Confessions Of A Cat Rescuer #5 - A Chance To Care
I Confess: I care too much. I really do. My heart is bigger than my wallet. Here I am, trying to take care of me, my wife, our home, and thirty-some cats on one part-time job and a weekly unemployment check. My wife also works part-time, but between her one job, my one job and the unemployment money, there is very little to go around.
But I must make another confession here: If I had a million dollars, I would give it Puffy Paws Kitty Haven in Englewood, Florida. Why? For one thing, God manages to provide all that I need. I have learned to depend on Him. And yes, I do hope He will send some more help our way. But until He does, we will manage on what He provides.
But the main reason I would give one million dollars to Puffy Paws is because they do so much good for the cats, and the cats really need the funds. Puffy Paws rescues on a level only a few cat rescuers ever reach. According to the Puffy Paws website:
“We care for kitties with feline leukemia, FIV (feline aids), blind kitties, feral cats, epileptic kitties, kitties with only one eye, senior kitties, kitties that do not use their litter box, kitties with thyroid conditions and more - basically unwanted and un-adoptable kitties that would be euthanized elsewhere.”
Puffy paws bills itself as “The World’s Greatest Cathouse” and I believe that they are deserving of that title. Puffy Paw’s mission is to provide hospice care for special needs cats, including quality healthcare, food, water, shelter and most of all, love to all the cats in its care until they cross the Rainbow Bridge. And this they do, day in and day out, for over 230 cats!
Now you would think that Puffy Paws would have a stream of volunteers to manage the massive task of caring for so many cats. But the truth is that Puffy Paws is ran by just two people! Chrissy and Rick Kingston run Puffy Paws from their home, and struggle daily to raise the $250 a day it takes to take care of the kitties, as well as do the majority of the cat care.
What does it take to care for 230 cats? Chrissy, who does most of the cat care, dishes out 78 lbs of wet cat food and 36 lbs of dry cat food a day! As most cat rescuers know, for every pound a cat eats, it seems that two pounds come out. Chrissy lugs over 660 lbs of litter every day to keep the boxes clean, then has to take care of the house as well. Cleaning supplies are over $25 a day.
Rick Kingston does much of the fundraising work. Puffy Paws has a “donation center” that is billed as “Englewood’s Strangest Store.” People donate goods to Puffy Paws. Shoppers can then select an item and get it for a donation to Puffy Paws. Puffy Paws has just started selling on EBAY, and under Rick’s efforts, Puffy Paws uses every opportunity to help the cats under their care. Rick manages to get some help with the donation center, sometimes from people working off community service. But between the donation center, EBAY, running the Puffy Paws website and blog, and dealing with the media, Rick has a full plate as well.
Now, why am I telling you all this?
First, I want you to understand why I would give Puffy Paws a million dollars if I had it. They deserve it. They deserve a break from the daily stress. They deserve to have just one day where they do not have to worry about if the cats will have enough to eat, or enough cat litter, or if they can stay in operation one more day. You see, because of the economy, donations are down, and Puffy Paws is almost always just one day away from closing. It’s not Rick and Chrissy’s fault. They have done everything they can. And they know that if they close, the cats will have nowhere to go. Remember, most of the cats at Puffy paws will never be adopted out. If they are turned in to a shelter, they will be killed. They really need some people to step up and help them. That’s why I would give them a million dollars, so they could keep on doing the work that very few people would ever do.
Second, I want to give you, my readers, a chance to care. I am asking each of you to do just three things:
1. Pray for Rick and Chrissy and for Puffy Paws.
2. Decide today to send them a donation. The website is www.puffypawskittyhaven.com.
3. Challenge everyone you know to DARE TO CARE by also praying for AND sending a donation to Puffy Paws!
Here is my challenge: I challenge you to get this article out to as many people as you can, to donate at least $1 to Puffy Paws, and to dare your friends to do the same. Do you know the quickest way to raise one million dollars? Simple, have one million people send you one dollar! I want to see how many people will actually dare to care by making a donation to Puffy Paws, sending this article to everyone they know, and daring them to do the same.
Don’t be surprised if you only get a few responses. Most people I know really do not care about cats or about the people who rescue them. But know this, if YOU dare to care, and show others that you do care, then maybe other people will start to care too.
And maybe Rick and Chrissy and the cats of Puffy Paws can have a peaceful night, knowing that people really do care. Thank you Rick and Chrissy, for all you do for the kitties!