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This is long. But I want to tell someone.

SeeMe
October 18th, 2007, 11:01 PM
I never really wanted a cat. I mean, like loads of other people, I looked at pictures of cute kittens, awwed over cuteoverload.com, and laughed at lolcats. But I never actually wanted one. After all, they excrete all sorts of things I want nothing to do with, shed all over the place, claw stuff up, and other things that I wanted absolutely no part of. There's a couple ferals running around my home, and I put food out for them, give them shelter, make sure they're not sick, but honestly, that's all the commitment I wanted with a cat. Sometimes I'd try to "tame them", so that I could get them into good, loving homes (perhaps through the SPCA. I don't know-- it never worked out.) I certainly never wanted an <i>inside</i> cat.

Until I met Henna. I was leaving to go to the store, when I spotted a little calico cat underneath the currant bushes out front. I had to wait for my mom anyway, so I sat down on the front porch and began talking to the cat. Within a few minutes she'd decided she wasn't afraid of me and came out to say hello. And she hasn't left since.

She was afraid at first. Most of the cats around here are afraid of people. There are a lot of bad people out there in the world, and a lot of people who like to hurt animals. But we seem to be a safe haven for them-- two big barns brimming over with mice, catnip growing wild everywhere, a cathouse, food... so many strays come through here. But so many of them have either never been petted by a human, or they've been hurt by one, so it's very hard to get close to them. Not Henna. After she got used to me, my brothers, my mom, she was extremely friendly. But she's not as close to anyone as she is to me. She would follow me around like a puppy,. purring and purring, and even jumping into my arms when she could. She'd let me carry her around, so long as I did not cross her Barrier. (She would not, and will not, go past a certain point on the property. Past this point is too close to the road for her.) I could scratch her belly without being bitten (a first for me! Most cats play bite when you do this. Not Henna!) I could even pet her while she was eating, and she wouldn't growl at me. I don't know when it happened, but I knew I had to give Henna the best home I could possibly give. A cat this loving, a cat who was so comfortable around humans, could not be a feral. She had to have been a drop off. We get many drop offs here. It's sortof out in the country, and I guess people see all the barns and think, "Oh goody. Farmers always like barn cats."

A few weeks after she came to us, Henna had kittens. We'd been expecting this (we were darn sure of her pregnancy when she arrived and none of us felt comfortable with an abortion.), and had put water in all the "usual" nesting places for her. In the barn, in the hay, all the warm, comfortable places a cat could want. But Henna did not choose any of them. She chose to have kittens in our balcony. (A wooden balcony, with two holes in the flooring--one on top, one on the bottom). Of course, we didn't discover this until one day I heard a loud, miserable "meow!" from the bushes. It was a baby kitten. I quickly figured out where the nest was, blocked up the hole he'd fallen out of, and returned him. And even after that, Henna did not move her kittens. She would let us play with them, and even allowed us to move them to a large rabbit cage, where we could be sure they (and she!) were safe. The plan was to raise the kittens until they were old enough to eat dry food, and be without their mother, then find them all good homes. (We have used a flea treatment and a dewormer on them already. Just a few days ago, in fact.)

It's been three months now. Two out of four of Henna's kittens (including the adventurous sky-diver) have found a permanent home with us here. One kitten has been adopted to a good home, and the other is waiting for his home.

And Henna? She's inside, where she belongs. As soon as we brought her in, she just jumped up on the couch, curled up, and purred. When we put a collar on her, she held quite still, and even thrust out her chest to show off her pretty "charm" (Which has her name, phone number, and an email address on it). She was an inside cat before. And every time I think about the people who abandoned her, my heart breaks a little inside. She's a beautiful cat, she really is. And she's so loving.

Recently (Two days ago, in fact) she was taken to the vet to be spayed. The reason I waited so long is because I'm kind of afraid of the unknown aspects of surgery, and I didn't want the kittens to lose their mother before they could be independant. I know it's a rarity, but hey, I actually had a dog who was allergic to vaccinations--odd things happen. It made me feel sick inside to take her to the vet. She's not a vocal cat, but that entire ride she was letting out sad, miserable meows. I'm sure that the last car ride she took was the one where her people got rid of her. The real heartbreaker, though, was when the vets gave me a guess as to how old she was. I had been thinking she was about five. No. "Around eighteen months" they said. That means, when she was dropped off at our house, she was just a few months over a year old. Past the cute and cuddly kitten stage, I guess.

I've never known a cat to be so loving. I didn't adopt Henna -- she adopted me. And I'm just fine with that. I love this little cat more than words can say. I don't know why, and it kind of seems silly, but she's... well, I don't know. She just needs me to love her. And I need her to love me. Kind of weird, considering I never really wanted a cat...

I really, really hate the people who drop their cats off though. There's a kitten outside. He doesn't have a name yet--we call him newkitty. He just showed up two days ago, and he's very, very frightened. I'd say he's about three months old. We're working with him (or her..) and trying to get him to not be afraid of people. I mean, it's not like it's killing me to try and tame the cats around here, but it's just so sickening to think that it might never, never stop. It's not a safe place. Not at all. The road we live on (Harley Road) is a horrible one. I don't recall a single day that I've driven down it and not seen at least three dead animals. Not only that, but at least one person puts out poisoned bait. He claims it's for the coyotes we sometimes hear. But mostly the cats get it. I've seen too many dying kittens crawling toward us, couching and puking with diarrhea to believe that any coyotes have ever gotten the damn bait.

And that's another thing. Yeah, it's farm area, but that does not mean that we're free of wild animals that will kill cats! Hawks, eagles, blackbirds, racoons, skunks, coyotes (once, a wolf) and so many other frigging animals that could kill a cat, and all those stupid people keep throwing their cats away... ugh. Sorry. I'm rambling now, I'll shut myself up.

Thanks for reading, if you read it all.
-SeeMe

mummummum
October 18th, 2007, 11:11 PM
Nice story! Farms and country homes are often the dumping grounds for unwanted pets by thoughtless and cruel people ~ thanks for being an :angel:! And we would love to see pix of all your kitties of course!

luckypenny
October 18th, 2007, 11:29 PM
I grew up on a farm as well but it was dogs that got dumped on our property :sad: . We would actually see people back up halfway on to our long driveway and push their pups out the door. Half the time, the dogs would start chasing the cars as they drove away. It broke our hearts.

What you and your family are doing is so wonderfully heartwarming. Thank you.

SeeMe
October 18th, 2007, 11:34 PM
Pictures, y'want pictures? Haha, i'm almost one step away from carrying around a wallet full of pictures... Unfortunatly, Henna's very, very hard to take pictures of, for some reason! So these pictures are before the kittens:

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v331/SeeMe/Picture353-1.jpg

Showing off my broom that a friend made for me. (I'm a Harry Potter geek.)

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v331/SeeMe/Picture360.jpg

Just being gorgeous (and pregnant.)

The kitties:

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v331/SeeMe/011.jpg
Kit9--he was adopted to a wonderful woman in Brantford just two days ago. He was very mature for his age--very calm, and serene. A zen kitty, if you will.

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v331/SeeMe/018.jpg
Yeller-- He's still waiting for a good home. He's a sweety. Shy, but he's still a sweety. I think he may have a home! (I hope so!) I wish he'd stop being camera shy--he has markings like a marble bengal. It's neat! He's called Yeller because of his colouring, and because he's a very, VERY vocal cat. The sort that just walks around meowing because he likes the sound of his own voice.

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v331/SeeMe/006.jpg
This is the kitten my brother's claimed for his own-- Napolean. I used to call him Puppy. He's an utter spaz! He'll gorge himself--to the point where he looks like he swallowed a baseball, if you don't stop him. He was the runt of the litter. And oh, how he loves to play! By the way, can you tell me what colour he is? I call him a brown tabby. Is that right? I love this picture of him. That's Yeller in the background

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v331/SeeMe/008.jpg

another shot of Napolean, with his lovely new collar. (His tag is in the mail!)


http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v331/SeeMe/007.jpg Tweak and his grass. He's adopted me, too. He's the biggest and the smartest of the bunch. Don't believe me? Well, he just opened my closed door! (It scared the begeebers out of me the first time he did it!) He sleeps in my room too--or at least he did. I'm trying to keep Henna seperate from everyone so that she won't get her stitches torn out. This means keeping her in my room. She's okay with that, Tweak isn't. We've got a cat toy that has a sort of teeter totter--there's a plastic vial filled with water and a marble in that rolls when the teeter totter moves-- and he's learned to work both sides by himself. He'll push down, then stick his paw under and push up. it's so cool!

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v331/SeeMe/004.jpg

And you can't see it, but his eyes are actually blueish-green. I kept waiting for them to change colour like the rest of the kittens did, but they didn't!

One more shot of him (This was the first time I was able to take pictures of him that weren't blurred because he was moving. I got three good ones.

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v331/SeeMe/002.jpg He also sleeps with his tongue sticking out!

luckypenny
October 18th, 2007, 11:41 PM
Gorgeous kitties :cloud9: . Somebody ought to tell Henna she'll get into an accident if she continues to ride that broom backwards :D . They really are a beautiful lot.

SeeMe
October 18th, 2007, 11:43 PM
I grew up on a farm as well but it was dogs that got dumped on our property :sad: . We would actually see people back up halfway on to our long driveway and push their pups out the door. Half the time, the dogs would start chasing the cars as they drove away. It broke our hearts.

What you and your family are doing is so wonderfully heartwarming. Thank you.

I keep expecting to see stray dogs, but in the eight years I've been living here, I've yet to see a stray. Most of the dogs here are actually very well behaved. There was one woman who let her dog run free and crap all over the place, but she moved out a few years ago. I think they put down the dog because she couldn't take it with her. While I don't agree with that, it's a damn lot better than her just leaving it. I couldn't imagine leaving an aniaml just 'cause you're moving. It's not that hard to take the pet with you, or give it to someone who wants it.

Honestly, I don't think that what we're doing is so special... but I guess in a world where people just drop their year old babies when they're pregnant, I guess it is.

SeeMe
October 18th, 2007, 11:48 PM
Somebody ought to tell Henna she'll get into an accident if she continues to ride that broom backwards :D . They really are a beautiful lot.

No kidding, eh? Her first flight and she knocked me off and crashed into a fence! And I hadn't gotten the insurance yet! :laughing:

mummummum
October 18th, 2007, 11:55 PM
:lovestruck: Such lovely kitties! :lovestruck: I can see why you might be camera-obsessed!

SeeMe
October 19th, 2007, 12:25 AM
:lovestruck: Such lovely kitties! :lovestruck: I can see why you might be camera-obsessed!

No kidding! That and, sometimes, I like to pretend I'm a photographer. But Kit9 and Napolean are such lovely models! It's hard to take a bad picture of them!

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v331/SeeMe/002-1.jpg One of my favourite photos ever. Napolean at a much younger age. I just really, really love this picture, hehe.

ancientgirl
October 19th, 2007, 10:09 AM
You are a wonderful person for giving these cats a chance for a good home. And for letting Henna into your heart.

Those are some adorable kittens! And Henna is a beautiful cat.

It makes me sick to know that people just think they can throw these living beings away like yesterdays garbage.

Love4himies
October 22nd, 2007, 11:08 AM
Hanna and her kittens are adorable! You are so good to bring her in. She was obviously not a feral, but an unfortunate kitty who needed a loving home.

want4rain
October 22nd, 2007, 11:53 AM
sucker. :) sounds like a familiar story of adoption-

http://i86.photobucket.com/albums/k98/waqnt4rain/PrettyFrances.jpg

it took a whole 4.5 seconds for Frances to decide this was home. :laughing:


-ashley

krdahmer
October 22nd, 2007, 11:55 AM
That is a beautiful bunch o' kitties for sure.... and you, a very beautiful person! :grouphug: It is mostly a humanly thankless job, but the kitties, well the love and thanks from them just overflows in our hearts... (and usually out my eyes!!!:rolleyes:)

I would call him a gray tabby, from the pics anyhow. And I have a theory... one you start taking them in and treat them well, its almost like they spread the word and more and more keep showing up. It's flattering really and just God's way of telling you that that is his purpose for you. Rescuer of wayward kitties.... not a bad purpose at all if you ask me. :)


And also that was very well written, maybe you could send something similar to a local paper in the opinions section to get the word out about dropping animals at farms or wooded areas, people that do that just figure their once pets will fend for themselves and it is so not the case!!:frustrated:

chico2
November 8th, 2007, 07:49 AM
WOW,I missed your first posts,but read yesterdays,got hooked:laughing:
You are a wonderful writer,with wonderful subjects:cat:
Your sense of humour reminds me of Kashtins Kin,also a great writer,who can put a smile on anyones face:thumbs up
Thank's for beeing who you are and taking care of all these sweethearts,beautiful pics:cloud9: