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Feral Cat Capture...Part 2 (appreciate tips!)

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kashtin's kin
August 26th, 2006, 08:09 PM
I posted a couple of months ago regarding a feral cat and her 3 kittens living (off and on) in a deserted shed just off our rural property. At the time there was also a family of badgers in the vicinity, which complicated things. I was looking for any ideas/suggestions re: capture of this cat family (hope to spay/neuter and find homes).

There were a few replies, which I greatly appreciated; I've tried to find my original post and those replies, but I haven't had any's no doubt due to my lack of computer skills.

I thought I would post a bit of an update, and explain my 2 month gap in posting; not to get into details, but I managed to get myself bitten in an unrelated incident (yes, I am a pretty experienced critter person/caretaker/slave...blush). I ended up having to get rabies shots, while also dealing with a bit of a family crisis, thus I am just getting back to the feral cat project now.

The mother and all 3 kittens are living in a different shed-again, just off our land-and are daily regulars at my feeding station by the back door, under a trailer. I have managed to [v. carefully] stroke 2 of the kittens while they are eating, but they are fickle i.e. I can touch them one day, but not the next.

There is absolutely no way I can just grab one, as I know they would shred me; from asking around it does seem that a livetrap is about the best option (I'd have to buy one, as there is no Humane Society etc. in my area...that is dealing with cats at this time). I'm prepared to try to do that ('trap'), but have never used a trap. Also, how might that work, in that there are 4 cat/kittens?

If it weren't for the breeding/overpopulation issue, I would be tempted to just keep feeding this family and do nothing more, but as we all know the family will expand exponentially. I am anxious to try to resolve this situation before winter arrives, and more importantly before the kittens breed.

If anyone has dealt with something like this, and/or has any advice, I would really appreciate it...and I won't just post and disappear this time. ...Look forward to any replies. Thanks.

August 26th, 2006, 08:49 PM
You ca try and do what CS did with her ferrals. She kept cat carriers out and put the food in them. Eventually the cats got use to seeing the carriers and started to eat inside them. Later CS just walked up to the cats and closed the doors to the carriers. I did miss most of the inbetween, but that is the jist of hoe she captured all the ferals. Stay on site long enough and you'll get many other ideas. Keep in mind it takes patience and time to get them to trust you.

kashtin's kin
August 28th, 2006, 01:25 AM
Thanks for the feedback, 'cepietra16'. Wow, what a crazy day since I posted (a bit over 24 hrs ago). One of the feral kittens is actually safe in a large cage in a quarantined bit of the house as I type; what a relief to have at least one...although I do hope to bring in at least one more, with any [good] luck.

It was raining when I went out to do horse chores a bit before 7 this am; I put out food etc. for the ferals, and went inside, leaving the door to our back porch ajar. I've been doing this a bit, when the bugs aren't too bad...with the rain this am, I figured the kittens might check out the porch (one or 2 have in the past little while).

After an hour or so, I went to close the door; I saw one of the kittens in the doorway, and s/he skedaddled so I just closed the door. I don't know who was more surprised when I glanced at the far end of the porch and saw the largest/most 'approachable' kitten still inside.

I closed the door into the rest of the house, raced upstairs to grab a large spare dog crate (had to put it together)/small litter box/large shoebox 'cave' with towel combination. Carefully got myself and above into the porch, where 'Sparky' had taken refuge behind the freezer.

Left things as they were for the am, and hubby went to TSC for a large wire dog crate. Sparky moved to behind the boot rack for the aft., then under the freezer; I moved the cage with food/cave etc. in front of the freezer and by suppertime kitty was in the cage with the door shut.

Sparky spent a couple of hours in the 'cave', but by later in the evening had turned into a least behind bars! I guess all my hours of feeding/playing with (had a fake mouse on a string outside)/talking to the cats sorta paid off. I know Sparky would still likely scratch me and try to escape with out the cage, but what a love bunny (reaching out paw to touch me, giving me v. gentle nibbles, licking my hand, meowing).

I am assuming that Sparky should stay in the cage fulltime for a few days, then be brought (in cage) to another quarantine room with no difficult hiding spots; once s/he seems okay with not panicking i.e. going back into cage, I'm thinking it's vet a week to 10 days or so??

If anyone has any advice re: this flexible plan, please do let me know. For now, I'm just so happy to have one of the cats hopefully on the way to a safe domestic life (kinda think we may adopt this one, having lost 4 elderly cats in a 6 month span last year...2 I'd had for 17 years; miss them, so it feels good to rescue one...still have 3 cats, all indoors).

I'm still feeding the rest of the feral, and am more hopeful now of perhaps bringing in another kitten or 2 (the mother is very canny/wild). For now I feel like a 'scrub nurse' what with the constant handwashing as I go from visiting Sparky back to the main house and veteran cats!:thumbs up

August 29th, 2006, 11:00 PM
I like those ideas of catching feral cats. I've got a lot of them and a litter of sick ones right now I am working with. (not feral) mama hid them within 24 hrs of birth and brought them out Sat am much to my horror...all 6 kittens were VERY ill. Took straight to vet but mama and 1 kitten of the surviving 4 is still not out of the woods yet. Vet saud 8% chance of making it thru Sat night so we are counting our blessings, but I think one of the feral cats is sick and needs attention too.

kashtin's kin
August 30th, 2006, 12:56 AM
Sparky (see above) is now out of the cage, and in a quarantine room; things have gone smoothly with him, thankfully. His 2 siblings and mom are still 'out there', and I do hope to bring in at least another kitten, somehow.

On the "oh, crap!" side, when I was coming in from giving my horses their supper hay I spied a ruddy huge tomcat (I'm assuming) under the horse trailer chowing down on the kitten food. Sorry, but I would rather track a bobcat than take on trying to 'tame' that guy...never say never, I suppose.

I sure wish folks would do the spay/neuter thing with cats (and dogs); they reproduce so much, so fast. It drives me nuts when I visit the horse farms of people with serious $$ and see litters of kittens running around; where are people's heads at??:eek:

When I lived near Winnipeg there was at least a lower-cost spay and neuter clinic. I have heard of places here and there that subsidize fixing esp. in the case of lower income folks...would be nice if that policy/set-up was more wide-spread.

August 30th, 2006, 07:16 AM
kashtin's kin,you are doing GREAT:thumbs up
Unfortunately with a big Tom around,mama cat will probably start the kitten-cycle all over again:sad:
Please keep us updated:cat:

kashtin's kin
August 31st, 2006, 12:24 AM
Chico2, thanks so much for your encouragement. Although I subscribed to a 'feral cat newsletter' some time ago, I'm just trying to figure things out as I go along for the most part. No tomcat today...I am hoping he and the mom are not on a romantic holiday-arghh.
Sparky is doing great inside; I think he is going to be a fun housecat when he joins the general population. Tonight I managed to convince Sparky's two shy siblings to chow down just inside the back porch-with the door open. I'm hoping that as the weather cools down, inside will look better and better to them...:fingerscr

Ed U KayShawn
August 31st, 2006, 09:23 AM
Hi if your looking to rent a live trap out there there is a few pest control companies that may lend out traps and a couple of vets in simcoe have live traps they will lend out. pm me if you can and i will do my best to help! Keep up the challenging effort! The world can only get better with caring individuals like you.

kashtin's kin
August 31st, 2006, 11:46 PM
Thanks for your feedback, Ed U... (I get it-cute username!); that's handy to know that I might be able to borrow a live trap in the Simcoe area. I will definitely follow up your suggestion. Thx also for your general encouragement. :fingerscr

September 1st, 2006, 07:04 AM
Kashtin's kin,people living in rural areas(several on this Forum)are constantly dealing with"dumped"animals:evil:
Somehow,people think that cats will be fine living on their own,or some people just don't care whether the animal lives or dies,as long as they can get rid of it.:frustrated:
Some cats are lucky,like yours,to end up where people care,others not so lucky..
I hope you can catch all"yours"and get the mom spayed:fingerscr
It can be costly,but I hope you can find a vet giving you a break.:fingerscr :cat:

kashtin's kin
September 2nd, 2006, 01:09 AM
Thanks again, chico2 and Ed U... and cpietra16, for your encouragement/tips. It's been less than a week since 'Sparky' was inadvertantly trapped inside, and already it seems like he's been inside for ages.

After reading somewhere that some feral kittens (especially after a certain age, which Sparky is definitely over at 3-4 mos.) never really 'take' to life as a housecat, it's been a relief that he is such a love muffin. He's adapted so well-although we're not taking things for granted-that he is scheduled for his first shots next week...and neutering as soon as he is old enough.

Still haven't seen the mom for a few days, but the 2 remaining kittens are hanging out together, and have come just inside the back porch (with the door propped open) to feed at night for the past 3 days. I sit about 2-3 ft. away talking to them constantly, and they are slowly getting a bit less wary. I'm just hoping this will continue, and that somehow we'll get the 2 of them. Taking it one day at a time...:fingerscr

September 2nd, 2006, 06:59 AM
Sounds great,I wish you could get some pics:cat:
With the weather we'll be having this weekend,maybe they'll all come on your porch for shelter:fingerscr
No need to thank us,anybody trying to help stray cats/dogs is a hero in our books,every little life saved is a triumph over the jerks who dump them:thumbs up

Ed U KayShawn
September 2nd, 2006, 10:11 AM
:thumbs up chico2

kashtin's kin
September 3rd, 2006, 12:19 AM
Hi chico2 et said "no thx necessary", but I sure do appreciate the support and ideas. The resources locally with this kind of thing are so thin on the ground, I really felt at a bit of a loss before I found this board. It's great to get feedback, and share the situation; I'm just hoping that the good news continues (I always convince myself that I am aware of the not-so-fun possibilities of just about anything in life...but if they happen it's as if all my self-coaching never happened, and I am so least I generally pick myself up again pretty animal nurturer/slave is always needed).

Yes, the 2 kittens were around more today; came in the porch twice for big meals...they must be getting sick of my dinner table conversation (luckily I am never at a loss for words!). They didn't look too wet at all, so they're sticking to their 'nest', which is good.

The smaller of the 2 kittens is a bit bolder. It's funny to see the bigger one acually walk right under her? to get to the food without having to get to close to me. I sit on a stool a couple of feet away; as I chat, I'm trying to move around a little to get them less alarmed by the motion thing. I wish I had a big net that would just drop down on top of them...guess I saw too many cartoons as a kid!?

Hope everyone is staying relatively dry. I was busy getting my horses blanketed and then into their clean/dry stalls today; it was great that the rain didn't start too early, so I was able to get my chores done beforehand. Being in and out all the time doing horsey stuff has really helped re: my awareness of the 'feral family', and they are used to my regular appearances and routine.:fingerscr

September 3rd, 2006, 12:38 AM
I've been following this thread and just wanted to say, kashtin's kin, you are an angel. :angel: Good luck with the kitties. :fingerscr

kashtin's kin
September 4th, 2006, 11:59 PM
Actually, not too exciting an update today; I think I've hit a bit of a 'taming plateau', but that's alright. The rain on the weekend had the 2 holdouts enjoying the back porch more than usual, and now they're back to seeing monsters in the corner. Patience, patience. They are eating like loggers?, and looking good; I will continue to try to visualize the invention of a fantastic 'kitty katcher' while I entertain the munching ferals with my endless soothing babble (you'd think I would have bored them into napping by now,
at least?!).

Their smart/charming sibling Sparky continues to thrive in his quarantine room...lots of toys and human visits. He gets his first shots on Wed., and then 2 more weeks till he can start to get integrated. Our other 3 cats are quite put out with seeing food dishes pass them by on the way to 'Camp Quadruped'; I have to keep reminding them all of their humble beginnings, followed by lots of if they don't run the household, as it is!

September 5th, 2006, 07:33 AM
One thing for sure,you have a great knack for creative writing,you gave me a needed laugh this morning:crazy:
I can just picture my own 3 cats,following a dish going to a strange cat,in THEIR house:D
Having horses(lucky you!),you must also have a warm barn,right?
So even if it will take longer catching the other 2,at least they have a warm place to go to and hopefully,but most likely,no more pregnancies:fingerscr
Have you managed to see what sex the kittens are???
Is mama cat still hanging around?

kashtin's kin
September 6th, 2006, 12:18 AM
Hey chico2, thanks for the response; I am always glad to know when I am a source of amusement:D ; if ya can't laugh...yer in trouble!! I appreciate humour wherever I can find it, so it's nice to pass it along in some form. (As for the creative writing, good eye-I'm a proud? drop-out of the Creative Communications i.e. journalism program at Red River Community College in Winnipeg...circa 1990??)

To address your queries re: ferals (affectionately referred to as 'the Von Catt-as in Von Trapp-Family)...
BARN: Oh how I wish I had a traditional barn situation! When I lived just outside Winnipeg I had a nice ol' barn, and it was toasty at night even at -30 C, what with hay up in the loft and 6 horses warming things up; during really cold days, I had a heat lamp set up for my 2 barn cats. Now, I have basically a shed i.e. 2 stalls side by side with dutch doors and plexiglass windows in the back; I clean the stalls each day, so it's like a barn...only NOT warm, unfortunately. (Well, warm enough with a horse with a winter coat and good food, plus a blanket when needed.) If it weren't for the neuter issue, I would put a cat door in the hay shed, which is quite cozy; I will likely do that anyway.
MOMCAT: Have not seen her around for over a week now...seems too much of a coincidence that I last spotted her the day I saw the strange tomcat. 'Willi' is very canny, and has in the past roamed quite widely.
GENDER: I always figured Sparky for a male (correct); with the outside duo, I'm not sure, but I suspect the noticeably smaller one is female and the other male?

The last couple of nights I have left the back porch outside door open for an hour or 2; the 2 kitties come in to eat, and often nap on a horse blanket on the freezer (I can hear them hop off). I think they are figuring out that the weather is often nicer inside, and they are getting a bit more comfortable with the porch...that's how I nabbed Sparky.

I am just hoping that I don't open the inside porch door to find a raccoon or skunk?! We've never had either of those critters around, so I'm not too worried...although in the early summer a family of [protected species] badgers in the neighbourhood took to dining on the food I was leaving out on the stoop; I had NO idea this was happening until a Natural Resources biologist on 'badger watch' showed me a digital picture.

There was a tense week or so when the kittens were young, and the badgers were around; mama badger was rummaging through the shed where the cats lived at the time (when the biologist mentioned that badgers have been known to eat cats, I just about needed heavy sedation). Luckily, the badgers moved on...these ferals have beaten a few odds thus far; hopefully they'll keep it up:fingerscr .

September 6th, 2006, 07:50 AM
Kashtin, build a website and they will come. At least I will, to read about your exploits. No pictures needed, especially of you possibly under heavy sedation, it would be too sad.

September 6th, 2006, 12:32 PM
Thanks for the updates...they're very much enjoyed. Fingers crossed for the other two kitties and hope mom makes an appearance soon. :fingerscr :fingerscr :fingerscr

September 6th, 2006, 01:54 PM
Kashtin'kin,yes,please keep writing,mostly because I like to know how the kitties are doing,but also because you always make me laugh.:cat:

kashtin's kin
September 7th, 2006, 01:08 AM
:crazy: Thanks so much for the positive words, everyone. Regarding the humour thingy, I never seem to be at a loss for nutty things to relate; years ago I gave up on the whole 'appearance of normality' effort, and learned to almost look forward to the inevitable chaos in my life as an opportunity to have an endless-and I do mean endless!- supply of amusing anecdotes! (I have a friend who is equally gifted?? in the art of turning sort-of disasters into hilarious stories; she refers to herself as having the "Hoffman Curse").

But on to the kitties, which is the Issue Du Jour. WE'VE GOT THE OTHER 2 KITTENS INSIDE!!! :D WOW. I'll go into more details tomorrow-my nerves are shot right now i.e. I needed a good stiff bowl of ice cream to wind down. Suffice to say it was a carbon copy of 'Sparky's' capture; they were feeding in the porch around 10 p.m., and when I went to close the open outside door, the 2 critters were resting together on a horse blanket at the far end of the porch..I quickly shut the door, et voila.

There was a bit more drama than with Sparky (he's such a cool dude...went for his first shots today, and things went totally smoothly, no fuss/no muss). It will definitely take some time to socialize this pair of spitfires, but they're safe in their big cage with their 'box cave'/food/litter. When Sparky comes out of quarantine, they'll go upstairs to Club Quadruped; after shots and neutering, I'll have my work cut out finding them a good home (preferably together). After all we've been through already, you can be sure I will do everything in my power to find the right home.

Sooooo, th-th-that's all for now...I think I need another bowl of ice cream (perhaps combined with some powdered horse tranquilizer??!!). The posts and words of support, once more, are really helping me. Everyone has been so kind...'behind every person on a critter-assist mission are a bunch of other critter helpers'. I'd give you all a hug if I could, but I'm afraid you'll have to do that for me i.e. put one hand on one shoulder....and PATPATPAT!!:thumbs up

September 7th, 2006, 07:39 AM
Great kitty news,thank's!!
We have several people here,experienced in catching and taking care of semi-wild kitties,I was hoping they'd show up:fingerscr
But you seem to be doing great on your own..
I've been told I'm a little nutty on several occasions,mostly because of my passion for any critters wild or not,but some people don't understand do they..their loss.
How old do you think these little guys are??
Mama cat might be hiding away somewhere having another brood:evil:

kashtin's kin
September 8th, 2006, 12:28 AM
Whew, what a whirlwind day or so...along with the pleasant shock of nabbing the 2 remaining kitties at once, I also had to patch up a rather weird/icky wound my retired horse managed to acquire yesterday evening (whoever coined that saying 'healthy as a horse'? HA...if anyone tells you you are 'h as an h', book a dr.'s app't immediately). To express her gratitude to me for attending to her nasty wound, my loving mare headbutted me right get your breath knocked out! Wheeze-so nice to be appreciated.

Alas/alors, I digress. The 2 kittens had a quiet day; 'shy one' ducked into the box cave a lot, while the small/bit less shy kitten often held her ground on the loft level of the cage. They are a bit off their feed, but have used the litter box and just now started to purr as I put out some fishy treats. Baby steps!

Best news: my sister-in-law (who is a highly trained cat slave, with 3 cats I aspire to be as pampered as!) said that she would take a female kitten. Fortunately, I recorded our conversation-verbal contract;) . If at least one of the 2 is not indeed female, I have the transgender team on standby...seriously, I have a feeling the smaller one might be a gal; she's so feisty!

If anyone has any ideas for names, feel free to suggest; both kittens are coal black with med. to short coats and no markings. (After his kitty wrangling stint last night, my hubby suggested we call them 'Tooth' and 'Nail'...accurate yesterday to some extent, but I think we want to project a more positive image:cool: .)

To hopefully address your points, chico2:crazy: , we figure the kittens are between 3-4 mos. old (the vet seemed to agree when he saw Sparky). Sooo, I guess I wouldn't have had to worry about them reproducing for a while had they remained on the loose. On the other hand, Wee Willi a/k/a momma finally showed up last night, and her boyfriend was not far behind:party: :( .

Right now-for a day or 2 at least-I just want to wind down a bit and have a few more bowls of ice cream. I simply can't face the whole adult cat multiplication issue immediately; I thought I detected a bit of a radiant glow about Willi,;) from the wary distance she keeps:eek: .

Sparky continues to be an incredibly fun/sweet little nut...oooh, and speaking of nutty, chico2, don't you find un-nutty/un-animal people just a little, um, suspicious i.e. What's wrong with them, anyway?!;)

kashtin's kin
September 9th, 2006, 01:20 AM
It's been a busy day...between the horses and usual indoor cats and the dogs, I've worn a path out to the back porch (keeping the caged kitties fed/litter box clean/chattering quietly away to them), and upstairs (Sparky is good at amusing himself with his toys, but since he's also in quarantine and new to indoors/people up close, he needs attention too).

The newer kitties secluded themselves a lot in their boxcave yesterday, their first day inside, and didn't eat much; it was heartening to see them up on their 'penthouse' level much more today, and eating and using the litterbox. I haven't yet put out a hand towards them but when I feed/clean, my head is often just inches from them, and they have stopped clamberig into the 'panic room' at the drop of a hat.:thumbs up

I've also spent quite a bit of time sitting close to the cage, but not directly facing them, and only making brief eye contact. This is one of those times when the ability to prattle on endlessly-and soothingly-is actually a very handy skill! The one drawback to switching from Sparky's Club Biped to the regular indoor critters to the back porch dwellers (phew) is the amount of soap I'm going through! :D

September 9th, 2006, 06:50 AM
It seems you lead a busy life:D
Wish you could take some pics,since I bought a digi-cam a few months ago,I have 3.503.004 pics of my cats and other critters
What colours are the little guys??Not that I am allowed any more kitties,just curious..
If you trapped the mama cat(preggers:confused: )would your local HS(humane society)take care of her and any kittens ,or are they euthanazia-happy?
I would think you don't want a new brood of kittens every few months:cat:
Reading your post in the morning,gets my day off to a good start after I've fed my ravenous crew:D
I've read about people catching feral cats and how wild and scared they are,yours don't seem quiet as wild..or am I wrong?
Thank's for the up-dates!

September 9th, 2006, 02:26 PM
Thanks for the updates....I love reading them. Glad to hear your SIL will take a kitten. Sure hope you can trap momma soon as she is no doubt pregnant again by now. :sad:

Chico, I love the little flashing camera guy. :D I just stole him from you. ;)

September 9th, 2006, 06:37 PM
Hi Kashtins kin. I missed most of your site somehow so its great ot catch up ; its like watching a soap opera....keep it coming. You sure sound like you have your heavenly hands busy with all these little critters:D Great job. Please post pics as soon as you can. I hope momma cat isn't too radiant and keeps herself away from the good old boyfriend:yell:

kashtin's kin
September 10th, 2006, 12:56 AM
...Just can't seem to log on before 1 a.m.; I'm up at 6, but my flexible schedule allows for napzzzzzzz! Always nice to see your posts, chico2. Re: queries...Sparky is a tabby, and 'Cash' and 'Pepper' are pure black DSH/if we can catch mum, I'll take her to a nearby clinic that has a 'wildlife care license' to spay (the local SPCA told me they haven't dealt with cats for a while, and they have no shelter)/all 3 kittens were very wary outside (i.e. untouchable), but when Sparky came inside he was a lot calmer, and could be handled outside the cage within 2 days, while his siblings combination of colour and disposition lead me to wonder if they are part puma!!??:eek:

Obviously, we got lucky with Sparky-the-charmer; it's going to take a while to get his sibs to the point he was at on his second day in. However, as I mentioned above, they are a bit less puma-like:thumbs up each day! As for the pics, I promise to get my butt in gear when I have a chance to get to town; I do have a digital camera, but no computer/printer hookup (of course, I have taken pics of les ferals).

By the way, nice to see your post, cpietra16. I will continue to update 'Fostering Ferals'; everyone's feedback really helps me realize it's not just me and a couple of hostile little kitties alone in the back porch! In the next day or 2 I'd like to discuss the interesting logistical problems presented by having to clean litter/feed etc. cats in a cage, all through the bars (luckily I have scrawny, chicken-like arms).

If I ever get another cage, I would look for one that has some sort of smaller opening as well as humungous doors...many horse stalls have a small 'hatch' where you can pop in feed or water. Well, it may be 2ish in the a.m., but somewhere it's time for ice cream, so I'm just going to pretend that's where I am right now!:D

kashtin's kin
September 13th, 2006, 01:13 AM
As I write this, I can hear Pepper and Cash cavorting in the back porch; upstairs, Sparky isn't thumping around at present, which just means he's taking an intermission. There have been a few interesting developments, and things that I have learned this week (aside from the fact that there is not ALWAYS a pony when you dig to the bottom of EVERY pile of manure...if there were I'd have a LOT more ponies than I do, but alas I digress).

I now know that kittens of a certain size can fit through the bars of some dog cages:o ; I did know that cats can be a little 'boneless' in terms of tight squeezes (we should all be so lucky), nevertheless when I found one of the back porch kitties outside the cage on Sunday I just figured I hadn't latched it properly. So, husband-in the role of 'kitty police'-was dispatched to the porch to return Cash to the wasn't too traumatic for all involved.

However, when Pepper was found grooming herself on top of the cage :confused: the following day, the dots started to connect...OOOOOOOH! Sooooo, it was decided to kitten-proof the entire porch, leave the cage open-and restrict humans and dogs to exiting the house via the SIDE porch only. This is a bit of a pain, as I now have to tromp around the house to get to the horses (especially icky:yuck: when I'm hauling water) instead of merely skipping out the back door and going a few feet into the paddock.

The Two Pumas are very happy with this arrangement, thank goodness. Cash is still quite aloof/shy, but Pepper and I had a real breakthrough this morning:thumbs up . I had been able to pat her carefully until then-but only while she was eating. But for some reason, this morning she had some food, then wound herself around my legs as if we'd been best buddies forever. Wow.

It's been a good 3 months since I first started feeding the 3 kittens outside, so we've been on speaking terms for a while, but these critters really were untouched by the human hand...and pretty determined to keep things that way. When I nabbed Sparky, I wasn't altogether surprised by his speedy transition to lovemuffin (although I had thought even Mr. Charm would take a bit more time).

Pepper was a different kettle of fish!! altogether-very wary, and had even tried to bite me when my hand lingered on the food bowl outside one day. So, to have him (pretty sure it's a 'him', after today) suddenly cozy up to me was quite a shock, albeit a very pleasant one-yay!!!!

Cash is the holdout now; s/he was quite distressed for a few minutes this morning as Pepper decided to accept me; s/he stood on a small table under the large back porch window and pawed the glass. Fortunately, this was a brief episode, and while s/he's not about to rush up and hug me (let alone allow me to touch him/her), Cash seems to have settled down and accepted her treasonous brother's capitulation.

Interestingly enough, Cash is the big purrmeister around here; perhaps when s/he 'comes around' :fingerscr she will be a real lovey-dovey??!! Sparky has almost exactly a week more of post-shots quarantine, so anytime after that it would be nice to shift the dynamic duo upstairs...and reclaim our back porch!

Speaking of Sparky, he continues to be a delight:angel: ; he's so upbeat:D , and cutely curious about everything. I was worried that he would be too lonely on his own, but between frequent human visits, and a selection of toys to play with he's doing fine. He has expressed interest in 'the world beyond the door', but has been very good about not making a break for it. We'll play the integration thing by ear (now THAT-unlike 'ferals'-we have lots of experience with), but I have a feeling it'll be a lively winter.

I'm REALLY curious about the gender of Cash, now that it appears that Pepper is a male; the litter had 3 kittens (that I know of) who out there is an actuary i.e. with 2 males, wonder what the odds are of Cash being female?? The wonderful catperson sis-in-law has offered to take a female, as she has 3 girls at present; we've always had both genders in the house with no real problems, but I do realize some folks have a preference (must admit that my first horse was a gelding, but I've had mares ever since...just something about sharing the whole PMS/crabby thing I guess?!).

Cash is a sorta med-longish-haired critter, so once s/he's nuetered, would sis-in-law even notice........hmmmmmmmmmmm.

September 13th, 2006, 07:31 AM
We did this two summers ago. There was a female cat that gave kittens in our neighbors woodpile. We managed to catch two of the kittens (about 8 weeks old) by hand. We caught the rest, along with mommy, with a livetrap we borrowed from Animal Control. The whole thing took about three days.
The kittens were adopted out, and momma was spayed and let go again.

September 13th, 2006, 07:47 AM
Thank's once again,for a great morning-read,better than the Star's comics:cat:
IMO,the most skittish of the 3 kittens,is probably a female,but that's only from my own experience,not science..
If your SIL has female cats,she'll more than likely notice the 2 little thingys left after neutering,on my tabbie Rocky,they look like 2 little black buttons:D
I think your SIL should try a little boy,I don't think gender really matters when mixing cats,as long as they are fixed,but that's also only my opinion.
I have a little Calico-cat coming to my house every morning(not stray,I know where she lives)I have to shooo her away,since she's driving my 3 males batty.
Yesterday morning I tried to get close to her,she growled and was getting ready to bite me,so I pulled away,she is definetly not feral,but was in defense mode right away...a wee little thing,maybe 7-9 lbs compared to my 17lb boys,but certainly spirited:D
Keep up the good work!!:cat:

September 13th, 2006, 07:49 AM
Sariss,the OP already has the kittens in an enclosed area,so they are safe already,but thank's for the advice:)

September 13th, 2006, 07:52 AM
Sariss,the OP already has the kittens in an enclosed area,so they are safe already,but thank's for the advice:)

Haha, Okay! Sorry, I'm not really awake. :) Just thought I'd share my story.

September 13th, 2006, 08:04 AM
You should get trapping cages. They work great except for the accidental capture of other animals like skunks. That shwat happened to me!! But anyway, you put food in these traps and as they go in they will close after they are in...Trust me I had up to 45 strays in my yard at one time and this worked... I figured I would just feed the ten that I had out there but before I knew it there were about thirty or so kittens out there! It was a I have some inside and some are waiting on adoption! Good luck and get some traps!! Find them a nice warm loving home!!

September 13th, 2006, 10:13 AM
cpietra: Can't be a soap opera yet. No one has died, no one is a murderer and no one's had someone else's baby who's been switched at birth....yet. :p lol

I love reading the updates and I look forward to them every day! :) I'm glad they're doing well.

Little puma's huh? That's cute :D Sounds like my boys...on a good day! lol

I hope everything continues to go well with them.

Keep updating!


September 13th, 2006, 05:49 PM
Yay, another update and glad to hear Pepper and Cash are starting to come around. :highfive:

I think your SIL should try a little boy,I don't think gender really matters when mixing cats,as long as they are fixed,but that's also only my opinion.

I agree. I have a 4yr old spayed female and a 3 yr old neutered male and have had both since they were babies. They get along great and have never had any problems. :cat:

kashtin's kin
September 14th, 2006, 12:30 AM
Thanks, everyone, for the most recent feedback; if The [Almost] Daily Feral Show Report is a sorta 'soap opera/comics' combo, then the encouragement etc. I get here is invaluable therapy:crazy: hopefully a good trade!! (Re: soap opera-if a s. opera is defined to some extent by it's murder/death/switched baby content, then count me out!! On the other hand, if it involves HUGE vet bills i.e.we just forward our paycheques to the clinic!/critter juggling-not literally!/days full of jogging from one litter box to the next etc. then I'm yer gal!!!!)

Speaking of litter boxes, besides the 2 for our 3 longtime cats and 1 each for the Puma Pair and Mr. Sparklet, there are the 2 dogs to pick up after outside, and those cuddly 1/2 ton pets-les horses. I had had horses for many years before I read somewhere that the average horse produces app. 50 lbs. of manure a day:eek: ; if I'd known that, I might have had second thoughts. No wonder my life seems to be a constant rerun of "I Dream of Feces"...bad joke perhaps, but sadly true!

I'm thinking of applying for a job at some fancy? sort of restaurant where the wait staff prance around with huge trays, or balance 5 big plates on one hand, what with the practice I've had lately with the cats; on more than one occasion I really have dragged out my one lousy tray to facilitate carting multiple bowls around. At least I would get some tips (unless I turned out to be as untalented as my mother, who lost her first summer job on her first day of waitressing when she dropped a huge tray onto another waitress as she lurched through the swinging kitchen door:yell: her defense, she was a very tiny person!); these felines are real cheapskates.

Ooooh, chico2, I hope you're right about the 'skittish female' theory re: Cash. And I'm glad to hear others say that they have no problems with a m/f blend of cats (until last year when our 4 very senior cats died in a sad 6 mo. span, we had 2 males and 5 females coexisting just fine). If Cash turns out to be another macho dude, I should wallpaper SIL's house with pro-m/f mix comments from here!!:D

Thanks to the folks who related their live trap experiences; even though the kittens are all inside, it's not like there won't be more wild-ish strays:sad: . I'm hoping we get a break for a while now; in the first 8 years we lived out here we had only one [friendly!!] stray appear, that we adopted, and one or 2 very self-reliant cats who just passed through... I had wondered how live trapping worked with multiple cats, but it sounds like it's doable.

On the subject of live trapping-sort of-I haven't seen the kitten's mom for a few days now:sad: . For so long I was just trying to keep the whole family fed, and on the way to 'human friendly'...THEN came the past couple of weeks of sudden kitten-catching; I had just caught my breath and was going to focus on mom, and now she doesn't seem to be around. I'll certainly keep an eye out, especially when I'm doing my horse chores after dark; I wear a headlamp as our place is not well-lit, and it's great for catching critter eyes out there (I almost miss The Three Kittens following me around from a distance, but it's not as if they ever lifted a paw to help out anyway).

Time for some kitty cuddling...keep well, all you good critter people:thumbs up .

September 14th, 2006, 07:56 AM
I envy you living on the countryside having horses etc...I am sure you also see some wild critters.
As for poop,I would think almost everyone here have become poop-experts,a subject discussed on many occasions,although 50lbs of horse-manure is not part of my daily chores,I would not mind as I am sure you don't,they too have to poop:D
Between my 3 cats and walking Bailey(my neighbors Cocker)there is plenty of poop.
When I walk Bailey,I've learned to bring FOUR poop-bags:yell:did not know such a small dog could poop sooo much!
I am hoping your mamacat is not off somewhere having more kittens:fingerscr or your porch could become a very busy place!

kashtin's kin
September 18th, 2006, 01:05 AM
Soooo, a fairly uneventful few days avec les furals. Pepper and Cash remain in the back porch playing up a storm...although they were a tad quiet for an unusual length of time Sunday afternoon, and when I went in to check on them Pepper didn't come to greet me (for the first time since deciding I am not in fact a dastardly alien). I couldn't see either of the little fursters, so peeked under the freezer, a favourite snooze spot. They were both there, but seemed awfully sedate; I [quietly] panicked, and carefully moved the freezer (I'm not SuperVoman, it's just a very small freezer:D ) so that I could get a better look. Bottom line: they were just fine, and somewhat perturbed by my disruptive concern! Yes, I know cats nap a lot, but their unprecedented 'scarceness' kickedstarted ye olde adrenaline..."I'm not nervous-just incredibly alert!!"

Upstairs in Club Quadruped, Sparky was also a bit more subdued today; perhaps it was the warmer weather?? Sparkadelic has lots of toys and human visits with which to keep himself amused, but he is definitely expressing more interest in the World Beyond the Door. As I assured him today, only 3 more days of quarantine until he can begin the integration process. It's always interesting to see how that goes; 2 of our cats took at least a month to fully emerge from protective custody, while one notable-Goose the Unflappable-demanded to come out in just 2 days (she'd already had all her shots etc.).

I feel a bit like an air traffic controller, with planes stacked up waiting for touchdown i.e. Sparky from the quarantine room to the household, the Two Pumas from the back porch to the q. room. I never realized how handy the back porch and door were until they were closed to in/out traffic. All kinds of clutter has now built up in the side sunporch (with an outside door) which is usually the only really organized room in the house; we are even parking the car in a different spot to accommodate the present situation. ...And do the little purrmeisters even THINK about bringing a bowl of ice cream to yours truly?! (I know, I know, the mere sight of their safe little faces is reward enough!!:D).

Hopefully Cash will warm up to me a bit more in the next week, otherwise the transition from porch to room will be a smidgeon more challenging. My most recent 'befriending strategy' has been to talk to her as much as ever, but to actually avoid getting too close (before, I would reach out to let her sniff, but perhaps playing just a bit 'hard to get' will work is it that she will at times deign to eat a treat right off my hand, yet otherwise not tolerate ANY contact; I've only ever had one or 2 other cats that would eat right from my hand...go figure).

Momcat a/k/a 'Wee Wilhelmina' reappeared a few days ago; I had a livetrap all lined up to borrow on Thursday, but it didn't pan out. However, I have a couple more leads to follow up on Monday, and I'm sure one of them will work out. I've already contacted a vet clinic that is prepared to spay a feral cat on short notice-if she's not already too preggers, so :fingerscr for trapping and spaying. I'll do my best.

This whole feral scenario is nudging me towards spay/neuter activism, I think. I've always felt very strongly about the issue, but perhaps the Von Cat Family came along to motivate me to take things FURther. When I get a bit more time I plan to post on the subject in the 'rant etc.' forum, as I'd like to get some ideas on what is happening re: spay/neuter (particularily with regard to cats) in different areas. I know there are children starving around the world (we do sponsor 2 girls in Africa), and my horse passion will always inform my life to a huge extent (to the detriment of our savings account :D HAHA that is a laff and a half...horses?? savings??!!...oh puhleese)...

BUT, as the saying goes, "think globally-act locally", in different contexts. There is absolutely no kind of lower-cost spay/neuter option in my area; the Ontario Humane Society and SPCA organizations don't have a tangible presence (in this area), and although their admirable mandates include spay/neuter education and advocacy they have a number of issues to deal with i.e. cruelty/abuse investigation, care and adoption ETC. (Again, the county I live in doesn't even have a shelter.)

Perhaps Wee Wilhelmina et al. will end up being the inspiration for SPAYWOMAN...hmmmmm:eek: , think that may need a little work!!!! Bad action figure name aside, think of the comics/toy vet clinics etc. that such a venture could involve!

September 18th, 2006, 07:51 AM
Thank's again,better read than my regular comic-strip:D
As for spay/neuter at a lesser price,probably really hard to find.
Our Oakville HS had a spay/neuter/release thing going on a couple of years back,when I was feeding and trying to catch a feral Tom,I don't know if they still do.
If ALL shelters would s/n before adopting out,it would be a good start,I am sure any serious adopters would not mind paying a little more if the cat/dog is already fixed.
I saw on the news,the Toronto HS once again had a no-fees adoption day last week,I hope all those FREE animals were altered:fingerscr
I believe people getting puppies are often more serious about s/n,people getting a cute little kitten,often lose interest once the kitten grows to be a cat and simply let them out to fend for themselves:evil:
A thousand by-laws are going to make no difference to them,they simply do not care,unlike us who love our cats and only want the best for them.
Sorry to be boring:frustrated:

kashtin's kin
September 19th, 2006, 12:41 AM
Hey chico2, thanks for the s/n comments and info (and it was NOT boring!!). I finally found a livetrap to borrow-yay-so it'll be good to at least be able to try to get momcat/Wee Wilhelmina. After trying local vets etc. re: livetrap, I ended up striking paydirt at an independant pet food business that also sells a lot of birdfeed and related stuff...kinda ironic.

I'm slowly ramping (with hubby's assistance) to the changing of the kitty 'guard' that's a change from kitty litter:D ! I have to move the big cage out of the back porch, disinfect it, and put it upstairs; I plan to keep in the open area up there as a pied a terre cum bachelor pad for Sparky to feel safe as he starts to be integrated with the household.

Once le Sparklet no longer needs the Club Quadruped room to retreat to, it's out of the back porch and up to the scrubbed down room for the Two Pumas. Especially with the rainy weather arriving again, I am soooo looking forward to having back porch access to the outside (and no more accusing looks from the Dynamic Duo :rolleyes: as I make endless trips to the freezer for ice cream-hey, I need something to run on besides nervous energy, guys!).

kashtin's kin
September 20th, 2006, 01:40 AM
OOOOkay, take a deep are in a safe and calm place, palm trees are swaying, the sun is shining...ARGGHHHHHH!!!! :crazy: Well, so much for that tranquility exercise; I think it's time to give my head a gentle tap with a semi-soft?? hammer, 'cuz the wee gerbils up there are working mega-overtime, and we all need some rest!

So, the 3 feral kitties are all doing fine (bit more on that later), but now I REALLY feel like I have a tiger by the proverbial tail: I set up the livetrap at about 9 p.m., and when I checked it around midnight-during last horse check of the day-my headlamp picked out a pair of eyes:eek: . Good's not a skunk! 'Bad''s not momcat/Wee Wilhelmina!

Scary news (well, just a bit of a surprise, really)'s le tomcat, WW's toughguy boyfriend. I guess I shouldn't be so surprised, but I just wasn't at all psyched up for this development:confused: . Mr. Tom had not been in evidence for a couple of weeks; I figured he'd had his fun and moved on. Apparently not...he's big, he's trapped, and he is very ticked off/scared.

I've been around cats all my life, but this is the most intimidated I've been :eek: (except for the time I was jogging along a path at the Toronto Zoo to catch up with my family, and suddenly realized that to my left-on the other side of a fence!-a tiger was moving right along with me, stride for stride...and it's not like he was out for a leisurely fitness run!).

M. Spitting Mad Tom is now in the garage-in the trap, needless to say. Luckily, I phoned around last week and found a vet clinic will to s/n a feral on short notice...guess who's getting a call first thing tomorrow! I was so sure that I would be bringing in WW, but at least this way there will be one less catdad around; the plan is to release him back here after he's 'neutralized'.

This still leaves WW (I spotted her, and left out some food after the drama of getting El Tom into the garage) to hopefully be looked after in the same fashion in the near future. Yikes :yell: , this is all turning out to be quite the complicated caper, from just one little feral family. (I've also got a senior horse on beaucoup de meds who requires extra special time and attention every day, not to mention a hyperactive pony who needs to be kept out of trouble, etc. etc.).

On the more fun side :D , Cash "Don't Touch Me!" Kitten in the back porch suddenly decided around suppertime that he'd deign to let me pat him; wow, what a turnaround. He's been a very stubborn holdout for almost 2 weeks, so that was a nice moment...later in the evening, he decided to adopt a bit of an aloof pose once more, but at least we're on the way. It was kind of funny to have to pat 2 kittens at once; I'm so used to playing with Cash's friendly brother Pepper, and talking to Cash from a distance!

(Incidentally, it looks like Cash may be the third male kitty in this litter, but that remains to be confirmed. If my s.i.l maintains her 'female cats only' policy, I'll deal with that down the road.)

In closing, if anyone has any words of wisdom/calming mantras/huge supplies of sedatives...please do let me know ASAP! I'm revving a little on the high side-even for moi-tonight and could use some reassurance; some of you folks have helped me get this far (which has been great!), so at the risk of 'going to the well once too often'...HELP/AU SECOURS!:fingerscr

September 20th, 2006, 06:36 AM
Someone else who knows how to deal with ferals please HELP this funny lady,I can sense a bit of desperation regarding the trapped Tom

September 20th, 2006, 06:48 AM
I know there are several people here who have dealt with ferals,I have not,I only kept one fed for a couple of years.
I am surprised your vet even agreed to treat the Tom,but it would be great if he could be neutered,NO more little homeless furbabies..
Be very,very careful in dealing with him...I've had a few catbites that had to be treated at the ER.:frustrated:
Whatever happens to the tom,at least the little guys are safe,I wish you could take some pics:cat:
I know the feral(George)that I fed,skillfully avoided the livetrap until we(HS and me) gave up on catching him,until one day,sadly he did not show up anymore:sad: Here he is:sad:

Ed U KayShawn
September 20th, 2006, 09:10 AM
Hi, please cover the trap with a large towel or blanket one that you do not care if it gets wrecked because it will! Before you transport the kitty cover your car seats with a tarp, then a blanket as ferals are known to eliminate when stressed. Be sure to never, have your fingers or hands, or legs near the cage when carrying it. Be sure to advise the vet staff under no circumstances should they touch the cat unless under anestetic.These are basically wild animals! they must be treated as so. Do not remove the towel or blanket from the outside of the cage no visibility for the cat is the most calming effect they have, other than drugs!! :cloud9: When you get the kitty home, he may be released if after the 24 hour surgery and you have ensured that he seems back to himself however, you must continue to provide food shelter & water and veterinarian care when neccessary (otherwise is it just abandonment) ** reminder even if he seems cuddly from the anestetic DO NOT TOUCH him!! please admire and coo from afar. and remember your awesome!! :thumbs up :party: pm if need be k !!

kashtin's kin
September 20th, 2006, 09:59 AM
Ed U. and chico2, thanks so much for the feedback; you two always have good ideas and just plain encouragement. Thx muchos!! :thumbs up . My surprise captive, 'Darrell the Feral" is now at the vet (FIV check first, and if he's okay then shots/neuter to follow). :fingerscr

Regarding the vet clinic, I'm really fortunate to live about 25 min. away from a small animal practice that is fully licensed and experienced in wildlife rehab (Windrush Clinic near Brantford, Ont.) ; I phoned them last week to check on the feral s/n issue. When I called this a.m. to book in Darrell, and mentioned that he is big and hostile (and SCARED, of course), the gal that I was talking to replied to the effect that he couldn't be worse than a big mad raccoon!

I'm hoping that 'Darrell'-man, that is one BIG cat!-is FIV neg, and that things go okay. Thanks for the advice re: trap, towel, care with hands...thankfully my common sense (and the hubby's calm smarts!) kicked in, and we'd done all the things advised. This cat is as mentioned BIG and extremely irked :eek: ; I have no illusions about being his buddy/getting near him when he's not in a cage.

And, due to my stupidity earlier in the year (don't ask!!), I've had the post-bite series of rabies vac's. I don't intend to get that stupid again-once is definitely enough-but it's not such a bad thing to have that protection..."and now, I will pat the wolverine..."

Thanks again for the help-any further feedback etc. will be gratefully received. Now I'm off to roll pennies harhar to pay for Darrell; once the 3 Amigos Kitties are all sorted out, I'll be living in a ditch :yell: !! ...All the more reason to get real pro-active in the spay/neuter area! :D

kashtin's kin
September 21st, 2006, 12:25 AM
Well, Darrell the Feral tested FIV neg.:thumbs up , so he got his shots and op; he's resting overnight in a small cage in our insulated garage, and tomorrow he'll be out from behind bars...minus a bit of testosterone etc. I imagine he'll be taking off right quick after his not-optional surgery; I just hope he stays as safe as possible. He is definitely one VERY FERAL cat.

At least he won't be fathering any more kittens:D , and is not spreading FIV. There was no sign today of his galpal, WW-the one I thought we were going to trap. I guess we'll bait the sucker again tomorrow night, and see what happens; good thing those badgers moved on, 'cuz if D the Feral was a lilttle scary...

With all the drama the past 24 hours, there wasn't much time to supervise Sparky's integration, or for the 2 Pumas; I'll just have to catch up a bit tomorrow?! An interesting day, but not one I would care to repeat on a real regular basis without some kind of medication;) . However, I guess the experience may serve me well in the future, as this feral theme seems to be recurring. People who know me are amazed :confused: at the number of times that they DON'T hear the word 'horse' in my conversation these days...

September 21st, 2006, 07:08 AM
It must be ESP,I was just thinking of Catsnatcher and her she is,back with an update,check "Pet Pictures",under the "Homelsss in winter"thread and you can read all about CS's struggles to get 5 outdoor kitties a safe place to live.
She,CPietra(who took in 2 of the cats)and others,are absolutely wonderful people with tons of experience with troubled cats.
Hopefully they can give more useful advice than I can give.
:highfive: for having the Tom fixed:highfive:
I wish I had a horse grasing in my backyard,they are the most beautiful creatures on earth,you are very lucky!
How old do you think the kittens are??

September 21st, 2006, 09:37 AM
Kashtin's kin, you are doing well. What you are doing is what we all did. You need patience, patience, patience...and more patience. From experience, you only catch a ferrel when he is hungry, sick, comfortable. As far as trust, you are working on their timetable. please feel free to pm me for specifics, as well as catsnatcher. Hope you don't mind catsnatcher:D

Ed U KayShawn
September 21st, 2006, 02:24 PM
I agree cpietra, you definately work on their time!! :candle: Way to go k! you've done a great job! The only trick I have ever found can work pretty good for bait is good ol can of stinky mackerel!! I have found that it does work the best and be sure to put it at the very back of the cage! But ya know sometimes that has not always worked either, they are just really that good at outsmarting us sometimes!! :p

kashtin's kin
September 22nd, 2006, 01:05 AM
I'm VERY grateful for the above posters/critterkin who continue to offer helpful advice and encouragement-thx again, everyone :grouphug: . As I continue my journey in Feraland, hopefully I'll be able to pass some of that knowledge and support on...what goes around does indeed come around:thumbs up .

Darrell the Feral took off without a glance back today; he seemed in fine fettle. New as I am to really getting involved with ferals, I've fed and observed quite a few strays over the years...I got the feeling with Darrell that he is one experienced and determined feral cat. I would be surprised if he was ever 'domestic', even as a kitten.

It would be great to see him again (even a postcard would do), but I'm not going to hold my breath...I've lost enough brain cells as it is:crazy: . I've read about how some feral colony 'managers' will notch a fixed and vaccinated cat's ear to indicate their treatment; it's too bad that wasn't really feasible in Darrell's case. If anyone has used any other method of ID, please let me know (i.e. some wild animals are temporarily 'non-toxic spray painted', or banded).

Momcat/Darrell's galpal/WW is around again today. I had hoped to try to trap her Thurs. night, but my vehicle broke down:( , so no transport to the vet. I'll have to wait till Sun. now to try, so as to be able to get to the vet clinic when it's open (would rather not possibly trap WW sooner, and stress her-okay, and me as well:eek:-with an extended confinement).

Sparkadelic was out of his bachelor pad for an hour or 2 today under supervision. Bold little fella that he is, he explored the whole house (we're not exactly talking zillion-room mansion here). The 3 'mature??' cat inhabitants have been pretty SSSSSSish around Spark, but he's standing up for himself without being stupid...I should take notes!:D

Cash and Pep continue to enjoy the back porch (so glad 'one' of us has the use of it ;) ). We don't turn on our furnace till it's a tad colder-gotta save $ somewhere-so I put one of those fake fleece crate 'pillows'with the rolled edges on top of a roughtote, and the guys are enjoying cuddlying up on that.

Of course, when I hit the sack at whatever ungodly hour I finally hit the wall, there will be the 3 crabby longtime inhabitants to try to negotiate with-without waking the hubster..."look, Odin, if you and Sally would just shift a few inches, and Goose would let me have half of my pillow??!!" I know I should be more assertive :o , but frankly it's easier just to go with the flow!

p.s. big thx to catsnatcher for posting her feral-trapping/gentling routine...the whole exercise re: putting food in a crate/cage in a progressive sort of method sounds EXACTLY what you do to teach a horse to load into a trailer (unless they are a bit unusual, and saunter right onto the thing first try)...when I was doing some remedial trailer-loading schooling with my pony this past summer, she went from "I'm not going ANYwhere!", to wanting to get on it when we were heading out for a ride down the trail!! Go figure!!

September 22nd, 2006, 07:30 AM
OMG,wish I had your writing-skills make a,what must be really frustrating situation,sound like sooo much fun!
I too have to share my side of the bed(King Size)with 3 cats,I don't think I could fall asleep without the steady purr in my ear:cat: After a while though,2 of them go off to their own regular spots,Rocky(my tabby 16lbs)stays with his mommy..:love:
Good luck getting the mommy cat,at least the big bad Tom can make no more babies:thumbs up

September 22nd, 2006, 09:39 AM
Have food, they will come. I am sure Darrell will be back...his girl is there:D

kashtin's kin
September 25th, 2006, 12:31 AM
Eek!: a busy coupla days with no update, and the Friendly Ferals are complaining :frustrated: about their lack of 'press'...seem to regard me as a combo Buffet Consultant & Supplier/Chew Toy/Toilette Sanitizer/Media Liason. It's not like I haven't tried to schmooz with Lloyd Robertson (we DO wear the same shade of lipstick after all-oops, sorry Lloyd!!), or line up something on Vickie Garbreau! I've even emailed Dr. Phil, but apparently we have to work on our 'angst factor'; if I can guarantee an onscreen brawl between the longtime resident felines and the Three Ferals, apparently we've got a shot...

Actually, I'm a bit more occupied with making sure Le Sparkster doesn't provoke a bit of a kitty donnybrook :eek: in the process of his gradual main house integration. Today was about his 4th day testing the waters; we're up to 2 hours or so-supervised! That little guy is SUCH a brat, albeit an endearing one. The first day he made rather aggressive overtures to all 3 mature cats...he was a tad excited, and while he really did nothing more than try to 'sniffmeet' nose-wise, poor Sparks was met with very crabby hisses and growls.

Picture Dennis the Menace charging into a senior centre (no offense intended-seniordom is no longer just an abstract concept to moi anymore!) and running amok. Our oldest cat is 12, and the 2 gals are about 7, so they aren't exactly ancient; I do wish they wouldn't get their kitty knickers in such a twist. Considering that the crochetty trio were part of our herd/pride? of 7 for approximately 7 years, and that they also were rescued and coddled cats, I think they're being somewhat unreasonable...but I suppose that's a cat's prerogative :shrug: ?!

Meanwhile, back in the [back] porch, Pepper and Cash are having a jolly time. Who knew that a small step stool could end up providing hours of kitty enjoyment-perfect for 'king of the castle'! Although Cash first bestowed 'your touch will be tolerated' status on me last week, he has progressed to not recoiling a bit at my friendly overtures, and has gone so far as to seek me out (okay, so that may be when I am coincidentally accompanied by a tuna snack, but I'll take what I can get).

Momcat alias Wee Wilhelmina does not appear to have been around on Sunday, but the outside food is disappearing...I am assuming the badger family has NOT returned:eek: , and that WW and/or her BBBF are responsible. I am still keeping my fingers crossed that Darrell the Feral does not bring a civil suit against me regarding his 'loss of enjoyment et al.'; good luck Darrell...if you want to be awarded nothing but 'buttons and a smile', you've sure come to the right place:thumbs up .

Well, I'm off to start penning my hopefully wildly successful screenplay (hell-oooo, Hollywood!) entitled "Brokedown Truck"-I had this compelling story outlined well before that upstart "Brokeback Mountain"!! I found myself with a dandy opportunity on Saturday to make a bunch of notes when my '85 3/4 ton truck decided to take a time out halfway up a big, steep hill-with a load of hay bales in the back! While plotting out my blockbuster movie-to-be, I was also able to enjoy an invigorating jog through the countryside in search of a phone. I even managed a pretty impressive :D sprint at the first house I came to; that dog was NOT on a very secure rope, and he moved surprisingly quickly for a portly fella with a grey muzzle.

When I finally got through to the auto service, they didn't seem to find the fact that I had no idea what road the truck was on to be quite as amusing as I did. I was vaguely aware that I was in the VICINITY of Orangeville...don't they have global positioning stuff or something? It's not like it was my fault my map had a big splotch :( on the very area I was in, or that the woman who so kindly loaned me her phone had just moved in last week. Some people take things just a little too seriously, methinks.

Harking back to the cats, I'm still hoping to snag WW...if she is too pregnant to spay, I will cross that bridge when I come to it. We'll work things out somehow. When I get a bit of a breather from kitty gentling/senior horse crisis management/truck trauma etc. my first priority is going to be getting some sort of s/n initiative going in this area. If I have to personally go through such an intense feral family scenario on a regular basis, I simply cannot guarantee my sanity (such as it is :crazy: )!?

September 25th, 2006, 07:03 AM
KK,I am hoping you keep a diary of your daily kitty-life,then you can write a book similar to James Herriot's "Cat Stories",it would be on any catlovers bestseller list:cat:
When I brought my Vinnie(found outside a factory) home to my other 2 cats,it took about a week,before I had reasonable harmony.
My Chico still gives off the occasional hiss,even after 4yrs he's hoping Vinnie is just a visitor.:D
Sorry about your truckadventure,hopefully everything worked out..
As for the food outside being gone,even here in suburbia,I have raccoons,possums and skunks(no badgers:D )who will happily munch on anything served!
Keep up the good work:thumbs up

kashtin's kin
September 27th, 2006, 01:03 AM
Hmm, I was just going to post a quick update tonight i.e. le Sparkster is having a laffriot :crazy: turning our household upside down with his daily integration visits (he's actually being a really good boy, responding to verbal scolding without being upset etc.). Our 3 peeved mature cat residents are also relaxing a bit...less evil :evil: growls, and more mere dirty looks (at Sparky, and moi, whose fault all this is!). The Two Pumas are doing well, also; Cash-who was extremely aloof for a couple of weeks-is now vying with his brother Pepper for the Friendly :D Feral of the Week title!

As I posted below? in my only mildly?! panicky :eek: fashion, we have momcat/WW in a livetrap :thumbs up as of 11 pm Tues.-almost time for another zip up to the [domestic, and wild animal] vet clinic. I am sooooo hoping that WW is FIV neg, and either not pregnant or not far much to fret about, and luckily I am a worldclass Fretster. As I was saying to my husband earlier, when my beloved (I've been her ridiculously devoted servant for 18 years) senior/very retired horse had some colic on the weekend, I was [at least comparatively!!] cool :cool: as the proverbial cucumber as I rubbed her ears and waited for the vet at 1:00 in the morning.

I guess I've been through so many horse crisis' (they are truly an animal with a real talent for heartstopping behaviour) that I eventually became somewhat resigned to whatever equine semi-disaster comes along, while the feral cat thing is a 'muddle your way through and bellow for help when necessary' kind of thing... Wish Wee Wilhelmina luck-and me, steely?! nerves-if you have a moment :fingerscr . Thanks!

September 27th, 2006, 07:00 AM
How is WW behaving??
Mind you,even the sweetest cat can turn in to a demon in a cage,I know ALL mine do,they howl and scream all the way to the vet.
I am glad the kittens are doing ok,between them and your horses,I hope you are relatively wealthy:cat: or have a very understanding,compassionate vet. WW!

kashtin's kin
September 28th, 2006, 12:36 AM
:thumbs up Yay!!-Wee Wilhelmina (Meryl the Feral on her vet chart for simplicity!) checked out FIV neg, and was vaccinated and spayed Wed. morning. As suspected, she was pregnant but not too far along, so we went ahead with the spay. Hopefully this pragmatic approach to cat overpopulation doesn't offend anyone...what would have happened to this next litter?

I got my first close-up look at WW in the a.m. at the vet clinic, as it was dark when she was caught, and we figured getting a towel over the livetrap and leaving her in a quiet place was more important than doing a photo shoot ("Work with me, Willi!"). She was actually quite calm-staying still, and no dilated pupils etc., unlike her big/VERY FERAL boyfriend, Darrel. She really is a wee thing...likely had this first litter after an encounter during her first or second heat.

I'm so glad she's at the clinic on this wet night; on Thurs. I'll pick her up, after talking to the clinic staff, and figuring out what crate/cage to transfer her to for her recuperation period. She may be small, but I have no illusions about 'petting the kitty':eek: ! I will want to be able to feed her from the outside of the cage, thank you very much; when Cash was about a month old I idiotically thought I could nab him by the nape of his neck while he was eating, and I came off that match-up much the worse for wear (for a while there I thought OHIP might cover cosmetic surgery, but apparently my wounds weren't bad enough, and anyway, they declined to do a facelift :mad: when only my hand was lacerated-POO!).

WW's boys are all pretty happy house kitties after a month or so indoors, although they are still in varying stages of quarantine. I'm planning to get Sparks in for his second shots, and the Two Pumas in for their first vacc's next week; they're pretty much ready to be neutered at 4 mos.-ish, so I'll have to figure out the logistics of all that (and maybe hold a telethon :D in the meantime!!). After this intensive 'vet period'-not to mention the $350 /mo. in meds my senior horse needs-I won't even be able to afford to shop at Value Village. But, hey, I've got lots of felines to keep me warm; maybe they can hunt down mice in the basement, so I can make some tasty stew to go with all the generic 'Kraft Dinner'!?

Rescuing critters beats the heck out of 'designer wear' (can't miss what you've never had!) any day, I'm sure you'd all agree.:cool:

September 28th, 2006, 07:29 AM
Don't worry,I don't think anybody here objects to WW's pregnancy beeing terminated.
I wish we could all do what you did.
Collect ALL feral and homeless cats and have them s/n,the winter is coming and many little kitties will freeze to death:sad:
Maybe WW will warm up to being caught and you'll have 4 more cats:cat: SEVEN cats oh,oh....
Your vet might be able to find homes for a couple,my vet keeps cats from HS right in the waiting room,the adoptionrate is really good.Although it really bothers me,seeing them there in a cage knowing I can have no more cats,I think it's a great idea:thumbs up

kashtin's kin
September 29th, 2006, 02:00 AM
I coulda used a traffic cop in the house today, considering the Musical Cats-not to be confused with the musical, 'Cats'- sort of situation that went on:crazy: . To back up a bit first, Wee Wilhelmina came home from the vet Thurs. aft all spayed, vacc'd et al. I had an idea of the logistical challenges housing her would entail, but I put off any actual kitten-shifting until I picked WW up, and could see exactly what type/size of cage or crate she was in.

It turned out Madame Feral had been moved post-surgery to a med. dog crate, sooooo-the TWO PUMAS migrate from the back porch to Club Quadruped upstairs (alias the spare room...if this was a B&B, let's just say the only visitors who would not be bitterly disappointed might be those looking for a rural Ontario version of 'Survivor':eek: ). This entailed the shifting of Sparks to the one bathroom (not the first of our cats to be resident Bathroom Kitty); he's spending more and more time in the main part of the house, but only under supervision, as we do not want to find ourselves on pay TV listed as 'Catfight :evil: Central!!'

All this room-juggling freed up the back porch for WW; she is resting in her crate for now, preparatory to a hopefully successful:fingerscr shift into a larger cage tomorrow. The cage is all set up with a privacy cave (i.e. cardboard box with towel and small entrance) and small litter box, and should do as a mini convalescent hospital. I can feed and scoop litter from the outside of the cage, and we will drape a sheet over it if more privacy seems desirable (it should be quiet in the porch, as the past month has trained us to use our side entrance...the electric fence at the kitchen door to the porch is a handy reminder if we get a tad stunned, and as an added bonus it really jump-starts the old heart:D ).

After a few short, fun-filled hours featuring moi cavorting about the house avec broom/rags and non-toxic 'disinfecting' stuff et al. not to mention carting around various cat beds/toys/litter boxes/feed dishes from room to room, I was able to wind down by putting the horses to bed! Does the excitement ever stop?!

All is pretty quiet now (minus me zipping around on my custom-built 'hamster' wheel): Sparky has finally tired of playing in the bathtub, the Two Pumas appear to have wound down their larger! room-warming party, and WW is sleeping (albeit with one eye open?). Imagine that, just about the whole family under our roof; just a month ago I despaired of ever luring ANY members of Willi, Inc. into the house. I asked el hubby if he wouldn't mind tracking down Darrell the Feral alias Mr. Dad, but for some reason he wasn't awfully keen on the idea;) ; so much for the complete family reunion...

September 29th, 2006, 10:46 AM

I love your posts and the updates!

Keep it up :D

I'm glad everyone is ok and just remember to breathe! :p


kashtin's kin
September 30th, 2006, 11:54 PM
The opening ?? of the title for this post is courtesy of The Sparkman; now that he has the run of the house (when one of us critter butlers is around, which is most of the time), he's EVERYWHERE! I'm still administering smelling salts to mah swooning self after the manic episode of musical cats :crazy: on Thursday evening, but the kitties have all adjusted. Judging by the thuds etc. coming from the Two Puma's quarters upstairs, they are taking their upcoming audition for Kitty Cirque du Soleil very seriously...

WW continues to recover from her Wed. op etc. in the back porch; today my Dr. Doolittle :thumbs up hubby was able to get her to move from the medium dog crate to the large dog cage without trauma, so now Willi has a proper litter box/cave et al. She is eating and moving around a bit more, but glowers at me as I tend to her; the confined, indoor life may not be her cup of catnip??

I was somewhat surprised to spot Darrell the Feral today...the last we saw of him was the angry :mad: flick of a tail when we released him after his trip to the vet; kinda figured he'd be in South America by now (possibly plotting his revenge:evil: ). I'll continue to put out his usual buffet, and perhaps he'll wait around for WW.

My big goal this coming week is to get going on figuring out how to get some pics of the feral family up here; even with a digital camera, I'm an amazingly :eek: bad photographer, but I do have snaps of everyone-even one of Darrell (in the livetrap!).

kashtin's kin
October 3rd, 2006, 01:49 AM
Yesterday I spent a moment or two on a bolting :eek: horse (not one of mine!); as they say, it's amazing how such an experience can 'concentrate the mind'! It's not exactly something to brag about, but I've been bolted on before...if you ride enough, almost everything happens to you eventually. The worst bolt was on a racehorse, and that didn't end so well :( i.e. "who/what/where am I?" + PAIN etc. However, even though my most recent experience wasn't pleasant, I only FEARED as opposed to KNEW that I would emerge from the ride very, um, compromised.
But here I am, relatively normal for another day-YAY! As a bonus, working with feral cats seems a little more tame:D !? by comparison! Consequently, when le Sparkster hopped into the tub with me today, I almost yawned. ...Yes, I do know it is preferable to bathe behind a closed door, but we have a very old house with no bathroom fan, and it gets soooo humid in there; if one is ever yearning after the 'thick mists of the moor', well, one has come to the right place!
And in my defense, I had also shown Sparks the full tub, and given him a flick of H20; he seemed to have gotten the message, until...SPLASHMEOW!! Sparks was good enough to leave me unscathed (I'm already pretty 'scathed', truth be told), so basically I only really missed out on the relaxation component of my soak:shrug: .
WW is now doing really well post-spay:thumbs up . She was a bit off-no surprise-for a couple of days, and I was a little concerned; I knew just being confined let alone all that other stuff (complicated spay and so on) would stress WW a lot, but it was frustrating not to be able to get a closer look at her at the time. Thankfully, for the past couple of days she has been eating voraciously...I hope to bulk her up a bit this week.
I had thought of trying to gentle WW, and adopt her out to my s.i.l., but on further reflection, it would seem that this ex-momcat is pretty hardcore feral. She remains very much in her boxcave inside the large dog cage whenever I enter the back porch (generally to feed her, or clean the litter). It is certainly possible that she would come around over time, but given the critters we already have-including her offspring-and the fact that WW is clearly most comfortable outside, I think we will end up releasing her.
She has pretty good 'wildsmarts', the weather is still decent...and I will continue to put food out (there is a selection of deserted sheds close by). It was not too difficult to say See ya! to Darrell the Feral after his vetting; he really was one BIGSCARYBOY! With WW, it will be much harder, but the most feasible thing for all, I think. I even get sentimental about insects (well, not mosquitoes and flies), so just one more thing to come to terms with...
On the brighter side:D , Darrell is still munching down at the 'feeding station' (although I am careful to look both ways when filling it, and keep my cattle prod in one hand!?), so I'm hopeful he and WW will be reunited in a platonic context. Perhaps they will join a book club, and enjoy strolling and chatting???
The Kamikaze Kitties are still practising their :crazy: gymastic routines upstairs; they're scheduled for their first shots this week, while Sparky will have his second set. When I phoned the clinic today to book the app't, I checked again on neuter protocol (age, vacc. requirement), but it suddenly occured to me tonight that I could be wrong re: gender, especially in [long-haired] Cash's case. I would imagine things will be made clear on Thursday!
Alas, I prattle...time to check on everyone before I attempt to reclaim part of the bed for myself :fingerscr .

kashtin's kin
October 5th, 2006, 12:28 AM
It's a tad hard to concentrate right now, as le sparkster is in the bathroom for the night, and it takes him a while to accept the fact that he isn't going to escape in his usual fashion (i.e. launches himself at doorknob/hangs on with paws and jiggles knob/open sesame...this is an OLD house, with loose/jiggley old doors etc.). It's a bit of a noisy routine, so I've got to try to think :confused: between the intrepid kitty's frequent launch times!

(On a reassuring note, Sparky is cool, calculating, and determined as he goes about his 'doorknob jiggling'-as opposed to a cat that might be upset and/or panicked. I don't think it's ever occured to Mr. Cool ;) to panic!)

WW alias momcat is still bulking up in the back porch (got some really nutricious 'hi-test' cat food for her a few days ago, although I drew the line at Kitty Steroids); it's been a week since her somewhat complicated spay, so I'm hoping that the weather will be decent in the next couple of days. I know that I must repatriate WW with the outdoors without undue delay as long as she has recuperated, but I don't want to turf her out on a lousy day.

The kitty gymnasts upstairs may in fact be losing their focus a bit, and practicing bar fights :evil: instead, judging by the chairs tipped over in their lair; I've tried to tell them that the life of a stunt kitten may seem glamorous, but it's tough work, and an olympic gold medal never hurt anyone.

Just found out earlier today that s.i.l. WILL in fact take a male kitten; perhaps she has been reading all this!? This is great news :thumbs up , as s.i.l. is an experienced catbutler, who goes to great lengths to ensure their happiness and health; one of the Two Pumas will be spoiled rotten. Now I just have to work on MY separation :sad: anxiety...will s.i..l. mind if I bunk with her for a week or 2 while I help the kitten with the transition??

It's vaccination day tomorrow for all 3 kittens; should find out exactly what gender Hairy Cash is...hopefully all 4 of us will handle the expedition with our customary aplomb (as long as I get my act together; last year at this time I drove my sister and one of her cats to the same vet for annual shots etc., and I locked my keys in the truck when we arrived at the clinic...pretty minor stuff, but I surpassed myself when we finally got home, and I found I'd locked us out of the house as well-weird old locks-thus necessitating the breaking of a window to gain entrance:o ...AND I was starving by this time!!!!).

October 5th, 2006, 07:16 AM
Thank's for the update and the comic relief:D
IMO your SIL will love a little boy-kitty..
Although I never really picked a cat,they kind'a picked me and happened to be boys,I find boys are most of the time more mellow and cuddlier.
I have only ever had one girl-cat,so my opinion is based on her,I loved her as much as any cat I ever had,but she was not as big of a suck as my boys.
Good luck getting them all to the vet:thumbs up

October 5th, 2006, 09:17 AM
Love your updates. When you have a second can you please add a few pictures. I love reading picture books:D

kashtin's kin
October 6th, 2006, 12:41 AM
:o Well, I never did claim to be an expert 'kitten gender determiner'; good thing, 'cuz if I had I'd have to resign as of Thursday! crazy little gymnasts Cash and Pepper are in fact gals! Briefly considered altering their names to Olga and Nadia, but I don't like to name-change unless absolutely necessary (i.e. horse I bought with the moniker 'Wildfire':yuck: ).Even though s.i.l. had already agreed to make an exception to her all-chick household, I'm sure she will be that much happier to be adopting 'Pepita'.

With regard to le Sparkster, he is certainly a boy, although one of his bits hasn't descended yet; hopefully it will before he's neutered, although I guess if it doesn't the op is just a bit less of a doddle. At least he's not a horse! I have a friend whose first apparent gelding was a 'crypt...'; it's not that obvious, and if no one picks up on it, one can end up riding a virtual stallion when that is the last thing the average horseperson wants to do! YEEHAW:eek: !

My visit to the vet with the trio of terrors was a bit exhausting for us all; Cash and Pepper are still a bit wary, so the weighing/worming/vitals etc. were a real adventure. Sparky was his usual confident self, but kittens x 3 does take a while! Interestingly enough, when we all arrived home with a collective sigh of relief, the PumaGirls settled right down to a snack followed by a light trapeze workout upstairs:crazy: ...while Sparkguy cuddled up on his blankie in the bathroom, and did absolutely nothing for almost 6 hours (he looked bright and content enough when we checked on him-the vet had said the rabies shot can slow them down, which I hadn't really heard before).

I had planned to release WW today, but things were a tad busy, and I didn't want to rush her-plus the next few days are supposed to be warmer:fingerscr . A day or so ago WW was still very sedate, and I wondered if she'd get her 'outside game face' back; I believe the answer to that question is a big yes, just from the way that she glares at me (it's amazing how psyhic one gets as a critterslave).

I'm hopeless :shrug: at telling even the simplest joke, and perhaps everyone has heard this BUT, my vet got a knowing snicker out of me with the one that describes the reaction of a dog to all the feeding/walking/cuddling it's person does ("S/he must be God!"), and the reaction of a cat to all the pampering it gets ("I must be God!"). Teehee.:D

kashtin's kin
October 8th, 2006, 12:34 AM
Much to her relief, WW was released/returned to the outside world yesterday around noon. After a quiet :angel: week or so of recuperating from her op, she began to get more active (and as noted above, WW's glare was getting positively scary:evil: ). I had planned to maneuver her cage from the back porch to a spot beside the horse trailer-right by the feeding station, and a hop skip and jump from on of her 'sheltersheds'-open the door, and let WW take her time emerging...

However, as soon as I got the front of the cage facing the open door to FREEDOM, WW sprang from the bowels of her boxcave and reared up to claw at the cage door. So, a quick switch to Plan B:eek: , as I fumbled to get the catches open; the second the cage door began to swing back, WW was gonewiththewind! She did pause for a moment under the trailer (to give me the finger,er, claw!), then lit out for the shed. I didn't get much of a look at her, but she did appear to have fleshed out a bit; judging by her bounds across the grass, she had fully recovered from her surgery.

It was hard to see WW go, but at least she's healthier, and won't have the burden of having more kittens. And I really got the strong impression that she is pretty firmly feral; her last day inside she even refused to eat, and I don't think it was just because she got sick of my 'cooking'! What with WW's swiftly bitter?? departure, I wondered if I would see her again; I was relieved and pleased :thumbs up to spot her Saturday in the early evening and once more during the late evening barn check...munching out under the trailer. She gave me a good look both times, but didn't let my presence interrupt her meals:D .

I'm hopeful that with food and shelter available, WW will stick around over the winter...meantime, after a busy Friday afternoon of disinfecting the cage and cleaning out the back porch (YAY! we got the use of our porch and door back after 33 days of feral occupation!!), it was once more into the Kitten Routine. Sparky continues to adapt well to household life, although he's still in the bathroom for a few hours at night (the 'mature' cats need to have some time to let down their fur and know they can relax :cool: totally). Upstairs, the GALS continue to develop their own version of the 'Flying Wallenda's' act...

It's great that my s.i.l. will be providing such a good home for Cash, but I'm already missing her (it's a curse being hypersentimental!). Ah well, the Weird Sisters will be together for a while yet, as they are in post [first] vacc. quarantine. We may just have time to put together a professional-calibre Cirque des Chats...with me in the role of prop-person!

October 8th, 2006, 06:44 AM
Great read as usual:thumbs up
If WW knew what a great thing you've done for her and any potential kittens,she'd be forever greatful.
No more kittens freezing and starving to death in the winter and WW has a much better chance of survival not having kittens.
You did a wonderful thing and I am sure she'll stick around where she has food and shelter.
As for the little ones,I am certain they'll adjust to the good life and become perfectly normal cuddly,purring cats.:cat:

kashtin's kin
October 11th, 2006, 12:50 AM
Our first feral thanksgiving, and aside from a few complaints about the gravy:yuck: , all went well. After all the drama of the past month or so (livetrapping/vet visits/kitty gentling), things are relatively quiet...and I'm not complaining!!!! :D

WW continues to sample the outside buffet, while her offspring are determined to have rural passersby mistake our ol' farmhouse for the Party:crazy: Palace (ex-feral style). It's amazing just how much noise 5ish lb. kittens can make!

I've taken tons of pics of les kitties, and I am definitely going to get them up here SOON-just have to pick up some stuff at a computer place!! It will really help all you super-kind :angel: BB people put a feline face (or 5!) to this whole saga.

In the meantime, I'm psyching myself up for worming day next week (frankly, I would far rather worm a 1000 lb. horse than pill a 5 lb. kitten!), and checking out my s.i.l.'s credit/personal/vet etc. references for her kitty adoption application...I dunno, I think she may have to take a few courses etc. to meet my stringent requirements ;) , or maybe just make a sizeable donation to the WW Feral Family Trust??). Good luck with that, huh?!

It doesn't look like Canada marks this (?), but October 16th is National Feral Cat Day in the U.S.:thumbs up

kashtin's kin
October 15th, 2006, 01:50 AM
Just a quick progress report...I have made some inroads on the picture posting i.e. clue #1: look in box that camera came in (:D instructions! cable! etc.!!). I thought I'd have to buy some stuff (with my non-existent Swiss bank account); now it just turns out I have to fire up the brain cells :eek:.

Sparks is doing great in the house proper; the 'mature trio' are getting resigned to his somewhat insolent (according to them...more high-spirited, really) presence, and the Flying Felines in the upper gymnasium keep this old house's support beams working hard.

All three kittens are growing so fast-they are about 5 months old now. It seems just yesterday that I was looking through the binoculars at three tiny kittens gamboling (not gambling ;) !) in the grass a couple of hundred feet away, for the first time. That was as close as I got to them for a while...

Wily Willi/momcat is still out and about, and resolutely feral (although she does concede that my 'food service skills' are passable), but I guess you could say that her offspring are fairly domesticated at this point...and not complaining about it, at least not to my face??!!

Yesterday el hubbo and I were discussing the logistics of Pepper's eventual move to s.i.l.'s cat-friendly abode; he brought up the subject of Cash's future, and actually suggested that we keep her :D , as well as the already installed Sparks. Wow...I didn't even have to start to plan any sort of "oh puh-leeeze" campaign!!

I'm really thrilled that our feral family are indeed all staying 'in the family'. However, I also realize that this scenario cannot be played out year after year; as it is, the night owls in the house have to settle for a mere sliver of bed (gotta start some sort of 'reservation' system?).

Well, I'd better give the tiny gerbils who power my paltry brain cells a rest, so I can power 'em up tomorrow on the 'photo posting' issue; I'm glad that although I've been ultra-stunned re: posting, I have been taking pics all along to document this feral experience.

The kitty crew have been complaining-AGAIN-that I'm not using flattering enough lighting for them etc., but I am NOT going to keep pestering Tyra Banks; if those wanna-be divas/divo are really determined, they can use Photoshop and all that graphic tool stuff and airbrush their hearts out (yoo-hoooooo...over here, while you're at it!!).:thumbs up

kashtin's kin
October 20th, 2006, 01:18 AM
:sorry: I've been sooooo sloooow on this photo thing; I am very much looking forward to photographically illustrating my 'Feral 101' saga. All the pics are downloaded (or uploaded??:shrug: ), and I spent quite a while yesterday editing and so stop-"see this space!!"

Meanwhile, back at the [micro]ranch-that is, apart from the computer corner-I'm psyching myself up for Wormorama :eek: (tomorrow), keeping WW satisfied at the feeding station (what, no caviar?), mediating minor disputes between Sparky and 'the senior felines' ("Hey, let's all just go grab a catnip and mellow out, everyone!"), and making sure my little 'Olga and Nadia' have all the gym equipment necessary to further their kamikaze kitty training.

Back to the photos, for me:fingerscr !! Better be worth the wait, huh!!?? :D

October 20th, 2006, 01:32 AM
You have a really great writing style. I hope you have a blog somewhere out there in cyberspace...:)

kashtin's kin
October 21st, 2006, 09:56 PM
:D I've finally gotten to the actual testing stage re: posting pics!! We'll see what happens:fingerscr ! Once I know what's going on (that'll be the day?), I'll title/organize the pic I [hopefull] post!!! :thumbs up

October 21st, 2006, 10:55 PM
What a doll! I've just gotten acquainted with your very entertaining saga--read the whole thing through from the beginning for the first time (I just joined this month so pay no attention to the number of posts... :crazy: ) Which of the kitties is this one?

kashtin's kin
October 22nd, 2006, 12:40 AM
Well, three cheers for 'Xtra Stay-dry' anti-perspirant; without it I'd have sweated-er, glowed-so much during the course of finally wrestling a pic onto this thread that the poor computer would have shorted out :D . Before I go any further, I must confess that behind my every success with technology, there stands...le HUB, a/k/a my saner, calmer self.

MANY women are just as, or more competent than men in terms of tinkering with 'stuff' (my mother-in-law, with her fully equipped power tool et al. workshop...and her engineer husband who was unable to change a lightbulb without blood pressure :yell: issues, comes to mind). Alas, I am not one of the gifted fixit types; my long-suffering spouse has diagnosed me with the "kick it to fix it'" syndrome. Just about everything around our micro-ranch has a dent :o in it somewhere i.e. garage door, filing cabinet, car (only inanimate objects, needless to say).

I assure you that I WAS standing ready to assist while le garcon worked away, but he's soooo disorganized-kept remembering tasks he had forgotten to complete ("Lamb loin, I think I forgot to pick up something in, um, the high arctic...yeah, that's right, the arctic."). It's really rather sad that he can't keep better track of things ;) .

Whatever the case, the upshot of our combined efforts is the above pic of Senor SPARKY :cat: , the first kitten I managed to entrap. He's such a charming little tiger... I'm thrilled to have finally begun the process of 'illustrating' the ferals I've written so much about. (At the rate I chat, a picture is worth a gazillion words!) Over the next week, I hope to post pics of all 5 members of Les Ferals-and I'll make sure I mention which one is in each pic.

I was so busy shrieking "eureka/ai caramba (sp?)/yippee/open sesame!!!!!" when it looked like Spark's picture was actually going to be posted :party: , that I omitted the wee detail of his name... Incidentally, the above shot is a bit of a fluke, in that it is not a truly bad picture; just don't want to misrepresent my photographic standards, and disappoint folks with my subsequent posts.

Saturday was a banner day around here, as I also wormed all 3 kittens successfully; I was confident enough to just 'pill' Sparky (the vet always makes it look so easy-HA!), but in the case of the slightly less trusting :evil: Puma Gals I resorted to crushing their pills with a mortor/pestle and mixing the powder into wet food. I watched them like a hawk-well, like a hawk with pretty bad eyesight-to ensure that Pepper and Cash each finished their very own portion.

And that's about it for the day (oh yeah, I rode my pony too!). Now that 'the Eagle has landed', picture-wise, I should sleep like a kitten; my earlier blithe assurances that I'd have pics up SOON were beginning to haunt me!

p.s. hazeletc. above: WOW, you read the whole saga? You deserve a medal, or something...but "THX!" :thumbs up is all I can do on short notice!

kashtin's kin
October 25th, 2006, 08:03 PM
Soooo, Sparky had his BB debut above:thumbs up ; now, there should be a pic of Pepper (face portrait?!), and one of Cash (full body shot) attached to this post. I've got a few cute photos of Pepper-not as many of Cash, as she was busy being a hermit :cool: the first couple of weeks she was inside.

I find it more difficult to take pics of the all-black Kamikaze Kittens, partly because they are so active :crazy: and partly because their dark colour seems to get sort of 'lost' (as opposed to tabby etc.). Also, as previously noted, I am not exactly ze Karsh/Avedon/Arbus of the critter world!!:D

October 25th, 2006, 08:16 PM
I find it more difficult to take pics of the all-black Kamikaze Kittens, partly because they are so active :crazy: and partly because their dark colour seems to get sort of 'lost' (as opposed to tabby etc.). Also, as previously noted, I am not exactly ze Karsh/Avedon/Arbus of the critter world!!:D

Yeah, black is a difficult color to capture on film. I think you did a good job, though--they sure are cute!! They're lucky to have you to keep their minds active...I'm sure they're thinking up ways to keep you on your toes. I'll bet they all have a fine streak of mischief behind those innocent eyes!

October 25th, 2006, 08:48 PM
Cute as buttons! Just like my black boys, I still call them occasionally by the other's name, if their backs are turned. The neighbour also has a black cat who spends a lot of time on my porch (I confess I have been known to throw a bit of kibble his way); one time I locked him in the bathroom without realising he wasn't one of mine. Couldn't figure out why he was so indignant until the real culprit turned up and the light bulb went on. He got an extra treat as damages!

October 25th, 2006, 08:55 PM
Cute as buttons! Just like my black boys, I still call them occasionally by the other's name, if their backs are turned. The neighbour also has a black cat who spends a lot of time on my porch (I confess I have been known to throw a bit of kibble his way); one time I locked him in the bathroom without realising he wasn't one of mine. Couldn't figure out why he was so indignant until the real culprit turned up and the light bulb went on. He got an extra treat as damages!

LOL badger! too funny!:D

October 26th, 2006, 07:01 AM
Oh they are so cute and adorable!


kashtin's kin
October 27th, 2006, 12:03 AM
Thanks for the kind words above-I've conveyed them to my little poseurs, and they thank you also (or they would if they weren't cats, and thus take it for granted that they are the centre of the universe :cat:!).

I'm really starting to get the hang of this photo-post concept :D , and so will continue to put a few more shots up. I'm planning to put up another one of Pepper "#1" with this post, as well as one of Le Sparkler. As I mentioned, unfortunately pics of Cash a/k/a Pepper "#2" are a bit scarce, as she was so camera-shy for the first while.

The snaps below :fingerscr , are from about a month ago; the subjects are still in more of a kittenish stage. At the rate they are emptying bowls of cat food, I guess I should not be surprised :eek: at their rate of growth! In the past, all our cats were 'mature' when adopted, so I'm just not accustomed to the kitten-cat morph, as it were.

I do have one photo each of Darrell the Feral, and Wee Wilhelmina, but they are even below my usual standard, so I am saving them up until I can get a few more cute kitten shots up. (I just realized I feel guilty saying that, as it sounds like I've bought into the whole "youth is more photogenic and sought after" mantra that seems prevalent in our society :frustrated: ...time to slap on some more 'Regenerist'...or maybe just give myself a wee smack on the head instead?!)

Sorry, DF and WW, I will try to do you justice; the pics are just worse because both VERY Wary Ferals were caged at photo op time, otherwise the only photographic record would have been a fuzzy streak going at Formula One speed...

I wish I'd been up to speed ;) on the pic posts before now, so all the aforegoing Feral Features could have been illustrated in a simultaneous fashion, but I'll try to make up for it:thumbs up .

October 27th, 2006, 12:15 AM
I wish I'd been up to speed ;) on the pic posts before now, so all the aforegoing Feral Features could have been illustrated in a simultaneous fashion, but I'll try to make up for it:thumbs up .

No time like the present! It's never too late to post pics.:D Keep up the good work :thumbs up

The tiger stripes are very chic!

October 27th, 2006, 07:23 AM
They are so adorable...and they look absolutely comfy, happy and like life is just too good...they hit the jack pot:thumbs up

kashtin's kin
October 28th, 2006, 12:11 AM
It's been such a relief this past week to be able to get pics of [most of] la famille Feral up here, to go along with the many words that preceded them! I may actually have to go out and find something to feel guilty about,, wait a minute-I just found my Guilt Pending list;) !

Should have enough stuff on that to keep me busy for just a leeetle while; how come there's always a backlog of the 'angsty' stuff?? I guess the trick is to find a way to store up the warm&fuzzy moments...wait a minute, that's why we share our lives (or vice versa?) with critters/furbabies!! :D

I think it's time now to take a short break from the Sparks and Sisters Road er HOME Show, and introduce Ma & Pa (well, maybe Pa?), alias Wee Wilhelmina and Darrell the Feral. As I've mentioned, please forgive the not-so-cutesy nature of these two snaps; I sort of feel like I should have mug :cat: shot numbers i.d.-ing the Caged Cats.

Darrell was a close acquaintance of roughly 36 hours? one night, neutered the next morning, and returned/released the morning after that. (I have spotted him at least once since he turned on the turbo paws once the live trap was opened.)

WW has of course been more of an ongoing theme; she's still dining chez nous most days, and has been around since Juneish. After their brief but extensive (and $$) vet attention, I fret about the future of WW and D the F, but I have to remind myself that there are at least two less cats breeding 'out there'. "Take care, feral friends...":fingerscr

October 28th, 2006, 07:21 PM
Oh, my...they look like very unhappy campers! :D But you did good there, whether they appreciate it or not! :thumbs up

You should try my method of 'storing' the Guilt Pending list. I bury it under the layers of dust in my house (dusting is numbers 9 and 11 on the list). The chances of my finding it and being bothered by it are from zilch to slim :crazy:

Thanks for what you did with these kitties. And for posting pics! :D

kashtin's kin
October 29th, 2006, 12:35 AM
Gee, if I'd known all this computer pic stuff was this much fun, I would have tried to figure it out a bit sooner (although for a while there my existence seemed to be a blur of cat-trapping/feeding/taming/vet visits etc.:eek: ). So, in the spirit of further illustrating my Feral Family, I'm going to post a few more 'cutepics'; I'm now kicking myself-well, actually, I just let my pony take care of that :D -for not taking snaps of the ferals when they were still outside.

On the other hand, I was so busy and stressed :yell: at the time that arranging artistic or otherwise 'photographic shoots!' was the last thing on my tiny mind. Also, I didn't know if any of the taming/trapping would work out; it would have been a bit depressing to end up with just the pictures to look at.

(When we had a quite rare protected badger mom and 2 kids in a sett just off our miniscule farm in the early summer, we were lucky enough to get some decent photos. Unfortunately, soon after, one of the youngsters was found dead by the MNR observing biologist, and the other 2 disappeared....still makes me sad to see the pics :sad: .)

Thanks for the kind comments above-I like that idea of sticking el guilto way down on the List, after dusting and all that other stuff that just sort of keeps you treading water, with no visable progress. Guilt Procrastination...that's for me! :thumbs up

October 29th, 2006, 04:36 AM
One of my cats was feral, and she was very young (6 weeks?) . I caught her in a humane trap - one of those where you put the food in one end and the cat walks in the other. Cat trips a lever plate & door closes. You're right about keeping them in the trap or a kennel for a few days, just to get used to seeing you around. What I did was let the kitten loose in my spare room, where she took up residence under the bed. My (ex-)husband and I went into the room several times a day, laid on the floor on each side of the bed, and talked softly to her while pushing treats under the bed. Good thing for us she was a pig, as she ate the treats every time. After a while we started touching her and eventually would pick her up and hold her while feeding her treats like tuna & turkey. This went on for a full month. Now she is very loving & cuddly, but only with me. She disappears when anyone else comes into my house.
You can buy a trap at a fairly reasonable price at If you use a trap, you may only get one cat at a time, which is okay. They "tame" down better when you work with them individually, and at the earliest age possible. I learned all this because I work at the local animal shelter in my city.
Good Luck!

kashtin's kin
October 30th, 2006, 12:48 AM
My creative brainbits? :D have been getting a good workout keeping the Busy Kittens amused...many 'typical' cat toys, in addition to cardboard boxes (didn't realize kittens were so keen on biting off bits of box, and wonder if this is related to teething?)/large paper bags/old watch with plastic strap/small step stool etc.!). The Gym Chick's room in particular looks like a toy factory exploded in there...

Next outings will be another set of shots for Peppers x 2, and the big neuterama for the Sparkster; this week I have some dog/horse vet stuff happening. So what, exactly, does money look like :confused: ??? Silly question, huh...does cold hard cash keep you warm at night? I think not, although some in the bank might keep the blood pressure down...wait, patting a critter does that too!!

Et voila, a coupla more pics of those fab former ferals:cat: .

October 30th, 2006, 08:51 AM
Holy attack of the cutes! I love that look on Sparky's face "you can't see me, but you're soooo done for!" and the girls are just, awwwwwwwww. Thanks as always for the pick me up, I check in here since your writing style is awesome and they just look so loved!

October 30th, 2006, 05:53 PM
Kashkin,I was in South Carolina for a couple of weeks,hence no reply from me,but I'm back,those pics look great...sooooo cute.
I will read everything you've written tomorrow,right now I'm poooped,a long drive.

October 30th, 2006, 06:51 PM
OMG!!! Have you thought of blogging about your experiences? I just read this for the 1st time and it reminds me of a story I once wrote about "socializing" a feral cat who needed to come in out of the cold so to speak. I was much younger then and was thinking of the Spy that Came in From the Cold so the cat became Jamie as in Bond, James Bond, aka Jamie. These days of course we have blogs and bulletin boards. My meezer has a blog but she is about to fire her assistant who has been to busy to update aforementioned blog - which is about cat welfare and stories about cats. This assistant is so bad she forgot the url of her meezer's blog. NOT good at all at all as my Irish grandmama might have said, lol

I have not read the entire story thus far (My life has been a tad busy of late) but will when I have time. I'll also post YY's blog site when and if I ever recall the name, lol (It's om Blogger if anyone wants to search.) I would be eternally grateful and offer free flu shot to anyone who finds it, lol (Kidding, I'll find a better prize - like some of the toys not yet opened in my office for the kids :) ) Maybe I can talk my vet into free vet care for a month or something but unlike docs, they do not yet have universal health care to work with. I do wonder how long it'' be before someone comes up with universal vet care???? Given the number of pet owners - and a PM who loves and fosters cat, hey ya never know. I dare not mention the word dog and Tory (esp since I live not far from Central Nova, home to Pictou well New Glasgow really and to be accurate, West Lorne Pete) in the same sentence however. :crazy:

My parents - animals lovers themselves but not as crazy as they think their offspring are - often claim my cats are better cared for than most children. Sadly, in my work, I see children who do receive less care than my feline fur babies. My coworkers laugh at my kitties' carriage or pram or whatever the best word for it is and I've admittedly taken much "ribbing" of a good nature tho for this wonderful cat ATV but I do think it gives people at the clinic something else to discuss besides cancer and other serious subjects!!!

Thanks for all you are doing for these cats!!! My bf and I finally watched the movie "Walk the Line" and a pair of cats dropped off at my clinic (someone knows I like cats!!!) have been named June and Jonny! They have been vetted and already spoken for - will try to remember to find pix one of these days. I've been so busy I never got time to tell that story but this one reminded me of the J's. They are meezers (why om earth would people "dump" meezers is beyond me but it alas, happens and being loud meezers who aspire to their heritage, they do indeed give their names much justice. Now if I could only find a small "geetar" for Jonny. One of my young patients painted a picture of Johnny and left out the H so he became Jonny after that incident - well, he needs something to ID himself from the big J after all. They of course have been spayed and neutered but if they;d had offspringp[ when they arrived, the consensus in the clinic and amg my friends and family was that a baby would HAVE to be called Sue, lol A 2nd choice was Queenie given that my fav Johnny Cash song is Ballad of the Teenage Queen.

The cats are adorable - looks like you have done very well with them. I am only sorry I missed this discussion before. I have socialized many a feral kitty (do not believe in the word tame) and wish I could have helped!!!! Or at least read your wonderful narrative. Sounds like you have managed just fine =- as have the cats!!!!

Good luck!!!! Thx for sharing!!! (and sorry for my digressions!)

kashtin's kin
October 31st, 2006, 12:43 AM
:yell: I just spent a while on a post, and I bopped something on the keyboard while posting a pic at the end! I'll repost the pic for now, and hope that maybe the text will show up somewhere-ARGGHHHH!

kashtin's kin
November 3rd, 2006, 12:22 AM
It's been such a busy week: between the non-cat vet stuff (figured it was time to fund another wing of ye olde vet clinic:eek: ...) and getting la ponita moved to her 'winter pony palace', I've hardly had time to pout :( about the Lost Post.

Computer programs etc. make it pretty hard these days to irrevocably lose stuff online, but I somehow managed to make my Tues.? post magically disappear-poof/waaaaa!!!! Subsequent scrabbling around in a crazed cyberspace search yielded nothing but bitterness:frustrated: , and a desire to club the computer to bits:evil: .

However, I have now regained my composure, and will not even try to duplicate any of what I wrote, as that will be sure to cause brainburn...meanwhile, sometime soon I'm going to have to officially transfer the feral young'uns from the Fiercely Feral category to the Formerly Feral one.

Big Pepper still has a propensity for window scratching in her infrequent stressful moments, and I certainly wouldn't leave any doors leading to the great OUTdoors open in kitten vicinity; however, the 3 amigos are well on their way to being 'complacently domestic'. On some instinctive level, I'm sure they realize that this new lifestyle has unparalleled benefits vs. the outside grind.

Once again-because it definitely bears repeating-I'd like to convey my gratitude for all the comments/encouragement/advice during this intense feral experience. I honestly can't imagine how I would have gotten through it all without 'you-all/the BB' backstopping me every step of the way. Soooooo...huge THANK-YOU!! I feel like I should host some cyper partay :party: in order to adequately express my appreciation...

For now, big group hug :grouphug: ; I've got a few more snaps of les kitties at rest and play (Sparky has grown so tired of my camera cavortings that he heads for his box when he hears the digital fire up!). After the chaos of this past week, I plan to spend the weekend psyching myself up for the upcoming round of carting kitties vetward (I find the visits with the two Peppers particularily 'nap-inducing!).

P.S. Wee Wilhelmina :cat: is still keeping me on my toes with the outdoor buffet...

November 3rd, 2006, 05:34 AM
The BIG thank you should go to you for saving 5 lives+all the unwanted kittens that would have been born had the Tom not been snipped and Wee W,not been relieved of constant motherhood

kashtin's kin
November 4th, 2006, 10:53 PM
...thought I'd post another couple of pics today, along with the news that the Two Peppers have been misleading me :eek: regarding their plans to join Kitty Cirque du Soleil!! I shelled out for a trapeze, splashy performing togs, choreography et al., and all along the deceitful little monsters have been instead practicing dropkicks and cage matches.

Professional wrestling is certainly an entertainment that takes physical skill, and some charisma, but I had such high hopes for the girl's career in KCduS; it's a great opportunity to travel the world, and showcase some truly unique talents and routines.

I guess I can't stop Les Peppers from pursuing a pro wrestling path :shrug: , but we had a little chat; they are now responsible for reinforcing this poor old house with I-beams, and for hiring a contractor. I wish them well, but I am not bankrolling every career change those fickle ferals come up with!!

November 5th, 2006, 05:52 AM
Awww thank's for the pics,they are beautiful:cat:
I looks like they are going to be BIG wonderful kitties,sorry about the career-change:sad: :)
Wrestling is the most important activity for my Rocky and Vinnie,hence the furlined floors in my house:frustrated:

kashtin's kin
November 8th, 2006, 01:57 AM
hey my name iz sparky, and i here that kashtinwhatever haz bin telling my life storey (it iz copeewrited buy mee, buy the way). well, i jest wont to tell u that my life iz vary hard and i am showing u sum picturs as proof. jest sew u know!!!!

November 8th, 2006, 06:00 AM
Morn' Sparky,I can see you are really suffering a tough time:cat
I've really enjoyed your bio,right from the start,so don't quit,keep your co-writer on her toes!
Ps.You look very much like my Rocky in his younger years,he sends his regards:love:

November 8th, 2006, 01:06 PM
Oh such a tough life....

How ever will Sparky make it through to old age?!



kashtin's kin
November 10th, 2006, 01:13 AM
Well, I see that a certain :evil: kitten has hi-jacked my keyboard and spread some nasty rumours. Just to clarify matters, Monsieur S. is due to be 'neuter-alised' next week; his bitter accustations may just stem from a bit of resentment??

It's nice that the 3 Amig-o-a's hold me in such esteem! It's not like I'm looking for anything as silly as gratitude (hey, they ARE felines, and I totally get that I should be honoured to be at their beck and meow!).

However, I must admit to a slight feeling of, um, bemusement :confused: since the 2 Peppers seem to have drafted me into their new pro wrestling routine; so far it just consists of Little Pepper leaping onto my back (no claws if I behave!), while Big Pepper gallops around us.

I guess I can handle that, but I have to confess I'm more than a wee bit concerned about what else they have in mind...I've seen some pretty scary- looking diagrams that seem to involve a cannon, dynamite, a parachute, and a person who resembles me :eek: to a suspicious degree.

Methinks it is time for some negotiation...

p.s. attached is Sparky's 'pictorial' apology for his denigration of my character (although yes, it IS true that behind his paw he is snickering...I have to take what I can get).

November 10th, 2006, 02:33 AM
OH that is soooo cute! Awwwwww.

lol yes he definately has a rather rough life...*sigh*


November 10th, 2006, 06:48 AM
oh to be a feral rescue in your house! the humanity!

great pic and great updates as usual :)

November 10th, 2006, 06:48 AM
What beautiful big paws you have Mr S:love:
Next weeks snip-snip is no problem,you'll not even miss the little 3 boys can tell you all about it:cat:

kashtin's kin
November 13th, 2006, 12:42 AM
This past weekend the outside 'hardcore' ferals were more in evidence :D than they have been for a while. The hubman was working on some stuff in the garage Sat. aft., and Wee Wilhelmina was hanging around (she's awfully free with advice for someone without an opposing thumb).

When I freshened up the feeding station fare just after dark, I was expecting to catch at least a glimpse of WW...instead, I saw that elusive fella Darrell the Feral bound off into the night, as WW's hissing :yell: head emerged briefly from under the horse trailer. It would seem that 'ladies first' is the law of the land hereabouts.

I had wondered if D the F was still in the vicinity-at least on occasion-as the food being consumed a la station de kibble has been considerable, and it is a certainty that WW is not 'eating for 6' this fall:thumbs up . The formerly romantically linked couple must be coexisting to some degree; I was hoping that some sort of platonic relationship would endure...guess I'll have to keep checking the kitty tabloids!

On Sunday, as I was catching up on horsechores, my aforementioned hubby busied himself constructing an insulated maison du chat to tuck into a sheltered corner by the horse trailer. WW and Darrell have a few pied a terre/nests in the area, but this convenient bungalow located in a pleasant district will at least provide them with another option. There is no jacuzzi, alas, but if they are willing to compromise...

Over the years, I've calculated that I do 80% of the critter care--and el huberino gets to see 99% of the incredibly amusing things that the critters do (I guess my eyes are focused too much on the ground :shrug: , where so much of my glamourous work is done: "Manure-ser-cise Forever!").

To wit: when he was working away on the 'cathouse!?' by the open garage door, hubby was entertained by WW's airs [sorta] above the ground. There is a hayshed attached to one side of the garage, and a lattice shade that kind of bridges or joins the hayshed and a section of fencing; WW was apparently zipping up the shade posts :crazy: to the roof of the garage for a quick glower at the carpenter below, and then zipping back down.

So you see, the Kamikaze Kittens come by their wrestling/circus ambitions honestly-a few sequins, et voila!

November 13th, 2006, 12:55 AM
LOL I can picture the crazy antics of WW! :crazy:

You ought to put this all together into a book -- I'll bet it would sell! :D At least until your readers discovered they could get it all for free at!

I love your updates -- and the pics of the kitties are great! :thumbs up Keep 'em coming, please! :D

November 13th, 2006, 01:35 AM
Hilarious thread, I very much enjoyed the antics and your writing style.

November 13th, 2006, 06:11 AM
He,He..awww these kitties,I think WW is thanking you,without coming too close,for years of potential mommy-hood being avoided.
They are so much smarter than most people give them credit for,I am sure WW will happily move in to the new condo.
I have a beautiful calico coming by(not a stray),watching my birdefeeders every day(a pain in the butt),she is incredible agile,climbs trees and somehow finds a way up on our roof,just like a little monkey,hides inside our cedarhedge for a feathery snack,maybe it's a female thing:confused:
My lazy big boys stopped that kind of acrobatics years ago,except Vinnie,who sometimes ventures up a few feet in the tree.
Thank's for keeping us updated and in stitches:D

November 14th, 2006, 08:07 AM
Wow, Kashtin!! What a great thread!! I started reading this around 7:00 this morning and here it is 8:31 a.m. and I've enjoyed every bit of it. It is amazing at how well adjusted Sparky, Cash, and Pepper have become. You've done a fantabulous job!! I'm sure WW and D the F are very happy being the outside cats they love to be also with the added benefit of not having to forage for food. I don't think they'll ever find any greener pastures than the one they are at right now. It's going to be so hard to see Cash and Pepper separated but as long as she is going to a good home......that's all that matters.

I was just wondering if you had re-introduced Sparky to his siblings and if you SIL has taken her kitten yet? Keep us posted. This is one thread I will be reading every day as it is so enjoyable. I love stories with happy endings and if you ever find yourself in need of extra cash for all your vet bills.......just take this thread to a publisher. I'm sure once they see your talent in combining your love for writing with your love for your furry'll have a book published in no time.

Keep up the great work!! :thumbs up


P.S. Your feral family is absolutely adorable!!

kashtin's kin
November 14th, 2006, 11:45 PM
We'll be off bright and early Wed. a.m. for Sparky's anatomical adjustment. It's about time; for the last little while the Sparkman has been affecting the 'testosterone swagger', so this visit to the vet should bring his mildly elevated level of aggression :evil: down to a tolerable level.

The whole alteration maneuver will also mean that Sparky will be able to frolic with the Two Peppers without my eagle,er, mole eyes on them the whole time. As well, the 3 semi-senior cats will be spared the worst of Sparkster's intimidation tactics...should be a more serene household all round. Not as much need for human referee intervention! (Best of all, maybe I'll get to keep my milk money :rolleyes: !)

When I pick Sparky up in the afternoon, I'll be bringing Les Peppers in for their second set of shots. I do so enjoy these relaxing :eek: jaunts to the vet with multiple cats; it's amazing how much energy it takes to deal with three 5ish lb. :cat: kitties. I swear it is a lot less stressful to round up a few head of cattle on horseback!

So, time to see if los felines have left me a teensy space on the bed :D so I can recharge the ol' batteries! Wish us luck :fingerscr !!

November 15th, 2006, 06:20 AM
:thumbs up too Sparky!! It will be like an initiation into your kitty-family.
How many cats do you have,other than the 3 babies??Any dogs??
How do they feel about the newbies??
Good Luck taking 3 cats to the vet:fingerscr

kashtin's kin
November 17th, 2006, 01:38 AM
It's hard to believe that for a few years I single-handedly sailed off to the vet clinic every fall with 5 cats in tow...4 in carriers, and one on a harness:crazy: ! Compared to that 3 ring circus, 3 kitties should be a cakewalk; although the day ultimately did not rob me of what little sanity I cling to, I definitely needed my 'Wheaties' for b'fast.

The easy part came first, as le Sparkster strolled :cool: into his crate with his customary savoir faire. I only had the use of our 20+ yr. old pick-up truck that roars ferociously and has the suspension of a tank, so we arrived at the clinic having had our hearing compromised and recovering from the effects of a rather violent involuntary 'massage'.

Sparky was checked in without incident for his minor alteration, and I blasted back home to do horse chores and psych myself up for crating the Two Pumas. When les Peppers are stressed-which we generally avoid, if at all possible-they do revert back somewhat to their feral personalities :yell: ; despite my calm as possible demeanor, the whole crating maneuver cost me a small amount of plasma and left the Peppers glaring balefully at the newest item on their kitty hit-list:eek: .

The girls were as unimpressed as Sparky with Steady Ethel [the truck]'s loud labours. Once at the clinic however, Big and Little Pepper were actually quite cooperative re: booster shots/weigh-in, tho' their poor little hearts were beating like hummingbird wings...mine too! With Peppers x 2 safely back in the truck, I trudged inside to retrieve Sparky, minus a minor body part or two (him, not me!).

When he was checked in, it was confirmed that Sparks was alas, still a 'cryptorchid' (finally learned how to spell and pronounce that word!). So, there was a chance the vet would have to make an incision, as opposed to the simpler 'pluck and run' routine. Fortunately, Sparky's parts were just barely scoopable; he managed to avoid the more invasive surgery:cat: .

Upon arriving home-enough trucking for one day!-I staggered upstairs with the girl's 'crate pour deux', and let the ticked off twosome out to plot their revenge. I then took Sparky's crate into his bathroom domain; he only goes in there to eat and rip his favourite cardboard box into shreds, but I was planning to leave him in for the night to recover his delicate :evil: balance et al.

Le Spark, not surprisingly, had a different agenda in mind; as he is fond of leaping up in a somewhat Nureyev-like fashion to clasp the old fashioned door knob in his paws and twist it open, I felt he would exert himself less ascending Everest...or simply wandering about the house. After an hour or so of becoming reacquainted with his?? kingdom, Sparky seemed to realize he'd had a rather arduous day, and abruptly subsided into his 'tuna box bed' on the kitchen table, where he remained in a blissed-out stupor all evening.

I managed to re-ingratiate myself with the Peppers by offering them some extra special snacks, but they made it clear that I've got a lot of ground to make up due to my shameful act of treason. (I am sooo not looking forward to their upcoming spay date...perhaps I can get them hypnotized prior to the trip to the clinic??!!)

A slightly longish account of a very l-o-n-g day! It's nice to have one more item crossed off the critter to-do list; I'm not even gonna think about the spay thing, and the Pepper's eventual separation (Big Pepper's going to be spoiled to bits by my s.i.l., but I'm still not looking forward to her departure-sniff!) for a while. Time for a catnap!! :D

kashtin's kin
November 20th, 2006, 10:16 PM
Sparky's disappearing act (+ the cat's in the bag...).

November 21st, 2006, 07:25 AM
Somehow I missed the Vet-Trip,wow,what an adventure:D
Sparky has certainly grown into a beautiful Tabby,just like my Rocky.
I know it's an individual feline thing,but somehow it seems Tabbies have a very special personality....Sparky and Rocky could be twins,eh:D especially from this end!

November 26th, 2006, 03:11 PM
Look at Chico's last picture, and Kashtin's Kin's above it. They're like twin kitty bottoms. So cute!
:cat: :cat:

kashtin's kin
November 27th, 2006, 12:34 AM
Re: above pics...they ARE awfully similar (distant relatives??). Out on the prairies I had a 'Friendly Feral' adopt me for a few years; one year the annual Xmas pic/card featured Brutus sitting backward on my shoulder, while I smiled cheesily :D along with one of my horses.

I posted the card/pic at work (so as to avoid multiple card giving :thumbs up ...more $ for critter food!), and I got a TON of comments about my 'raccoon'!! Evidently Brutus' tabby ringtail drapped down my front convinced most folks that I was a raccoon handler.

To be fair, the prairies aren't teeming with raccoons; people had the basic tail ring thing right, minus the raccoon bushiness. For a while there Brutus and I enjoyed a minor sort of 'mistaken celebrity'...I was obliged to label the card before I got reassigned to the city zoo!! (That would have been great in some ways, but I liked my modest recreation dept. seniority/hours, plus how many different types of manure :yuck: does one person REALLY want to have close personal knowledge of??)

Tabby raccoon anecdotes aside, the formerly feral youngsters are doing well. Sparky has more breezy confidence than your average politician; the Two Peppers are not nearly so cheeky, as one minute they will be crawling all over me and purring up a storm... then in the blink of an eye they apparently receive a message from their FEWS (Feline Early Warning System), and are off in huddle mode.

Sometimes it's hard to believe that for 3 months all 3 kittens lived together with their hardworking momcat, WW. As I slowly got acquainted with the kittens over the course of the summer, it was obvious that Sparks was the boldest :cool: one, but the gap in trust between him and his sisters still surprises me somewhat.

Every trip to the vet sets us back a bit, and nets me accusatory looks for the next few days...I'm thinking a visit to Mouseworld, or maybe a gal's day out maxing out plastic at Pet Valu followed by tuna melts :cat: might help deepen our bond??

As for 'Miss-Trustful' herself (and as a dedicated feral, she is wise to maintain that outlook), WW...the hubster (that would be the person in this partnership who is capable of hammering a nail in straight without: breaking a sweat/cussing a blue :yell: streak/straining the resources of the local ER) has her condo nicely situated.

In this part of the country we've had a kinda weird 'late November Indian summer', so WW hasn't really availed herself of her detached bunglow with deck, yet...but I'm sure there's snow somewhere on the horizon. (I'd better take a pic of Maison Willi before winter sets in.)

For now, here is a snap of le Sparkster executing his Escape from :evil: Alcatraz...well, the bathroom, actually. It may LOOK as if he's standing on the floor and reaching up to the doorknob, BUT in fact he has launched himself at the knob of the [closed] door, grabbed onto it with his front paws and jiggled it the pic, he is just in the process of deftly dropping to his feet (when he started this routine-his first time in the bathroom!-he used to crash to the floor in a kittenish heap, but he quickly managed to coordinate himself).

kashtin's kin
November 27th, 2006, 01:06 AM
...see above...

November 27th, 2006, 07:21 AM
Aww Sparky,it was only a matter of time before he would escape:cat:
I was wondering where you were,but I guess you probably have your hands full,between horses,feral cats etc..and Christmas on it's way:D
We have plenty of raccoons here,beautiful little guys(some not so little:D ).
You'll probably have more cuddle-success with Sparky than the girls,I find males are not quiet so cautious and skittish.
I would have love to see the Christmas card with the "raccoon"tail..
Here's one of my visitors:D

November 27th, 2006, 01:50 PM
Kashtin & Chico - great photos! Here in San Diego, I've only seen one raccoon on the loose. I'm curious about Kashtin's ferals & how they act with outsiders. My Miss Peabody, former feral kitten, is so terrified of everyone (other than me, of course) that she hides when anyone comes into my home. Most people accuse me of making her up, since they have never seen her in the flesh.
:cat: :cat:

kashtin's kin
November 27th, 2006, 08:09 PM
Interesting point, Miss Peabody! Years ago my father adopted a 'friendly :cat: feral' street cat, and one of her male kittens. If I hadn't seen pictures of the incredibly elusive "Lone" (perhaps he wanted to live up to his name?!), I really would have wondered if dad had an imaginary cat :crazy: .

I suppose that can I lay claim to two sightings of Lone over the years, but they were so fleeting and peripheral :confused: ; if I hadn't always been on the lookout for ze phantom cat, I would likely have concluded that those brief glimpses were a figment of my rather undisciplined imagination.

Of WW's three progeny, only Sparky could be said to be a truly sociable feline at this point. Little Pepper is more outgoing than Big Pepper; I think they both have the potential to be more trusting and friendly in general, but I also feel Big Pep may always be a bit more aloof (she does have a much-read biography of Greta Garbo...).

WW, as is fitting for a good feral mom, really instilled a significant inclination towards wariness in all her kids. In Sparky's case, it would appear that his sheer inherent zest for adventure has eclipsed much of his natural caution; it seems that he has also figured out that a little charm :D goes a long way!

I think that some cats (even ones that are 'domestic' from the get-go) are naturally a bit on the shyer side, and if they end up a quieter household, may bond fairly closely to their principal human handservant...while avoiding contact with people they are unfamiliar with.

In the case of the [very] Lone Ranger, my father's house was in general only visited by a handful of people; Lone allowed himself to be admired by these select regulars. I know of another devoted cat person who has 2 out of 4 cats who would have to be classified as exceedingly timid; none of these cats is from a feral background.

Just as in the case of us lesser (as opposed to felines) mortals, I feel that some cats born feral can become quite trusting, and seek out human company. On the other hand, a domestic cat may be very much inclined towards shyness (or just not terribly interested in hobnobbing :eek: with human hoi polloi!?).

I guess it's all somewhat down to the old nature vs. nuture issue: given certain innate characteristics-combined with a specific environment and/or care, all creatures have their own personal evolution of 'self'. ...Now, if I could only figure out how the heck I ended up with a 3-way split personality: waitress, rural 'horse [+cat+dog] frau', and plastic surgeon ;) (apologies to the cartoonist Nicole Hollander).

kashtin's kin
November 29th, 2006, 10:39 PM
...made the mistake :o of running out of WW's special high-calorie food for a day; it's quite remarkable just how effectively a 6ish lb. cat can harangue from 15 feet away. Thank goodness for fresh rations, as I am not altogether comfortable with being pierced by the laser Guilt Eye for extended periods.

After resolving the above situation, I decided to go for maximum stress saturation, and let Little Pepper out of the kittie gym for a while (les Peppers final quarantine is finally up). Predictably, LP disappeared into the chaos of the adjacent storage room, with Sparky chaperoning...and moi over-chaperoning, so to speak.

LP had a stimulating hour or so exploring the nether regions of Storage World; the three 'senior-er' cats were all napping downstairs, so no exciting :eek: confrontations. Big Pepper was not thrilled to be solo for a while, but she survived with some reassuring chat...I'm not planning on any 'expeditions' for BP, as I am not QUITE :frustrated: able to squeeze through 4" openings in hot [cat] pursuit.

BP will just have to wait until she moves-sniff-to s.i.l.'s Cozy Catarama...

Below: Sparky stars in "I DREAM OF TUNA" (the remake).

kashtin's kin
November 29th, 2006, 10:52 PM
..."I Dream of Tuna", starring the Sparkster.

November 30th, 2006, 01:07 AM
Cute picture! I have no idea how you find time for all the things you do. I wanted to thank you for your reply to my last post re: Miss Peabody being terrified of EVERYONE. I think you were correct in that she has not been socialized well. When I was living with my husband, she was a tad friendlier. We had a lot of people coming & going. She still hid when they came over, but she would sneak out to peek at them now and then. Since I've been alone (2 years) I don't have a lot of company, and she has reverted back to her feral alter-ego. I need to start having more people over. I haven't done so because I don't like where I'm living right now. Guess I'll just have to make the best of it.
Anyway, thank you again. Did you know you're also really funny? Maybe you could start yet another sideline doing standup.:crazy:
Miss Peabody :cat:
Bert :cat:
And their human :)

November 30th, 2006, 07:19 AM
Love the pic of the Sparkster:love:
I am a great fan of James Herriot(sp?)and his catstories,you should collect all your posts and have a little book published.:thumbs up
I am certain it would be a bestseller among cat-lovers:D
I am glad WW is still around,at least you can keep an eye on her over the wintermonths,I am thinking daddy is around lurking too:cat:

kashtin's kin
December 7th, 2006, 11:34 PM
After a bit of tweaking here and there, Casa WW is in permanent place (for the winter, anyway). I took a couple of pictures of the insulated boxcave before el hubbo afixed it to a small platform a foot or so above ground...and then almost totally enclosed the house/porch etc. ! It's great-all nice and cozy (and yes, he did leave room for a cat to wend it's way in), but all I can get a pic of is the plywood surrounding the residence :shrug: .

I haven't gotten out there with the camera yet, but I will do so soon; I'll take a shot from the rear of Casa WW, as there is an covered patio where I put the food/drink bowls. It may look like Fort Knox, but at least we can be sure that no snow or rain will be getting inside...not to mention nothing larger than a cat :cat: .

With Casa WW being so secluded and all, there is no way to see if Willi herself is in residence, but she is definitely availing herself of the dining facility. My faithful carpenter did offer to pry one piece of plywood off for a few minutes while I put in a few more wood shavings; perhaps WW will leave me a note (doubtless full of demands for improvements by the landlord ;) ).

Today was 'spay day' for the 2 Peppers. Although I am totally PRO S/N, I confess to a twinge of anxiety especially when critters are spayed; just that whole notion of slightly more invasive surgery (hmm...another area where guys have it easier?!). Les Peppers are healthier and of course younger than momcat came through okay back in Oct., and when I called the clinic after lunch I was reassured that the leetle girls' surgery went fine.

The clinic is keeping them overnight, which I don't mind-a bit more time to recover in a medical setting, and the girls are together (or at least 'adjacent'). Crating them at 7 a.m. actually went better than it did for their last booster shots :evil: , which was a relief. Sparky followed the progress of his sister's crate from the Pepper Gym to the back door, and appears to be missing his sibs (especially since I've been letting Little Pepper out to play with him for a few hours each day recently).

Having the girls away for a day or so allowed me to clean out the gym more thoroughly, and put a few of their larger 'apparati??' away, as they will hopefully refrain from performing their more difficult :crazy: routines (i.e. flying trapeze) for a few days at least. It certainly has been strangely quiet around here today without the periodic thuds of the Highflying Felines.

Below, is a picture of WW's winter digs from the front, and one from the side-with Sparky on top of the boxcave to put the size in context (pics taken in kitchen prior to Casa WW being set up outside).

As mentioned in the 'Feral Shelter' thread below, the 'box' is insulted with 2" styrafoam, covered in mactac sticky stuff, bound with duct tape, and furnished with wood shavings (till Ethan Allan can stop by)...

p.s. before the boxcave was exterior-ally?? finished by the mactac/duct tape/ham-fisted princessa (alias moi:o !), it actually looked very, um, NOT unprofessional :D !!

December 8th, 2006, 12:27 AM
How sweet! A Chateau for the lady. Those kitties are so lucky you found them (or vice versa)
:cat: :cat:

December 8th, 2006, 07:35 AM
Looks like a great house for WW,a hug for hubby the carpenter:thumbs up
I am sure the girls will be ok:fingerscr
I keep trying to picture your household,with how many cats?? Dogs???
As usual a great morning-read,thanks!
The Sparkster is getting big,isn't he,wonderful Tabby:love:

kashtin's kin
December 18th, 2006, 12:50 AM
Well, I've been a bit preoccupied with some other pressing issues lately, but rest assured, I am still playing handmaiden (can 'maidens' have wrinkles:confused: ) to Famille Feral. When I picked up Les Peppers from their spay day a while back, I was all psyched to NOT have another vet vist for the forseeable future; forgot about suture removal (WW had dissolving stitches for obvious reasons, and I just sort of assumed...).

Wrong-o! Heigh-ho, heigh-ho, it's off to the vet we go tomorrow. Les Peppers are still not overly fond of men :eek: (need more socializing with hubby), and also not inclined to react well to restraint:yell: ; Little Pepper loves lolling in my lap, but if I held her down, all bets (and much of my skin) would be off. And I don't even entertain the thought of interfering with Big Pepper's 'at large' [in the Kitty Gym] status-shudder.

We have admittedly made it through 2 app'ts for shots etc. without moi being significantly shredded, but that involved a female vet, and more fleeting restrictions on movement. Oh well, as Vincent Van Gogh [apparently] once said, "What would life be if we had no courage to attempt anything?" ( ...Um, quieter????)

With the rather unseasonably warm weather that southern Ontario has been experiencing for the past week or so, I've gotten lots of fall barn chores and gardening done, and have seen quite a bit of WW:cat: . For a very elusive gal, Wilhelmina has a surprisingly effective way of communicating her dining requirements; when she hasn't got me scrambling to freshen the buffet, I often spot WW in the field honing her mousing skills.

As mentioned in an earlier post, I did take some snaps of Wilhelmina's insulated chateau in it's outdoor incarnation-mounted a couple of feet about the ground on a petit 'deck' avec roof. Please do be forwarned that although WW's digs are furnished by Ethan Allen and boast a jaccuzzi (sp?)/home gym/theatre/Sub Zero kitchen, her casa is fairly rudimentary-think Extreme Home Makeover BEFORE Ty et al. attack-so as to not invite jealousy, and attract the criminal element:rolleyes: .

I would have liked to have been able to take a pic of WW herself delicately consuming my gourmet offering; alas WW refuses to be photographed eating (doesn't show her off to an elegant enough advantage, even when she's nibbling on cavier)...and I lack the telephoto lens that would allow me to capture her image from a discreet vantage. Whatever...:shrug:

December 20th, 2006, 08:20 AM
KK,that is a great shelter:thumbs up
I know with Allies passing,it must have been very,very difficult to do all the things you need to do,but I am certain,you never for a minute forgot about"your"kitties:love:
I would love to see a pic of WW..
I am a pic-nut and wish I had a camera I could use to take pics of my birds and other critters while standing 30 feet away.
My husband has a good camera,but by the time I get the right lense on and adjust the setting my object would be long gone:D

kashtin's kin
January 3rd, 2007, 12:32 AM
I don't know how the holiday season gets so busy, what with having a family circle that takes no time to draw-i.e. pretty smallish-and being somewhat inclined to the [friendly:D ] hermit lifestyle...but it nevertheless does. The biggest challenge this year was the transition of The Two Peppers from the kitty gym to the general household.

As discussed above, I was sorely tempted to put my visiting kin in the unheated sunporch with a good!! electric blanket, rather than deal with introducing les Peppers to the entire house during a slightly hectic time of year (the timing of the girls' spay meant that I had only about 3 days to turn Chez Kitty Gym into a passable version of Le Guest Room).

However, I did reconcile myself to the duties of a not altogether laissez faire/slatternly hostess-moi?!-and round about the winter solstice began to [outwardly] calmly :eek: do the big changeover. "On the first day..." of Operation Kittenshift, I basically moved most of les Peppers 'amusement park' (bazillion toys of all description, play boxes/paper bags, high wire, safety net, rings et al.) and left the door to the gym OPEN.

(I then moved a bunch of stuff around and out of the NEW kitty quarters in an adjacent room...this portion of the second story of itsybitsy farmhouse is more or less our 'basement'; in other words the home of bikes/skiis/storage boxes etc. etc. So, this was the most aerobic-puffpuff- part of the whole logistical exercise.)

That went quite well, much to my relief; Little Pepper had been out of le gym for lots of visits, so was keen to explore (chaperoned by larger bro' and already assimilated ex-feral Sparky), while the less adventurous Big Pepper chose to remain inside. Heartened by this success, on day 2 I took various Pepper Beds into the rearranged room that incidentally has no door; hey :shrug: , this ain't the Hilton, as previously noted!

Day 3 was the real acid test, as at this point it was necessary to literally shut the door on this stage of the Pepper saga, in order to vacuum/mop/reinstall bed and so forth. Big Pepper had ventured to the doorway of the room fairly often by then, but still retreated to her 'security seat' on the window ledge for much of the time.

Just when I was agonizing over if/when to attempt to lure/lift her from her perch, Big Pepper soooo serendipitously! casually followed me OUT!!!! :thumbs up Before she could reflect and regress on this huge development, I quietly shut the door behind us, and slowly ushered her towards the doorless room filled with kitty Pepper accoutrements galore.

I had envisioned Big Pep flinging herself at the window in this new place in a mad scrabble to escape (her initial reaction to being trapped in the back porch WAY back when) and my simultaneous nervous breakdown, or some such manifestation of panic :eek: x 2, but my Garbo-esque gal did herself proud with her adaptation to a strange new world...yet again.

After that, it was largely a matter of spending quality reassurance time with Big Pepper in particular, and doing all that kitty gym cleaning like an amphetamine-stoked housekeeper. My perhaps excessive kitty-proofing/prepartion of the 'open room' seemed to pay off, as the Peppers settled right in.

I guess! I tend to imagine worst case scenarios (although I do hope for the best at the same time!!), because I was further pleasantly :D surprised by the speed with which the girls proceeded to explore the downstairs a/k/a main living area, complete with 2 dogs. It definitely helped a ton that for the most part Sparky was there to shepherd his female sibs around; all in all what could have been a bit of a traumatic time for all concerned went incredibly smoothly. WHEW.

Next, on KAT Network..."GIRLS GONE WILD!!!!" :crazy:

But first a couple of pics of the Peppers (Lil Pepper on my lap with Sadie the JRT! and Big Pepper on the kitchen table beside catboxbed...I do scrub the table and banish cats for quick human meals!)...

January 3rd, 2007, 12:50 AM
Love the updates and the pics. The peppers look like they are very content. When does the other pepper (sorry, not sure which one) go to her new home with the inlaws?

January 3rd, 2007, 07:10 AM
WOW,you have made amazing progress with these formerly feral kittens,seeing one of the Peppers very relaxed with you and your JRT is unbelievable and Big Pepper is stunning,really beautiful,you get a for what you have accomplished..:love: :cat:
About cats on the table,in my kitchen it's the place where Rocky can lay and keep an eye on me,what goodies I might be dropping,expecting a little cuddle every time i am ear him,no place is off limit for these guys:love:

January 3rd, 2007, 10:52 AM
I'm relatively new to this board and hadn't seen this thread until today. I read the whole thing! Awesome except I'm supposed to be working. :angel:

Keep updating us and posting the pictures. Lovely to hear about what you have done for this family of cats. :thumbs up

January 3rd, 2007, 11:03 AM
I was hoping there would be a post holiday update on your crew Kashtin :) I'm home sick today, so your fabulous writing is keeping me laughing as always. Congrats on transitioning the girls, amazing how they surprise you at the weirdest of times :thumbs up

kashtin's kin
January 17th, 2007, 10:22 PM
Well, after the minor chaos of Christmas, followed by our dog Freyjya's 'mystery affliction' (see health forum, if inclined) AND losing power for almost 2 days after the recent ice's hoping for a few crisis' that don't make a beeline for Chez Tiny Farm :fingerscr ! After spending a short time NOT preening in the spotlight, les Kittens are threatening to sue for neglect and alienation of affections; they've always been a bit self-centred, and a LOT litiginous.

Since my most recent?? post back in early January, Sparky and Sisters have really settled in. Although the 2 pics attached to that post portrayed the Two Peppers looking quite comfortable in their nouveau habitat, we were still somewhat under frisky kitty siege :crazy: at the time. Offsetting those rare moments of calm were long periods of Kamikaze Kitten Kapers; I was frequently under the impression that we were home to at least a dozen supercharged teen felines!!

Even my previous busybusy incarnations as playground leader/daycare worker/ski instructor/museum guide/horse stable operator/professional puppeteer ETC. barely prepared me for KittyRide Inc.-"hold on, :eek: you're just along for the ride!!" Accustomed to socializing/intergrating one animal at a time, I found myself bitterly envying the multiple arms of an octopus, as I attempted to keep up with the Tempestuous Trio.

Fortunately, Sparky was well past his initial assimilation days of rushing up to each 'resident mature cat' in turn, standing on his hind legs, and flailing his front paws in the manner of an aggressive bear. And, the girls were of course not :evil: testosterone-fuelled; thus, they were less aggressive...towards the other cats, at least! Their youthful spirit of adventure and discovery manifested itself more in attacks on inanimate objects.

Electrical (and other cords) were energetically chewed, the kitchen counters doubled as a racetrack, blinds were rattled and bent, knickknacks were assualted and broken, charming carpet patterns were created by yanked- out strands of yarn...and that was just the daily warmup!! I grew to loooong for the mercilessly brief moments of CAT-atonia, when I could stop lovingly murmuring "NO, kitties!" :yell: , and not be sideswiped by galloping furballs while I rather hopelessly attempted to restore some order?? to the house.

Just when you thought your place was pretty much critter-proofed... I had a deja vu re: when after years of boarding horses, I bought a pony-and stood in mesmerized shock as said equine-on-amphetamines proceeded to limbo under fence rails, and squeeze beteen 2" gaps in trees :confused: !? I'm constantly caught flat-footed :eek:, and humbled in my relationships with quadrupeds-all that in spite of being UNsmugly prepared.

Thank goodness, the eye of the most recent critterstorm seems to have passed; we've all settled into a much less tumultuous-for the most part!-existence....just in time for me to gather my shattered little nerves and escape categorization as a 'chandelier UTTERLY devoid of bulbs'!!!! Yay!! :thumbs up The next challenge on the near horizon is Big Pepper's move to my sister-in-law's luxurious catabode (I think she's already got a college fund set up for BP). But that will be another story for another day...

Below, 2 pics of 'Trio Busykitty' (one, lounging/debriefing in the living room after a wild romp, and the other, exploring the potential for havoc-wreaking in the bathroom)...rare to catch all three close enough for me to get them all in the frame!

January 17th, 2007, 10:40 PM
Awesome Kashtin!!! Glad to see everyone's keeping you, um, busy? :D

January 18th, 2007, 06:15 AM
WOW!!! I just saw this post for the first time today, and sat down with a cup of tea and read all 5 pages of it. what a great saga!! And great pictures too. Those cats are really lovely, and very lucky to have found you. Actually, I don't believe in 'luck'. I think this was meant to happen, they were meant to find you (and vice versa), etc. I was happy too, that you let your cats on the kitchen table (I do also, as it's by the window, they seem to congregate there - all 6 of the inside ones, at least - my neighbors think it's disgusting. Ha! too bad...Your histoire reminds me of when I lived in New York and would come across feral cats near where I lived. They seemed to be wilder than the ones I find here in Ireland, maybe because life for a suburban or urban feral cat is so much scarier. I also have a theory about more skitterish cats having bad eyesight and so are more nervous because they don't see things as clearly. Anyway, I know that I've come into this at the very end, but I really enjoyed reading all 5 pages, and seeing the pictures, etc. It was great!

January 18th, 2007, 07:57 AM
As usual,thank's for the entertaining read:laughing:
You really have kitty-behaviour down pat and an amazing talent for putting it in to words.
Did I understand you got another pony???
Good Luck to Big Pepper on her move,I hope she will not be too stressed out:cat:
Thank's for the pics LOVE to actually see the little monsters,they are sooo cute:lovestruck:

kashtin's kin
January 18th, 2007, 11:07 PM
I forgot to mention one of the more dramatic effects of Girlz Gone Wild et al.; our Christmas tree spent all but about 20 min. of the holiday season in 'protective custody', through no fault of it's own. We've-not surprisingly!-had issues with kitties and the Christmas Conifer before, but have generally been able to leave our 2 ft. artificial on display at least when we're right there to supervise...with tasers at the ready ;) !

This past holiday, however, found the poor little tree-thing viciously attacked :evil: by all 3 kittens simultaneously, who despite entreaties and threats would not agree to back off on their mission to annihilate Oh Tannenbaum. Thus, we put the tree out for 15 minutes on the 25th (while the tannenbaum trashers were occupied with a meal); we did the present thing as expediently as possible, and quickly locked le tree away. ...Kinda detracted from one's vision of a leisurely gift exchange-sigh.

Thanks again to folks for their kind comments; one's petit travails are always more bearable when one is made aware that others are enjoying :laughing: witnessing one's challenges vicariously!! When I read other people's responses, it allows me to gain another perspective, and enjoy things more least in retrospect!

Re: pony, chico2-I'm still workig on pony number one (after 6 years, I'VE finally become almost 'bombproof', which is a term commonly used to refer to fairly unflappable equines!). I was just recounting the state of shock I found myself in lo those many years ago; even though I take La Ponita in stride now, that initial reaction :eek: is still etched in my teeny brain! I do hope to find a pony companion this spring for LP, although I've heard 2 ponies are rather MORE than merely twice the trouble (all that Pony Solidarity stuff).

p.s. it's sooo nice to hear of other critter servers who are only able to regain the use of their kitchen tables for brief human meals; I've been inspired to come out of denial, and just state unapologetically, "Yes, my cats :cat: DO have sovereignty over the table-what of it?! :p "

Below...Les Peppers on a break from Operation Arboreal Assault (BP examines bath, while LP inspects laundry)

January 19th, 2007, 03:06 PM
I've so enjoyed reading your wonderful tales (tails?) of the Animal House! Please don't stop!!.
When my cat's birth mom, who lives down the hall from me, used to come by daily, I'd often walk into the dining room to find her stretched out on the dining room table. She would never lay on the bare table, however. She would either be lying on top of a newspaper or, more often than not, a place mat. I always found that terribly amusing.

kashtin's kin
January 26th, 2007, 01:30 AM
Sigh-just when ya think you're due at least a teeny bit of 'smooth sailing'... out comes a tapeworm :yuck: eww!! I had just about assembled all of Big Pepper's personal accoutrements on Wed., in preparation for the scheduled Thurs. move to her new home when I spotted BP having a sick-up right by one set of litter boxes. No biggy/it's a cat thingy...until I bent down with the paper towels and was immediately put in mind of 'Tremors' (that goofy movie from the early 90's where huge earthworms run amok).

I've wormed lots of dogs, cats and horses over the years; it's been a while since I've seen a disgusting :eek: intestinal sort of worm up close and personal (I'm rather fond of the little helpers in my garden). Peppers and Bro' were wormed twice in early November, and live indoors; I haven't seen or heard any evidence of mousey buffets. Nevertheless, it would appear that at least Big Pepper is harbouring a nasty parasite or two.

Alas, this does kind of fit, as just in the past week or so it seemed that perhaps Big Pep and Little Pep had switched bodies :confused: . They both sport fairly long hair (and BP doesn't care to be picked up), thus they still look about the same size; upon closer examination however, I was able to deduce BP had definitely lost a bit of weight. She can't have done it for her modelling career, as we had agreed she would finish her degree first...ergo, cherchez la tapeworm!

According to my vet clinic, it is usually roundworms that are upchucked, whereas tapeworms prefer to take the back door, but this was definitely a tapeworm via mouth. Needless to say, I hastened to the clinic to pick up enough feline Drontal pills to dose all six cats twice (the young'uns were wormed by a different clinic in Nov., who gave me Interceptor...apparently Drontal is very thorough and specific).

So, another merry evening at Club Critter; hubby and I each did 3 felines, and I STILL have a splitting :sick: headache. I've said it before, and I'll say it again-I'd rather worm a 1000 lb. horse than a 3-12 lb. cat any day!!
The only cat who has been easy to do-so far-is Sparky. We know the basic technique, and we've had some practice over the years, but el hub and I still feel like we're suiting up for a WWF Cage Match when it comes to cat pilling.

Once we had completed our Herculean task (could this be a version of "Survivor: Feline Island??"), removed leather jackets, goggles etc./applied polysporin to our oozing wounds, we relaxed :rolleyes: by doing some re-bandaging of our 'SLO' dog, Freyja-who is doing well. If I had received a cell phone call from a certain pony at that stage of our jolly evening, I'm afraid I might have been less than polite!?

Looking on the bright side, Big Pepper will be a member of our household for another couple of weeks :D (pill #2 is in 10 days, during which time I hope to regain whatever semblance of sanity I may have possessed prior to MegaDose Day). I think when I first reported Le Worm to huberino, he interpreted it as just another ploy by me to hold on to all 3 kittens; so sad not to be trusted :evil: !

...below, 2 pics (NONE of ze evil tapeworm!): Sparky and a Pepper-can't tell which one!-playing King of the Kouch, and Senior Senor Odin and Sparky sharing everyone's favourite tuna boxbed (trust me, Odin smartens young Sparkler up when he wants to!).

p.s. Senor Odin was missing an eye when we adopted him from a humane society about 14 yrs. ago; he may only have the one eye, but he has always been frighteningly-some might say dangerously!-brilliant.

January 26th, 2007, 07:30 AM
:laughing: KK,I have no eperience with Tapeworm,but I would think it's awful stuff:yuck:
I was reading your post LOL and hubby made me read it out loud:laughing:
After all the problems you've had lately,I suppose a sense of humour is vital,or you would be pulling your hair...
Pilling 6 cats:evil: I am pilling one,twice a day and it is easy,but SIX,wow!!!
Good luck with the evil Tapeworm:fingerscr

I also think it's time your luck will be turning,I can see a multy-million $$$ winning in your future:thumbs up

January 28th, 2007, 01:22 PM
This is an old request and I am a new member and experienced with trapping. First of all you must not try and approach a feral or semi-feral cat because they bite! And if you have your own cats at home and bring a feral home instead first to a vet. you may be exposing yours to all kinds of diseases. Even vaccinted and unvaccinated cats should not be together in the same room. I have a few tricks that might help. Usually before trapping I phone the local vet who is very experienced with treating feral cats and I tell her that I might be bringing a feral "tonight". Then I set up a trap with sardines in it and wait, depending on the weather I put a towel on top of the trap (if it is winter I put a white towel, if summer a green one). I find that this really helps because the cat cannot actually see the trap! Also never leave the trap unattended if it is very cold. If the "right" cat gets in, it goes to the vet. And all the necessery treatments are done. Also very important is that the vet. puts a tatoo in the cat's ear in case it is ever trapped again. Then we know it is already fixed. The best places for these ferals is to be released in barns and on farms but usually these places are already "full", so we bring them back to the area they were trapped. I hope the information will help.

jesse's mommy
January 28th, 2007, 02:20 PM
Ummm, she's already caught the cats, had them spayed/neutered and took some in. :o

kashtin's kin
February 6th, 2007, 01:04 AM
Yeah, I know-Casa Willi has been set up for quite some time now. I was hope, hope, hoping! :fingerscr that WW was availing herself of her custom chateau, but until tonight I did not have absolute proof of any sort of residency. She was definitely eating on the adjoining 'porch', but the the actual entrance to the interior is sort of around a sharply-angled corner (good protection from the wind etc.).

It is therefore pretty much impossible to ascertain whether or not a cat is indeed inside (unless you witness it exit or enter, and WW has been too canny for any such sightings), without reaching way around that corner into Chez WW. Frankly, even if my somewhat stick-like arm was able to contort itself enough to be able to flail the attached hand :eek: inside WW's recreation room...well, let's just say I'm trying to keep my critter-bite quota to a minimum this year.

Tonight, though, I discovered an impromptu method of 'cat-in-the-house' detection; some snow had drifted onto the outer edge of WW's porch and gotten into her empty food bowl, and without thinking (one of my more outstanding skills, if I do say so myself :D ) I grabbed the bowl and knocked it vigourously on the roof of the chateau to get rid of the snow. voila-who WAS that masked, er, BLACK CAT??!! WW just exploded :eek: out of her cosy retreat, and had bounded half-way across the snowy farmyard before I managed to attract her attention by rattling her gourmet kibble. She paused briefly, so I shoved the food on her porch and made tracks in the opposite direction...dashed into our modest ol' farmhouse and extinguished the outside light poste haste.

When WW and I very occasionally meet up, I back right off; I'm pretty sure that once I'd flung myself inside, WW felt able to return home and partake of her buffet. Just a teensy bit of a surprise :yell: for both moi and WW, who was no doubt kicking back and relaxing with one of her series of mouse-themed DVDs i.e. Mouse of La Mancha, The Mouse and I, Little Miss Mouse, Gone With the Mouse, Star Mouse, Thelma and Mouse, About a Mouse...

Perhaps?! I am too easily thrilled-ya think-but it really is a huge deal to actually KNOW that WW is using her casa, especially during the -20ish celcius at night cold snap we're in the middle of at present. Les ferals and I have been through a lot these past 7-8 mos.; tonight was one of the more gratifying moments. (Just yesterday I was 'cursing' The Spawn of WW as we were doing the de-worming routine, but this WW housing info has overridden that *#%!&* cat pilling!) :thumbs up

Below, Sparky and 'A Pepper' say, "Our mom is cozy...and we hate de-wormer!!"

February 6th, 2007, 02:13 AM
Having just given a cat Drontal for tapeworm, I'm interested that your vet prescribed a second round. Is this normal, or did he have a particularly bad case (as if vomiting one up wasn't enough)? Was it the vet who suggested you dose them all?
Hoping our friends in far-flung time zones are not eating breakfast: twice now I've spied parasites surfing in freshly delivered cat poo, conserved a sample and rushed to the vet, and they saw NOTHING. The second time they humoured me with Drontal, because I am a very good client :). Is this possible?
I know what I saw, up close and gagging as I was. They were not round worms - been there, done that. They almost reminded me of snails without their shells, short not nearly as narrow as a roundworm. The cat was recently treated with Revolution, which takes care of a couple of common parasites and tapeworms seemed the logical conclusion, but I really have NO idea.

February 7th, 2007, 06:48 AM
KK,as usual,love to read about your kitty-adventures:laughing: never a dull moment at your house!
In all my years of having had cats,I never had to deal with worms:yuck: I guess it was just luck:fingerscr
Love the pics of Sparkster and one of the Peppers,I hope mama and papa cat are ok out there in these arctic temps, I know you are doing your best to give them shelter:thumbs up

kashtin's kin
February 19th, 2007, 12:33 AM
It's been a reasonably uneventful?? couple of weeks out here at the [Mostly EX] Feral Funhouse. Considering the human nerves :eek: left shattered in the wake of Operation Worm 6 Catz (TWICE!!), I think that at least a brief period of time without some sort of critter mayhem was somewhat deserved!

Thank goodness it's apparent that despite les catz best efforts, they ingested enough drontal to annihilate that nasty worm burden. I was quite concerned about Big Pepper, who had with the help of her friendly :yuck: personal tapeworm been transformed into Slightly Wraithlike Pepper.

It took well over a week to be able to tell that BP was definitely trending upward on the weight front; her sibs are still a pound or 2 ahead, but BP no longer disappears when she turns sideways, so to speak. She's still the 'fey-ist' of the feral kids, but I was able to sneak BP regular extra meals (she relaxes more when she eats with her sibs).

Actually, we've sort of discarded the BP and LP designations due to the former BP's pre-worming weight loss; we now refer to BP as 'Hairy Pepper', and LP as 'Plump-ish Pepper'. Once HP makes the transition to s.i.l.'s, we'll be able to dispense with this whole Two Peppers situation :confused: ...reminds me of the Dr. Suess story where some mother names ALL of her 20-odd sons Dave!

HP's departure has been deferred a few times; I got sick just before the first scheduled 'au revoir'...then came the tapeworm saga...and now we're on hold for a bit as s.i.l. had to say good-bye to the oldest of her 3 cats a week or so ago ('Millie' had a wonderful cat life; s.i.l. just needs a little time to adjust).
Millie will always have a very special place in s.i.l.'s heart, but I'm sure :crazy: HP will be a welcome addition.

Meanwhile, the Sparkman is busy 'alpha-catting' it up; the only other male, Odin the Gentle Genius couldn't be bothered with a Macho Contest! Of course, the 'twin' Crabby Queens (Goose and Sally) aren't about to let the young scalliwag give them any grief...better watch it, Sparks :evil: !!

With the colder weather, I've been keeping a close eye on the outside feeding station; we've spotted WW at least once in the past week, and the buffet table needs frequent replenishing. And so, la Famille Feral [and not so feral] continues to grow-as in 'grow up', not grow in number! :fingerscr

below: a pic each of HP and um, Plump-ish Pepper!! (HP has a slightly longer, 'duller' coat with a very distinctive 'mane', while her sis has shorter and glossier hair, minus the ruff/mane...they both look a tad 'ragged' due to the dryer winter air/static electricity).

February 19th, 2007, 07:30 AM
KK,I was wondering how you and your furries were doing,but I suppose you had your hands full with worms:yuck:
They all look wonderful to me worm-ordeal or not,HP especially,but they all are all really sweet.
Sorry to hear about your S.I.L's loss,but I am sure HP's arrival will help.
It will be a little sad for you to see her go,but you've done wonders with this whole little kitty-family:thumbs up
The second pic is the best,we even get to see a glimps of one of your pretty doggies and another one of your cats:lovestruck:
and Sparky,well,he has to be a tough little Tabby-boy with all those females around :laughing:

kashtin's kin
March 10th, 2007, 12:58 AM
Just thought I'd do a brief update on La Famille Feral; last weekend we finally moved 'Hairy Pepper' to s.i.l.'s about an hour away. Things went quite smoothly, and reports indicate that HP is adjusting 'on schedule'. I'm thankful that we were able to adopt HP to a relative who can give her all the 'cat advantages' :cat: in life, but I'm still struggling with my own rather needless separation anxiety/trauma. Silly moi...

I don't mean to waste energy on angst when there is nothing at all tragic or sad about this transition; it's been planned for ages, but over the past close- to-a-year I invested so much in my personal 'feral crusade'...I'm afraid I've just never been much of a 'stoic' with the good-bye theme. I keep giving myself figurative smacks upside the head (best to keep them figurative due to the concussions :confused: I've already had...getting a tad low on ye olde brain cells as it is), as I can visit HP and all that.

But, I still need a bit more time before I can put the experience into a light-hearted post; in the meantime, here is an 'au revoir' yawn, Pepper stye...

p.s. if anyone knows of a good way to seal tear ducts, do let me know!!

March 10th, 2007, 01:03 AM
Awww, of course you're sad. You have been very invested in Pepper's life and seen her through so much that it would be very difficult to see her go :sad: . I'm happy that you at least get visiting priviledges and know that she will have a fantastic home :) .

Big hugs to you :grouphug: and kudos for a feral capture well done :thumbs up .

March 10th, 2007, 03:32 AM
I haven't poked my head in here for awhile but ~ Pepper is gorgeous What a difference you have made in her life ~ she's a whole 'nother cat.

I know ~ it's hard to rationalize "How can you feel bad when you are doing such a good thing?" But, I'll bet that's what most folks who do rescue feel when they start. Then, they learn to let go and trust (after doing a boat-load of investigation on the forever-home of course !).

You have done a wonderful thing :grouphug: ~ thank you.

March 10th, 2007, 06:38 AM
Awww KK,I was wondering where you were and how the kitties were doing...
I don't know how to plug tearducts,wish I did,since yesterday I felt really mushy and cried over a dead little sparrow:sad:
I usally just let the tears flow,dripping all over the floor:) you feel sad,you feel sad,nothing much to do but cry..
Of course you'll miss HP,you saved her life,you're her mommy:lovestruck:
How is the Sparkster and the other black kitty reacting???
and is HP the only cat in your s.i.l's household??
She'll probably miss her sibs for a while:sad:
Since I've followed your very entertaining posts from the beginning,I think you belong waay up there on the pedestal together with all the rest of the wonderful rescuers we have on this Forum

kashtin's kin
March 11th, 2007, 01:05 AM
Thanks so much, "guys's" above, et al. I feel a tad less desolee (avec the French accents...this one- '/'!!) already. (If you could see me, you could tell that I am sporting a small/brave smile; none of the 'smilies' on the right of the reply form quite fit!). I've gotta say, this BB has ALWAYS BEEN THERE
in a fantastic way for 'me and the ferals'. We are so grateful, and look forward to being more amusing in the very near future...

kashtin's kin
April 4th, 2007, 01:20 AM
Oops :o , early April already!!!!...don't want everybody picturing me in some endless/dramatic depressed state: sorting through pictures of Hairy Pepper, clutching a small sample of her [shed] hair left behind, running my hands over HER feed bowl...and weeping gently all the while.

I will always love that hairy lil' ex-feral, but she's been in her new home for about a month now. The first week HP was alternately tentatively friendly, and in hiding mode. My cat-experienced s.i.l. just played things by ear; made sure she spent time in HP's quarantine room, spoke to her reassuringly and fed her some of her favourite treats/food.

Sooo, I fretted a wee bit that initial week, going through kitty withdrawl and all. However, it wasn't long-EEEEK, just had to gallop off to attend to a cat sick-up...all done!-before reports were rolling in from s.i.l of HP allowing herself to be cuddled!! and enjoying the run of the house (showing off her agile turn of speed to s.i.l.'s 2 older cats).

HP came into my s.i.l.'s life a month or so after s.i.l. had lost her oldest cat of 14 yrs. to cancer; HP of course did not replace poor Millie, but she has been a lively and loving addition to the household. HP seems to be coming into her own without the competition of her slightly more aggressive siblings, and s.i.l. would appear to have lost her heart :lovestruck: to her new ex-feral. I'm all happily emotional; I did know that things would work out well (just had to get through my one-less-kitten phase).

Speaking of 'kittens', the ex-feral gang are probably hovering around their collective first birthday now; I guess they're very young cats now (I've actually been thinking of Sparky-the boy of the trio-as a bit of a teen-age thug :evil: for a while now...he used to be such a sweet kitty who would cuddle endlessly; now he tolerates short lap visits, but is usually too busy stirring up trouble to bother with too much 'sissy affection'!!).

(Pepper seems to have taken over as my virtual 'shadow cat'; no matter where I perch, she's on my lap practically the minute I plunk myself down...I have sat through more than one crappy :yuck: tv show to avoid dislodging the happily purring Pepper. My new constant companion is also somewhat alarmingly fond of just about anything edible; since we are not in the business of creating Kitty Kouch Potatoes, we monitor mealtimes closely, as Pepper will even move in on the dogs' food :eek: without intervention.)

While HP luxuriates in her new abode-she even had a checkup with s.i.l's cats only vet 'just for the record'-her The Other Pepper sis and Sparky continue to grow and keep all the rest of us (mature cats, dogs, people) on our distinctly un-balletic toes. Just last night I'd run myself a nice, deep bath; as I opened the bathroom door (I always catch up on a few things while the tub fills) Sparky and Pepper were doing their IndyKitty 500 imitation.

I was shutting the bathroom door behind me and starting to savour a few minutes alone with my bubbles when a Sparky-pursued Peppy tore past me and threw herself into my pristine temple of watery peace. Ai caramba!! HUGE SPLASH...followed by a very wet :eek: Pepper streaking out of the bathroom as fast as she'd entered.

Needless to say, I spent the next hour drying off and soothing a very startled young cat...followed by a huge mop-up job-walls/floors in bathrom, floor in kitchen et al. So much for THAT relaxing little planned interlude; by the time I'd cleaned things up, I pretty much collapsed in bed.

And so it goes in our little critter-centred universe. Momcat a/k/a Wee Wilhelmina has made it through the winter in good shape; there are days that pass without a WW sighting, but the feeding station is visited every night. Now that spring is upon us, I've seen a lot more of WW prowling about the old farmyard just off our lillipution place. She is still on pretty high alert/wary, which is a good thing for a feral.

I am just so relieved that WW doesn't have another family to raise (and for me to catch/socialize!) this year; perhaps she will never forgive me for the trauma of that whole trap/spay/shots/recovery week back in late Oct., but it was obviously a good thing for WW...and all the kittens she WON'T be having. I hope she continues to stay fairly close, and keeps safe :fingerscr .

Although things always seem to crop up critter-wise, it would seem that this Feral Cat saga (begun by a very stressed 'feral rookie' back last summer) has pretty much run it's course. Thanks to all the fantastic support/encouragement/advice on this BB, this whole almost-a-year, as I've mentioned before, has been a really positive learning curve thingy...well, my Lap Pepper is getting a bit restless, so I guess it's time to toddle off...."No Pepper, it's NOT time for breakfast!!"

Perhaps I will update Les Ferals on the odd occasion i.e. aquisition of driver's licenses etc.?????

Below, Pepper and Le Sparkster, contemplating their next hair-raising move?!
(also, Peppy having another arduous day, if I can find the pic!?)

April 4th, 2007, 01:46 AM
OMG, loved the falling in the tub story. I think just about every cat does that once in their lifetime :D . I am so glad that Pepper is fitting is so well with the sil :thumbs up.

:offtopic: How is your dog doing these days?

April 4th, 2007, 01:48 AM
Wait... It's not over is it? I love reading your stories. :o :sad:

April 4th, 2007, 07:14 AM
Oh there you are:thumbs up I've been hoping to hear from you!
I was reading your post and laughing,hubby got curious why,so I read it out loud:laughing:
Please do not stop writing,I've missed all your feel-good stories and your amazing talent for making everything seem fun!!
Glad HP has adjusted to her new home,it's not like you'll never see her again.
As for WW,I am sure she will stick around,she knows a good thing and you did the best thing anybody could do for her,taking care of her babies and preventing any further babies:thumbs up
You are just simply wonderful:highfive:

April 4th, 2007, 09:27 AM
It can't be over!!! Seriously, I think we all look forward to the Adventures at Le Casa de Kashtin. I'm so glad to hear that HP has settled in well with your S.I.L., and even more so that all is well in your house :)

kashtin's kin
April 23rd, 2007, 12:52 AM
Well, technically it's '2 little ferals', now that Hairy Pepper has taken over s.i.l.'s household...and I guess the feral kittens have morphed into fairly domestic adolescents (although more alert :eek: at times than your average cat!). Sparky seems to have gone through the worst of his loutish teen-i.e. "Whaddya want?!"-phase, which is nice. He was such a cuddlecake of a kitten almost from the get-go after being lured inside that his Mr. Independant personality took me by surprise; it's a relief all round that the Sparkman has mellowed.

This house is only big enough for one major cat snit at a time, and that quota is generally filled by la Goose (8 yr. old gal we adopted after she was struck by a car as a kitten...she still has some minor balance issues on the physical side; on the psychological side Goose has sulked almost continuously since the ferals arrived indoors). Goostiani has honed her resentment skills to a fine edge, and we all suffer her slings and arrows :evil: , alas. While once she almost always slept beside my head, she's taken to her kitchen table chateau for the past few months, deigning to stir only for food and litter excursions.

We've tried to humour Goose, but she's a VERY stubborn cat...she's just biding her time, waiting for the ferals to become a little less adorable! In the meantime, Glossy Pepper has become my superbuddy over the past while. When I'm in the house we are rarely more than a few feet apart, which is cozy without being suffocating; GP is not clingy or fearful, it's just that she's figured out that I snack frequently, and am not averse to sharing a BIT:D .

I've been a tad preoccupied for the past month or so, preparing for the May return of my little Pony Patrol; when I finally had to send my retired horse over the Rainbow Bridge late last fall, her companion La Ponita spent the winter winning friends and influencing equines (it's her specialty) at a friend's boarding stable. A while ago I was able to find a pony companion for Senorita V...a cute younger man (gelded, of course!). After so many years with my horse, and then V, I expect that there will be, um, interesting times ahead dealing with the new combination of my charming V-pony and little Mr. B-man.

Even more distracting-if possible-than the above changes has been an ongoing illness in my immediate family. It's a chronic condition rather than an urgent sort of thing (thankfully), but of course there just happens to be a 'cat challenge element'. Said relative had 3 cats when she became unable to maintain her home; I was able to find a fantastic cat boarding facility-yay Cats Only B & B in Burlington-where the 3 amigos have lived for the past couple of years (luckily relative has some $$). I was hoping that eventually my relative might regain enough independance to once again live with her cats, but :sad: instead a move is being made towards more supervised care.

Et voila...MORE cats for me to do some career-planning for. If we hadn't just absorbed 2 cats so recently, these 3 could probably have been worked into our critter lineup; we're s-t-r-e-t-c-h-e-d financially (and spacewise!) already after all those feralama expenses. Sooooo, I kicked the ol' protesting and diminishing brain cells into action again, and things will hopefully work out; my vet s.i.l. is going to give the youngest cat a home in her clinic as a blood donor cat, and mascot. Nooo, not my fondest hope, but the relative involved will be able to visit the cat-and blood donor animals do fill an important need. Also, this feline will certainly be retired in style.

The oldest cat is in her teens, and because her chances of being adopted are so slim...well, let's just say I emptied out my tear ducts to the extent that hubby graciously agreed to take her in. Thx sweetie :thumbs up !!!! (I may actually have to come up with some non-flannel p.j.'s in order to express my appreciation for the poor lad's patience with Casa Animals Plus!?) This leaves one more cat-sigh-and I have listed 7 yr. old Alonzo with a private/non-profit cat rescue in Hamilton. I know only recognized rescues are permitted to advertise on the BB, but if I may I'd like to give a 'shout out' :goodvibes: to The Pride Rescue just to thank them (Nicole, specifically) for being so helpful.

Aside from all that-whew-I'm pleased to report that Wee Wilhelmina (feral mother extraordinaire, keeping her 3 offspring safe till I could take over last summer) is still around and about...and eating well. I only see her every week or so as she's never forgiven me for that whole spaying thing, but I'm soooo glad WW doesn't have to go through the kitten experience this spring. Anyhoo, I guess it's that time again i.e. feral feeding hour; Willie prefers to dine under the cover of darkness, so gotta go play waitress...;) .

p.s. Hairy Pepper and s.i.l. are thrilled with each much for all that angst!

April 23rd, 2007, 07:30 AM
KK,thank you for checking in ever now and then:thumbs up
It's good to hear the x-ferals are doing great as well as momma-cat.
My Rocky is just like Glossy Pepper,he always keeps me within eyeshot as if he's worried I am going to leave:laughing:
I guess Goose considers herself Queen of the castle,will not bother with these lowly ferals:cat:
Sorry about your relatives cats,becoming a blood-donor cat sounds terrible,but hopefully he'll be ok..:pray: you taking in one of them,will be a challenge I am sure,but you can handle it:)
This is one big worry I have,as I am a bit older,I am worried my cats will outlive me and hubby,I don't know anyone who could take the 3 of them:sad:
It's nice to hear you are getting another pony,we'd love to see some pics,of the kitties and the horses,so the next time you show up,pics please!!
Still,even without pics,as usual,I really love reading your posts,never without a good laugh:laughing:

April 23rd, 2007, 09:08 AM
Chico.. you are young and healthy...but if it will make you feel better, leave me your cats in your will and I will gladly make my way up to your place and bring them to my home. Ofcourse they will ahve to be able to live with some other...

April 23rd, 2007, 03:34 PM
CPietra,thank's that is sooo sweet,who knows it might happen one day.
Rocky just turned 11,Chico is 9 and little(big)Vinnie is almost 5yrs old,him and Tess would make a lovely pair:lovestruck:

kashtin's kin
April 30th, 2007, 12:11 AM
Chico2, your mention of critters and wills (sort of) reminded me of the subject of 'living wills'. I firmly believe the 40 is the new 30!, 50 is the new 40!, 60 is the new 50! and so on :p , thus we are all but wee spring chickens!! However, I read a good article in one of my horse mags a while back regarding the issue of 'living wills'; naturally, due to my poor attention span and kamikaze brain cells-aiiiiiii!-I have only retained the vague impression that living wills involve making some sort of legal provision for the care of one's furbuddies should one, um, predecease them.

When I lived out west in my 20's, I actually had a non-legal written agreement with a close friend to care for each others horses/cats/dogs in the event that one of us fell off the old twig :sad: at a tragically young, I can't believe I had such forethought at that point (I think it was the ONLY careful and considered decision I made that whole decade!). El hubbo and I had a loose verbal thingy with a relative a while back, but we haven't chatted about it for ages; we really should do something more legal-ish.

I guess it's one of those subjects that it's easier to just put off, but if we are to ensure that our dependant fur friends are not left in the lurch should they outlive us, some sort of living will is something we should all seriously consider. We devote so much to our critters here and now, that it seems kind of obvious to 'provide' for them in some way in the event ETC. Anyone who has a parrot or a giant tortoise should definitely get going on the living will, ASAP...

Easier said than done-ain't that the case with EVERYTHING!! After all this info spreading, I have just added 'look into living will' to my megalist, before I make the Top 10 of SuperHypocrites:o . ...Soooo, now that I've got us all good and depressed and guilt-ridden (oops), I'd better put up a couple of distacting photos :thumbs up . One is of Goose-as previously described!-showing her in her determined approach to 'sleeping through the unpleasant cute kitten issue'. The other pic illustrates Pepper and Sparky (bane o' Goose's existence) taking a moment out from tearing the joint apart...

p.s. #1 re: 'background' in some of my pics...can you tell we haven't gotten around to renovating parts of our poor old farmhouse :o (we've actually taken down a whole lot of REALLY bad wallpaper etc., circa 1940, but you wouldn't know from a lot of these kittypics)!? It's a work-in-progress, ya know?! #2 ...didn't mean to get all 'dogmatic/catmatic' with that living will stuff; here's some more :goodvibes: to counteract!

April 30th, 2007, 06:26 AM
Awwww,nice to see the famous kitties again...:lovestruck:
As for a living will,we made one up a long time ago,every time we travel I make sure things are in order.
The problem is,not many of our friends,or our sons,would be able to care for them,I am sure Vinnie and Chico would have a home in no time,Rocky is a different story,he is very needy and it seems I am his whole universe,but I'll just have to stick around to become a really old lady:)
Better start a healthier living:goodvibes:

April 30th, 2007, 06:31 AM
Nothing says happiness like 2 cats sitting on a tupper ware countainer:D

April 30th, 2007, 12:23 PM
Awwww that's so sweet :) :lovestruck:

I'm glad that everyone is getting along nicely :P

I didn't realise you lived so close to me...I wish I had the money to take poor Alonzo but I think I'd be murdered (by MY family) before I had the chance to see him! Hopefully he will get adopted out and they are a very good rescue :)


April 30th, 2007, 03:45 PM
dtbmnec,I reread KK's post cannot find anything about any Alfonso:confused: maybe you answered to the wrong thread:confused:

KK,that's lovely wallpaper:yell: A couple of months ago I removed wall-paper in my bedroom,never,ever,no way,absolutely not,will I ever put up wallpaper again:laughing:

April 30th, 2007, 03:56 PM
This leaves one more cat-sigh-and I have listed 7 yr. old Alonzo with a private/non-profit cat rescue in Hamilton. I know only recognized rescues are permitted to advertise on the BB, but if I may I'd like to give a 'shout out' :goodvibes: to The Pride Rescue just to thank them (Nicole, specifically) for being so helpful.

Here you go Chico :)


April 30th, 2007, 04:13 PM
Oh yes,it was from april 22nd,I forgot..sorry!!

kashtin's kin
May 1st, 2007, 12:40 AM
Exciting day at the ol' casa, especially for the :cat: cats, ex-feral and otherwise...personally, I could use a dose of 'Atravet' (horse tranquilizer)!!
After a busy w'end, I was looking forward to sleeping in a smidgen, but a demented robin had other plans. Shortly after sunrise, I was re-awakened (after tossing enough cat snacks around to buy me a bit more quality time with my pillow) by a recurring soft but hard to ignore 'klunk' on one of the living room windows. My mother was an avid bird-watcher, so I soon (for a semi-comatose person) realized that we had a case of robin-in-nesting-craze :eek: .

I've been lucky enough not to have personally dealt with such a situation before, but that's when birds go a little wacko in nesting season, and get really aggressive with their reflection in windows (I think it's a guy-bird thing, but don't quote me on that). Dunno why THIS year, but el Robin must have thunked his birdbeak about a million times :crazy: before I managed to grab a ladder and a bar of soap, with which to scrawl all over the outside of the window. If you pull the curtains or whatever, it doesn't hafta tie yarn across all across the outer side, stick on falcon etc. decals (soap's just the fastest!).

Needless to say, I had a rapt and more than willing to help feline audience during this whole bird drama; between Mr. Robin going for concussive brain damage and 6 slavering :evil: cats, I was fumbling around and expressing many unladylike sentiments i.e. "Oh pish!!" :D Anyhoo, after the soap trick pretty much got the robin calmed down, I had a quick arts and crafts session, and drew my own version of a hawk to stick on the window. Yoiks, and the ponies aren't even home yet!! It's definitely time for me to take up yoga/meditation and all that.

Oops, didn't mean to rant on...but it was pretty goofy in retrospect, moi staggering around with my bar of soap, imploring :yell: the bird to "quit attacking yourself!!!" and the cats to "stay inside and stop climbing the windowscreen!!!" I'd really like to know where that image of the 'peaceful countryside' came from, 'cuz it's a megadanger zone out here, baby!

Now, what I REALLY meant to say here: chico2, you are too kind, regarding the wallpaper... you should have seen the stuff in our sunporch (now mercifully stripped, and painted over); it was a weird blue, interspersed with bizarre looking huge pink cabbages!? I am with you all the way on the wallpaper issue! Also, dtbmnec, nice to hear from ya-and so sweet of you to say you wish you could adopt Alonzo. You've got your hands full with your own kitties; I've had one query so far about Alonzo (when I sent the folks an email, I had to have le hubster edit it so I wouln't scare the poor prospective adopters away with my unbridled enthusiasm/info).

p.s. "if you go into the woods" these days...don't carry a shiny window with you (forget the bears, it's the birds you better beware!)! Oh yeah, forgot to mention that I had a great Wee Wilhelmina sighting a few days ago; I looked out the back porch window in the aft. and caught WW having a drink from water that pools on out unever concrete parking pad. Our eyes met...and she skittered off, but that's the first time I've seen WW (her whole body, not just a head peeking out) in daylight for ages. I may feed/water her every day, but she's still 'spay bitter'...

May 1st, 2007, 07:06 AM
:laughing: :laughing: you are a little nutter,but welcome to the club:laughing: :laughing:
I have done many"oh,I hope-nobody-sees-me"kind of things in my looong lifetime,but no worse for wear:laughing:
First I thought,you would have a wounded Robin on your hands,I absolutely adore Robins and I too am an avid birdwatcher(like your mom),I see,or hear a new bird and out comes the binoculars and birdbook:lovestruck:
Still,can't figure out the soap,did you soap the window??
I've had birds flying in to my windows,ending up with their legs in the air,only to fly off when I approach,only once did I find a Mourning Dove with a broken neck:sad:
Glad to hear WW is around and ok,also that spring is here and you don't have to worry about the cold....
We will need pics of your new pony,ok!

kashtin's kin
May 4th, 2007, 01:04 AM
Les ferals are keeping things ferally fun (:D groan), but the real breaking news is the re-homing of my sister's cat Alonzo! He was on the Hamilton Pride Rescue site only about a week; a really nice semi-retired couple contacted me Monday-ish, we exchanged lots of cat related info, and then met on Wed. evening.

After a good visit in person, lovely couple decided to make room in their lives for a new furbuddy :cat: in need of a second chance; have already been in touch to say things are going fine, and they have really 'fallen' for Alonzo. As a world class worrywart, I'm still doing a bit of nail-biting (don't want to tempt the fates?!), but I feel quite confident Alonzo has struck it lucky.

I don't think all cats posted on the Pride Rescue site could possibly find homes this quickly; I'm very grateful that this couple decided to try to give Alonzo a reason to 'smile' again (he looked quite sad :sad: in his pic, which I will try to include down below). Alonzo really deserves a stable home, and my sister will feel much better about having to give up her cats...knowing they all have good people caring for them.

Pride Rescue impressed me :thumbs up to the extent that I will hopefully soon be doing some cat transport between Brantford and Hamilton, in particular (apparently they do some feral cat stuff from Toronto, so I'm interested in that, needless to say).

I'd do a 'Happy Dance', but Freyja-the Border Collie/Blue Heeler x-does not approve of dancing :shrug: ; that is, it's perfectly okay for HER to frolic's just us poor humans who are not allowed to express too much emotion!!??

p.s. yes, chico2, I rubbed bar soap all over the outside of the window to cut the reflection/glare that compelled Mr. Robin to attack himself...and you bet, I'll get some ponypics up here once I've dealt with their agents (if I can afford it?)!!

May 4th, 2007, 07:08 AM
Aww what a sweety he is and he does look a little sad,but hopefully he'll be all happy now:pray:
Looks like he has a bit of an eyeproblem,easily fixed though.
It's always a good feeling to have a good rescue,where you know the animals will be treated well,especially living where you do,having jerks dump cats:mad:
At least now your sister can rest easy,her cats are safe,I am sure they were constantly on her mind,poor lady,hopefully she'll be ok:pray:

Good luck with the Pony-venture,I am sure it's really expensive to buy and keep horses,but they are wonderful,wish I could have one,but no barns,or horses allowed in our backyard:laughing:

kashtin's kin
May 22nd, 2007, 10:34 PM
I had intended to post a little earlier in the month, but was rather distracted by the whole 'new pony' issue. It looked liked we'd found a decent companion for La Ponita; a gelding the same size as Mlle. V. certainly met HER criteria (cute boy toy:lovestruck: ).

Unfortunately, the more I saw of 'little man' at his home, the less enamoured of him I became i.e. TOTAL opposite of my uber-friendly gal who 'crawls respectfully!!' all over me every time I go out...turned out the little man was muchos averse to being caught/brought in barn :evil: , and had a fairly nervous dispostion.

I've worked with some pretty emotional horses, but I really do NOT enjoy equines that avoid human contact. I don't think this pony had any serious issues, but I already have a delightfully nutty-albeit in a good way!-pony...and I'm not 20 years old any more (don't bounce ;) as well, or possess inexhaustible time to devote to pony psychology).

A younger friend who actually enjoys :crazy: figuring out/training difficult horses sort of came to the rescue; she looked like she'd won the lottery when I told her she was welcome to the pesky pony. Soooo, la perfect pony will be going solo for the forseeable future; we can trailer (although I've put a stop to pony martinis en route) around to socialize , and I got her a bunch of 'pony-amusing' toys/puzzles.

On the CAT front, the post-feral kids are doing great :thumbs up . And just a few hours ago I went out into the sunporch-it was still light out-and spotted a Pepper lookalike crouched on a ledge on the outside of one of the windows. :eek:..."MUST NOT PANIC!!" As I suspected, the outside cat turned out to be Pepper's mother, WW, but I was pretty close to going for the smelling salts!

WW has been doing a fair amount of sunbathing right around the house, although she does melt away if 'interrupted' in any way. Thankfully, although Sparky and Pepper are very fond of bird-watching :cat: , they have not thus far made any attempt to pursue ornithology OUTside! Sparky really seems to have perked up our only other male cat's spirits; Odin was perhaps a tad estrogen-overwhelmed??

And Pepper and I continue to have a special that can only come from an introduction out of a horror film i.e. "3 Pound Kitten Savages Woman"??!! Pony travails and charming ex-ferals aside, the next critter project-of-sorts will involve 'bringing home Sonia', my sister's oldest cat (see above, above for details!). We are looking forward to giving her a quiet and enjoyable retirement.

La Ponita Perfecta below...

P.S. chico2, poor you! So sorry!! I am just getting current with the BB again; missed your slight?! cat-astrophe in mid-May...your wounds looked a lot like the ones I incurred upon first coming into CONTACT with wee Pepper. I trust you have recovered for the most part by now...:grouphug: from all of us on the Funny Farm.

May 23rd, 2007, 12:16 AM
Hi again! I thought I'd pop in & tell you I haven't forgotten about you and your critters. You sound as busy as ever. I've been busy with my human critters. We had a death and a heart surgery in the last few months. One good & one sad.
Hope you don't miss the Hairy Pepper too much:sad:

And hello, Chico. I was so enamoured of your cat, Vinny (I hope he's the one I'm thinking of with one blue eye & one green). Anyway, we had 3 cats at our shelter last week that had the same eyes. The cats were all white, or mostly white. I never saw such a combination before I saw your cat! They were all adopted out quickly.

Kashtin - I will drop in more often. I truly just haven't had any time!
Bye for now:cat: :cat:

May 24th, 2007, 07:33 AM
Good to hear from you again:thumbs up
Kashtin,sorry the pony did not work out,in my none-existing-horse-experience I thought all horses were gentle softies,but the pony got a suitable home anyway,which is good.
Aww,WW is back,hopefully she'll stick around,even if it is outside,maybe move in to the barn in the winter:fingerscr at least she would be safe..
Your picture is wonderful,I soo would like to nuzzle up to her:lovestruck:
My wounds are much better,after a week of IV-Antibiotics,thank's:fingerscr

kashtin's kin
June 14th, 2007, 12:24 AM
Well, I've been trying to find a nice chunk of time during which I could sip on a Mocktini :cool: and work on an update of ye olde cat/dog/pony madhouse, but the whole relax-and-type thing just isn't coming together. So, I've decided to outline and dash for now, with more amusing details to come?!

My sister's oldest (early-ish teens??) cat has been with us for a couple of weeks now, and the kitty litter dust has started to settle. 'Sonja' is a tiny thing, and a bit on the frail side...but mentally :evil: tough as nails; for the first few days it sounded like we had a tire losing air, as she barely left herself time to breathe between hisses!

She spent much of the first day or 2 in the large dog cage in the kitchen-our 'decor' just keeps going from bad to worse!-barricaded in her boxcave. We still don't leave Sonja out unsupervised, but she is now on the loose much of the time. The other 5 are muchos jealous of her senior food, but over their initial curiosity...oh those busy! :crazy: former ferals (I think they thought she was a large rodent at first!?).

Here's the only pic we've managed to get thus far (she tends to skitter about when the camera comes out...some sort of agency fee we're supposed to fork out)...

P.S. received an email from 'Alonzo' (sister's 8ish yr old cat, adopted to really nice :goodvibes: couple through Hamilton's Pride Rescue) indicating that his new family has passed their initial training phase...:thumbs up .

June 14th, 2007, 07:22 AM
Awww,she's a tabby-girl,love them tabbies:lovestruck:
I hope she calms down and realizes she's in heaven:fingerscr
You do have a very busy household,how did you end up with Sonja??
Then again,you are one of those"can't-say-no-to-a-needy-kitty-people"which really is wonderful:cat:
Thank's for checking in,I soooo enjoy your posts:thumbs up

kashtin's kin
June 20th, 2007, 12:43 AM
...I caught me a feral..." (no apologies to Ms. Spears!). Yup, it's livetrap time again at Casa Feral, and I am as cool and calculating as ever i.e. :eek: . And, since I began this post with such a lame cultural reference, I'll just follow it up with another one...think of me as a gal 'Jack Bauer', just with my trusty livetrap, as opposed to a Glock?!

Hey, I only wish I was so sanguine: why is it that in the face of constant threats to the U.S., somehow Mr. Bauer :cool: coolly ends up dealing with things practically on his own (what is it with those CTU people, anyway?!), while merely nabbing a 14 lb. feral in a livetrap makes me want to dial 1-800-I.V. Valium?? (Cyberkitten, where are you when I need you?!)

We've only just gotten my sister's geriatric cat Sonja assimilated into our household, and I was hoping for a wee break from the feline frivolities. Alas, when I heard the sounds of Harold the Feral (a tom I've seen a handful of times in the past coupla months) having his way :evil: with WW's body double (a half-grown cat who also is the spitting image of Pepper at that age) last night at 2 a.m. I saw the writing on the wall.

No more living in denial, hopehopehoping that the young cat was a male, or that Harold was just passing through; time for Feralgal to don her cape, and dust off the livetrap...sigh!! Even though this whole scenario was pretty inevitable, I hadn't mentioned my growing fears on this forum till now, as we were busy with Sonja and a few Pony distractions.

When I set the trap around 11 p.m., I was keeping my :fingerscr that we'd catch the female first. However, just as we caught Darrell the Feral before we got WW last year, Harold went for the bait first...evidently in Feraland, it's Rotten Toms first :mad: !! So, it looks like another early morning run to the clinic; I just called them again Tuesday morning to remind them that I would likely be bringing in some sort of feral soon, so it seems some practical?? part of me knew things were gearing up.

I am grateful for the experience I had last year with regard to this 'exact' situation, and for how all you BB folks were such a huge help :thumbs up with advice and moral support. You'd think I really would be a tad more casual about this feral deja vu; I think I have too many nerve endings too close to the surface of my skin..."I'm not nervous-just incredibly alert!" and all that. My DH is enviably matter of fact about everything; I sooo wish I could get a CALMNESS transplant or something!

Oh well, guess I'd better try instead to get what passes for sleep around here...hopefully things will go smoothly for moi and Harold later this morning. I'll let you know!! In the meantime if chico2 or anyone cares to throw me a bone of encouragement, I don't mean to sound pathetic :o , but it sure helps!! (Oh, and I'll make sure to take and post a pic of :cat: Harold asap.)

June 20th, 2007, 06:08 AM
Awww KK,here we go again:yell:
I am assuming you are going to have this boy snipped,to avoid another set of babies melting your heart:confused: hopefully not too late:fingerscr
You will get all the encouragement and hugs you need from anyone here,I am sure:grouphug:
You are a very special lady:love:
Most people would just ignore feral cats,let babies be born into an often very short life,but not you:thumbs up we need another few million people like you!
I just hope your wallet is a bottomless pit,or you have a very understanding,generous vet:fingerscr
Looking forward to some entertaining read from now on....Good Luck!

June 20th, 2007, 06:36 AM
Wow KK :eek: Another feral:sad:
Kudos to you for sure for everything that you have done and will continue to do for all those kitties. You are an :angel:

June 20th, 2007, 07:29 AM
Oh, good luck, KK! :grouphug: You're an :angel: for taking these guys on, but I'm sure each and every one is a real adventure. :rolleyes:

kashtin's kin
June 20th, 2007, 08:35 AM
Thanks sooo much for the encouraging words, you great BB folks :goodvibes: . Some of you have been helping me along the path of 'feraldom' since my first panicky post a year or so ago (some things don't change i.e. you/supportive, and moi/EEEEK!!). If I had to do all this in a sort of vacuum-poor little me...all alone??!!-it would be so much harder, and not nearly as much fun.

I brought Harold the Feral in to the clinic first thing this morning, and should be able to pick him up this afternoon. It all's well, he'll spend the night in the cage in the garage; if he's anything like Darrell the Feral, Harold will be off like a shot tommorrow morning...and cursing me for the rest of his days :mad: ! (Sorry, big guy-perhaps you might like to take up needlepoint in lieu of propagation??)

As I mentioned very early this a.m., I'll make sure to get a pic or two of the doubtless highly resentful Harold on here today or tommorrow. I'll also fill you in a bit on 'mini-WW' :cat: , who I have my livetrap sights set on next, and some other Feral Farm miscellany. And thanks again for the boost re: thoughts this morning; I can feel my heart rate subsiding already!! :thumbs up You guys are the bestest!

June 20th, 2007, 08:43 AM
he he So you don't think Harold is going to be a happy camper, eh? :o Ah, well, nothing like a little ingratitude from a curmudgeon to make you feel fulfilled, eh? :rolleyes: The ol' codger just doesn't know what's good for him. :D

Good luck with mini-WW! We'll be crossing our :fingerscrs and :pawprint:s for your success! :thumbs up

June 20th, 2007, 08:44 AM
PS Aren't you grateful that you're not the vet tech at the clinic that has to get him out of the carrier? :eek: :crazy:

June 20th, 2007, 04:02 PM
I am waiting with anticipation on the next chapter,Harold won't know what hit him,I am sure:laughing:
I love to see a pic of him,if possible,I love big old Tom-Cats:lovestruck:
I am sure the vet had fun and loves you for bringing in these wild ones:laughing:

June 20th, 2007, 04:26 PM
Wow what an ongoing saga. I feel like I just read a book series! :thumbs up for helping these kitties!!!!

I'm sure Harold will find a new hobby to take up his time!

Aren't you grateful that you're not the vet tech at the clinic that has to get him out of the carrier?
That is why they have long needles on poles...they can inject tranquilizers right through the cage bars, as long as the cat isn't moving around too much!

kashtin's kin
June 21st, 2007, 12:17 AM
Thanks again for the BB turbo boost to my morale you may have deduced by now :rolleyes: , my hummingbird-like constitution is not ideally suited to deal with stressful situations (although I usually function better under EXREME stress, when I don't have time to push the fret!! button).

This early a.m. finds Harold the Feral resting quietly/resignedly in his cage in the garage. As in the case of an equally po'd Darrell last year, Harold pretends I don't exist when I tactfully take a peek every couple of hours; he has that thousand mile stare :mad: which makes me wonder if I ought to perhaps plan a little trip out of the county until he [hopefully?] chooses to forgive me??

Between the shock of captivity, and the effects of anaesthesia, even tough old toms end up looking a bit rough[er]. I'm assuming :fingerscr that Harold will make tracks tomorrow a la Darrell; I gave him a 'soupcon' of food/drink in the evening, and although as mentioned above he didn't acknowledge my presence...I was heartened to see he'd eaten when I checked back.

Not entirely surprisingly, although WW and mini-WW breakfasted Chez Feralville Snax yesterday morning, they lacked their usual appetites, and boycotted supper. I can see where having one of their own snagged would put them off a bit...but they should enjoy their time with Senor Brute incapacitated :shrug: !!

I'll let you know how things go later Thursday, and I promise I will post a pic, although if it's anything like Darrells', it'll look more like a mug shot. Thanks so much for getting moi and les ferals through another long day; I really appreciate all your comments (had to snicker at that 'vet tech retrieving the feral from a crate' one...I sure know when to let the pros take over i.e. with the long 'arm' of the tranq!).

Right now Pepper, who was about 3 lbs of very wary :crazy: feral kitty almost exactly a year ago (I just checked my calendar, and our first sighting of the 3 kittens was 15 June '06) is nestled bossily on my lap! You'd never guess her origins, and all the hours spent last summer gaining each other's trust :cat: . It's a ridiculous form of servitude-that would be me!-but it's amazing how a purring cat can make one forget all the sweat. I think that must be the big feline secret weapon!? :D

p.s. I appreciate the-blush-kind words...every one of us is a 'critter hero' in our own way :angel: .

kashtin's kin
June 22nd, 2007, 12:23 AM
O-M-G, this place is turning into Tomcat Central. I had intended to deal only with Harold the Feral's smooth return to freedom (Thursday) in this post, but the capture of GERALD the feral an hour or so ago is now the breaking news. Arghhhhh! Okay, so I guess it's not rocket science that if you have a feral feeding station-aimed at supporting WW, mother of our ex-feral/ex-kittens- you're bound to attract a few other diners.

The so recently neutralized Harold had been around off and on all spring, and has likely caused 'Mini WW' to be with kittens; I definitely had him in mind re: livetrapping (along with Mini WW, needless to say). I had hoped to nab little Mini herself during this most recent trapping mission...I confess I was not at all psyched for finding a :eek: large/spitting & growling mad/grey and white tom in the trap!

If Tomcat Weekly is indeed spreading the word about the haute feline cuisine here, perhaps they might also mention that there is a certain price to be paid (i.e. bit of machismo removal)?! Ai caramba. I have no idea if Gerald has been dining chez nous for a while, or if he was just passing through. Out of the 4 cats we've trapped, he's the first one that we have never 'met' prior to capture.

When I picked up Harold on Wed. afternoon, I mentioned that I might be back on Friday a.m.; a quick acknowledgement :thumbs up of Queensway Vet Clinic in Simcoe is in order for their accommodation vis a vis short notice feral surgery. If this revolving feral door is going to continue at this pace, I'm going to have start giving pony rides to cottager's children as they pass our place (I could probably do pretty well, especially on Fridays...although on second thought once La Ponita got her cut :frustrated: , I'd be lucky to have enough left for a new bottle of Advil!)

But back to good ol' altered Harold for a moment. He was still very subdued on Thursday a.m.-that is, until the blanket came off the cage!! He shot out of it like a greyhound, streaking across the grass until he reached an opening in an old farm shed just off our wee property. I was pleased to see that Harold actually stopped once he'd reached sanctuary; I think he was already making lunch plans :cat: !

That little rascal Mini WW has been much in evidence lately...just not in the livetrap. On Wednesday she was up on the garage roof-as taught by WW??-and Thursday a.m. she spent quite some time at the sunporch door peering in at her fascinated domestic brethren (the screen door only has a small screen in the top third, so is secure). Once I appeared in the porch, Mini made tracks :pawprint: .

With another vet visit coming up in a few hours, I'd best go see if Odin and Sally (both veteran bedhogs) will deign to assign me a few square inches. Here are the promised pics of Harold...not too great, between my lack of photographic talent and the cage grill (plus, I don't take any longer than necessary for such a 'shoot', as I don't want to stress the poor cat)!

p.s. from the pics, it may look as if Harold has an open cut on his face; he IS a bit of a Scarface dude as are most mature toms, but all his cuts were in fact older and thus healed.

June 22nd, 2007, 06:18 AM
Harold is a beautiful cat, KK. He doesn't look happy, but he is very handsome. :D

Good luck with Gerald. I'll bet he looks nearly equally unhappy...poor dear. :o

So, did Odin and Sally give you a slice of bed? :D

June 22nd, 2007, 06:48 AM
KK,awww Harold is beautiful with all his battlescars:lovestruck: and you have yet another Tom:yell:
You are doing a GREAT thing(keep telling yourself that)saving probably masses of kittens from being born in to miserable lives and early deaths:thumbs up
To make money to pay for all this,you should write books,you are every bit as talented as James Herriot was at describing kitties in a very humorous way:laughing:
I hope your hubby is very understanding:fingerscr and does not mind living on mac/cheese..:cat:
Hope you manage to catch mini WW,but 2 romantic males out of the pic,will be a good thing for her and any other little girls:thumbs up

June 22nd, 2007, 06:41 PM
He is a beautiful kittie!!! Quite the battle scars though:eek:

Again you deserve a big pat on the back for everything you are doing:grouphug:

kashtin's kin
June 23rd, 2007, 12:47 AM
Again, thanks everyone for the thoughts and posts; all that :goodvibes: postive energy really keeps me going when I start to sag a bit (uh, that's my spirits I'm referring to, not my skin ;) ...that's a whole 'nother story i.e. "How I Spent a Facelift on Ferals?!").

But, with your help, I got through another day of chaffeuring around ANOTHER resentful tom-will the fun never stop!? My mug shot is even now probably circulating on the Tom Circuit, and I hate to think what kind of bounty :evil: may be on my increasingly grey head. I'm starting to feel a tad nervous when I'm outside doing chores etc.; I wonder if I could maybe just have a sort of temporary bodyguard i.e. some kind of low-rent/burned out mercenary??

When I phoned the clinic Friday a.m. to let them know I was on my way, it sounded as if they might not be able to squeeze Gerald in-ARGHH!! I was totally dismayed at the thought of Gerald's capture/my spiking stress level all going to waste. However, I zoomed down to Simcoe prepared to throw myself on ANYone's mercy; as it turned out the nice staff that greeted me assured me that a quick little snip would be no problem (whew!! for me, if not for Gerald!).

As this is the third tom I've brought in in the past year (I had one 'friendly feral' done when I lived out west), I'm getting my routine down pat i.e. remind staff that I'm not 100% positive the cat is an intact do check! Between the battle-scarred mugs and the musky odour I'd be surprised if any of the guys I've nabbed were already altered, but ya never know :o .

Whilst Gerald was visiting the 'Tom Day Spa 'n Neuter', I spent some time trying to work out some strategy with regard to S/N in the larger context, as at my present rate of trapping etc., I may be driven to more extreme measures in terms of funding (DH: "Uh, :confused: I thought we had furniture??" ...sadly, even thrift stores wouldn't take our pet-wrecked stuff!)

I've tried to network a bit via phone with S/N folks and rescues in the States and Canada-muddling around in circles for a few months. But, it is amazing how 2 neuters in 1 week concentrates the mind! I finally phoned Alley Cat Allies (big TNR etc. organization in Washington D.C.); I ordered an informative DVD on S/N et al., and left a voicemail with someone who will hopefully get back to me with some practical ideas.

I have a horror of 'personal publicity', and am not looking to become the Face of S/N in my area. I've done lots of public speaking/teaching for other organizations, but that's different! I'm petrified :yuck: of conflict and personal politics/agendas as well...I am hoping resources like Alley Cat Allies will help me avoid most of that?? When push comes to shove, however, I guess I'm just going to have to get some skin-thickening potion.

Sorry-didn't mean to go off on the above tangent, but I actually felt like I made some progress today, and I've already got some ideas I'm jotting down...but back to the Tom du Jour! I was able to get some cat cuisine into Gerald a few hours ago; as with Harold, he was dopey and not about to eat with HER around, but when I checked in on him he'd polished everything off.

Judging by Gerald's general aspect, I'm guessing that he will be taking off later today at a pretty speedy rate; although Harold was mighty ticked off at being trapped, Gerald did a lot of very impressive growling, and I sense I won't be receiving any sort of hostess gift :rolleyes: !!

Well, heigh-ho, heigh-ho and all that...I'll do my best to get a decent pic of Gerald, but these toms aren't exactly into posing. :shrug:

p.s. Yes, chico2, DH is one patient/great fella (albeit not a big fan of mac and cheese...time to learn how to make SPAM roast!!..."Why yes, sweetcakes, of course that's, um, meat product!" And on the sleep front, Sally and Odin were kind enough to make room on the bed, although they seemed to have mistaken me for someone of Lillipution's the thought that counts?? ...oh yeah, and Harold appreciated the compliments!

kashtin's kin
June 24th, 2007, 01:13 AM
Well, I must say I'm enjoying a less stress-filled day or two...gardening, pony time!! Gerald, feral tom #2 from last weeks neuterama, was given his freedom on Saturday-boy, did that fella make trax (who WAS that masked :eek: cat??) !! After Harold the Feral made his initial sprint to an old shed on Wednesday, he more or less hung around. In Gerald's case, he may be in Mexico by now, at the rate he was going!! (Which sort of fits in with my theory that he wasn't a regular at our place; guess he figured if that's what we do to manly cats, it's not somewhere he wants to have anything more to do with...gotcha, Gerald;) ).

Mini WW seems to be around every time I go out the door (frequently, when one is a pony slave :shrug: ) I will be crossing every finger and toe possible this coming week that we'll be able to lure the little cutie into ze 'tuna trap'. Mini is looking a BIT rotund, which I am hoping is due to the gastronomic goodies she's getting from Chez KK, rather than from the effects of dallying with those rotten toms :fingerscr !?

And now, without further ado, my usual fairly bad tom potraiture! Despite messing around with the camera (I apologize for the highly technical term), each successive 'tom shot' seems to be anything but an improvement on the previous one! I suppose I must resign myself to the fact that my true calling lies in the handling of the scoop de litter...oh well, I think I have nonetheless captured his surly :mad: side with some degree of accuracy?!

June 24th, 2007, 06:45 AM
:laughing: Poor Gerald(like your choice of names!)but he won't know what's missing,I think:confused:
He probably will be back when hunger overtakes fear.
Let's :pray: mini WW is not preggers:pray: but she probably is...then what??
After reading the Star in the morning with not too many laughs,it's great to come here and read yours,always makes me laugh,although it's really sad so many kitties are homeless.
However they came to the right place on your property:thumbs up

June 25th, 2007, 05:15 PM
I always look forward to your updates KK, you're fighting the good (albeit thankless/unpaid/occasionally growled at) fight :highfive:

June 29th, 2007, 11:55 PM
Hi Kashtin's Kin & Chico2. I haven't been on the website for a while. My 17 year old Bert died on Monday. I had to have her put down. I'd never done it before and it was awful, even though Bert was so, so sick. :sad: :sad: But I still have my little former feral, Miss Peabody. She needs another companion but I don't know if I'm ready yet.
Anyway, KK, keep up the good work. If we lived closer to one another I'd be happy to take one of your foster kitties off your hands.:cat:

July 1st, 2007, 07:10 PM
KK - LOVE reading about your feline adventures. Keep the pic coming they are great:) Can't wait for you next post, hope you can catch Mini soon :fingerscr - sounds like she could be WW's daughter from a previous litter.

:highfive: for doing so much to help the furbabies in your area.


Slave to Duffy :cat: w/loads of tortitude
(growler refers to Dal/Lab :rip: )

kashtin's kin
July 4th, 2007, 12:33 AM
I must confess that I was getting to the 'tom neutering fatigue' point with that week full of Harold and Gerald, but now I'm a tad disheartened by having my 4 for 4 feral livetrapping streak suddenly ended...and in a very emphatic way :mad: . Good ol' WW has apparently decided to pass along her knowledge of the evil livetrap on to 'Mini Me' (as described above); we had the trap out 3 nights last week, practically oozing with fish oil, and those 2 little smarty pants just gave it all a miss.

I think I may have even seen WW give me 'the claw' :cool: one night as she strolled disdainfully by the trap as I checked it one night. Well, we shall see, Ms. WW. True, I finally felt obliged to return the borrowed trap to Royal Oak Feeds of Simcoe (thx again, :angel: folks!); I think I'm going to bite the bullet and buy one...I actually tried to a while ago, but all the TSC's in my area were out of the size I need. BUT, this is so not over!

Alley Cat Allies, the great :cat: feral cat resource in Washington D.C. was kind enough to call me back, and I had an encouraging chat with someone; 'Briana' emailed me some ADVANCED/HA! trapping tips i.e. take a week of so off, then put food increasingly close to trap (I did withhold food, but not water, for a few days, which is recommended).

Sooo, sorry not to be able to report more triumphs of ze livetrap, but I'm not done yet...just don't tell WW and Mini Me :fingerscr !! My feral project for this week involves helping Pride Rescue in Hamilton transport a feral-ish family from one town to another for fostering and vet care; that should keep my mind off trapping disasters!?

In the meantime, a pic of formerly feral Sparkman getting ready for the Tour de France...with all the doping controls supposedly being implemented this year, he figures it's be a cake,uh,catwalk :D .

kashtin's kin
July 4th, 2007, 12:50 AM
...had to resize the pic! While I'm posting again, I meant to thank everyone again for your comments and encouragement; it's what I turn to when the trap is empty AGAIN :goodvibes: !! Special hi to the Feral Folly Regulars :D .

p.s. former ferals are AMAZING inside insect catchers...Sparky and Pepper perform like highly trained Special Forces critters as they stalk and pounce on flying thingys (total cooperative effort, until it comes to who gets to munch on the moth!).

July 4th, 2007, 01:26 AM
Sparky's so handsome :love:
Harold the Feral also soo handsome :lovestruck:

moth muching :yuck: grosses me out :yuck: hope they kill them first heehee

how is Sonja holding up in wee farm o' formerly feral cats?

July 4th, 2007, 07:48 AM
KK,thank's for the morning laugh,I was waiting for another report from feral-land...Sparky is adorable,great pic:cat:
My cats love those big juice to get off the PC,hubby is pacing behind me:laughing:

kashtin's kin
July 19th, 2007, 01:21 AM
Contrary to popular belief, I have not trapped mySELF in a livetrap...and thus been incommunicado. (Suffice to say that rumour about moi swanning about in the Muskokas is sadly, equally untrue.) In fact, it's just been more-of-same in Critterland: wake up to Sparky/Pepper :crazy: bar-room brawl a/k/a WWF MEOW, breakfast service inside and outside (Wee Wilhelmina scowls :mad: as I rush to feed the Incredible Pawing Pony before her feline highness), litterbox patrol, critter laundry, crateS and livetrap maintenance, research feral livetrapping strategies et al., all ending with the Pepper/Sparky bedtime bar-room brawl and a race for bedspace. (I have GOT to get a bit faster!)

I did get away for a few hours one w'end, in order to transport 5 kittens/2 momcats (crates x 3) from point A to point B in a cooperative effort involving Elmira Cat Rescue and Pride Rescue of Hamilton. 'Susan' has an amazing set-up in Elmira, and is a fantastic resource re: cats in general, and ferals; 'Nicole' is tireless on behalf of Pride cats. I was both humbled and inspired after meeting the above cat :angel: advocates...don't want to sound too corny, but honestly, I feel like a mere dabbler in cats, in comparison!

No more breathless Adventures in Trapping of late; I think Harold and Gerald spread the word on the tomcat grapevine, and Mini Me has been very elusive. However, I finally bought my first livetrap recently, and will do my best to catnab where appropriate; I can still borrow another trap or 2 (multiple traps apparently being helpful at times). It's nice to see WW on a daily basis :fingerscr , close to a year after her 'TNR' experience...and the two juvenile Former Ferals are a constant [boisterous!] reminder of what CAN be done in terms of turning around feline fates!

Below, a pic that explains why we don't have many sit-down meals around here :shrug: !!

July 19th, 2007, 06:37 AM
Lol at the cats in the box:laughing: I love it :thumbs up
You can see that at my place as well. My room-mate's cats love boxes:D

As always your story is very entertaining and you deserve more pats on the back for everything that you are doing:highfive:

July 19th, 2007, 07:19 AM
KK,I can sooo relate,after stepping in a mushy hairball this morning(Chicos),discovering my white cat(Vinnie) had had runny poop attached and my Tabby(Rocky) had missed the litterbox,before I even had my cup of coffee...
Finally sitting down for my coffee and Newspaper,2 cats decide reading the paper is a waste of time for me,but the best way to get attention for them:frustrated:
Well,I love them anyway:lovestruck:
I've never heard of Pride Rescue in Hamilton,nor Elmira Rescue,sounds like wonderful people:thumbs up
Thank's for checking in with us,I needed some comic relief this morning:laughing:
The boxed cats are soooo funny,sooo typical!:cat:

July 19th, 2007, 06:12 PM
Oh the Pride Rescue! I got Pawz from them! Never did meet Nicole but I did like how Pawz was homed and all (though how that lady was able to stand like 15 cats in the house (even if the babies were leaving in six weeks) I will NEVER understand LOL). If you happen to see her, tell her Pong's doing well and has moved to Guelph :) lol

I love the cats in the box. In fact I've got one of Leo...except Leo's too big FOR the box. Its rather amusing watching him squish himself inside this tiny little box for ten minutes. :D


July 19th, 2007, 06:37 PM
I havent been following the story except for this last page,love the scarface kitty,but kudos to you for what you are doing.:thumbs up :thumbs up

July 20th, 2007, 01:34 AM
KK so glad to hear from you I was going to start bugging you with "update us" msgs in this thread.

Kudos on the transport:highfive:

MiniMe will slip up one of these days & get herself caught (esp since you already caught WW - #1 toughie), hopefully very soon :fingerscr

I'm assuming the box on the left contains Goose, so the two tabbies are Senor Odin & Sparky right?? Or is one of them Sonja??? How has she adjusted to the wee :crazy: farm?? :D

kashtin's kin
July 20th, 2007, 11:58 PM
Just a quick post to say thanks for the ongoing encouragement, everyone :grouphug: ; better motivatation than even really goooood chocolate! And Growler, what an accurate eye you have (you should get a prize :thumbs up !)...half the time I can't keep my :cat: catmasters straight (pony gets called a cat name, one dog gets the pony's moniker ETC.!).

Oh, and WW is really hanging out a lot with Ponyface-plus she lets me get within a couple of feet of her :goodvibes: ...too bad she's already spayed! (I'm really glad WW has very distinctive short-ish legs, 'cuz she looks awfully um, full; thank goodness we know it's FOOD, and not kittens.)

July 21st, 2007, 12:33 AM
WW is really hanging out a lot with Ponyface-plus she lets me get within a couple of feet of her :goodvibes: ...too bad she's already spayed! (I'm really glad WW has very distinctive short-ish legs, 'cuz she looks awfully um, full; thank goodness we know it's FOOD, and not kittens.)

So cute she has a Pony friend:lovestruck: She is probably getting over the whole Capture/Spay/Release incident & knows you are providing her food (she thinks you can be all that bad:D ) so maybe she is coming around a wee bit?? :fingerscr :goodvibes:

Definately good she won't be through all that kitten business again:highfive:

July 21st, 2007, 06:37 AM
KK,thank YOU for what you are doing and thank you for giving me a sometimes much needed reason to smile early morning:thumbs up

kashtin's kin
August 2nd, 2007, 01:41 AM
Another flippin' post lost, after an hour of typing industriously away...oh well, at least I was somewhat entertained (trying to be philosophical, but I just HATE when that happens; cyperspace can be so unforgiving :yell: ).

To summarize much more briefly-sigh-I've recently been somewhat involved in monitoring a neigbourhood neglect/abandonment case involving a horse, and the unspeakably obtuse, cruel, and delusional [moron] owner. Things culminated today with the most UNintrepid moi in the role of 'Pseudo-P.I.', complete with stakeout items such as binoculars/notepad/camera.

I managed to question the owner with civility (when I really pined for a stun gun :frustrated: ), get SOME info, and avoid being suckered into being harangued by said owner (a DIalogue with at least some relation to reality was too much to hope for, alas).

However, it was a really harrowing experience for the conflict-shy me; I did what I could for the horse under the circumstances, but I wish I had had the guts to 'speak for the animal' much more loudly. Although I kept scrupulously under control and within the law, I was physically intimidated and verbally abused (nothing compared to the poor horse's experiences :sad: ). I have gotgotgot to get a cellphone...

I'd originally intended to post on 31 July, in honour of the anniversary of Pepper-in her tiny :evil: feral guise-attempting to rearrange my previously flawless skin and divest me of significant blood. (That was when I observed one morning that she had a throat wound...and an acute brain short caused me to confuse her with a cuddly domestic kitten.) Note to self: do NOT attempt to touch, let alone grab ANY wild critter!!

Yesterday was a really disheartening experience, and I decided to post in an attempt to counteract some of the rotten stuff; this BB (as I've said a few times) has always represented a caring and reassuring environment of people pretty much the polar opposite of the unevolved creeps I dealt with :wall: on Wednesday. It's that poor horse that is really in need of support and comfort, needless to say...I don't mean to whinge about my delicate sensibilties...

Whatever the case, I wanted to do something more positive, amongst folks who love and nurture critters: here are [hopefully] two contrasting pics of Pepper, who has apparently resigned herself gracefully to la vie indoors, with me at her beck and call.

p.s. more on the 'other'/outdoor :cat: ferals later...

August 2nd, 2007, 07:17 AM
KK,Pepper is so sweet,looks like am angel,but I suppose there is a little devil lurking:laughing:
It must be disheartening and frustrating dealing with an abuser,I would have to practise learning to keep my cool.:evil:
I hope there is a solution for this poor horse,with enough proof of abuse,someone will step in,I hope..:pray:
Peoples cruelty to innocent,helpless animals never ceases to horrify me,but that's why there are people like you and many others on this Forum,to undo evil deeds by monsters.
Nice to hear from you again,I hope there is a happy ending for the horse:fingerscr
Looking forward to more kitty news and pics:cat:

August 3rd, 2007, 01:34 AM
Ahhhh Pepper, such a mischeivious face :D So cute.

:fingerscr Good luck w/the horse situation, certainly hope the :loser: doesn't get to keep the poor thing.

Perhaps La Ponita would like herself a new friend?????

kashtin's kin
August 4th, 2007, 12:47 AM
...quick thanks to chico2 and growler for the 'horse encouragement'; I was on the computer and phone all Friday tracking down rescue and auction info...will keep plugging (some really great horse rescue :angel: folks are getting the word out).

La Ponita has a pony playdate every week, which is going to have to do for now...I spent a TON of $$ keeping my 25 yr. old horse going till last fall (would have kept on getting in debt, but she finally crossed that 'quality of life' fine line).

Also, 'Handsome' would have to be isolated, as he has been much lacking basic yet vital vet care...and I have no idea how serious the tumours are. Sigh.

My present cat challenge involves trying to keep Pepper from reaching the proportions of a pony, herself! My insatiable little 'familiar' is relentless :evil: in her pursuit of FOOD. I've found cats who suffer from early food privation tend to eat everything they can...but Pepper doesn't have that excuse!

I'm trying to convince Sparky to get his sister moving more; step class, spinning, jogging, boxing...even Richard Simmons classes, I don't care!!

p.s. FINALLY! got a pic of WW; the only other one was of her hiding in her cavebox in the dog cage after being spayed...just glowing eyes, really. THIS pic at least shows an entire :cat: cat! I have to 'size' the pic before posting, which I will do soon!

August 7th, 2007, 04:50 AM
:thumbs up I posted a couple of months ago regarding a feral cat and her 3 kittens living (off and on) in a deserted shed just off our rural property. At the time there was also a family of badgers in the vicinity, which complicated things. I was looking for any ideas/suggestions re: capture of this cat family (hope to spay/neuter and find homes).

There were a few replies, which I greatly appreciated; I've tried to find my original post and those replies, but I haven't had any's no doubt due to my lack of computer skills.

I thought I would post a bit of an update, and explain my 2 month gap in posting; not to get into details, but I managed to get myself bitten in an unrelated incident (yes, I am a pretty experienced critter person/caretaker/slave...blush). I ended up having to get rabies shots, while also dealing with a bit of a family crisis, thus I am just getting back to the feral cat project now.

The mother and all 3 kittens are living in a different shed-again, just off our land-and are daily regulars at my feeding station by the back door, under a trailer. I have managed to [v. carefully] stroke 2 of the kittens while they are eating, but they are fickle i.e. I can touch them one day, but not the next.

There is absolutely no way I can just grab one, as I know they would shred me; from asking around it does seem that a livetrap is about the best option (I'd have to buy one, as there is no Humane Society etc. in my area...that is dealing with cats at this time). I'm prepared to try to do that ('trap'), but have never used a trap. Also, how might that work, in that there are 4 cat/kittens?

If it weren't for the breeding/overpopulation issue, I would be tempted to just keep feeding this family and do nothing more, but as we all know the family will expand exponentially. I am anxious to try to resolve this situation before winter arrives, and more importantly before the kittens breed.

If anyone has dealt with something like this, and/or has any advice, I would really appreciate it...and I won't just post and disappear this time. ...Look forward to any replies. Thanks.

thanks as we type a feral kitten is bathing himself in my arms never just grab one without leather gloves or a oven mitt on your hand anyway best thing to doif these fickle kittens allopw any handling then remember food is the key way you communicate with them
and trap and spay , neutr and release is the best solution, you might have to find out how to get this done in your community don't stop feeding them
get ahold of the mom in a trap if you can and once you have the kittens cage them in separate crates while they are being socialized look up socializing feral kittens on the internet yes it can be done the younger the better they must be totally separated from the mom cat and she must be spayed then you need to help them in the winter for shelter sounds like they have a shed put old sofa cushions in there get a big cardboard box and tape it all closed after you put a sofacushion in there then tape it and cut an opening for the cats to get in just above the sofa cusion, they will be warm and cozy in this cardboard winter cat house hehe keep working on trust issues feeding and improving the food quality gets them to come closer and more often
look up trapping feral cats on the internet try the mackerel soaked paper inside the trap trick they love that smell yuckif yu can get the mom cat trapped then get her to the shelter or a vet that will do feral cats, some will some will not try contacting feral cat solutions i have four feral kittens right now and their mom does not stay too far away because the food is good here
i intend to get her trapped eventually put the kittens in a crate behind the trap she might enter t communicate with her young
By the way if you add brewers yeast or nutritional yeast to any cats or dogs diet it makes them not so desirable to the flea infestation fleas hate the taste of a pet or critter that eats or consumes brewers yeast dunno why
i have a recipe for my nursing feral cats
one large can of friskies salmon
about a cup of cooked diced or mashed carrots its a great filler in cat food they seem to like it i would not give them too much soy a common filler in dry cat food it gives them gas use carrots instead it is far better for them and by the way some canned peas don't hurt either just not too much, a little leftover cereal like grapenuts is good cats do need a bit of fiber in their diet my tame neutered cat loves steamed or raw cauliflour we can't keep him out of it cats do like vegetables just mixed in low abundance with fish or salmon cat food the majority being eggs and cat food
Don't give them only dry food it has lots of problems on a cats urinary tract and mixing their food as I do is good for them some would scoff I feed them leftovers in it sometimes
dry food is probably better than starving to death and I do keep a bin full of the dry with lots of water available but the food they really love is my recipe!
Trust me I have spayed and released feral ex mom cats that are nine years old still going strong.
It's kitty health food;)
scrambled eggs, the cats get all the eggs over a week old
olive oil like two tablespoons of it
this helps with furballs and cat vomiting again i do not know why
half a cup of oatmeal cooked or uncooked
any fully cooked rice is a good addition to this
oh yes a quarter cup of brewers yeast or nutritional yeast for fleas it makes the fleas go away naturally
and i stir it all up and feed it to the ones that i am trying to capture
food is the language feral cats understand the best
sometimes i add a little roast garlic and bacon grease if my husband cooks bacon, i am a vegeterian myself but the cats aren't
use your imagination you can parlay one can of cat food into a high protein meal that feral cats will trustand the more they love your restaurant the easier it will be to trap them
oh and about not feeding cats milk
nursing feral cats can have yuor sour milk the ones you have not captured yet by the wayit does not make them sick it gives them the backdoor trots
but its ok for feral cats that are going to the batheroom outside
by the way i put catboxes with kitty litter on my porch at my feral feed station and they use it i have no tomcat smell at my feed station since i put the cat boxes out there:thumbs up
when i bring a feral cat home from being spayed they are usually constipated from the anesthesia guess what te vet says to give them for constipation , yes it is milk never hurts to teach the wild ones about the advantages the housdecats have
about livetraps they are a great invention
you can "rent" them from the shelter by giving them a check that they never cash you get the check back when you return the trap usually
or many vets have them to rent for a small fee
or some feed stores have them too for rent but you might want to invest in one or make a box trap
but a good live trap costs about $67.00 and just type in live animal traps your browser will take you right to it
now if you should find a litter of kittens if they are 4 weeks or so old remove them from the mother and start isolating them to start socializing them to start feeding them put a bit of wet cat food on the end of a gloved finger and gently pry open their mouth stick the food in there and watch them eat it to get the idea, younger kittens need to be fostered by a tame mother cat or left with the wild mom until they are about four weeks old

August 7th, 2007, 05:59 AM
:thumbs up

thanks as we type a feral kitten is bathing himself in my arms never just grab one without leather gloves or a oven mitt on your hand anyway best thing to doif these fickle kittens allopw any handling then remember food is the key way you communicate with them
and trap and spay , neutr and release is the best solution, you might have to find out how to get this done in your community don't stop feeding them
get ahold of the mom in a trap if you can and once you have the kittens cage them in separate crates while they are being socialized look up socializing feral kittens on the internet yes it can be done the younger the better they must be totally separated from the mom cat and she must be spayed then you need to help them in the winter for shelter sounds like they have a shed put old sofa cushions in there get a big cardboard box and tape it all closed after you put a sofacushion in there then tape it and cut an opening for the cats to get in just above the sofa cusion, they will be warm and cozy in this cardboard winter cat house hehe keep working on trust issues feeding and improving the food quality gets them to come closer and more often
look up trapping feral cats on the internet try the mackerel soaked paper inside the trap trick they love that smell yuckif yu can get the mom cat trapped then get her to the shelter or a vet that will do feral cats, some will some will not try contacting feral cat solutions i have four feral kittens right now and their mom does not stay too far away because the food is good here
i intend to get her trapped eventually put the kittens in a crate behind the trap she might enter t communicate with her young
By the way if you add brewers yeast or nutritional yeast to any cats or dogs diet it makes them not so desirable to the flea infestation fleas hate the taste of a pet or critter that eats or consumes brewers yeast dunno why
i have a recipe for my nursing feral cats
one large can of friskies salmon
about a cup of cooked diced or mashed carrots its a great filler in cat food they seem to like it i would not give them too much soy a common filler in dry cat food it gives them gas use carrots instead it is far better for them and by the way some canned peas don't hurt either just not too much, a little leftover cereal like grapenuts is good cats do need a bit of fiber in their diet my tame neutered cat loves steamed or raw cauliflour we can't keep him out of it cats do like vegetables just mixed in low abundance with fish or salmon cat food the majority being eggs and cat food
Don't give them only dry food it has lots of problems on a cats urinary tract and mixing their food as I do is good for them some would scoff I feed them leftovers in it sometimes
dry food is probably better than starving to death and I do keep a bin full of the dry with lots of water available but the food they really love is my recipe!
Trust me I have spayed and released feral ex mom cats that are nine years old still going strong.
It's kitty health food;)
scrambled eggs, the cats get all the eggs over a week old
olive oil like two tablespoons of it
this helps with furballs and cat vomiting again i do not know why
half a cup of oatmeal cooked or uncooked
any fully cooked rice is a good addition to this
oh yes a quarter cup of brewers yeast or nutritional yeast for fleas it makes the fleas go away naturally
and i stir it all up and feed it to the ones that i am trying to capture
food is the language feral cats understand the best
sometimes i add a little roast garlic and bacon grease if my husband cooks bacon, i am a vegeterian myself but the cats aren't
use your imagination you can parlay one can of cat food into a high protein meal that feral cats will trustand the more they love your restaurant the easier it will be to trap them
oh and about not feeding cats milk
nursing feral cats can have yuor sour milk the ones you have not captured yet by the wayit does not make them sick it gives them the backdoor trots
but its ok for feral cats that are going to the batheroom outside
by the way i put catboxes with kitty litter on my porch at my feral feed station and they use it i have no tomcat smell at my feed station since i put the cat boxes out there:thumbs up
when i bring a feral cat home from being spayed they are usually constipated from the anesthesia guess what te vet says to give them for constipation , yes it is milk never hurts to teach the wild ones about the advantages the housdecats have
about livetraps they are a great invention
you can "rent" them from the shelter by giving them a check that they never cash you get the check back when you return the trap usually
or many vets have them to rent for a small fee
or some feed stores have them too for rent but you might want to invest in one or make a box trap
but a good live trap costs about $67.00 and just type in live animal traps your browser will take you right to it
now if you should find a litter of kittens if they are 4 weeks or so old remove them from the mother and start isolating them to start socializing them to start feeding them put a bit of wet cat food on the end of a gloved finger and gently pry open their mouth stick the food in there and watch them eat it to get the idea, younger kittens need to be fostered by a tame mother cat or left with the wild mom until they are about four weeks old
You would not believe thec relationships you can have with feral cats I had one that decided to be a pet housecat and she took walks with me back when she was wild we were just friends and she chose to reside for the longest time in an old dog pen, why- because the other feral cats were always attacking her
I took her and had her spayed
then kept her in the bathroom with a harness and tethered to a iron skillet until she was not so skittish about house noises
she was with us for at least a decade she died from diabetes and yes cats get that too weight gain or loss can be a symptom of it
Her ashes are in a tin in the china cabinet, you do get attached my husband wants her ashes mingled with his one day
Another feral cat we had was a Tom named Smokey he was very wild but took up residence every winter in the attic above my pantry and stayed there all winter long, if he would be gone he always came home on friday when I cooked a big salmon
The city trapped him and destroyed him claiming he was a wild cat, that cat wasn't wild when he entered my kitchen
no I never had him neutered; he wasn't my cat but I wanted him
I wanted to but he was my first feral cat actually he might have owned me not the other way around
the gene pool for cats is small in my community, I see a lot of his descendants, but I never owned him
I just was his friend
He was a beautiful Russian Blue tomcat that must have been an escaped purebred and whoever let him loose in our community was definitely improving the gene pool for cats in this town the human populaton is only 369 here and the cats were all inbred before he came. His descendants are now the healthiest of the feral population and my understanding is at one time the feral cats of this community were so inbred that kittens were born with encephaly I actually saw that brains on the outside of the skull
and that seems tragic to me.
I always wanted to get Smokey neutered but reasonably he did lend some strong genetics to the cat population of this town.
He loved my kitchen and my pantry. I know he was feral but we were friends.
Another place yuo might ask about getting animal traps is check with the Fish and Game department they would know
If my spelling is bad think of it this way I am holding a feral baby kitty that I am socializing as I type, and feral kittens no matter how sweet they seem should not go to homes that are not aware of their feral origins they are a far more challenging pet
now a few minutes ago when I went to put Ribbin back in the cage he screamed afraid to go back in, he loved falling asleep in my arms I think I am making progress here earlier today the wild mom cat poked her head in the door and there he was with her we opened the door and the mom ran off and he wasn't quite so fast Zack, a friend caught him and I put him into the big birdcage with his brothers yes I do need more crates the crate in my kitchen needs to be hosed out.
I cannot give the feral kittens to just any home either, they need to go to someone who has patience for them
Ribbon liked being cuddled! Ha he wants to be a domestic I bet.
The Mom cat is being a _itch about not wanting to be captured but trust issues we never did anything mean to her ever except take her kittens away so they get a chance at a future, she is well fed.

August 7th, 2007, 06:50 AM
:rip: You would not believe thec relationships you can have with feral cats I had one that decided to be a pet housecat and she took walks with me back when she was wild we were just friends and she chose to reside for the longest time in an old dog pen, why- because the other feral cats were always attacking her
I took her and had her spayed
then kept her in the bathroom with a harness and tethered to a iron skillet until she was not so skittish about house noises
she was with us for at least a decade she died from diabetes and yes cats get that too weight gain or loss can be a symptom of it
Her ashes are in a tin in the china cabinet, you do get attached my husband wants her ashes mingled with his one day
Another feral cat we had was a Tom named Smokey he was very wild but took up residence every winter in the attic above my pantry and stayed there all winter long, if he would be gone he always came home on friday when I cooked a big salmon
The city trapped him and destroyed him claiming he was a wild cat, that cat wasn't wild when he entered my kitchen
no I never had him neutered; he wasn't my cat but I wanted him
I wanted to but he was my first feral cat actually he might have owned me not the other way around
the gene pool for cats is small in my community, I see a lot of his descendants, but I never owned him
I just was his friend
He was a beautiful Russian Blue tomcat that must have been an escaped purebred and whoever let him loose in our community was definitely improving the gene pool for cats in this town the human populaton is only 369 here and the cats were all inbred before he came. His descendants are now the healthiest of the feral population and my understanding is at one time the feral cats of this community were so inbred that kittens were born with encephaly I actually saw that brains on the outside of the skull
and that seems tragic to me.
I always wanted to get Smokey neutered but reasonably he did lend some strong genetics to the cat population of this town.
He loved my kitchen and my pantry. I know he was feral but we were friends.
Another place yuo might ask about getting animal traps is check with the Fish and Game department they would know
If my spelling is bad think of it this way I am holding a feral baby kitty that I am socializing as I type, and feral kittens no matter how sweet they seem should not go to homes that are not aware of their feral origins they are a far more challenging pet
now a few minutes ago when I went to put Ribbin back in the cage he screamed afraid to go back in, he loved falling asleep in my arms I think I am making progress here earlier today the wild mom cat poked her head in the door and there he was with her we opened the door and the mom ran off and he wasn't quite so fast Zack, a friend caught him and I put him into the big birdcage with his brothers yes I do need more crates the crate in my kitchen needs to be hosed out.
I cannot give the feral kittens to just any home either, they need to go to someone who has patience for them
Ribbon liked being cuddled! Ha he wants to be a domestic I bet.
The Mom cat is being a _itch about not wanting to be captured but trust issues we never did anything mean to her ever except take her kittens away so they get a chance at a future, she is well fed.

I never started out wanting an involvement with feral cats, they sort of just entered my life on their own but they are intriguing and I would not stop feeding them even though lots do breed I cannot capture all of them but I can make their lives better with shelter food and clean water

August 7th, 2007, 07:10 AM
:thumbs up

I I am fortunate in that I have had many feral cat friends over the years but i swear the ones that break my heart are the abandoned tame housecats that come to feed with the ferals, why do people dump out theior friends this way?

August 7th, 2007, 07:31 AM
Ellendar,thank you for what you are doing,the need is great,these kitties need all the help they can get:pray:
Ignorant people who abandon or dump their cats,believing they'll survive on their own,or simply don't care if they do,are unfortunately plentyful:yell:
Thankfully there are wonderful people like you,KK and many others on this Forum who take these poor little souls under their wings:cat:

August 12th, 2007, 11:24 PM
p.s. FINALLY! got a pic of WW; the only other one was of her hiding in her cavebox in the dog cage after being spayed...just glowing eyes, really. THIS pic at least shows an entire :cat: cat! I have to 'size' the pic before posting, which I will do soon!

KK I've been going :crazy: waiting for the pics :D I can't wait to see WW :D

Any news on Handsome the horse?

kashtin's kin
August 12th, 2007, 11:52 PM
My apologies re: my earlier promise to post the first [half!?] decent photograph of that elusive gal, WW...and my tardiness in following through. Actually taking a daytime pic of WW was somewhat of a photography lottery win :D for me (between my ineptness with a camera, and WW's legendary determination not to become Star Katz/People Katz/US Katz fodder :cat: ).

WW seems to enjoy hanging about while I do pony chores. This is of course all on her terms; if she finds my work unamusing :shrug: or has more pressing engagements-i.e. perusing her buffet, personal grooming etc.-WW slips discreetly away. However, particularly during early a.m. and late p.m. hours, as Ponyface is fed et al., WW likes to keep close tabs on her personal waitress (her food is 'refreshed' at these times).

Except for her 'spay entrapment' almost a year ago (WW's lawyer forbids her to comment :rolleyes: on this issue, as her case-accusing me of, um, entrapment-is still before the courts), I've never attempted to move towards WW...let alone catch her, and it's interesting how close she will stay. WW is often between 2 and 5 feet from me; she likes to semi-conceal herself behind weeds and other small objects, but this does not interfere with her micro-managing skills!

Without further ado, then, ze legendary feral [ex!]momcat...WW (catching some rest atop her condo...after she had just ordered me to skim her dratted pool for the 'nth' time that day!).

p.s. had forgotten the pic was taken at dusk, so MORE 'glowing eyes'...but at least you can see the rest of WW this time...also, with reference to growler's horse query-things are moving slowly, but I haven't given up and will let you know what happens (must reiterate that helping ferals is easier in that one isn't dealing with OWNERS intent on misrepresenting health of animal/trying to extract as much money from sale of same animal...when horse is suitable for rescue/companion home only, and is being denied appropriate vet care...). OOPS, rant started-that's why I was trying to stay on [WW] topic for now :frustrated: .

August 13th, 2007, 12:27 AM
aww sweet WW hanging out on the way making more friends :cloud9:

Pretty soon you'll have her in the house with the rest of them ;) :D

It's so good she likes :) Former Feral Villa Spa & Resort :) so much she decided hang around for so long. Do you know if she has seen Pepper or Sparky through the windows?

Any luck seeing Mini around lately?

August 13th, 2007, 06:41 AM
There she is,the little black beauty,I am sure once winter is back(:yuck: )she'll get closer,thank's KK:thumbs up

August 15th, 2007, 01:36 AM
aww KK love the Sonja :cat: pic from Chico2's congrats thread, it looks like she's settling in real good :highfive:

kashtin's kin
August 28th, 2007, 01:39 AM
...a while ago I posted to celebrate?? my first (and almost last :yell:) tete a tete with Pepper. Luckily, our relationship endured that little [MY] skin-shredding episode! Today represents an exciting but less painful day in This Feral Year...the first anniversary of Sparky's arrival inside.

Last Sept./Oct. was a bit of a feral whirlwind; I had to go back to some of my original posts to jog-boot, boot-the old memory. Nabbing La Sparkman in the back porch marked the initial success along the long and winding road of capturing and socializing :cat: Les Ferals. It's been quite the year, as documented in this thread!

I am still a looong way from Cat Guru status, but have nevertheless hauled myself up the ol' learning curve a fair distance-with regard to ferals et al.-and as long as my oxygen tank keeps going, so will I (despite my height phobia thing :eek: ). This busy feral-go-round experience has taught me so much; I'm glad this thread exists, if only to remind me of the stuff I have learned thus far :rolleyes: .

Once again, a huge and heartfelt :grouphug: thanks to all the folks on this BB who have given me-and in turn, the Ferals-so much support, advice, and encouragement. What could have been a really frustrating and difficult task had I had nowhere to vent/ask questions/borrow valium!! was transformed into a series of fun anecdotes...for your part in keeping me from ending up prematurely, um, 'institutionalized', I am eternally grateful.

Last night I was mixing up a batch of fresh home-made cat food to augment the commercial fare (this, from a person who survives on sandwiches :thumbs up out of sheer laziness, only reluctantly dusting off the stove when obliged to entertain), and happened to get a couple of pics of La Sparkman-du-jour himself batting clean-up, so to speak.

August 28th, 2007, 07:06 AM
Hi there KK,glad you checked in:thumbs up
Whatever Sparky is eating,must have been really tasty:cat:
Your year with these little guys,must have been a great experience and you certainly made it sound like a lot of fun,minus the war-wounds:yell:
You always manage to put a smile on my face,when sometimes events here are really upsetting,so thank you,for all the entertainment and for beeing a great kitty-rescuer:thumbs up

August 30th, 2007, 12:25 AM
I joined this BB after alot of your adventures were nothing more than memories & words on a screen, but have enjoyed every minute of your very entertaining writing on a most amusing herd (:laughing:) of subjects both feral & non-feral alike. :)

Wonderful to have a :crazy: clean-up crew that gets paid their dinner isn't it :D Sometimes when you (or maybe it's just me?) really don't feel like doing dishes it's easy to think *well this one's been cleaned already by <insert name> ie [Sparky], no need to wash it* :rolleyes: ;) :laughing: :crazy: oh well :shrug: gotta wash the others anyways so one more bowl won't hurt :D

You have & are continuing to do such a great job for all the ferals in your area, keep it up feral kitty :angel: :)

kashtin's kin
August 30th, 2007, 12:44 AM
How quickly things change-from celebrating :party: Sparky's 1st anniversary as a housecat (he was still a feral for the initial period, but he 'capitulated' quicker than his stubborn sisters), to having to bring Pepper in to the vet Tues. aft. :sad: .

Pep had sicked up a few times in the past week; in a multi-cat household, one cannot be a stranger to 'sick-ups' for long...however when they differ from the norm (i.e. bile, too frequent production from one cat etc.), it's time to take a close look. I'd put Pepper on some bland food, and she seemed to be improving, as in eating/cavorting with her brother.

But I realized on Tues. that we'd better have a vet consult; we were able to pretty much rule out some scenarios, but I left Pepper at the clinic for an x-ray and bloodwork. Nothing definitive has come up thus far, although she did spike a minor-ish fever today.

If she seems to be doing alright Thurs., they will slowly try her with some food. ...In the meantime, I'm my usual SO NOT cool and stoic self. I'm going about the daily routine and all that (PONIES wait for no [wo]man), but I am soooo worried. In situations like this (critter illness), I tend to keep things to myself-amazing for a chatterbox like me-until things are hopefully positively resolved.

But in this case, what with Pepper being a public figure and all, I thought I would let you all know of her illness. She has been SUCH a character over the past year; all of our animals are special to us critterfolk, but lil Pep is sort of my 'familiar'...stubborn, food-loving et al. I guess the ferals and I have been through so much together, that we have a slightly different sort of bond than our normal??/rescue cats.

I'm trying to reassure Sparky and WW that I'm doing my best for their sister/daughter...wish I could reassure myself as well. As for that 'jingles' request, horse BB's have a tradition of wishing jingles for people/horses in times of trouble; some horse bits have a jointed metal 'curb chain' about 4-6" long, and that is what is shaken for jingle wishes (literally or figuratively).

I :pray: and jingle that Pepper will be alright. I've always been grateful for the support I've found on this BB; just articulating Pepper's Plight has helped. As Pepper's [lowly-paid] agent and press officer, I'll let you know how things go...:candle: .

August 30th, 2007, 01:47 AM
aww :sad: poor :sick: Pepper ~ get well soon :cat: :pawprint:

well here's a few cyber :goodvibes: :goodvibes: :goodvibes: :goodvibes: jingles for Pepper :cat: :fingerscr

hoping & :pray:ing for good news

August 30th, 2007, 03:18 AM
Investing in a humane trap is a good idea if you sincerely want to help
e bay has traps for less than $30.00 and yes there is shipping THese will need to be trapped and altered and as soon as possible

August 30th, 2007, 03:26 AM
I lovethat yawn , that's a nice looking kitty

August 30th, 2007, 03:44 AM
These have no memory of ever being feral, at first they were hissy, biting spitting do not touch me kittens, their feral Mom had taugfht them well, now they all want real cat food the wet kind with the scrambled eggs and the Brewers yeast in it, I adore them all, my husband says we should keep them, I said yes but they must be altered and given shots am certain they all need to be wormed And I want to capture the feral Mom cat who "visits" them in order to steal their food but she is gentle towards them and cares genuinely for them but I can see the food matters more to her she is very young quite self oriented and extremely thin but looks so much healthier since she has been eating what I feed those kittens Those kittens were born July 13th so still too young for the vet visit, for worming or even flea treatments but I bathed them in baby shampoo and got rid of the majority of the fleas I think they have ear mites but I am swabbing those out with Bactine it works pretty good and helps resist infections from the mites I must let the Mom visit until she is successfully trapped but I worry about her contact with these now tamed kittens and of her contact with my pets the spayed female Russian Blue cat and my neutered male Raggdoll he got ear mites from her i am sure of it She never misses meal times
I am so proud that these little feral kittens are so tame now and have healthy shiny coats, (that loive oil in my recipe" They are already cat box trained perfectly their coats are so shiny hard to tell thesetarted from a feral mom cat

August 30th, 2007, 04:13 AM
:thumbs up
no never just grab one always use the gloves oven mitts work in a pinch but good leather gloves the kind welders use are good

August 30th, 2007, 04:16 AM
just look on e bay for ahile until you find a price you like

August 30th, 2007, 07:19 AM
Ellendar,we ALL appreciate your knowledge and experience,also for beeing a kitty:angel: we need more people like you..
However,sometimes it seems like you have not read the posts before replying.
In Kashtins Kins case she learned by experience and I believe she now knows all the tricks of capturing and helping feral cats/kittens,she's done a wonderful thing:thumbs up
Don't get me wrong,I really appreciate your advice,as I am sure do others.:thumbs up

KK,all our paws and fingers are crossed for Peppers quick recovery,after all you and the kitties have been through,she better not be seriously ill:pray:

kashtin's kin
September 8th, 2007, 12:24 AM
I meant to post a bit earlier regarding 'Pepper's Progress', but I was too busy biting what's left of my nails for a few days. Fortunately-YAY:thumbs up -it seems that whatever virus Peps had was annihilated by antibiotics. Our glossy princessa has been keeping her food down for a week now, and appears to have recovered her chow-lovin' joie de vivre.

For now, she is dining on a special food for felines with 'tipsy tummies'; it's vet prescribed and therefore pricey, but it's working. When Pepper first began uppity-chucking her food, I slaved over a rice/chicken etc. homemade food, alas with no luck (Sparky LOVED it :cat: ).

Fingers et al. crossed:fingerscr that we have no more vet visits (canine/feline/equine) for a's no wonder that as someone without any extended healthcare plan, I'm reduced to begging my human Doc for any samples for myself!! I keep telling DH that it's not too late too order that 'Do It Yourself Home Surgery' kit (I'm a spazz :rolleyes: , but DH is one of these people that can turn their hand to just about ANYthing with success).

Below are Pepper and Sparky's first-anniversary-indoors poses...I'd like to get a pic or 2 of the OTHER Pepper (who's doing great, from all reports) from s.i.l, so I'll have to get on that...

p.s. I was afraid that Pepper would have revenge in mind once she returned home (she reverted to a very feral :evil: personality at the would I!), but after a few suspicious moments (once uncrated), she settled in happily; Sparky was sure thrilled to have his sis/playmate back, as the rest of our cats tend toward the 'crabby senior' reaction...especially when harassed by Le Sparkman.

kashtin's kin
September 8th, 2007, 12:31 AM
...don't know what happened to Sparky's pic, so I'll try again! Also, thanks to any/everyone who wished Pepper well-especially growler, and chico2 (as always!)...thanks so much :goodvibes: :grouphug: :D .

September 8th, 2007, 02:46 AM
YAY!!!! For Pepper :highfive: good girl for kickin' that nasty whatever-it-was :D KK those are great pics of the two cuties :cloud9: :lovestruck: hehe no more nasty :evil: vet trips for Pepper she wants to stick around the house not go galavanting about anymore :D

September 8th, 2007, 07:43 AM
Awww KK,Pepper is a little beauty,love her longish hair and I am relieved she's well again:thumbs up that's a great pic of her!
and the Sparkster,looks full of mischief,the way only tabby-kitties can.:laughing:
I am glad everything has calmed down in the KK household,let's keep it that way:pray:
Thank's for checking in:thumbs up

September 8th, 2007, 11:11 AM
Those are some beautiful kitties you have there and I certainly applaud your patience! :D :grouphug: Taking in ferals is one tough job. :highfive:

:pray: for your continued success and their continued health!

kashtin's kin
September 23rd, 2007, 01:27 AM
...okay, so it wasn't the standard domestic cat [more] extensive pat/scratch (hopefully the person scratching the kitty, not vice versa!) sort of thing, but after a whole year it WAS a Kodak :cat: moment, alas without the camera!

Actually, it's almost exactly a year since that canny momcat alias WW was trapped/spayed/released by the not-so-canny but stubborn moi ;) ; after her tiny daughter-Pepper-gave the stunned (i.e. I'll just pick up this feral kitty :loser:) moi a surprise! micro-dermabrasion treatment, I like to think I learned SOMEthing!?

WW has been spending more time in my immediate vicinity as I go about my pony servitude outside, and when I dole out her wet food at night she's been just inches from my hand...and more importantly the food, of course! A couple of days ago I almost gave her an absent-minded pat :eek: ; WW is so similar to Pepper in coat length and colour!

I stopped my hand in mid-air that night, and congratulated myself on saving an appendage just in time, but the next night I looked at WW and thought "what the hey"; if she was extending some form of friendship, I didn't want to offend. So, I just gave her a gentle pat-more of a fleeting touch, really-on her midsection.

WW moved back a bit, but not far, and not fast. It's been two nights of this now; I'm not thinking we'll be sharing a condo :cool: in Florida this winter, but hopefully things will continue to progress slowly... I was a bit hesitant about encouraging WW at all, as wariness is part of feral survival; one of my in-person cat gurus (Susan of Elmira Cat Rescue, and cat person extrodinaire) assured me that WW would still avoid other humans.

And that's the tale of 'one small pat for catservant, one big pat for feraldom??', or something like that! On the Pepper front, Her Royal Feline Highness appears to be fully recovered from that nasty virus, if the return of her rapacious appetite is any indication; she's also recovered the pound or so that she lost that week.

HRFH Pepper wishes to once again thank everyone for their concern, and subsequent congrats on her timely recovery :D; in lieu of a pic of her momma, Pepper has instructed me to post her latest photo portrait (she's now insisting she must sit for a properly painted portrait, no less, so I guess I'll have to look into that...).

September 23rd, 2007, 01:39 AM
YAY!!!! :highfive: WOOHOO!!! Alright WW! Good job KK :thumbs up I knew she come around eventually - she knows she's got a great thing going @ your place - baby steps, she just might really surprise you one day soon ;) :D

So glad HRFH Miss Pepper :cloud9: is all back to better :D
<in a southern drawl no less>: Fabulous Photo Pepper Dahling :D

September 23rd, 2007, 02:09 AM
It's been a while since I've checked in on this thread and it has been wonderful to catch up on the tales of the many ferals :cloud9:. Love the pics of the Sparkster and Pepper :cloud9:.

September 23rd, 2007, 07:25 AM
KK,A morning starting with an X-feral and a semi-feral report,is a good start:thumbs up
Even if WW will never become a housecat,she has food,the odd try at a pat and warmish stable to stay,a great improvement since her feral,preggers days a year ago.:thumbs up
Pepper,is wonderful black girl-kitty,I can understand how she wants a say in what pics you display of her:cat:

kashtin's kin
October 11th, 2007, 09:12 PM
This ongoing thread has as it's primary 'man[cat:cat:!]date' a Focus on Ferals, primarily the redoubtable matriarch of the WW clan (who settled here in the late spring of '06), and her irresistable offspring (Peppers 1 & 2 and Sparky) who have developed into happy domestic felines...even if they are still noticeably more alert than the average housecat!

If you're an insect of any kind in this house, the faster you take out life insurance the better :eek:!, and note to self: DON'T wear shorts when Pepper is on your lap and MAY be startled (how many impromptu micro-dermabrasion episodes does it take to learn :o this lesson??!!).

This past month or so all the cats/dogs et al. were not forgotten, but I spent much of my spare time looking for a VERY small pony to keep my riding pony-La Ponita Velveeta-company. LPV lived the vita solo for the past 6 mos. or so (aside from a few pony playdates when we hit the road in the Ponymobile), but I was determined to find her a compatible pasture playmate before winter.

When the colder weather hits, I'm still out feeding/choring a fair amount but I stow my saddle until spring; LPV being deprived of her frequent rides (I may have the reins in my hands, but we all know who's in the driver's seat..."NO Velvet, we are NOT trotting, er, cantering, er galloping YET??!!") over the winter means less attention/stimulation, which equals busy pony finding own'd be surprised at how much a smart pony can drop?! at the casino ;)!!

DH is a good sport, but he prefers not to spend every waking minute replacing fence rails, parts of barn etc. destroyed by LPV's various experiments in physics; an equine companion for her to eat/meditate/argue/play with was the only reasonable solution. And so began my first search for a pony/horse NOT to be ridden.

Not having to test-ride ponies did make this project considerably less stressfull i.e. no need to drag along helmet, crash vest, boots, prayer beads etc. On the other hand, it was still a challenge to find 'that perfect pony'; I quickly found that many ponies were quite obese (I spend enough time trying to keep LPV fit, and I HATE having to 'diet' outside critters), while others were quite happy to play catch-me-if-you-can endlessly (I was quite emphatically NOT looking for a 10k running partner).

These problems are often found in ponies because they are such canny little beasts :evil:, not always big enough to be ridden/schooled by adults; the weight thing can be traced back to their forbearer's lives eked out on scant rations (i.e. Shetland Islands), and the tendency of people to "feed that POOR pony begging for some sustenance!" It seems that grandparents are also inclined to impulsively buy a pony for grandchildren who quickly lose grandparents would NEVER have had to worry about entertaining ME if they'd only picked up on my subtle hints as a child ("PUHLEEESE can I have a PONY?!!!!).

Eventually, I found a well-proportioned and friendly little mare, and in due course brought her home in the Ponymobile; my only worry was that she might be a tad on the passive side for my rambunctious LPV. When 'TT' came off the trailer and my gal caught sight of her, all 4 of LPV's hooves left the ground simultaneously :eek:; I think she wondered what the heck I was doing with such a big dog!

This is pretty ironic, as LPV is a medium pony; when riding at small shows and some local arenas, large HORSES often do a double take when they first see us (some stables just don't have ponies). So LPV got a taste of her own medicine, so to speak...although it was very fleeting; within a few minutes both mares were companionably nibbling hay.

Aside from DH having to further pony-proof a couple of sections of the fence (who knew a pony could squeeze through an opening THAT small??), things have been going quite smoothly in the pasture. LPV is of course Alpha Mare without abusing her position too obnoxiously...while TT is quick to squeal a shrill "foul!" if she feels put upon. All in all, a pretty good equine match :D.

Meanwhile, back with Les Ferals, Sparky and the more-than-completely-recovered?!!! Pepper continue to turn the house into their own personal Cirque du Kitty at regular intervals...either that or they're practicing bar room brawl stunts for their upcoming movie roles!! As long as we humans look where we're going, and are not significantly weakened by flu etc., we are usually able to keep our feet :thumbs up-good for the ol' reflexes!

WW continues to allow me to touch her briefly and gently, ONLY when she is being served her preferred feline cuisine; she is growing a thick coat (I'm glad she's long-haired, as the warmth far outweighs the tedium of grooming!), and has lots of sub-dural insulation-fat!-as well. Pepper's twin-ish sister adopted by s.i.l. is doing great in her respective queendom; s.i.l. and I exchange anecdotes of our ex-feral's brilliance and incredible good looks, ad nauseum.

Pepper is now writhing all over the keyboard and making typing difficult; I think she senses this post is more 'pony' than PEPPER, and has decided enough is enough!! Below are-hopefully-a pic of LPV & TT, and also one of
Pepper and Sparky doing their post breakfast routine of watching WW (I feed WW before the 'indoors'; she is often grooming herself by the feeding station while her fascinated offspring look on...

p.s. La "Who Was That Masked Mare?!!" Ponita models the latest in fly masks, as well as an out-grown fly sheet...

October 11th, 2007, 09:24 PM
Great update :thumbs up. I'm glad the horses are getting along so well, I'm sure the new pony is enjoying life in her new digs :).

Love that pic of the former feral babies :lovestruck:.

October 11th, 2007, 09:48 PM
We had a feral cat adopt us once. What a mess? He sprayed all outside the house and my husband put on heavy gloves to catch him. He bit through the gloves. My husband was going to have to start rabie shots if we didn't catch him. We contained him in the garage and when animal control came to get him,what a fight! I felt bad for him. He was a strange looking cat,big with a big head. They think he was part bobcat. he did not have rabies but did have cat aids. They checked for rabies when they put him down. Sad.:shrug::cry::shrug: