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Update on My Cats
Cats Cats Cats
About the Cats
I'm a caretaker of about 11 feral type cats here in Bullhead City, Arizona, population around 43,000, and I've no idea what the cat population is, or would be if the babies were not taken to animal control, but you bet it would be pretty high.
People who are in the savvy drop their unwanted kittens or pregnant cats in any business establishment parking lot rather than take them in to animal control, as they figure they might be found by a human and given a home, whereas, it's no secret around breeding time, animal control gets swamped with the drop offs. They simply cannot care for the cats. Not enough cages? Not enough volunteers to feed them and clean the cages? I just figure, if there's 12 cages for cats, maybe they can only fit into the cages a few at a time, as they got some kind of law.
I've read a few stories of people who work at these places, and believe me, they don't like their jobs. They're the ones who have to snap the leash on the dog that's licking their hand, so happy to get out of that stinking cage, not knowing it's their death date has come already. Even lost pets get less than a week to live.
Nobody likes to work at a death house. That's all it amounts to, although some of the pets are lucky and get found by their owners, or adopted, overall, the adoptions do not equal the snuffings.
Anyhoo, this article is just about my cats. The ones born under my mobile home and how I became a reluctant caretaker of this colony. I might mention I've got 452 on my petition for the TNR (trap, neuter, release) program to get it implemented in my town. I need 1,000 ideally, but people have stopped signing the petition, so I'm thinking I will send it out with less than 1,000 signatures to some one who might pull a few strings for this program to go into effect.
Meanwhile, I discovered I have at least 3 males in the pack. Those I will probably get fixed out of my own pocketbook even though I really don't have the money, I may be able to talk some vet into giving me a discount on the 3, and males are less costly to get fixed.
One of the males is getting really friendly. A big guy, he's a gray striped, rather stocky gentleman who sneaks in my house, eats fast and leaves if I make one move towards him. I know he's catchable however.
Late at night, the group sits on my doorstep peering into the comforts 3 of their kind enjoy, that I'm slowly domesticating, and that is coming along well. I am even getting my toes boxed around in the morning. I think this is their way to awaken me to get them more grub.
I cannot allow them all to sleep in my home, so I've rigged up some quarters under my steps, some straw and cushions, and they've discovered, it's a way to get in from our cold nights which Arizona has very short winters to be concerned over.
They still basically sleep under a vacant modular home across the fence, but they "dine out" at my place.
I've received some gifts from them. a few pigeon feathers have been left by my door. It is clearly a thank you gift. As well, one of them brought me some tree bark and laid it there. They are not able to catch many birds. The birds are way too smart to be hanging about here. Sometimes though a pigeon is too slow, and well, arizona has too many pigeons if you want to know the truth, and cats eat birds. Deal with it. It's like survival of the fittest on this planet.
But the cats are not surviving here that well without help of humans who regard them as cheap life. So here I am, as we must try to help mother nature when we can. Man is the predator beast to the cats awareness.
Amazingly enough, a great deal of my petition signers are from other countries! It would be great if I could get more signers from the states. It seems other countries are more humane then we are. Here's my petition link:
Mainly, TNR works, as it saves the lives of unborn kittens. Not only that, there's a strange thing called the vacuum effect in mother nature. Kill a bunch of cats leaving an empty place in the environment of these animals and somehow a male and female out there get together to fill in the empty habitat rather quickly, only to produce more kittens that will be killed, run over, poisoned or shot even, dumped in various out of the way places, or taken to animal control and put to sleep, and the cycle continues like that.
What is the predator of a cat besides man that is? The coyote is one. We have coyote up in the hills but I've not seen one come down here. Probably because there is small wild game for the coyote up there. If the coyote gets hungry, we could see that the cat population would decrease here through mother nature's effects.
Not that this all this makes me happy or anything, but it's called the natural food chain and I'm not in control of that. Sadly, over in San Diego, my daughter's cat got taken by a coyote coming right into this huge town. Lots of canyons over there where they could hide out. We know it was a coyote because one had been spotted in the neighborhood and other peoples domestic animals had gotten taken. More than this, we found his foot. Yes it was his foot. He had unusual markings. We hoped it wasn't his foot, but we finally had to put two and two together after putting up "lost" signs all over. A neighbor reported a skirmish had occurred on her lawn and she had found the sign, and she saw the foot the next morn. Spooky was very street wise, and had lived a long life with us, about 9 yrs. He had wrestled with a coon on my farm even. He didn't get away this time. Now my daughter keeps her cat indoors. A shame, as cats love the outdoors, theres butterflies and leaves that blow in the wind they like to play with.
Mine do not roam that much. They know where the food is and they like rolling around in the dirt out there and hiding in my bushes. I often see them leaping and playing and it cheers me up. I have a ladder they climb on. Then if a pigeon gets on my roof, they go after it from the ladder, or if they're not hungry, which they shouldn't be hungry, for pete's sake, they get kibbles twice a day as they DEMAND kibbles twice a day, if they're not hungry, they begin to play who gets to be on the ladder..swat..swat...box..box..
Today I researched the vets and I'll start asking them to give me a break on the 3 guys I got here. I took the first step. I don't have a phone right at the present moment, so I just have to force myself to drive over and chat in person.
I'd rather be dancing or singing or writing on some other subject, but this is something that has to be done. Thanks for the read. Please offer a prayer for me and all the cats that just want to have some kind of life here. I could surely use your support..maybe just whisper to the wind YOU GO GIRL! sniffle...
Check out this article about another town's feral population and how they are struggling with the problem just as I am
Addition 12/07/09 this letter came from For The Love of Paws today, it's in Golden Valley, AZ near to where I live.
I'm a caretaker for 10 feral colony cats. they will start breeding soon. I can get only two fixed at animal control for low income person.
Im in bullhead city. can u direct me to a vet who will work with me on cost of fixing, so to let me pay on credit, it will cost $1,000 to get all fixed, I could make small payments monthly, or can I bring a few cats to your sanctuary to be fixed as the TNR program? We do not have a TNR program. We do not get any discounts from any vets in this area. We have to pay the going rate just like the general public. We get the cats fixed that come in to us as we can afford it, making sure males are separated from females. As far as I know, none of the vets here let anybody carry a balance.
I have my own ways of catching them and they come in my house easily. I don't need traps. u r only an hour away from me. I have good credit record.
I could make monthly payments to your organization as well. We do not have any funds for this type of thing. I don't want them killed. thanks for info. Sorry this isn't better news for you, but it's the reality in Mohave County.
For the Luv of Paws
Well, for anybody following this adventure in waking up and smelling the coffee, I have asked Luv of Paws if I may bring in 2 or 3 to them. That would at least help some.