Friday, February 23, 2018

A Few Too Many

This time of year, cats come out of the woodwork.   Males start roaming looking for fights and sex.  They get killed on roads by the score. 

I'm still at it at the burned out house colony.   We had a tiny teensy bit of snow here yesterday.  Our school district did not close but many did, for less than an inch of snow that quickly melted and the sun came out, although temps remained cold.

By the time it was light yesterday morning, the dusting was mostly gone.
I went out in my garage, day before yesterday, and was shocked to see a black cat sleeping in the chair where I usually sit and read.   I thought it was Dude, the big black burned out house colony male, sitting in a cage in the garage, waiting for that barn home.  But he was still in the cage.

Dude, who was fixed last Monday and will be leaving soon for a Corvallis barn home.
I stared at the cat, who had backed off into my garage stuff, and was staring at me, like "you messed up my nap!"

It wasn't Arrow, the smaller of the two black cats I have still.  The third, Jade, died recently, of mouth cancer.

And how did he even get in my garage, I wondered, since I rarely leave the door open.   And how long had he been inside?   I finally just let him out, and later saw him on a porch a couple streets away.   I wanted to stop my car, roll down the window, and lecture him.

The freeloader in my garage
I set the trap out at the burned out house colony yesterday, since someone was eating in the trap.   In the meantime, I determined the old tabby girl in the bathroom is completely tame.  Now what, I thought.  She was supposed to go to a barn home with Dude and the two girl teens. 

Then I go check the trap at the colony and there's a cat in it.  I think it will be the black and white I've heard about from a neighbor.  Instead, it is a girl, an almost entirely black torti.  In fact you wouldn't know it was not a black cat unless you looked in light and saw the bits and flecks of orange.

As I sat there, in my car, temps dropping (got down to 20 F degrees last night), I watched a brown mackerel tabby male come through, checked the food area, went on, rubbing his cheek against the edges of anything, marking.  I'd passed him on the road when headed to the colony, a half mile away.  He gets around.  And he'll be dead soon, hit on the road, beat to hell by a bigger badder male, something, if not neutered.   Of the ten trapped so far at the colony, 7 have been females.  This is not unusual at all for this time of year.  The females stick around their familiar territory.  The males take off, hormone driven, lusting, fighting, marking.  Males come in by the score, if any of the colony females are in heat.  Only one of the females, one of the first trapped thankfully, was in heat, one of the younger tabby girls.

If I have a lot of spay neuter space available, I like to leave an in heat female in the colony pulling in boys from ten miles.  It can make a huge difference, get every male that shows up fixed.   Saves their lives.  Stops the fighting and marking.  Creates peace.

World Peace by surgical procedure I call it.  Too bad we can't pull that with the human species.

Well that's the story for now.   Cats everywhere, too many unfixed ones, and I'm behind as usual on everything.  Off I go.

Wednesday, February 21, 2018

Did I Get Them All?

I am sincerely hoping I got all the cats caught needing caught at the burned out house colony.

I've had a trap there tied open, food in it, for two days now, without anything touched.

I caught nine cats in the end.

8 of the 9 were fixed Monday at Willamette Humane's clinic.  Five of the eight were girls, including Toby, Dimer and Nickel, all tabbies.  Toby is the tame abby tabby.

The other two girls were the two black teens, but they are different ages, so different moms.

The three males were Smokey, Dude and Jynx. Dude and Jynx are both big and black while Smokey is gray.

I caught the 9th cat during the day Monday, also a tabby.  She or he will be fixed next Monday then the four I have now---Dude, the big black male, in a cage in the garage; the two teen girls plus the 9th tabby are in the bathroom---they'll all go to the same barn home a week from today.

Diana has the other five.  Three of them are going to a stables very soon--Jynx, Dimer and Nickel.  The other two, Toby and Smokey, are going back to the former renters of the burned out house who are now living with a friend.

So not bad, nine caught, 8 of them fixed, and all 9 have somewhere new to call home.  Photo below if of the 9th cat caught---Niner.   She or he is in the bathroom with the kittens.  A very easy adult feral to manage, benign, scared, sweet.

Hope I got them all, however.  Had been told there is a black tux by a neighbor but have not seen any sign of another cat.  We shall see.

I was so excited about the snow predicted for last night in the valley.  Anything but the normal usual dismal soggy constant gray and wet.  I was tired from all the trapping and everything else so I went to bed very early last night.  I was excited when I woke up, expecting snow outside.  NONE!  Damn weather forecasters, building up excitement for snow and there's nothing.   Portland has snow but not us. Intensely disappointed.

Sunday, February 18, 2018

I Said "No". At First.

Yeah, yeah, yeah. 

She said "no" to trapping a colony.  Sure.  Right.  Like that would happen.

I did turn this one down, when someone else had jumped in, gone over after someone posted about it, got the numbers of the people involved.  This included former renters, a neighbor to the house the people had rented and the owner of the house involved.  The renters set it afire with a cigarette butt, I was told, and now are couching it with a friend.  They left a number of cats behind that they'd fed.

The person who jumped into it said it was seven cats, then five cats, then it was six so I had no clue and thought this was a great one to sit out.  She didn't share the numbers either of the people involved.  Time to let someone else do all the work.

Until she called me telling me the owner of the house had a trap set for the cats and had said he would dump them somewhere else if he caught them.


So I met her there and set traps and after hours, much of it after dark in very cold temps, caught three cats.  And it was quickly apparent, there were more cats than had been claimed.   This is not a person who is new to me, the renter man.  Years ago, I trapped and removed a dozen or more cats he fed.  But some folks repeat their mistakes.  He never fixed the next one that came along and it started all over.

The renter wants two of the cats back.  But has to first build some enclosure for them at his friends place.   Then, get that done, buddy.   Below are the two boys he wants back, Toby and Smokey.  I caught Toby Friday night and Smokey yesterday afternoon.


I don't have his number to tell him he has one week to get ready to take back his cats, after I get them fixed and hold them and feed them.    I told the woman who does, to let him know.

Make an effort buddy, I'd like to tell him, because I sat two nights for hours in freezing cold on your behalf.  Well, not really, on behalf of the poor cats left behind.

Anyhow, I've caught seven of them now.   The original woman who got involved is holding four of them, including the two little teens and I've got three of them, including Toby, one of the ones the renter wants back.  At least six of these seven will be fixed tomorrow.  And there is at least one more to catch, maybe more.  I just got too tired last night to keep going.  The other five caught so far are two adult blacks, probably both boys, and two teenagers, both black, and a tabby.

Big black male

The second kitten caught and I think he is a boy.

I think the above kitten is a girl.

Another black adult
And the most recent caught, late last night, the tabby.
Supposedly former renter is taking two of the seven.  Supposedly first person involved will take two to a stables where she has other cats.  Supposedly, maybe, the woman who posted about it, has a barn home for two.  I hope all of these work out because that would leave a lone cat to place.  Well, lone so far, because there are more over there.

In other news, there was a possibility of snow for the valley floor this morning but the early morning came and went and no snow.   We've had an unseasonably warm and snowless winter in Oregon, so many are happy that even this late, the weather turned cold and snow is falling heavily in the mountains.  We depend, here in Oregon, on mountain snow packs to supply water in the summer.

Thursday, February 15, 2018

Off to the FCCO

I trapped again Monday at the Salem colony, for leftovers from the first trapping event, in which I was able to nab 20 unfixed kitties.  Meow Village took in 11 of those cats, thank goodness.  The caretakers of the cats are elderly and don't have much money.

So Monday, after taking seven other cats to whs to be fixed, I headed over to trap again at the Salem colony.  Its not that easy to pick off unfixed cats, when most left are fixed and when the caretakers themselves have no idea who is still out there.  I had a bit of an idea of who was left.  Mostly from quick looks at running cats.

I caught one big black tux male in the morning and I caught five others that evening, two kittens and three teens.  I was worried I was tiring out the older couple however.  Both have health issues.  They are so sweet and ply me with halo tangerines, chips, cookies and drink when there.
Huge black tux male fixed yesterday.
Black and white teen boy fixed yesterday at the FCCO.

Black teen male fixed yesterday.  Zorro they call him.

Gray and white teen girl fixed yesterday.
Kittenish orange tabby tux male, fixed yesterday, and Meow Village took him in, along with his sister.

Long hair torti, the orange tabby tux's sister, fixed yesterday, taken in by Meow Village.

I knew that Monday evening they were exhausted. I am amazed at their stamina, however.  And left traps set, at their insistence.  Next morning they called excited, said they had two caught.  I went up and unfortunately, when we went to see who they had caught, one of the two traps in the garage was empty.  He had not clipped the back transfer doors on the traps.   In fact he had unclipped them for some reason.  So one of the two cats had nosed up the back door and vanished.  I knew by his description of the cat that he was already fixed.  In the other trap---Buffy, the long hair orange and white male fixed last time around.  He felt bad, I could tell.  I reset traps correctly, using hot tuna and wet cat food and spreading catnip everywhere.  By late evening, when I was about to go to bed, having to get up early for the trip yesterday to the FCCO, he called again.  This time he was sure the cat in the trap wasn't fixed.  I drove up to get the cat and sure enough, he had a winner!!!  No ear tip, but a cat I had not seen.
Gray tabby on white female fixed yesterday.

So Wednesday morning I drove seven more cats up to be fixed at the FCCO.  I spent the day in parking lots again, reading mainly.  But when I got a news alert on my phone and looked at it, I went into a state.  Another school shooting.  It upset me badly to think of children being gunned down.  Out of stress, i suppose, I mindlessly began cleaning the inside of the car with paper towels and hand sanitizer, as the phone played live video of the scene, unable to even think about anything. I should have turned it off, there's nothing I could do about it.

I picked up the seven cats, four boys and three girls, at the clinic, around 4:30, then killed more time before heading to a fundraiser for Animal Rescue and Care Fund.  I wish I had money I'd give them lots for all the help they have given cats including many from the mid valley they have taken from me.   It took me awhile to get to the NE location due to severe congestion.  My gosh it was bad.  Then I endured stop and go bumper to bumper traffic on a steep hill on a two way street getting there, and that was not so easy with a manual transmission.  But I made it.

The event was a happy affair with people milling around sipping drinks, (I just drank water) talking, eating, and looking at the raffle items.  I ran into people I had not seen in years.  All cat people of course!

I took off about an hour and a half later, worn out, and needing to get the two kittens in the mix to Meow Village.  When I stopped with them, I saw two other cats they'd taken in from the same colony.  One was a black short hair I thought was a teen.  She had a bad upper respiratory.  Kathi took her to the vet and she got antibiotics and fluids, after they took her in, and also it was determined she is elderly.  My gosh, Kathi now cuddles her.

And I saw the orange polydactyl male, also from the Salem colony, who turned out to have FIV and a very bad leg infection.   They cared for him too, after I took him to Meow Village, taking him to the vet, getting him care, and to my surprise, there he was, running around  the house, tame as can be, happy too and his leg is healing so well.  Neither of these cats would have lived had Meow Village not taken them in! 

He will be up for adoption through Meow Village soon.

And finally I made it home, with five cats now, set them up in the garage and went to bed.

Today I'll take them home, leaving in fact, in a few minutes to do so.  They will be happy to get out of those traps!

Tuesday, February 13, 2018

Before I go to Sleep.....

I better update with Monday's load of cats who went off to be fixed in Salem, at Willamette Humane's spay neuter clinic.  Their program for feral/stray cats is absolutely lifesaving and terrific.

So, I netted Big Orange Boy, Hazel's basement free loader, a stray who wandered in and made himself at home.  He'd even go upstairs and play by himself with cat toys she has for her other cats.  Nobody wanted to play with him.  He's not fixed and smells like he's ready to fight anybody anytime.  So her other cats gave him a very wide berth.

Poor Bob.  Something needed done (or removed).

So Sunday evening I went over with my trusty home made fish net.  He was an easy net to be honest.  I thought he'd fight it like the dickens and maybe shred it.  It's old netting on the hoop by now.  Originally it was a volleyball net.  I got the netting at Goodwill and rigged it onto an old hoop.

Did the job again with Bob.  Once he was in the net and a towel over him, he didn't budge.  It was easy then to let him out into the back end of a transfer trap.  That was that.  Bob's back home now---neutered, vaccinated and parasite free!!!

Looking Good, Bob!

Then Lola got fixed too.  I loaned traps to some Sodaville folks who wanted to make sure the cats they were feeding didn't end up producing more cats.   She'd had kittens, the vet report said, but is not lactating.   Well, maybe next we'll be trapping the kittens, if she brings them to the food too.

Lola, fixed yesterday.
Then Diana rounded up the last four of six from a Halsey situation.  The other two were fixed a week ago.  This four included two calicos, one in heat, and two boys.

Leslie from Halsey.  Isn't she beautiful?

Mama Kitty was in heat at spay

The lady feeding these cats named this boy Lucifer.  I don't know why.  Lucifer is fixed now.  Which is good.

Heathen, fixed now also.

Diana also picked up a kitten on Seven Mile outside Brownsville, yet another calico, this one long hair, and Rosy was fixed too.

Rosy was also spayed yesterday.
All four girls fixed were calicos!!!!

Well, right after dropping them off, after helping KATA unload about 12 more cats from the Cascadia Homeless camp colony (36 they've caught to be fixed there now), I headed on back to the Salem colony.  I don't know how many are left needing fixed there.   But over yesterday and today, we caught seven more.  That's pretty good.  They're getting fixed tomorrow and that's why I need to go to bed right now.  This will be 27 fixed there.

Pictures of them later.  For now, night night.

Shaun White won gold!  Made me happy.  Maybe because he's old, relatively speaking.   I always like to see come backs.

Sunday, February 11, 2018

BB Now at Heartland Humane and River Trail Photos

BB the black girl with the white whiskers is now at Heartland Humane, waiting for a home.  I hope she gets a great one.

Gearing up to trap the rest of the Salem colony cats, starting tomorrow, at least I hope to get the rest.  The greatest issue doing so is caretaker cooperation in it.

Also will be driving some Halsey cats to be fixed tomorrow, the four remaining unfixed ones (two were fixed last week).  Diana found this woman needing cats fixed and will bring them up here today.  Fortunately although these cats live mostly outside, they also come into the house through a window and the woman could get them into Diana's carriers, although one carrier broke apart in the car and that cat got out again.  Hopefully she will be contained again soon.

I walked through the county park up in Waterloo again.  I'm trying to get some exercise.  There's not really much available in pleasant walking where I live.  The city has few sidewalks even, at least, sidewalks that go for more than fifty feet then vanish.  I didn't realize that until the time my car broke down and I had to walk to get groceries.  Unfortunately that grocery store closed and now its many miles to an affordable store so I hope my car keeps working.

Anyhow, we don't have trails and walking paths around here, have to drive to find any so the county park, a 35 minute drive from me, is about it.  That park has a relatively short path along the river, five minutes or so walking west of the boat ramp on the trail before you are spit out onto just field and about ten minutes the other direction, if the trail isn't under water which it often is and its a very rough trail currently full of rocks and roots and in places, water still.  But I went along it yesterday, lacking other forms of recreation.

The trail is rather rocky and full of roots.

The paths from the trail to small beaches on the river are sometimes just washes, where water has run in when high.

Some parts of the trail are full of icky standing water left behind when high water receded.

South Santiam River

Cat tracks in the sand.  Feline tracks show a central pad then four toe pads minus claw marks.

Santiam's water is very clear but also cold.

Someone was walking in very sharply pointed shoes or boots.  I can't walk in such things.  

One of many standing pools of trapped water with algae growing.

Looking east up the river.

I've been watching the Olympics.  Not a lot of time spent on it.... I didn't watch the opening ceremony.   Looks cold there.  The combined N. and S. Korean venture is a bit awkward.  I like the winter Olympics more than the summer games. Are you watching the games?

I forgot to add some cat photos, so now I am....

Tuesday, February 06, 2018

Four More Cats Fixed Yesterday

Took four more cats to be fixed yesterday.   Diana rounded up three of them.  Two from Halsey, one from Brownsville.

Then The Sodaville folks caught another they feed.  The hard luck black kitty.  She turned out to be a previously fixed female.   Felines First might be taking her in a week or so if I can't find a rescue to take her sooner.   There's no sense for a sweetie like her to live like a stray because her owner, who didn't care for her, died. 

The folks who fed her call her BB for Black Beauty.  The big male fixed from there last week, Smokey, vanished after they released him.  But yesterday, he suddenly appeared again, with a second calico.  He still thinks he's shooting a loaded gun when now he's shooting blanks.  Good thing.

They have no idea where the cats are coming from but there are still two calicos and a gray tabby to catch there.  Or they're going to end up with kittens in the brush.

There are four more in Halsey needing fixed besides the two fixed yesterday.

Charlie from Halsey, fixed yesterday.  He is one stinky boy.

Chemical, unknown why caretaker calls her that, a little girl, fixed yesterday, from Halsey.  The clinic marked her as postpartum, but did not mark lactating.  So I wonder if she just had a litter recently.  
Then Diana brought up one little teen from Brownsville too, a torti, would have soon been in heat, like all the other females.

Mya from Brownsville, spayed yesterday
Besides those three the fourth was BB, and I have so far just the one photo.

Black Beauty from Sodaville turned out to be a previously spayed female.  She's about five years old and needs a really nice person to adopt her.
There have been some deaths in the cat world I know.  Clementine of Mountains Shadows died.  She had been with Chelsea in Lebanon since early last summer.  She was one of the oldies I took out of there, already with ear tips from long long ago.   The oldies including Clementine, Joplin, Pepper and Lucy are all dead now but Lucy.

This was Clemmie not long after I took her in, and tried to shave off some of her matted dirty fur.
Bart died too.  Bart was a tame huge black kitty mixed into a Millersburg feral colony.  I trapped cats there over and over.  Sam came from there and so did Oci.   Only Bart was tame and really really wanted a home.  So the couple who called me about the cats the third or so time at that same spot, who walk that route, drove over with their pickup and picked up black Bart and took him home with them.  He was so happy and loved til his end.

RIP Bart.