Thursday, August 29, 2013


Well, my three overnight boarders were fairly well behaved on my porch last night.  Except for Little Blackie – he escaped from the carrier I THOUGHT I had him securely tucked away in, but after giving them their meals before bedtime, I must not have latched it completely.  Thank God the windows were not left open too wide, nor the door propped open like it usually is for the strays in the neighborhood that I feed.

I turned on the light when I got up at 4 am., and peeked out and saw him sitting on the ledge.  Or I should say HER.  I TNR’d two females and a male.   The female from Baldwin was in early stage of pregnancy, which would have been her second pregnancy.  I thank God for this intervention.  We would have had more kittens born outdoors, and from my eyes, I’ve seen enough of that already.

Back to Little Blackie, she allowed me to pick her up and carefully place her back in the carrier I had to clean out – after I cleaned her up a bit, as she  was quite a mess – she didn’t have a litter box, and probably never used one, so the chair became one, and so did the inside of her carrier.  It was particularly heartbreaking to have to release her this morning, for she allowed me to hold her in my arms, such a dainty little lady.  She deserves a good home.  I hope someone out there reading this will consider her.  She has to fight off at least five other cats to get food when I arrive there at that spot in the morning.  Speaking of, I spoke to a group of guys on the porch of the house next door – nice guy – told me he works at Petsmart and what I was doing was so good – so I jumped on the opportunity to ask if he would allow me to shelter the cats on his property, and he told me he wouldn’t have a problem, would have to ask the landlord.  I told him it looked like I was having trouble with the people on the corner that had allowed me to feed on their property a few months ago, after being booted off the vacant lot just down a way from the corner.  Of course, these are the people I brought flowers, plants and gift certificates to as a way of thanking them.  

I think about all that I do for these animals.  I had a guy come to my house last night wanting me to sign a petition – it was some environmental project – he was a young guy, fresh out of college going into grad school – a little nervous about what he was doing – and as is usually the case, he was asking for a small donation for their cause.  I pointed to the three carriers covered up with towels on my porch and told him what I was doing, and how I was my own cause, and could use donations for feeding over 50 cats a day, not to mention getting them spayed and neutered.  I told him about the kitty that had been pregnant, and he asked how many one cat can reproduce.  I didn’t have the numbers for him, but I told him MANY.  So I gave him my card and told him to spread the word, because I needed the help!  J  How’s that for turning the tables?

I am off tomorrow, so I wish you a safe and happy holiday weekend!

"I may not be there yet, but I'm closer than I was yesterday."

Wednesday, August 28, 2013


White and Black - Ferndale and Webster

Little Blackie - Ferndale and Webster

Baldwin Mama - Baldwin and Parsells
I spent the first half of the hour that I allow myself each morning to go out feeding homeless cats in the city trying to trap cats.  I went back and forth between two set traps from one location to another.  In between I fed at the rest of my locations on the ‘front nine’ I call it.  By 6 am., after leaving the house at 5:15, I still had the ‘back nine’ to do.  I managed to trap two cats for spaying/neutering this morning at the clinic, and Laura was able to trap the grey/white from Baldwin who already had babies a while back.  I am not sure who the mother is of Cricket, the little boy I rescued, and of the other three that remain there.  I was able to get the little black sweet boy on Webster and Ferndale, along with a long haired white kitty with black spots.  The very petite, young buff red PREGNANT cat was just not biting.  She was halfway in the trap, but there is an aggressive unneutered male that picks fights with everyone, and he wanted to get the sweet smelling tuna, so pregnant girl was a bit intimidated by him and ran off.  So, all in all, I think I got two males, and Laura got a female, although I might be surprised at the end of the day and find out mine were both females also!

I will pick them up after work and bring them back to my porch for overnight.  I am doing this because the corner that Little Blackie and the white and black came from is a very very busy corner, and I can only imagine letting them out in the afternoon/evening and having them get hit by a car.  Cats are usually quite spooked when the gate opens for them, they just want to escape, so I need to take precautions and keep them overnight to let them out in the quiet of the morning tomorrow.  So I will have three guests sleeping on my porch tonight!

It was a very wet morning out there, AGAIN.  Not only do I get soaked trapsing through tall grass in empty city lots, behind people’s houses, stepping through mud puddles, and pushing aside tall rain soaked weeds to get the bowls out of one of the shelters, but the kitties are usually soaked as well.  I don’t know if they are just too dumb to get out of the rain, or if the garages I feed some of them are ready for collapsing because of the holes in the roofs, etc.

Monet seems to be on the upswing.  You remember he was missing for a while in my house over the weekend, and I freaked out.  He has been acting under the weather ever since, but has gained back the spring in his step and is running around playing like a maniac.   He is a real cuddler and would make someone very happy.  He needs a permanent home, please spread the word!

"You can never cross the ocean unless you have the courage to lose sight of the shore."

Tuesday, August 27, 2013


I heard Brother Wease, a popular talk show host who has been around for years, is well known, and influential to a lot of folks in Rochester, on the radio yesterday morning.  They were talking about cats – I joined in on the already in progress conversation after I finished my rounds and was driving home – he was saying how he had two cats, that they were both outdoor cats, and that they were declawed.  He reveled in that fact, and even mentioned that they had brought home mice, and that he had already heard from people against it saying ‘how could a cat defend itself outdoors’.  First off, does he even know what is involved in ‘declawing.’ (MAIMING)  For your reading pleasure, here are some facts about declawing.  His discussion this morning confirmed the reason why I never really cared for him.  I would rather listen to Howard Stern, who's wife Beth is heavily involved in North Shore Animal League, a no kill shelter in downstate New York. 

Written by Veterinarian, Dr. Christianne Schelling

If you are considering declawing your cat, please read this. It will only take a moment, and it will give you valuable information to help you in your decision. First, you should know that declawing is pretty much an American thing, it's something people do for their own convenience without realizing what actually happens to their beloved cat. In England declawing is termed "inhumane" and "unnecessary mutilation." I agree. In many European countries it is illegal. I applaud their attitude.

Before you make the decision to declaw your cat, there are some important facts you should know. Declawing is not like a manicure. It is serious surgery. Your cat's claw is not a toenail. It is actually closely adhered to the bone. So closely adhered that to remove the claw, the last bone of your the cat's claw has to be removed. Declawing is actually an amputation of the last joint of your cat's "toes". When you envision that, it becomes clear why declawing is not a humane act. It is a painful surgery, with a painful recovery period. And remember that during the time of recuperation from the surgery your cat would still have to use its feet to walk, jump, and scratch in its litter box regardless of the pain it is experiencing. Wheelchairs and bedpans are not an option for a cat.

No cat lover would doubt that cats--whose senses are much keener than ours--suffer pain. They may, however, hide it better. Not only are they proud, they instinctively know that they are at risk when in a weakened position, and by nature will attempt to hide it. But make no mistake. This is not a surgery to be taken lightly.

Your cat's body is perfectly designed to give it the grace, agility and beauty that is unique to felines. Its claws are an important part of this design. Amputating the important part of their anatomy that contains the claws drastically alters the conformation of their feet. The cat is also deprived of its primary means of defense, leaving it prey to predators if it ever escapes to the outdoors.

I have also had people tell me that their cat's personality changed after being declawed. Although, the medical community does not recognize this as potential side effect.

What do you think?

An update on a couple of things witnessed this morning - I did not see Neck Wound Kitty from Parsells/Garson/Hayward - his new name will be Nicky.  I pray he is around tomorrow morning and falls into the trap where Laura will then have him treated for his several years now neck wound.  The cat on Pennsylvania and Fourth - the buff red one that was pregnant - is pregnant no more.  She had her babies.  Its the fourth or fifth mama I was not able to get on time.  It makes me sick to my stomach thinking about all those babies born - of which I rescued only five of, from all those moms.  I am considering gathering up some of the friendly cats on Webster and Ferndale and bringing them to Lollipop FArm, where their cat facilities have expanded, and I hear they have room for adoptables.  Considering.  I must do something about that corner.  There are males there that are unneutered and fighting, which I am sure is a reason that these people want me out of there.  It poured buckets yesterday - not a lot of fun out there for homeless cats.  Please consider saving one.

"Strive not to be a success, but rather to be of value."

Monday, August 26, 2013


I had a mentally exhausting weekend.  Well, at least Sunday was.  Saturday was pretty good, getting my house clean, and then hanging with mom in the South Wedge doing some window shopping, looking at pretty homes and gardens.  The weather has been perfect for the past week or so, despite a rain shower overnight last night.  We even had President Obama in town to eat at a Park Avenue eatery, where Mom and I wound up our day sipping a glass of wine that afternoon, across from it. 

Little Monet, who has become the joy in the house these days – the adult kitties are real fighters these days and are making their mom very unhappy and having to split them up, put some in their ‘time out’ rooms, and cleaning up cat piss along the way.   Very frustrating, but I look at them still thanking God that they are not still out on the streets, where there are SO many that would make loving pets if only given the chance.  Anyway, Monet was quiet on Saturday, and slept a lot.  In the late afternoon, during my ‘wine time’, he came sniffing around on the porch, and then back in – laying next to me during mealtime.  The next morning, as I always do, I got up at 4 am. and all the cats gather at my feet, each with their own style of morning greetings (fifty shades of meow), I did not see Monet.  Which was VERY unusual.  He is there like clockwork, waiting for his little bit of wet food treat.  So after I fed the others, I started to call for him, looking around the house, opening every door and cupboard.  Still no Monet.  Now I am panicking, and glancing at the clock knowing I have to leave at 5:15 to go feed the other homeless/feral cats that I feed each day in the hood.  Now I begin questioning myself if I really did see Monet while I ate dinner the night before.  Now I am thinking he either got out, or is dead in the house somewhere.  I started to go outside in the pitch dark calling for him.  Then running around in the house calling for him.  I decided to go on my rounds, assured he would be sitting there when I returned an hour later.  I got to my middle spot on Ferndale and Webster, after seeing the three baby kittens – siblings to Monet – on Baldwin, and I noticed that the ‘kind’ people that allowed me to move my shelter to their driveway/fence area had packed up my two plastic totes and boards, and stacked them as if to say ‘we don’t want this hear anymore’.  I simply lost it at this point.  There are five beautiful cats here waiting for me each morning – one very petite sweet little orange kitten that is pregnant no less!  I started to ball my eyes out.  I immediately placed the shelter over next to the dirt on the other side of the driveway, and prayed after I left that they wouldn’t trash it.  I even left a note for this woman to call me, which she never did.  I had to hope it would still be intact for these poor animals when I returned in the morning. 

I left there devastated – by seeing the baby kittens on Baldwin, the shelter being closed up, and knowing Monet was missing.  I questioned what I was doing and thought the end of this madness is near.  I got back to the house, and no Monet.  From that point on, I tried to just put one foot forward and not totally lose it.  I walked around the neighborhood in silence, calling for him, listening.  Nothing but bird chirps and squirrels rustling about.  Same with indoors, no TV, no sounds, just listening, calling for him.  Nothing but the other cats mewing in response to me.   After that, I was a babbling crying idiot – I called a few friends, but no one could say anything to relieve my sense of loss, and guilt thinking I had somehow let him outside and how was never going to find his way back.  I thought about the parents around the world when their child goes missing.  It’s a horrible, horrible feeling.  This is a 14 week old kitten that depends on me for food, shelter and love.  I was just devastated.  Finally, around noon, after walking around the house again, I heard a faint mew, and went into the house and found Monet, at the food dish.  I have NO idea where he was, but I scooped him up and cried one last time into his little belly, thanking God for answering the prayers of me and the few people I asked to say prayers.  Thank God, a heavy weight was lifted, although I paid the rest of the day with my very sore eyes.

So that’s my weekend story.  My faith restored, I went out again this morning, and the shelter was still up the way I left it on Ferndale and Webster.  For another day.  Thank God.   PS, Monet still needs a home!  Help!

"Change your thoughts if you wish to change your circumstances."

Friday, August 23, 2013



I want to clarify something about yesterday’s post.  The new clinic IS allowing me to spay/neuter ferals and strays that I place back on the streets, which is the most important part of all of this – even though I HATE to return these cats to the street, that’s the really hard part.  So far that I am grateful to this clinic.  I just wish I could personally get a break for all the cats I’ve rescued and found homes for that need spaying and neutering.  The reason I’ve been so successful in adopting out cats is that they already have  been spayed or neutered, and had their shots.  I adopt out many to lower income friends and others that have come to know me through my blog.  It’s a lot of money to spay neuter and get the shots they need – without ear tipping, because that matters to some potential adopters too, and these medical bills are paid mostly from my own very small pocket, not to mention the money I spend on food, which is outrageous enough.  If anyone would like to help me with any of these things – please feel free to do so.  I thank those of you who have helped me in the past!  But to continue this insane journey, I need a bit of help here and there.  With fall and winter almost upon us, I need food, shelters (plastic totes or wooden huts) and perhaps calling the clinic to put a tab down for me for a spay and neuter or two.  It is so much appreciated.  I feel so overwhelmed.

Laura was unable to get Neck Wound Kitty again this morning.  I am not sure if she saw the pregnant cat at the other location either, but she had two spots available at the clinic today, so she was going to try to get the kitties on Central – the friendly ones that are ‘owned’ by the family on the corner
(the one that doesn’t like me because I took one of their dying kittens) – to bring to the clinic for spaying/neutering, if she wasn’t successful at the other locations.  As I said, there are at least five grown cats there that need to be spayed or neutered.  That doesn’t count the number of kittens they are harboring in this sad looking house.

I hope you enjoy the picture of Leo and Monet, both needing adoption.  Monet is such a great little kitten, gentle and sweet, he gets along with everyone.  Have a great weekend!

"The future depends on what we do in the present."

Thursday, August 22, 2013


This morning Laura tried to trap Neck Wound Kitty from Parsells, after I had written her yesterday asking for her help.  She is an expert drop trapper, and if anyone could get him, she could.  I’ve been feeding NWK for many years, starting out on Hayward, me moved to Garson, one street over, and he has since taken up residence on Parsells.  Back on Garson, I had seen his neck and thought he got into a bad fight with a raccoon or something, there was a big gouge taken out of his neck.  I felt terrible, but continued to feed the poor animal.  At some point after that, a year and half ago, Laura trapped him, medicated him, had him neutered, and returned him back to the street, I think.  Fast forward a year and half later, he is still scratching away at his constant infected neck every minute of the day, and yesterday morning when I pulled up to this spot to feed him and the other kitties, I heard a horrible sound and it was NWK - each time he scratched, he howled.    Laura is going to try again tomorrow.  Please say a prayer she succeeds.   She also tried to find the pregnant red female on Fourth and Pennsylvania, but to no avail.  There were several other kitties there, but no pregnant momma.  I’ve seen her every morning for a week now, bursting at the sides, but she was not there for Laura this morning.  Another prayer please.

I also want to comment on the house with all the cats on the corner at Central that I’ve been feeding recently – we had two spayed from there, and there are several more females and males that need to be done.  There is a group of people that live in this house, mostly black, and mostly poor.  (I like to describe the people I encounter, it does not make me racist - I am sure if they were telling someone about me, they would be describing me as a white girl).  If you look at this house, it’s pretty sad, you see things strewn all over the porch, windows and shades ripped and half open/closed with no screens, no grass on the lawn, broken boards and siding falling off the house.  There are children that live there, and there are cats, tons of them – all with fleas too.  Remember when I rescued the four week old kitten that was laying there half dead on the porch.  These people had no problem with me taking it away and treating it and then the next day bringing food and milk replacement for its siblings inside, but when I told them I had saved the kitten, had it adopted out, and wanted to take the others – at least five other 3-4 week old kittens from two different mothers – they were aghast that I would keep the kitten.  The next day was when I saw a NO TRESPASSING sign put up, and they did not return my call to them after leaving them a note on the porch to call me.  SEVEN cats run to me each morning there, half have the cheap plastic flea collars on, half don’t.  Two are spayed, the rest need to be.  I had two huts set down to protect the food I leave them in case of rain, and those were destroyed.  I am not sure if it’s the same people, but someone doesn’t like me.  Its as if these people are saying to me, stay away – these are our cats, and we will let them multiply if we want to.  There HAS to be a law against this.  In the meantime, I will continue to try to get these cats fixed, when I am able to financially.  But what about those four or five baby kittens inside?  What will become of them?

The new clinic on Bay is not allowing me to get the cats I RESCUE spayed or neutered there for low cost.  I am rather disappointed by this, after all, I am taking care of the cats, and helping to stop the overpopulation of them in their neighborhood.  Here is what I wrote to them, and was rejected.  I cannot afford a regular vet service for a cat spay or neuter, but am still trying to do good for these animals. 

Dear RCAC: 

Unlike the rescue orgs, I don't make a penny when someone adopts the cats I rescue from the street.   I pay for the spay/neutering out of my own pocket because most people won't adopt without that being done anyways.  When I do make a needed rescue of a cat in the Beachwood section, and TRY to get them adopted out,  I adopt them out to people of all income levels, including very low income folks, and wind up taking care of those vet bills (emergency, spay/neuter) in addition to helping with food, because I am just trying to get them off the streets.

I have one income in my home (of 12 cats), and spend every extra dime I make on saving these cats, getting them fixed, and fed and sheltered.  I put my own (home) cats wellness aside to get the cats I rescue the very best chance to be adopted out and can only do so with low cost veterinary services.  I would ask Dr. (name omitted) to consider me in a different category than just anyone, as I am trying to clean up the streets in OUR neighborhood.

Here is a comment someone e-mailed me about yesterday’s post – again, I couldn’t have said it better.  Thanks to the few of you who comment on my posts, they mean a lot to me, knowing that someone is paying attention.  J

Your article is so true…..rescuing animals is not a career choice….It is something in the blood, in your very soul that drives rescuers to what they do.  It is  just a fact, I do believe it is in the genes.  Your heart says it must be done so therefore you do it. there is no way to turn away from the eyes begging for help and love, 'no' is not in your vocabulary when  it comes to these poor creatures. We understand their pain, perhaps we were animals in our last life, who knows.   The reward is knowing that we did the best we could, and your sleep is the sleep of the just.   Karma?  I believe it exists.      Sharon

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Rescuing Animals

Here is an article sent to me by a fellow rescuer yesterday.  I printed it out to read at home, and glad I did.  It got to me, knowing there are others out there just like me, putting themselves through the same torture I go through every day, except I still believe I go a little further into the madness by going into the inner city and feeding over 50 cats a day in the dark.  Even in blinding storms.  Even when there’s been a shooting there the night before.  It was written by someone who is obviously more well spoken than I could ever be, but it’s the same exact wording I would use, if I could.  And for those of you, family and friends, who question me, get angry with my choice to continue to do this while I can, this is who I am, like it or not.  I can’t change it.  Until the day comes when I have no choice.

As a young child dragging home broken and unwanted animals I could never have imagined it was some sort of calling for me. I never dreamed I would spend my adult years trying to save almost every unwanted pet I encountered. But here I am, in mid life, with a houseful of pets discarded by others, in a circle of friends who live just exactly as I do, trying to rescue the thrown away pets of the world.

Rescuing animals: we live it, eat it, sleep it, breathe it, and take it everywhere we go with us. It’s a calling, a gut reaction, a determination to right the wrongs of others, and to save innocent lives as we speak out for those creatures that have no voice of their own.

Most of us live paycheck to paycheck and do without much so that our animals can eat and see the veterinarian. It’s no different than being the parent of a pack of two legged toddlers. They need, we provide, and many times to the detriment of ourselves. But we do it all, with no regrets.

With the vast numbers of homeless pets in our nation today, we realize that we just can’t save them all, even though we try as we give it our best shot day after day.
Our hearts break a thousand times a week as we see animals euthanized because there is simply no place for them to go. We open our email accounts to people begging for help, looking for a place to rehome their pets, for one reason or another. Our phones blow up with calls and texts for the same reasons. We open our Facebook accounts only to scroll through pages and pages of pets needing homes, some who have suffered starvation, illness, and abuse, and many who have died at the hands of heartless humans. Almost everywhere we venture outside of our homes we see pets in need. It never ends. The numbers are simply just too great.

Amongst the rescuing I have done, I’ve taken thousands of images of pets trying to get them recognized and into loving homes. In the midst of my five page job description (when once employed by a shelter) it just boiled down to my doing whatever it took to help the animals, and I did it gladly, with no complaints.

Some of the work was dirty, hot, cold, and many times heartbreaking. Budget cuts ended my employment with the shelter, as economics do so often with many programs in animal rescue. But having become known for my efforts, working in rescue didn’t end with the job. It seldom does for any of us.

Being close to so many in this business, I see their mix of joy and disappointment on a regular basis and my heart breaks for them when they feel the burn of this calling; the burn deep inside of each of us when we have done everything right only to see an animal put down because no one wants it. The burn inside we feel when we’ve rescued one that’s been so ill that even with the finest medical care just isn’t strong enough to make it. The burn inside when we encounter animals that have been abused, and sometimes killed, by the hands of a human being. And to feel the fury of the latter is a scorn like no other. It will make a person look at the human race through tainted eyes and make one cautious of almost everyone.

I watch my fellow rescuers struggle with the choices before them when the burn happens, and it happens to every single one of us at one time or another. That point that we get to when we can’t see through the fury and the tears. When we can’t sleep at night for the atrocities we’ve seen that play over and over again in our heads. For the souls we’ve see in the eyes of needy animals who we’ve failed to save, even though we did everything in our power to do so.

Does one stay in rescue and do what can be done and be satisfied with the results? Or step away from the whole mess, stop checking email, shut off the phone and un-friend every rescuer, crossposter, shelter, on our Facebook page? Oh, and just don’t leave the house.
In the decade that I have been active with animal rescue, I have only seen a handful of rescuers actually be able to pull away and stay out of the scenario completely. Even those will admit it is a struggle to stand back and let others do the job. Though some have chosen to step back and stay out, the urge to save never goes away.

Why so difficult to leave all the craziness behind? Because for most, being a rescuer is not a conscience choice we make. People just don’t wake up one morning and say “Wow. I think I will be an animal rescuer.” It’s a drive that lives inside of us and not something we have consciously made the choice to do. To save the life of an innocent is just a natural reaction for most, and we do it without batting an eye.

We go out and about and see an animal in distress and we automatically flock to it trying to fix whatever ailment it may have, and if we can’t fix it, we find someone who can. We see abuse and instead of idly standing by, we react to stop whatever abuse might be occurring, and many times will do so without regard to our own well being. We get a call, or an email and know that on the other end there is a helpless animal that’s whole life is being thrown into uncertainty.

We’re a breed all our own. It’s an impulse for us and not something that we can shut off just because our hearts are aching and we just don’t think we can take anymore. We react like we breathe, without thinking to do it; it just happens. And somehow the numbers we save keep us going even though the many we fail to save haunts us, always. It's all a question of how much we can really take.

With 10,000 animals dying in shelters, every single day in the US alone, it’s hard to step back and pace oneself, but it’s something anyone in animal rescue must learn to do. We must learn to recognize the burn, step back a few paces, and find a way to regroup before we hit that point of no return. A point we would forever regret.

I write this for all my fellow rescuers who understand every word, and for those of you out there who think we are all crazy and cannot fathom why we put ourselves through it.

Tuesday, August 20, 2013


I wanted to share this article I read over the weekend about kindness, and acts of kindness.  Kindness is something I try to bring to each and every fellow human I encounter each day.  I need to remember this article, as there are times when I don’t want to be kind to another human being.  There are people that just rub me the wrong way – there are some very arrogant people that I have to deal with on a daily/weekly basis – arrogance is at the top of my list of traits I despise in people.  We are all the same.  Act like it.



Monet (Blake) – I now know why Blake’s name was changed to Monet.  After he returned to my home yesterday after being neutered, and after his initial fright of me, and new surroundings, I was able to observe the happy little kitten inside of him, and how beautiful his colors are on the outside.  He is like a Monet painting, so his name will remain Monet for now, until I can get him adopted.  Then I have no say!  But he is a beautiful little boy that will fit in well with the others for now, I hope.  My little Cricket goes to his new home this evening, and its going to be a tough goodbye.  I love him so.  But I soldier on in my quest to remove these tiny creatures from the mean streets and find them good homes!

KINDNESS (article)

On my way to work a few weeks ago, I stopped at a bagel shop and ordered my usual bagel with egg and cheese.

This was routine for me, but on this particular morning, I was especially hungry and eagerly looking forward to my sandwich.  But when I opened my wallet, I realized I had left my cash and credit card at home.

Seeing how flustered I was, a young woman in line behind me offered to pay.

At first, out of sheer embarrassment, I refused, but she insisted, easing my reluctance by gently suggesting that I do the same for someone else when the opportunity arose.

I left the bagel shop smiling and with a good feeling.

Her kind deed had stirred within me an overwhelming desire to ‘pass it on’, and throughout the day I found myself looking for opportunities to show kindness.

I soon realized that I did not have to look far, for they surrounded me.

There was the maintenance man struggling to hold his cardboard boxes while trying to put a key in a lock.

I offered to take his keys and unlock the door.

He gave me a big smile and has smiled at me every day since.

At lunchtime, I sat with a co-worker I was just getting to know.

She was having a bad day, and to my pleasant surprise, she decided to share with me what was going on.

We talked, and I offered her some words of encouragement.

When our lunch break ended and we parted, she smiled and said, “you helped me see things in a different light.  Thank you for listening.”

Later that day, on my way home, as I was leaving the grocery store parking lot, the woman next to me had dropped her watermelon, and it had rolled  underneath a car.

As several of us gathered around offering suggestions on how to reach the watermelon, one of the men said “OK, everyone step back!  I am going under.”

We cheered him on as he proceeded to crawl under the car and rescue the runaway melon.

The woman thanked the man profusely for his kindness, and we all chuckled about the crowd that had formed in aid in this recovery effort simply by offering encouragement.

That night, as I reflected on my day, and my thoughts of compassion and kindness filled my mind, I remembered a poem by Henry Burton:

Have you had a kindness shown?
Pass it on;
Let it travel down the years,
Let it wipe another’s tears,
‘til in heaven the deed appears,
Pass it on!

That little incident in the bagel shop really got me thinking.

I realized that the more we give, the better we feel about ourselves, and the happier our lives become.

Each small act of kindness we do has the capacity to throw out seeds in all directions, and if these seeds then spring up as new trees of kindness, what a wonderful world this would be.

Pass it on!

Monday, August 19, 2013


OMG, my life is so crazy.  Really.  I run here, I run there, thank God for the downtime I take.  Its sometimes at the expense of others.  I missed out on my great niece’s birthday yesterday, and also got the particular birthday girl mixed up, thinking it was the two year old, but it was the four year old.  I felt bad, and know I am a disappointment to my family a lot, but this cat business consumes my days sometimes.  This morning I dropped Cricket off for his neutering, and along with Cricket, Blake was going to be dropped off for the same thing.  At the end of the day, I will pick up BOTH Cricket and Blake.  Blake will be my new resident, and Cricket, sadly, will be leaving me and going to a great home tomorrow.  I have fallen in love with this very gentle, non-hyper, loving, licking my face kitten.  I am praying Blake will be a good replacement until we can find him a home.  He was being fostered for the past month by a kind woman and her daughter, but the others, both a little human and a dog, were not a great fit for the little kitten.  So stay tuned for some up to date pictures of Blake!   I must find him a home, so please spread the word!



I was so busy this weekend.  Kristin, my brave schoolteacher friend who has had an entire summer off, came over early on Saturday to help me reposition and clean out a shelter I have built in the back of John’s yard on Parsells.  John has been kind enough to allow me to feed kitties behind there, even though I rarely see them.  They must be very feral.  I used to feed Stanley, Sylvester and Sadie behind there, but all three were adopted by Maryann in Canandaigua early this year for her barn.   When we removed the door that was on top of a few totes/huts, we could see there were a ‘few’ ants (Thousands), but when we removed each of the lids to replace straw, there were gazillions of ants under the straw.  In one tote, I noticed fur, and when I touched it with a stick, I saw a skeleton of some poor animal that died in it.  Who knows what kind of animal, but I pray it was a fast death.  I remember smelling something pretty bad early this year, but couldn’t get in there to clean up without some help, and Kristin gave it to me.  We were like two pioneer women, getting the job done, even though it was totally disgusting, with every insect imaginable before our very eyes.  YUCK.  I could really use some new totes built for me, if anyone has any free time to do?  I have one very large tote in my back yard donated by a sweet girl named Jill, but it still needs to be built into a shelter. 

The house on Stout, next door to the garage I feed a black and two red kitties inside of – was demolished.  There is an empty dirt lot there now.  Its sad to see, and good to see because the house was in pretty bad shape, but sad because I’ve lost some protection from the weather on the south side of the garage, even though the garage faces west, where most of our storm systems come from.  I must replace a board on a window, must have blown off with the demolition.

The red kitty on Pennsylvania and Fourth is still very pregnant.  Frightened and pregnant.  I can only say a prayer.  I am not getting too many spots at the clinic for some reason, and I don’t have the money to boot, but I do have two spots for TNR next week I believe.  I must check.   But those will go for the Central Park kitties that are all lactating and pregnant. There are five there that I still need to do, three females, two males – not to mention the kitties on Baldwin that need spaying.  And there are now new ones on Webster and Ferndale, tiny little black and red kitties that are unsprayed/neutered.  There are so many.  I really need help.

So that’s the scoop for the day.  Thanks for reading!

"When things go wrong, getting UPSET does not help, but getting UP to SET things right always makes life easier."

Thursday, August 15, 2013

Vacation Day - YAY!

But doing many backbreaking chores - not sure which I would rather be doing actually, work at work, or work at home?

Taking a break from blog today, except to say that I saw a very pregnant beautiful red cat again on Pennsylvania and Fourth, ready to burst, and another I believe is pregnant amongst the group of cats I am feeding on Central near Fifth.  Terrible situation there, and I may be going over to see if I can talk to the women there and see whats up with the little kittens.  I have had half of the cats there spayed, but half are still not, and I believe this cat is either full of milk AFTER giving birth, or is filling up with milk AND babies. 

Little Cricket, the kitten I rescued from Seventh Street, was introduced to her new mom, and big brother last evening.  He will be going for his spay on Monday, and will be going to his new home on Tuesday.  I am going to miss this precious little gift from God.  I still see his siblings on Baldwin, that I cannot get.  So sad.  And the little little girl that I rescued from the porch on Central last week, she is being shown to her new mom today.  Kristin has been caring for this other little gift from God, and kitten will be going to her new home at the end of the month.  I must try to save the others in this house on Central.  There are four more.  Wish me luck.

And have a wonderful weekend everyone.  XO

Wednesday, August 14, 2013


Big Red II

A friend of mine, who in the past has adopted at least six cats that I’ve rescued off the streets this past year, recently had two of them escape out of a screen from her home.  One was found within days, the other, it took two weeks.  With the help of the trap I lent her, Snowflake was caught yesterday morning.  Thank God.  If anyone has ever had a cat go missing, its torture.  For me, never having had children, its got to be the same emotions you go through it one of your human kids is in trouble.  I am thankful that they are safe.  My friend will also be going through a major surgery soon, she is doing something totally unselfish and giving an organ of hers to someone who really needs it, someone she doesn’t even know.  I really admire her for this.  She has the ultimate big heart. 

I was telling her afterwards that this is one less worry in your life.  We all have enough.  For instance, last Friday morning, when I was feeling so overwhelmed  – when I did the TNR (Trap-Neuter-Return) that I hate doing so much because of  having to release cats back on the streets, I said to myself, OK, you have four hurdles to get through and it will get easier after each one, and after the first one (trapping), the second one was dropping them off at the clinic, the third was picking them up, and the fourth was releasing them.  And each hurdle I got through I said, one down, two to go, etc.  Then found myself faced with finding the dying kitten on the porch when I released the second kitty~!  Another mountain to climb!

Lots of hurdles in our lives, but we just take them one hurdle at a time! 

Some observations from my route of feeding an average of four cats at each of my 16 locations that I go to on a daily basis, 365 days a year, pouring 16+pounds of dry food down, 24 small cans of wet, and three gallons of water to each of these hungry babies waiting for me:

I believe a red tabby at Pennsylvania and 4th is pregnant.  She is not there every day, but she was there again this morning.  She is semi-feral, or just an afraid stray.  Paul on Second called me at an ungodly hour (for me) last night telling me there were two raccoons in his attic again.  I can’t believe he hasn’t plugged it up yet.  But what can I say, I can only be kind and compliant because he is allowing me to feed behind his house.  I did not bring the trap over to him telling him someone had borrowed it, so hoping he can get a friend over to help plug up the roof so that the critters can’t get back in.  I did see Tuffy this morning, who’s foot is still untreated, but he is applying pressure to it.  My first stop on Parsells is too dark for me to see who I am feeding – not sure if Neck Wound kitty is still around.  I did.  I saw crazy Marilee this morning on Ferndale and Webster – she had taken Little Red a while back, after the crazy evil man down the street destroyed the shelter I had in the lot there – Marilee lives just a ways down from there – and then I noticed Little Red was back out, waiting for me each morning by the new shelter that I set up in the driveway of the the kind couple – her name is Zulma – on the corner.  I may have finally found someone to adopt Little Red, and so in the next week I will be making plans to get him out of there, but in the meantime, Marilee said this morning that they all were welcome at her house.  Of course, there is a tiny (stunted growth I believe) other red, and two tiny black cats hanging here now, all unneutered and unfixed – so she is not caring for these animals like she thinks she is.  Casey, who travelled back through the city from Norton Street to Garson Avenue to return to the spot where I rescued her a month ago is still waiting each morning for me to give her food and water.  And the kitties on Central are still waiting hungrily for me to place their food and water down under the tree, still half are unneutered/spayed.  And I keep seeing one kitten – Cricket’s sibling – at the Baldwin location, where there is an unsprayed female there that I need to get fixed. 
Thats half the story, but I need to get to work - so enjoy your day, and be kind to animals!  :)our

Can you spot the frog?

"Let your dreams be bigger than your fears, and your
actions be louder than your words."

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Ignorance is Bliss

ig·no·rantˈɪgnərənt/ Show Spelled [ig-ner-uhnt]
1. lacking in knowledge or training; unlearned: an ignorant man.
2. lacking knowledge or information as to a particular subject or fact: ignorant of quantum physics.
3. uninformed; unaware.
4. due to or showing lack of knowledge or training: an ignorant statement.

The people that were on the porch on Friday when I arrived to release the other female kitty I had just had spayed, milling about, with a tiny sick kitten laying there, they are not evil, they are lacking in knowledge. They certainly care for these cats, they just don't know how to. I went back the next morning, and they showed me into their home to see the other baby kittens. I brought them some eye ointment, some Dawn dish detergent, a bag of cat food, some milk replacement formula, and a small baby kitten bottle. I showed Sherelle how to use the formula and the ointment, she had no clue. This is a woman who has seen a lot, she has learned a lot on the streets in her life, I'll bet, but not about cats. There aren't many african american folks that like cats to begin with. She and another woman that lives there, Brenda, are an exception. I give her credit for her heart. I touched her arm and thanked her before I left for her compassion. I told her to call me if she had any problems. I hvae not heard from her.  I will check up on this situation maybe this weekend. There were at least four other baby kittens there, tiny little things. Not more than four weeks old.   If anyone knows of homes for any of these baby kittens, I can get them for you, gladly.  The others didn't look as bad as the baby I rescued on Friday.  Here are some more pictures of the baby that I received from Kristin yesterday, the girl who is caring for the kitten until her eventual adoption at the end of the month by a good friend of hers.

I must give you an update on all my other spots - there is so much to tell you about.  I just don't have the ttime in the mornings.  Its so dark out now, especially with the storms we get almost daily.  I don't leave the house now until 5:30 because of the darkness, and still, by 6 am, its not completely light out.  That means I don't get home until 6:30-6:40 and race to get this post out and get ready for work. 

This morning was another soaker, and it was so muddy for these poor cats.  I replaced some soaked towels and replaced them with dry so that their little pads could feel some dry comfort while they gobble their breakfast before the raccoons come and steal it.

I will leave you with more pictures of little Cricket, who also may be adopted this week!  He is due for his neuter next Monday, along with little Blake or Monet as he is also called, who we need to find a home for desperately! 



"God has a reason for allowing things to happen.  We may never understand his wisdom, but we simply have to trust his will."

Monday, August 12, 2013

Another Doosey...

Of a weekend…  so I go to release the two females I trapped and neutered Friday morning from the clinic that afternoon, and after dropping off the first one – well, let me explain the first one before I go on…  I got out at Baldwin Street and made sure there was full food and water for the kitty I was about to release from the trap, and I then let the little girl (Edna) out, only to see her take off like a rocket across the street.  As I was standing there, I turned around and saw an older black woman marching toward me.  Long story short, she had noticed me for several months, wondered ‘who is this white girl – is she breeding cats here?’ – a little ignorant, but I guess anything is possible?  I told her what I was doing and how I was actually helping out her neighborhood.  After a while, I convinced GAIL that I was doing good, and she wholeheartedly gave the the thumbs up for doing what I was doing.  She was monitoring this area because she wanted to keep it safe for the neighborhood kids to play in.  So, I made a new friend there.  On to my next stop on Central near Fifth.   Before I let the kitty out, I saw a large group of people on the porch next door, and walked over to them to explain what I was doing, and that I wasn’t dumping a cat there.  As I was talking to them, I looked down, and there was a tiny baby kitten, barely three-four weeks old, just lying there, it looked dead to me.  I told them I had to take it and help it.  They had no problem with it, and told me there were two more inside just like it.  I did all I could for that moment, and I went and released the kitty, that they called “Snickers”, and raced back home with the dying kitten and a promise to this group of people that I would be back in the morning to get the other two they mentioned.  I got home, and revived this flea covered, eye crusted girl in the sink with a bath, and then wrapped her gently in a towel, applied ointment to her eyes, and prayed for the best.  She just lay there, motionless. 

In the meantime, I was frantic to get out of the house to drive a ways to a concer that I had tickets to, and friends were meeting me, and I had the tickets.  Needless to say, I wish I didn’t go to that concert, but I did, and on the way made a million calls to people, and finally, my friend Kristin offered to have her mother go to my house, and get the kitten.  She did, she brought it home, gave it some formula, and voila!  Here is the result!

There is so much more to this weekend, but I just had to share this with you quickly, and get to work!  Have a great day!!!

"Maturity is not when we start speaking big things.  It is when we start appreciating the small things."

Friday, August 9, 2013


That’s something I am sure you are not hearing too often this weekend at Oak Hill Country Club, where the 2013 PGA Championship is being played.  We have all the golf greats in town – Vijay Singh, Phil Mickelson, Tiger Woods, Adam Scott, and many others.  Although they are not out on the course this morning, because its pouring, once again.  I was able to trap a mother cat on Baldwin, and soon after, I placed a sweet girl into a carrier from Central, because I had two spots waiting for me at the clinic today for trap, neuter and return.  That is two less litters that will be produced – yay!  I am sure both have already had at least one litter already, and I believe that the one from Baldwin may be Cricket’s mom!  The poor thing was terrified in the trap, but when I release her, reluctantly, later today, it will be nice, and sunny, and dry.  Yes, I am forever the optimist!  J

Because of the number of kittens I’ve rescued lately, their fosters/adopter moms have asked when is the right time to get them spayed/neutered - Here are some interesting facts:

Q: Is it OK to spay my cat when she’s just a kitten?
A: Yes, as long as she’s at least eight weeks of age and weighs at least two pounds. Pediatric spaying and neutering is widely accepted. Those ideas about needing to wait are really antiquated and the evidence is to the contrary. Even the American Veterinary Medical Association supports early spaying and neutering.
Cats can go into heat very early. They can have a litter at six months of age, and they can have three litters a year. Also, if you’ve ever been around a cat in heat, you know it’s miserable for people. They yowl loudly and continuously. They want to get out. It really alters their behavior. And every unneutered male cat in the neighborhood will be at your house spraying your front door. Your whole house will reek of cat spray. It is a really regrettable experience
Q: It can cost more than a $100 to get a cat spayed or neutered. I can’t afford that. What can I do?
A: There are a lot of low-cost options all over the country.  ASPCA keeps a database of them on its web site. You can put in your zip code and find all of the options within a certain radius. Click on the "pet care" tab and look for the low-cost and free spay/neuter database.

I plan on bringing Cricket in for a spay soon.  He is going on the 12-week mark and its time.  There are places where for just under $100, you get can your kitty spayed or neutered, and all of its shots.  And if you are very low income or live in the city, you can get your cat spayed for free!  You just have to do a little digging to find out.  It makes me sick when I hear someone say, “oh, it costs too much to have Fluffy fixed, so I just let her have kittens and we give them away.”  Sick.  And I do hear it all the time.  People are just plain ignorant.   There are so many animals being killed in shelters all over the world because of overcrowding, because of people like this.   And if they aren’t in the shelters, I am feeding them in your own back yard.  Please do the right thing.  Spay or neuter your pet.
"Success isn't just about what you accomplish in your life.  It's about what you inspire others to do."