Tuesday, December 12, 2017

Difficult Weekend

The things I get caught up doing.

Last weekend, I ended up in a rural location, with temperatures in the 20's, trying to catch cats at a house that had been sold, the sale closing this week.  Someone in Corvallis who occasionally traps cats had been contacted about the situation, did not want to do it, and told the realtors to contact me instead.

I didn't want to do it either.  The realtor said there were maybe five cats and said she'd donate $50 per cat to the nonprofit.   The trapping required back and forth trips out there, each trip one way takes 20 minutes.  In the end, I caught three cats and all are tame.  One however had a bloody stub tail void of skin.  I knew that would need amputated.  All three cats are tame, although I didn't know that until after I trapped them.

I had seven reservations for fixing cats Monday and figured these cats would all need fixed.  The home owner had died in a horrible car wreck in 2015.  Her adult daughter moved in but was a drug addict and shot herself there last March. Her drug addicted friends took over the house then and had to be evicted over and over.  Now its been sold and the new owners didn't want the cats left by all these unfortunate souls who lived there before.

Back and forth I went to check traps.  At night since the buyers were there working on it during the day.  Sunday I took the black with the injured tail and the black tux to Meow Village along with a $200 donation from Happy Cat Club.  I knew the black would need amputation surgery on her tail.  She got that Monday, thanks to Meow Village. I couldn't take them a cat requiring surgery without a donation to help cover it.   I still have the gray female here.  I took her along to be fixed yesterday but she turned out to be already fixed.  She's also very tame and needs a house cat home.  The real estate agent has not sent the promised donation yet.  But I'm sure she will. Right?  I hope.


Tail injuries are quite common in cats.  They get run over, dogs grab them by the tail, or fans in engines cut off the tail when the cat is trying to warm up, etc, the broken piece break offs, skin pulls off the rest and then it never heals.  Trap mesh knocked off scabs so it bled.

The two cats under the deck before I trapped them.
This is the gray girl.  I call her Suzie.  She needs a nice indoor home after all the crap she's been through. She turned out to already be spayed and to be very tame, like the other two.
Besides the back and forth there, to check traps, I experienced frustration caused by the first woman they contacted, who was not helping in any way, but kept communicating with the realtors, inserting herself.  I told her three times to step away from it.  She'd tell me things like the realtors themselves were going to go one morning and take all the tame cats.   That didn't happen.  I do not know why she had to feel involved when she wasn't.  She had told them she couldn't help.

 And at the same time she's wanting me to trap cats in Corvallis someone asked her to trap.  And I'm exhausted and she doesn't give a rip. If you are not going to trap, quit advertising that you do, lady. 

It was so cold going out there to check traps in the night, below freezing, and besides dealing with that situation and finally taking the two Meow Village would take, to Salem, I also collected Ash, to be fixed, from Sodaville. 

He'd been gone for months and they figured him long dead, when he suddenly showed back up.  They said he was in a carrier.  So I went and got him.  They put him in my car in their carrier and I turned back to give the rest of their cats food.  They are now all fixed and were swarming me for wet food.   When I turned back to my car, Ash was at that time breaking apart their carrier in my car.  He was now loose in it.

I slipped into the car, pulled the huge boy off my dash and stuffed him into a live trap.    Ash was fixed yesterday.
Ash, now fixed.
Then there was Champ, roaming a Lewisburg trailer park.  He had a bad reputation and has been hated there for fighting with people's cats.   He badly needed neutered so a cat lover living there trapped Champ. Champ turned out to be a sweet sweet boy, nice and tame.    I believe he will be headed to Heartland today. That's what the lady said who picked him up last night. But he was fixed yesterday and I nearly broke my back carrying him in the trap, he's so big.  It's a good ending for Champ, as people at the trailer park wanted him dead.   The lady who caught him hoped to save his life.

Champ



Then there were the three girls from rural Scio.  This turned out to be a difficult assist.  The woman who is not the owner, but a relative of the owner, met me with them, in an insecure cardboard box, all three cats in that one box, in Albany Sunday, when I was already bone dead tired from all the trapping and rounding up other cats.  The cats exited the cardboard box, in the car, so I handed her traps through the door and she got them into my live traps one by one.  I thought she'd learned her lesson about secure transport.  Turns out---nope.
Momma Cat, fixed yesterday

Shadow

Spot, another female, fixed yesterday.
Since they live so far out and had no carriers I said I would bring the cats to their place if I could find it, out in the hills south and east of  Scio somewhere, after they were fixed.  But yesterday, after picking the cats up at the clinic in Salem, I missed a turn to hit highway 22 to Stayton, and then I could not find them.  It was dark, the roads are narrow with few places to pull off, even if you know the roads out there, which I didn't, and my phone is barely working anymore.  It won't hold a charge long.

So I went to Scio, the nearest small town to where they live.  There is little cell coverage in that area but I finally got a text through asking her to come meet me at the store in Scio.

This time she brought a dog kennel AND the cardboard box in the back seat of her car, for the cats.  The kennel had nothing on the bottom, just wire, and the mesh was four or five inch.  I shook my head, said "they'll go right through that and get out and they just had surgery and shouldn't lay on bare wire."   She rolled her eyes and said they had to and took one of the traps and let the cat into the cage and immediately she dropped through the big huge holes in the wire mesh bottom and went under a seat and the woman was not happy.

I said I'd have to follow her to her place, because this would not work, to hold the cats, which also made her upset and she took off in her car.  Her boyfriend was in the car but just sat like a sack of flour with his head bent over and eyes on his phone.  I was supposed to follow her but there was no way I could do that.  She took off, it was dark and many cars came before I could turn too, to follow her, so I lost sight of the back of her car.

 I drove a long way before she starts texting me but I can't read texts while driving, and its dark and the road is narrow and I can't find anywhere to pull off.  I finally do pull off, and she calls and she's mad and tells me I followed the wrong car and implies how stupid I am and I say I'm just going home she can get her cats the next day and she's yelling over that too.  I finally go back because she's back in Scio and she puts the cats in the cage because she's now torn up the box from the day before to line the bottom of the cage with.

I want to scream at her for not being prepared and now acting like I'm to blame.  I pull over in a church parking lot and sob my eyes out.  Exhaustion!   After getting it out of my system, I felt better and thought, 'the cats are fixed, it's all o.k.".  For all I know she was worn out too.

So Ash was fixed and Champ was fixed and Suzie was determined to already be fixed.  The three Scio girls were fixed.  And lastly, a Brownsville girl kitten, MandM, was spayed.  Diana down in Brownsville has been persistent in getting the cats around one house down there fixed.  There's been about 9 I think she's gotten in from that one place, with one left to go.

M&M
None of it this weekend was easy because trapping at night, at a place where no home owner, renter or neighbor can or will check traps, will be an endeavor.  Now I need to find Suzie a home and get the promised donation from the real estate people to put an end to that saga with those cats and get Ash back home today.

I'm quitting for awhile.  Kind of had it.  The dryer.  The phone.  The assholes.  The drug addicts.  The lazy people trying to shove off everything on me.  Yeah, I like hard work and to get things done but I need some time off and I'm taking it.  I'm going to kick back, spend time with my cats.   Copper is leaving this coming Sunday.  Wren and Cheetah went to a great home already.  Then its just Pisces, Twilight and adult Suzie to find placements for.  I'm optimistic I can do that.  Might take a bit.

I put the dryer back together but now the drum is scraping on the other bracket.  I'm not dealing with that anymore and will try to find a craigslist dryer.  And my darn phone won't hold a charge long either anymore.  I barely use the phone.   But its a complicated issue to solve since its on my brother's plan and I can't just go find a used phone and switch over to it, because my brother has to be involved and he's a busy man and very tough to reach.  I might just switch back to prepaid net10, but I don't know if I could keep the same number.  I hope so.  I have an old Net10 phone in a drawer.  Dumb phone not smart phone but I don't care as long as it takes calls and I can call out on it.

Today in Alabama my guess is the Republicans will elect a probable pedophile, someone who used to use his position to intimidate young underage girls into sex acts with him, to the US Senate, making a mockery of any Republican claim to some higher morality.   What a joke.  That's my prediction on the special election outcome.  I shouldn't be so cynical.  Maybe Alabama folk have more sense than that.

Its become a test in my mind, the Roy Moore affair, and those defending him with all kinds of pure baloney, including our President, on whether the American people still have a sense of right and wrong.   If they elect Roy Moore today in Alabama, I will have my answer.

Saturday, December 09, 2017

That Darn Alarm Clock

I never bothered with an alarm with Miss Daisy alive.  She was my alarm.  She wanted me up, and made sure it happened, so she could get her morning cat treats.

Now that she's gone, I must rely on conventional waker uppers, like my battery powered alarm.  I set it for 5:30 a.m., as there is trapping to be done this morning, and wake up, see my clock says 6:30, curse the clock did not ring, get up, begin the chores of litter box cleaning, water dish filling after setting my teapot on the stove to boil water for coffee.

Then I spy another clock I have, also battery powered, in the kitchen and the real time is 3:00 a.m.  I've already done the chores and am drinking a cup of coffee in preparation even though I thought I was an hour late waking.   Ah shoot.  The alarm clock isn't even running.  Battery needs changed.

Ah well, back to bed in a moment and I can sleep later since all the chores are done.

I have battery powered clocks because there have been constant power glitches here since I moved in, with the power going off for a few seconds then coming back on and I got tired of resetting the clocks.   Lately the power company has been here sometimes all day, four big trucks or more, crowding the block, to replace some lines and a transformer.  Maybe it will be reliable now.

My clothes dryer has been broken for ten days now.  I took it apart when it began a horrible scraping sound and became very hot.   Once again a front glider bracket is nearly worn through and half broken.  This is because I overload the dryer.  The glider brackets attach at the bottom of the front piece of the dryer, one on each side, pads on each, around which the drum rotates.  I had to replace a bracket and the felt seal a few years back.

At first I was going to order parts online but then I dallied and went to a repair shop with the front piece that has the damaged felt seal and broken bracket and asked what it would cost to be repaired there.  The price was very large, over $120 for parts and an hour labor and I thought that is more than a used dryer would cost off craigslist, which is where my washer came from, for $100 and has worked fine for years.

So finally then, I ordered the two parts online.  And three days later they came but the cement for the felt seal wasn't included although I had paid for the cement.  I called them up and the rep said it was back ordered and it would be five to seven days before it could arrive.  I cancelled the cement order and ended up finally at Home Depot comparing glues until I found one that would tolerate both high heat and moisture.

I spent a lot of time removing the old felt seal and glue, dousing it in rubbing alcohol to soak, then scraping the old off with the end of a screw driver.   Finally last night I glued on the new felt.  Now it needs to dry 24 hours, then I'll add the new bracket and put the dryer back together.


Takes clothes awhile to dry hanging up but not that long, a couple of days for most, three for jeans, but the cat bedding takes too long so that is why I want it fixed.  Otherwise, I see I could easily live without a dryer and I'll use it far less now, knowing how long it takes to hang dry different items after the last ten days.

We have had clear days here lately but it is cold nights, below freezing but not that cold.  And I prefer the cold to the rain.

I took Cheetah and Wren to their new home yesterday and I miss them already.  The new home is with a dedicated cat lady with a very interesting creative house.  I like it.   Copper won't be leaving for another week because his new owner stated she has difficulty applying eye meds so could I keep him til he is through the course of those meds and I said "yes I can".

I feed the Waterloo boys every other day still and also the farm colony cats every other day.  They come running when they see me.  These are two of the tamest of them. 


Thursday, December 07, 2017

Trip to the Big City with Cats

Yesterday morning early I drove to Portland.

With cats, of course.

I took along Twilight and Pisces, the Harvest Drive girls.  The other 11 I took all were KATA kittens, who needed fixed before they could be adopted out.  We have a slight shortage of affordable spay neuter availability in the area where I live.  To put it mildly.

Hence, the need for a trip to the big city.

Which is never fun, now that Portland is so congested on almost any roadway it is not a pleasant experience to go there.  But sometimes one must brave the traffic jams to get a baker's dozen kittens fixed.

Driving to a parking lot, to nap and wait, later in the day, I saw all these amenities for bikes, on the roads, including green boxes, green slashes and I have no idea what they mean.   And all day long, I saw only two bikes.  I see more bikes here where I live, than up there, and yet they spend so much on bikes and seem to not keep up the roads for cars.   I can't figure it out.

Anyhow, was a smooth trip otherwise, just tiring, very much so.  But now all the bathroom kittens except Copper are fixed.  Winnie is gone to Heartland and tested positive there for FIV (Feline Aids).  FIV is generally a disease of big fighting males. It is caught and spread when they bite one another and the bite wound gets closed over.  But females can get it too, when they fight or get bitten by an infected male in the act of sex and then they can pass it to their kittens.  Often the kittens throw off the virus however and Winnie may accomplish that.  Heartland will adopt her out.  FIV is hard to spread cat to cat and even infected cats often live normal lifespans.

Winnie was found quite a distance from the others and I'm not sure if she was really one of them.   Copper tested negative for FIV/Felk and is still recovering from conjunctivitis.  He cannot be fixed for some time, or the stress on his immune system from anesthesia and a neuter, would likely allow the virus that gave him the cold to begin with, to make a come back.

But Wren and Cheetah were fixed Monday at WHS and by some coincidence, the same vet was working at the FCCO yesterday, and fixed their mates, Twilight and Pisces.

A friend up in Canada has sent me lots of help for the cats including toys and cat food.  She recently sent Squeeze Up treats.  Pisces loves these treats, so this morning, with her a bit under the weather from her spay yesterday, I brought her one.




Wren and Cheetah are leaving today, going to a local cat woman, who will work at taming them further.  Copper is leaving Sunday. 

Monday, December 04, 2017

Success!

I caught the black tux last night, the one I'd been after, whose feeders moved.

I didn't trap all day like I had been, but left it til evening, after driving up to Sweet Home to pick up four trailer park cats. 

The trailer park is a far cry as far as cat population, from what it used to be.  I don't know exactly how many I've gotten fixed there since I started, two years ago.  Lots.   Tenants have come and gone.  Cats have been left but not many. 

There may be only two unfixed cats left in the park.  One of them is owned and the other is a black male stray I intended to trap yesterday but I got going too late, after doing chores and lounging all morning.

The cats roaming around are all looking good, healthy and sporting those ear tips, like badges of courage.

So I took the four and called it good.
Grem, from the trailer park

Smokey from the trailer park also being fixed today at whs.

Noname from the trailer park, being fixed today.

Shadow from the trailer park, also being fixed today

And on the way back to my place, I set two traps instead of one, at the house where the black tux used to be fed, and where many neighbor cats eat too.  I set both in places I had not set the trap before, to throw the now very hungry black tux off some, and spread catnip about, to further mess up his mind.

Two hours later I came back to check the trap and there he was.  He's a massive boy, well fed I'd say, but he was not happy at all.  I hoisted him into the back of the car and was whooping and hollering for joy inside.   I did my happy dance once home, out in the driveway.

He's up at the clinic today with the four Sweet Home teens and McLagan Road kittens Wren and Cheetah.  They are leaving me tomorrow, going to a nice cat lady in town here.
Cheetah from Mclagan Road, being fixed today.  She has blossomed into the most fun and loving kitten.


Wren from McLagan Road.  I used to call her Meadow.  I love her so.  She is getting fixed today.

As for Jackal, as I named the black tux, he's leaving from the clinic to go to my friend who places barn cats.  She's meeting me there, which is nice of her.

Jackal!  I got him!
So I got that big boy and it made me happy.  I was also cheered totally after seeing all those cats, long fixed now, with their ear tips, playing, well fed and happy at the trailer park.  Fixing the cats there has made such a huge difference.   I just wanted to cry, out of happiness, to see it.

Saturday, December 02, 2017

Winnie Now at Heartland



Winnie is at Heartland Humane now where she will be put up for adoption.  It was hard for me to take her over there, now separated from her sisters and best friends, the Harvest Drive girls Twilight and Pisces.  Makes me want to cry tonight.  Winnie is one of the four McLagan Road kittens.

She needs to move on, however, and I hope she isn't adopted out as a single kitten to a household with no other cats.  She would be miserable.

She loves other cats and to play.

I hope she isn't adopted out to assholes who glance her way now and then but otherwise ignore her, and kick her outside, to fend among the dogs and cars and all the other threats that come with a cat outside.  I hope her adopters keep her flea free, all that, take her to the vet if sick.  I hope she is adopted by kind, loving and responsible people.

I am not so convinced there are that many of those types of people left around anymore.  Guess I"m worn out trying to trap cats a family fed.  Then they moved and left them and with days before they have to turn in their keys, they called me, wanted me to trap them.  Would have been easy had they done it before they left.  But now?    There are lots of free roaming neighbor cats in the area who get in the trap and it becomes a matter of luck to catch the right one and lots and lots of time.

I've caught a bunch of neighbor cats and a huge possum, but only one of the two who relied solely on this family for food and shelter.  I've caught one tabby three times.  She has a collar, so I release her, but catching her three times, you have to wonder, do her owners even feed her?  Or is she too on her own?   This area is really bad for animal neglect and abandonment.  Really really bad.  I don't know why.  A way of life I suppose.
This is the big tabby tux now with Meow Village

The first one and only one so far I caught of the two needing caught is a big huge tabby tux unfixed boy.  She had arranged for him to go to Meow Village.   So off he went after I caught him.

The other one is harder to catch now that she or he has seen the tabby in the trap three times, another cat too and the possum. Plus the tabby tux.  I'm wearing myself out trying to get the cat caught so it won't starve to death, now that its food source up and moved away.  Hurts my heart to think about it.

Doesn't help my dryer quit.  Started making a horrible scraping sound.  Its the front felt seal and brackets for the gliders again.   One of them is almost worn through.  Same as the last time I fixed it, years ago.   Waiting for parts to arrive to fix it, while hanging up clothes and cat bedding all over,  isn't fun.

So that's why I'm not a happy camper tonight, I'm tired out and I have to let it all go and go to bed.

Thursday, November 30, 2017

Day at the Coast Sleeping in My Car

I took two cats to the coast clinic yesterday.

I went to bed early enough, but woke up too early, after nightmares. 

Been worried about placing the kittens in the bathroom.  No group will take them this time and I've only tamed two sufficiently for adoption but now nobody will adopt them.  I have no venue, unfortunately, and depend on finding other groups willing, if I take in cats in trouble.

There's been no spay neuter space in the valley for some time.  Outside of three I snuck into Heartland a couple weeks ago, there's been nothing.

Next week I finally have 7 reservations at whs on Monday and am transporting 12 up to the FCCO in Portland Wedneday for KATA.  How'd I get talked into that?  I stupidly volunteered after they expressed frustration at the lack of spay neuter in the valley and how they have so many kittens waiting to be fixed.  Why don't they take them up themselves?  Good question, one I can't answer.  It's true there is a serious lack of affordable spay neuter in the Linn and Benton counties.    This lack means more unwanted cats everywhere.  A viscous circle.

I admit I like any excuse to get out of town and transporting cats to a clinic is a good excuse to get out of town, don't you think?   I hope to see a friend for breakfast up there, and visit some favorite thrift stores.    Sure, it is tiring but getting out of town for me is a big deal.

I try to find ways to work with other groups.  I figure if I help them they'll help me, but that often isn't the case.

I'm also taking two of the bathroom kittens that day to be fixed along with the KATA 12.  Was supposed to be Copper and Winnie, but Copper got sick, has conjunctivitis, so she went with me to the coast clinic yesterday.  Along with Soloman, who is elderly and had been drooling.

I dropped off Soloman, who was scheduled for dental cleaning with extactions if needed, then waited for the vet to see Copper  Didn't take long.  She tested Copper for FIV/Felk (negative) and for coccidia and giardia since she'd had loose stools.  Negative on both of those.  In the end, she sent me with antibiotics and eye drops.

I then had Copper for the day while we waited on Soloman, in the car, so there was not a lot I could do.  I drove to the parking lot at the south jetty and took off my shoes.  Then I got in the back and spread out my sleeping bag, let Copper out of her carrier, which also has a litter box in it, and we snuggled until I fell asleep for a few hours.  When I woke, I found Copper snuggled into a blanket under the seat.

Soloman had to have four teeth pulled and also a lot of tartar removed.  He should feel better soon. Soloman is between 11 and 12 years of age.

Someone was supposed to come see Copper to perhaps adopt her today but cancelled.  I figure its probably not going to happen.  This is the second home possibility that's been lost.   It's depressing.

She can't be fixed now for a month til she's well over her cold.

Instead of taking Copper and Winnie Wednesday with the KATA cats, to be fixed, it will be Pisces and Twilight, the Harvest Drive kittens.

I didn't take a single photo at the coast since I did nothing but sit in a parking lot then sleep in a parking lot.  Super exciting day!

This is Copper

And this is old Soloman



Wednesday, November 29, 2017

Beauty

Driving too and from trapping locations, sometimes I become overwhelmed with the beauty of the valley.

The rain can drive one nuts, but the rain turns landscapes green. 

This time of year, next summer's grass seed crop is several inches tall.  The valley is carpeted in green and splendor, at least when the rain isn't driving down and turning everything gray and miserable.

After feeding the cats at the county park a couple days ago, I drove out to help some folks on Harvest Drive rake leaves.  I needed the exercise and also to check out the trap set on another porch there.  The last kitten, a black one, hasn't been seen in some time.  I doubt she's still alive, but I want to be sure she has the best chance if she is.  So I rebaited the trap now constantly set.