Sunday, September 19, 2010

Another "Situation"

I'm trying to contain yet another Lebanon situation. The attic cats.

UPDATE: Today, I've caught seven adults at the attic cat colony and five kittens. They had already caught five themselves. Ten kittens caught in all now and seven adults. There are at least four more adults to catch. I left four traps set.

I did go up into the attic but it has plywood on the floors, but open eves, not covered in plywood, which allows the cats to travel the entire perimeter of the large ranch house, and under the plywood attic flooring, out of sight and inaccessible. Netting the cats in the attic is out of the question.

I trapped two adult females in the garage. One is lactating the other is not.

Out in the shop, one granddaughter had found an area of poop, up in a loft crammed in old parts, tires, boxes. It's up some stairs and the loft area is about 15 feet by 12 feet, all stuff. I went up there and starting moving things, told the young woman to watch for movement and suddenly a kitten shot out behind me, through a space that opens onto high shelves, in an adjoining room. I went into that room and was climbing up a rickety short ladder when the kitten went flying from 20 feet off that shelf to the concrete floor. The young woman had come in by then and grabbed the kitten. He's about six weeks old.

At that same moment, the other grand daughter yelled she had three more kittens in the junk floored loft. She netted two, with my net, and as I came out of that adjoining room, where the flying kitten came down, a little black tux rushed by me and around the corner of the shop. I could not find him afterwards. But we now had three more kittens to join five others they had found, four of them tiny bottle babes about three to four weeks old. All four of those kittens are girls.

They had also caught a male kitten a few days back. When I wormed him today, I found a large abscess on his neck oozing puss from a tiny bite wound, probably inflicted by another kitten.

So, now we had 8 kittens contained and two adult females. I saw two more teenagers, both tabby on whites. There are at least five or six more adults to catch including a big dominant black tom, whom the husband has been trying to bait out to shoot, because of his nasty behavior. He won't shoot him if I catch him and have him fixed.

I called Poppa's president about the kittens, trying to see if she could call PAWS, see if they could take some bottle babes. She could not get ahold of PAWS, but said she had a woman in a trailer park up there whom she'd helped with cats willing to foster them, to bring them up. In the meantime, one grand daughter, married, and her husband decided on the spot to adopt two of the tiny girls.

I was leaving, leaving the traps set, because you don't catch cats this time of day, and decided to check the ones out in the shop before leaving and spotted yet anotehr tabby tux kitten up there, amongst the junk. Wasn't easy to find the little bugger, who ran and hid. I had no flashlight and was balancing precariously on junk, moving a piece, keeping my balance with the net handle I had in one hand. I spotted fur, down beneath the floor on the wall stud, and reached down with one hand to touch the kitten's backside, to make her move out of that tiny awkward hole, and to where I could grab ahold of her without killing myself. I got her and the daughter ran up with a carrier.

Kitten number nine.

So, seven need somewhere to go. They tried Safehaven. The daughter said she cried when she went there with the four tiny ones but they said they were full and had no one to foster them. Keni and her friends come through again. And i hate to ask it of her. I didn't mean to, just wanted to see if Sharon could take them, from PAWS. These are the people who care, who work their butts off for nothing to help anyway they can. So she found the trailer park woman willing. But they'll still need homes.

They had tried Spay Inc. too but were told it would cost them $100 per cat or kitten trapped. Today alone, would have cost them $600, for catching the four kittens and two adult females. They don't have that kind of money. I was actually happy to help them out. They're very nice people who adore animals. They get them dumped off there.

They're mad.

They want legislation to force people to fix their pets. They're mad at the big national groups begging for money to pay their salaried staff in six figures and not helping animals.

I told her I am mad too, that it's a huge problem left, for the most, to tiny individuals, without money, to try to solve, while others make huge bucks on the suffering of animals and do really nothing, when it could be solved in a matter of a few years, if money and effort was directed at it.

So I left traps set. They're happy with getting any help. I felt lame catching only two adults. But I got there late and made some tactical errors. I'll catch them. I should not have climbed up into that attic. But I could at least see the situation and understand then what could and couldn't be done. They'll all get caught and out of the attic.

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