Nothing new really out there today. I am still going to be booted from one of my spots. Don't know where Red and Boots will go. And the man who doesn't want me feeding under his porch due to the rats, this morning I moved a board to a field across from his house and placed the food and water down. Its a step toward something, what that is I don't know.
I am posting my very first post I did years ago on this blog - not being lazy, just running out of time, and I believe its important to read for those who've never read that far back! Have a wonderful weekend everyone!
The Beginning: My Mornings in the Hood
Let me begin this by telling you the origin and purpose of this blog. Who doesn't have a blog these days?? But as I left the house this morning at 5:45 am., doing what I've been doing for the last 10-15 years, before most of you are not even swatting at your alarm clock to shut off, I am feeding between 15-25 cats a day. Why? I often wonder, but the race to help innocent animals is clearly overtaking me. I've spent countless hours, and countless dollars doing this. My dream in life is to have every animal, dog and cat, spayed and neutered, and have a warm and loving home to live in. I firmly believe that if each individual in this country took some responsibility, we could wipe out the homeless and feral populations of cats, and unwanted dogs. If we just reach out to rescue organizations and reach in our pockets for $40, we could spay and neuter one animal,and that would be one unnessary animal that gets euthanized at a shelter, or starves to death outside, or gets hit by a car. And if we could each find in our hearts a spot for just one animal, it would give those millions of cats or dogs a home. But thats not going to happen, so I must continue my quest. I also hope I hear from others like me, who do things from as little as adopting a pet, to feeding strays and/or ferals like me. I would love to connect and get ideas from others. It will renew my dwindling spirit.
I can't take you as far back to 15 years ago where it all began behind Lorraine's restaurant on Culver Road, where I crawled under service trucks to feed and shelter stray cats for close to 8 years, rescued and found homes for many, including my own. I found my Sweet Boris almost four years ago, on a winter January morning with minus zero temperatures, after him coming up to me finally nudging my chin after about two weeks, knowing he could trust me. My sweet boy now has kidney disease, and is in kidney failure, and whittling away to nothing. But he still jumps up on the bed when I get in each and every night to cuddle with me under the covers, nuzzling his nose to mine, staring deeply into my eyes, then the purr as loud as the engine of a truck begins, and the drooling is just around the corner.
From then its taken off to about 9 feeding spots today. I know. Crazy.
Lets begin last Sunday. I awoke to a beautiful morning, was out about 6 am., and I was setting down my usual food and water on a filthy porch strewn with drug paraphalia, bird droppings, childrens shoes, pieces of wood from the door being kicked in, at a grafiteed, boarded up house on 7th street. It was set for demolition the next day, this I knew by the gigantic piece of machinery in the driveway. As I was doing this, I heard the most dreaded sounds you can hear, faint mews coming from in the house. I went to the Jeep to get Kings, my trusted lookout, and asked him to come back with me with the flashlight. We crawled through the kicked in door and proceeded to look around, holding our breaths at the rancid smell, and hearing the scurrying of cats around the dilapitated house. We noticed a mattress in one room, but it was very dark from being boarded up, and we couldn't hear anything, so I was hoping that I was hearing things.
We went back to the car and I just had to call 311, I couldn't just leave it alone. They told me to call the number of the Animal Shelter that opened at 7 after I explained my situation. I went home, had my breakfast, and called at 7:05, to find a recording. I called 311 back and got a very nice operator this time, who took the time to get ALL of my information, told me the shelter was not open to the public until noon, but that officers did start early, and she would relay the message personally. Within the next 30 minutes I received a call from an angel, Officer Elaine Lalka. She asked me to meet her at the house within 45 minutes. Once there, she summoned two Rochester police officers so that she could legally enter the house. Once she came out, she was carrying 5 newborn kittens that didn't even have their eyes open. She had found them in the mattress! The mattress in the picture of the demolished house! She lovingly placed them in her carrier, and told me that they may have to be euthanized if I couldn't take them, but I knew that I couldn't, and that would be the most humane thing to do in this already overcrowded world of homeless animals. I moved my feeding area to the back of the lot, hoping the wrecking crew wouldn't hurt it, and praying for the adult cats left in the house and that they would get out. I also left a note for the crew for the next morning warning them of cats in the house! I drove home sad, but rejoicing in the fact that I saved five babies from a horrible death. Within 30 minutes of being home, I received a call from Officer Lolka that the kittens were going to be on their way to Another Chance Pet Rescue where they would nurse them and care for them. God does show himself in many situations like this to me. I am so grateful.
Tuesday 5:45 am: - off to the Ballet Cats (Rochester City Ballet building on University Ave) where Kings and I cleaned up some trash behind the dumpster on Sunday, where I have to crawl in every other day to feed and check on the shelters we have back there, a little easier to navigate, and doesn't stink so much. They come a running when they hear and see my car. Fed them, then proceeded to my second spot that I go to every other day, which is Hayward Avenue, off East Main. As I turned from East Main onto Chamberlain, I spotted a cat, which I proceeded to pull over, get out and place a bowl of food and water down for it, but from a distance, it was paying no attention as it was licking itself. Hopefully it will eat before it rains today! I then went to my normal spot where I placed food and fresh water (I think a racoon lurks because the water is always filthy!) and spotted a cat I've never seen before watching me. I then took off for my next spot, corner of Central and Goodman, where I still haven't seen my Smokey #1 around in a while. There is a new stray hanging around there. But before I got out of my car, I spotted something in the road, so put my car in reverse, and backed up to discover another dead cat. Someone, as usual, had hit it and left it there. I got out, got a crisp clean children's beach towel from the back, and wrapped it gently around the kitty, and placed it in my back seat. Had to open the windows, the fumes were terrible. Off I went to feed at Smokey #1 spot, and then had to stop on the corners of 2nd and Central, as there are two sweet kitties there now waiting for me each morning, and then onto Hebard Avenue, where Smokey #2 was dumped last winter by a woman who didn't want him because he was spraying her house. I didn't see any of my kitties there, but placed a bit of food down for them under the garage where some of them use as shelter, and thank God its there, especially during our brutal winter we had, and the storms we get in the spring, that is until the owner fixes the door and then we have a problem! Then onto Niagara Street, where Sasha was let back after being neutered last Wednesday, and did not place any food down, just water, as I am going to try to trap there tomorrow because Habitat for Cats is allowing me Wednesdays in May to do TNR - Trap Neuter and Return - on any kitties I can. Then onto the second to final spot, 7th Avenue, where the house was finally demolished yesterday. What a site. No sign of kitties. They are scared to death from losing their home. I pray for them.
I promise that my close to daily postings won't be so long. There were just some things I had to clarify before I began this unknown journey. I have many people I will thank along the way. All of the Angels in my life. I will also be posting pictures, as soon as I can figure out how to do it!