough. If a dog is lost or running loose through your neighborhood, local animal patrol will come and capture that animal, take it to a shelter and try to locate its home. They do nothing for cats, leaving them to their own devices. The punishment for animal cruelty and neglect is pityful. Some view the care of thrown away animals as a waste of time, money and resource. Perhaps if we had more compassion for those so open to it, we could reach out a little more all around.


Joe the Troll said...

Good on you. My dear departed Sybyl was feral when I got her. At least, she was found outside and had a wild streak a mile wide! It took a long time, but she and I bonded very closely during her 16 years with me.

Your last point is very well taken, as well. When I take an animal into my home, I make a lifelong comittment, period. I remember someone browbeating me about having Sybyl declawed. That's not something I do to all my cats, but she was supremely destructive, and she was an indoor cat like all of my cats. He kept teling me how cruel I was. But when he moved to an apartment that didn't allow cats, he just kicked his out the door with a "So long!" That, I think, is where the cruelty was. Sybyl may have lost her claws, but she was pampered her entire life and could still catch mice with the best of them.

Webmiztris said...

i couldn't agree with everything you wrote here more...

and Sadie looks totally pissy in that pic! lol! it's so sweet that you took her in. :)

Joe the Troll said...

You know, the way she's sitting at that table with her paws up.... she kind of reminds me of Alf!

Paula said...

Great post. My Cocoa was tossed out by someone - you could tell she was totally used to being in a house and getting fed/pampered. She knew not to scratch on anything but her post too! Tiki's a wild little imp, but I don't care. I wanted to get hardwood floors anyway, so it's okay the carpet's mysteriously unraveling.

Jodie K said...

Alf! LMAO...I can't look at her the same anymore ;)

It's funny when I realize how spoiled she is now. She still LOVES to hang out in the great outdoors, but when she's had enough, I damn well better let her in and make a path to the futon couch in the basement.

Aries327 said...

Both my cats had been abandoned. Bastet found us in Mesa -- she was meowing up a storm while my husband and I swam at our apartment pool. The kid hanging out at the pool told us the other kids threw her in the pool for fun. Jerks.

We fed her bacon because that's all we had, a week or two later, I was too haunted by the thought of her being abused and I brought her in to stay. And we adopted Sobek from the local pet rescue -- Bastet needed a friend. They're like my kids.

I'd bring in all the feral cats at our Nashville apartment if I had the resources to care for them.

Pet abandonment really chaps my hide. I applaud your efforts and appreciate your blog.

Aries327 said...

btw -- When I was a kid, I actually had an orange cat named Alf. He was a doll.

Jodie K said...

Welcome to my blog, Aries, and props right back for what you do ;) Takes someone special to take action instead of walk away.

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