Saturday, April 10, 2010

Three Homeless Sisters

Ava has died of dry FIP up in Beaverton. She has been with Poppa's President for three years.

Ava was among the first four cats I took out of the camp I still work at, in getting cats fixed. I trapped three pregnant sisters and grabbed a tame kitten sitting on the edge of that busy Corvallis street, who had wandered out of the camps, starved, searching for help. I had no idea there were many many more back there then.

Safehaven took in that tame desperate little kitten. I brought home the three adult sisters and took them first in to be spayed.

The first sister died in surgery. Old Doc Anderson insisted on doing a necropsy and found a congenital heart defect, a barely functioning tiny thickened chamber. She would have died anyway, he said, with such a severe defect. She was not young, an adult into her mid life stage.

Both the other sisters went to live with Poppa's president. The next sister died a year later, of sudden pancreatitis, same thing Toby died of. Now, two years later, the third sister, Ava, has died, after battling dry FIP for five months.

FIP is a disease that is feared. Little is known about it. Diagnosis is difficult. It has wet and dry forms. It is thought to be caused by a mutation in the corona virus and that only some cats with a certain genetic makeup, can mutate the corona virus, which is common and causes the common cold in cats, to the more deadly type that causes FIP (feline infectious peritonitis). However, not much else is understood about how this virus causes excessive fluid build up in the organs of some cats (wet form) or, in the dry form, literally causes a cat to waste away to nothing, as Ava did.

Ava was in a room for awhile, when sick with a cold, I was told, with kittens who all had colds. They all recovered, but Ava didn't. A month later, after the initial cold, she began to waste away. In the end, she had some seizures too. She was put to her rest yesterday.

All three sisters had tragic lives.

The only break two of them got was when they went into a cat trap, starved nearly to death, yet pregnant. One got a year more of life, the other three years more. I saw Ava several times in those three years. She was fat and happy, enjoying life, getting lots of love.

The first sister got a break too. She died under the peaceful sleep of anesthesia, instead of out there in the berry vines. Her heart never pumped right, the vet said, so living was hard on her and starvation even harder on a cat in heart failure.

The three sisters have all passed on now. Rest in peace, dear ones.

And to Poppa's president, Keni, who takes in so many with such issues, and rarely complains, thank you!

Keni still has one Corvallis homeless camp cat: Trudy, the tame brown tabby tux left behind by two younger campers this last summer. They'd brought her in from Twin Oaks. She was living as a stray there in that trailer park. Then they left her behind when they moved out, along with her two kittens, a little calico with a bulging popped out eye, who is now in a home, and a little sweetheart very sick boy, who got well and got a home. West Linn PAWS took in Trudy's two kittens.

Keni is fostering two FIV positive Adair boys, both tame and abandoned in Adair--Big Ben and Adair. She has Ellie, also, from Albany. Ellie was one of scores of cats abandoned and often abused in the drug infested apartments off College Park Drive. She is a long hair torti pt Siamese manx. And Keni has Twister, an FIV positive sweet long hair orange tabby boy from Clover Ridge Drive in Albany. She has had Twister for over two years now, and he has not shown any signs of active disease yet.

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