Thursday, June 21, 2012

re-homing success...

At first it seemed that I bit off more than I could chew with this feral cat and kitten socializing project that I self appointed.

It looked pretty overwhelming once the kittens were brought home to be socialized...I was trying to go by the manual, but sometimes I guess you've got to just wing-it.

There were six scared kittens in a cage in my basement.  The manual said they should not be in a sound-proof place but more in an area where they would encounter human activity and, I thought that perhaps the cage should be moved to the living room since that is where the most activity is.  Our house is VERY quiet normally and so I'm sure any house that these kitties move to will be a rude awakening for them.

Having the cage in the living room was not working on many levels; smell and litter everywhere and the inability to control the situation with so many kitties at once, just to name a few.  ~ Can you say "Chaos"! So, back to the basement went the cage.  BTW, not an easy task since the cage is HUGE and won't fit through a normal door, so that means it needs to be folded down, which means we have to somehow gather up the wild, afraid, squirmy, bitey, all claws kittens, put them in carrier and change their location.  This was not making life very easy for me and hubby, since it seems that he felt this was more my project than a shared one...and I was giving him plenty of work to do...perhaps more than his fair share.

Boxy a.k.a. Lil Miss
We had one really horribly frightened kitten we named "Boxy"...we named her that because she never came out of the little box we put in the cage for the kittens to play in.  Her little ears never came out of the pasted to her head position.  We felt that Boxy was going to make life very difficult for the others as far as socializing goes.  Thankfully I contacted the right person to help me out with Boxy. She took her home to give her more one-on-one socializing.  She told me that she had never encountered a kitten that was so feral and if this case study didn't work, then we would have to get her fixed and put her back with her feral mother.  Well, I'm happy to report that after a good couple of weeks of intense socializing, Boxy is now completely tame and has found her new home.

Mr. Orange a.k.a. Michi-gan
Eventually the "better" kitties got to graduate to the kitchen and then to our master bathroom.  Miss Hissy needed to stay separate from her siblings/cousins for about a week so that we could give her more direct attention.  She really wanted us to be with her, but would hiss at us each time we tried to play with her.

Pretty quickly Mr. Orange, Fluffy, Tiger and Foggy all found new homes...the only one that still needs to be re-homed is Miss Hissy-fit.

While we still had Tiger, Foggy, I had brought them to the vet to get neutered and from a fecal sample they were diagnosed with round worm and coccidia and were placed on meds for that.

Pretty much from the get-go, we noticed that Hissy was on the shaky side and didn't quite have her balance.  She is also the runt of the litter; a half a head shorter than the others and skinny.  I thought that maybe she would become more stable now that she was inside and getting food and water on a regular basis and her meds for round worm and coccidia, but it hasn't yet proven to be completely true.  I did a little googling about 10 week old kittens that have balance issues and saw that most of the links that came up had to do with Cerebellar Hypopliasia.  So, I checked it out on Wikipedia.  At the bottom of the page there was a YouTube video "This is Charley". 

Once I watched the video, I thought that it just might be true.  I have a vet appointment for Hissy on July 3rd for her to get spayed so I will bring it up at that time and see what they have to say.

According to some other things that I've read, it seems that because of this video, there are now waiting lists of people who want to adopt this type of special needs kitty.  I sure hope so.  I want to find her a very good home.  She has certainly come a long way...

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

10.10.30 -> 6.6.12...


My dad passed away last Wednesday around 2:15pm.

I was on Mackinac Island with my cousins who were visiting from Belgium.  Not easy to mourn and host at the same time.  Didn't want them to feel too awkward.  And so, it really hasn't hit me yet.  I'm sure it will.

4 hour drive back home to drop them off and then another 30 minutes to my parents to see my mom.

He was on such a roller-coaster ride for the past 6 months; quick declines and slow improvements.  Trying to figure out what was wrong with him at the different times was always a guessing game.  It was either dehydration or infection...and it seemed to go from one to the other each time.

With infection he was totally out of it and with dehydration he was agitated and delirious.  What finally did him in was congestion it seems.  Perhaps it was turning into pneumonia...who knows?  Mom said he went without suffering - she just stopped hearing the gurgling coming from the bedroom and that was it.

So sad.  He was such a trooper.  Fighting for what little quality of life he had.  Lucky for him, when he was up, he never remembered the times he was down.  However, we did.  Whoa! what an emotional ride.

I am happy that even though the dialysis was somewhat against his will (at first), he still went and I went with him.  It gave me some extra time with him that was lacking in my older age.  We watched movies and talked about some stuff like his dentures, the Army, mountain climbing, etc.

He only got crabby at the end; pretty much the last two or three times we went to dialysis.  He DID NOT LIKE GOING!  Waste of time - boring - it's not home - he'd rather be painting.  And having to wait for the EMS to pick him up and the possibility that they would be late, it drove him NUTS!

We had a family viewing of him before he was sent to be cremated.  My sisters came in from NYC and Boston.  We will have a "Celebration of Life" for him on October 13...the weekend after what would have been his 82nd birthday.

Love him.  Miss him.  This is hard.