Winter Newsletter

Well summer has most definitely left many happy memories of glorious, warm weather and wall to wall sunshine! Now we face what looks like cold, wind and rain, and it seems plenty of the later at the moment! Whatever the weather though, or the time of year, our feline friends still need our help and that of the other Rescue Centres too. The hot weather did cause added suffering to the poor mites on the street trying to fend for themselves. Some of course were lucky and were offered food and water, and sometimes shelter, but those not receiving that help, and had no easy access to  water did not fair well as you can imagine.

There does not seem to be any lull in the numbers of cats and kittens needing help in one way or another throughout the year. So much suffering and neglect could so easily be avoided by simply  neutering and spaying. Our pleas often falls on deaf ears but we try very hard to promote neutering and in turn offer the operations at a VERY reasonable price. We are able to do this due to Pet Doctors support year in year out. We subsidise the cost of neutering and spaying but the amount the cat/kitten owner pays is very fair considering the full Veterinary cost they would pay generally. Our Scheme is available throughout the year and has been running since 2002. In recent years we have offered the ‘Blitz Neutering’ in conjunction with Pet Doctors and the cost to the owner is reduced even further – this usually starts at the beginning of September and continues through to the end of  the year. We also offer microchipping at the time of the Surgery only. If you would like some help and are on a low income, not necessarily on benefits, please do not hesitate to get in touch – our contact details are on the cover of this Newsletter.

 

We sadly lost 2 of our very elderly permanent foster cats in July. They were both in very advanced years – 18 and 20 so they had done very, very well. ‘Tia’ had been living with Joyce since she was 12 years old. She liked some of her visitors but not others! She was ‘on guard’ when she thought the need arose! Thankfully she was fine with me and was as good as gold on all of her Vets trips! ‘Tia’ was hyperthyroid so she did see the Vet quite regularly when she was first diagnosed. ‘Mo’ was also hyperthyroid so was also on treatment but she too did really well. Her condition was very advanced when she came into our care but she had a lovely last year with ‘Millie’ and she was adored by all who knew her x

It is SO rewarding to take on these elderly cats so they can live out their natural lives with all the love, comfort and care they so dearly deserve. Millie now has ‘Alfie’ – a black boy who is coming up to 11. He is very chatty and he also loves a lap! Poor ‘Alfie’ had been badly neglected – he was thin, very scabby and flea infested and he didn’t resemble a black cat at all. His coat was thinning and was brown where he had been living outside for so long. NOW … he is twice the size with a beautiful black shiny coat and a very loud voice to show his appreciation x

 

We have taken many cats/kittens in during the year and here are just some of their ‘tails’  ……..

‘Ryan’ came to us at the grand age of 15. His previous owner sadly due to personal circumstances was unable to take him with her when she moved, so asked us if we could help. ‘Ryan’ too is now in a Permanent Foster Home and settled almost as soon as he stepped out of his carrier! We have seen him again recently and he really is a very happy boy. We quite often offer Permanent Fostering with cats over 12, which we find works out really well for both the ‘Foster Mum/Dad’ and of course our feline friend.

‘Simba’ – 13 years old – has recently moved in with Pat also as a Permanent Foster. She was originally found on the side of a road badly injured she was thought to be about a year old at the time. She had recently been spayed, but was never claimed?? She had a fractured jaw and badly damaged front leg, she did actually undergo an amputation as they were unable to save the leg, so she has spent the majority of her life just on three legs bless her x We understand ‘Simba’s owner passed away 3 years ago and she was then offered another home, sadly though her ‘Dad’ has just gone into residential care so this is when she came to us for rehoming. This little girl may not have four legs but she is certainly jet propelled on the three legs and she does have, she moves like lightening! One brave little cat for sure.

‘Kitty’ is 18 and we were asked to take him in August as his owner sadly was no longer able to keep him due to a change in her personal circumstances. ‘Kitty’ is adorable and such a gentle boy. He is totally blind, but is very well adjusted to his lack of sight as he has been living with this for some years now. ‘Kitty’ also has kidney degeneration but at present this isn’t affecting him but if/when he needs supportive treatment he will of course receive whatever he needs as he too is in a permanent foster home so we provide any Veterinary care he may need. ‘Kitty’ is SO happy in his now permanent home, he LOVES the garden and in the nice weather he would be out on his cushion basking in the sun! Now its winter time he can be found in one or other of his favourite sleeping places and is thoroughly enjoying being a centrally heated boy. He also gets on really well with his feline brothers and sisters and they have great respect for this gorgeous elderly gentleman.

‘Purdy’ had been living in someone’s garden for several weeks but even though they asked in the area, and contacted all the rescue centres, no one came forward to claim her. When she came to us she did need treating for fleas/worms and had quite sore, scabby skin, but she improved very quickly just by treating her topically. ‘Purdy’ wasn’t spayed so once it was obvious that an owner wasn’t going to come forward for her, we duly had those alterations carried out! This little cat has such a sweet and gentle disposition and it wasn’t long before someone fell for her charms! ‘Purdy’ settled very quickly with her new family and she is absolutely ADORED, which is music to my ears. What went wrong in her first home we will never know, but her ‘appearance’ coincided with someone moving out in the near vicinity??

‘Toby’ came to us as a stray. He is probably 4 years of age and he was undoctered so it wasn’t long before the necessary ‘alterations’ were made! He was quite nervous to start with but with Phil’s persuasion he soon learnt that not all humans are bad! He is defiantly a soppy boy now, and is really happy in his foster home. Jenny and Rob have fallen for ‘Toby’s’ charms and it looks as if he may be STAYING! As long as he gets on with their existing two cats (they were from us also!) then ‘temporary’ may well become ‘permanent’! Fingers tightly crossed ‘Toby.’

‘Eddie’ came to us having been found straying as a young kitten?! A very kind lady had already taken him in and had been caring for him. Sadly the lady’s daughter was seriously ill so she was at her bedside every day. This meant she couldn’t care for ‘Eddie’ as she would have liked so we were asked if we could help. Jane and Colin offered to foster ‘Eddie’ for us  …. and he is still with them as they just couldn’t bear to part with him!  Which leads me to ‘Dotty’ who Jane and Colin also fostered for us ……. yes you have already guessed ….. ‘Dotty’ is staying too! ‘Eddie’ and ‘Dotty’ ADORE each other and ‘Klaus’ – their Bengal – has taken them both under his wing! It is SO lovely to see them all together it really is. ‘Dotty’ was bought from an irresponsible ‘breeder’ at 2pm one Saturday afternoon – the new owner was on the phone to us by 3.30pm as they were concerned about this little kitten. She was only 7 weeks (if that) was HEAVILY infested with fleas/worms and had loose motions. We arranged for the kitten to be seen at our Vets straight away, as was concerned this little mite would become anaemic, if not already. She was duly flea treated and advice was given as what to feed her. Sadly by Monday morning the couple felt they were unable to cope any longer and asked if we could take her. Well bit by bit little ‘Dotty’ recovered and just attached herself to Jane and Colin’s heart ….. oh and ‘Eddie’s’ and ‘Klaus’ ……. so ‘Dotty’ too went from a temporary foster to moving in permanently!

‘Kato’ had turned up at business premises on the Island in appalling condition, and although Rachel’s employers were not thrilled she started taking care of him whilst she was at work. She did really well with him but as the weather changed she hated to think he was out there all overnight until she returned to work in the morning – that is where we came in! ‘Kato’ is a magnificent boy and it wasn’t long before he too was setting off to a SUPER new home. He walked round as if he owned the joint! Shy? No fear of that! It was so lovely to see him with carpet under his paws and looking so settled so quickly – a lovely home so well deserved.

‘Snowy’came to stay with us for a few weeks back in August. She is feral and had sustained an eye injury, probably a claw in the eye while playing rough and tumble with her daughter! As she is unapproachable the eye could not be treated in the normal way and as it was deteriorating it was decided to remove the eye completely. After her surgery she came to us for a holiday until the eye was healed and she could go back safely to her daughter. Although they are feral they do come into Chris’s home via a microchip cat flap, and apart from the summer months they do tend to sleep indoors but won’t be touched! While ‘Snowy’ was convalescing with us her daughter decided to be more friendly and stay in the house with her ‘Dad’ more, and has continued to do so, which is great. Chris can stroke her now and she rolls at his feet which is a great improvement. ‘Snowy’ needless to say is still the ‘untouchable’ type! As long as they are both happy, healthy, well feed and cosy, which they most definitely are, then as most cats they write the rule book, and us mere humans must obey!

‘Reggie’ is a Ragdoll x Birman and we were asked to take him under very sad circumstances. His owners would never have chosen to rehome him but they really had no choice. ‘Reggie’ is 5 years old and had been a big part of their family since he was a kitten. It is quite unusual for us to have a pedigree cat, although over the years we have taken a few, ranging from Persians, Siamese, Orientals, Bengals and Birmans. We had a lot of interest in ‘Reggie’ but just recently the ideal home came along for him and he very soon moved into his new home and took over as soon as his velvet paws stepped out of the basket, and he hasn’t looked back since! His is ADORED by his new Mum and Dad and they feel very blessed to have him in their lives.

‘Poppy’ 9 years of age came to us as she had been slowly moving in with a lady who already owned a cat and a cat flap! ‘Poppy’ would invite herself in, have a meal then either stay in for a snooze or go back out in the greenhouse. We scanned ‘Poppy’ and she was microchipped, but unfortunately the details were not up to date. We took ‘Poppy’ home with us to try and solve this lady’s problem with ‘Poppy’ as her own cat wasn’t impressed and was staying out of the house more and more.  My Vets did trace the owner eventually so ‘Poppy’ went home. But not for long …… she returned very quickly to the lady with a cat and a cat flap!! Eventually we were asked by the owner if we could rehome ‘Poppy’ as she just wasn’t going to stay with them, which is what we have done. ‘Poppy’ is now in a LOVELY home with Jane, she is the only cat and she just adores all the attention and time that Jane spends with her. So for ‘Poppy’ it has all worked out very well, but sad for her previous owners – we do send them photos of her so they can see how she is getting on with her new ‘Mum.’

‘Jasper’ is thought to be about 8 years of age and he had apparently been living totally outside for at least 2 years, possibly more. He would go to different people for food, but no one was in a position to take him in. Whether his owner had moved away no one seems to know, but he hasn’t been reported missing so he is now looking for a special person to love him and give him a lovely life to make up for his past. He really is a gentle boy and would probably be better as an only pet so he can get sole attention from his new ‘human slave’!

 

‘Teddy’ is as he sounds! He too had been straying for over a year. He was being fed but had no home to call his own. ‘Teddy’ is 3-4 years of age and he will help to make someone’s life complete. He needs to be the only pet, but he would LOVE to be in a caring new home really soon. He awaits your call …….

‘Jenna’ is 6 years of age and although microchipped her owners are not traceable from the registered details. This is happening more and more now where owners don’t keep their chip details up to date. This little girl (or not so little!) has not been reported as missing and has been living in someone’s garden for 3 months. So because there is no way of contacting her owner ‘Jenna’ now needs a safe new home where she will be truly loved and cared for.

 

 

We have had three very sad cases this year. ‘Cuddles’ came to us when her ‘Dad’ passed away, but she arrived with a huge mammary tumour. She did have surgery and we hoped this would give her six months to a year but sadly the cancer returned. The time she had with ‘Millie’ though was very precious and she was loved, pampered, and was a very happy little girl. She was an amazing character and we feel privileged that she spent the last lap of her life with us.

‘George’ came to us in an appalling condition. His coat had to be shaved off as it was SO bad, he was undoctered and probably 8+. He also had kidney cancer but we gave him lots of love, comfort, good food and tried to make up for his past by giving him time with us. We did our very best for him for as long as we could. ‘George’ enjoyed his time with us and became quite a lap cat. So he literally went from rags to riches and it was very obvious which he preferred xx

‘Georgie’ came to us again as an undoctered tom, and he was thought to be about 5. He was also lame on one of his forelegs, and the hind leg on the same side was also abnormal. The plan was to treat him with anti-inflammatory drugs and antibiotics in case there was an infection causing the problem. An owner didn’t come forward to claim him, and he wasn’t microchipped, so after the necessary time had lapsed he was booked in for blood testing and neutering. You can imagine our HORROR when he tested positive for Feline Leukaemia. The symptoms had not improved with either effected leg so this was obviously related to the leukaemia virus. In ‘Georgie’s’ case this could all have been AVOIDED – if he had been neutered and vaccinated he would probably have escaped this terminal disease. Why did his owners not have him neutered? Why did they not protect him? Why was he living as a stray begging for food? Where are his owners now? As quite often happens it is those who REALLY care who have to face the sadness and the loss.

 

Ferals ……

How can we finish 2018 without any ferals! We can’t!

We were asked to help at a farm recently. We were expecting seven adult cats and four kittens. Well we have neutered/spayed six adults – there is another one, who we are hoping is a tom as he REFUSES to do anything but look at the traps and as he saunters off he looks over his shoulder as much as to say ‘not flaming likely!’ There was another adult with half a tail but she hasn’t been seen for a few weeks now. If she does reappear though so will we! Instead of four kittens there were seven! One sadly passed away, our Vets are unsure why, but it could have been due partly to a heavy worm burden in the gut, and possibly anaemia. The other six kittens have thrived thankfully. They all have homes to go to quite soon so will not be returned to the farm.

 

We have also been asked to help with two other colonies – there are six in one area and a mother and three kittens in another. We hope to get all these neutered/spayed soon before they start to reproduce again!

 

Voluntary Helpers

Feline Welfare would not exist if it wasn’t for all the help we receive from our volunteers ……….

Liz, Doug and Vanessa work tirelessly throughout the year to raise much needed funds which enables us to help our less fortunate feline friends, their support and dedication is invaluable and greatly appreciated. The time it takes to organise and prepare for our Fayres every year is a mammoth commitment but Liz and Doug work very, very hard to put on fantastic and very successful events. Liz, Doug and Vanessa also turn out to numerous Car Boot Sales from March/April until September/October time, again to raise money for our furry people, past, present and future.

Liz Nichols and her dedicated team take over ‘kitchen duties’ at our Fayres which is fantastic and a great help to us as they have everything completely under control from start to finish!

Our Foster Carers enable us to help more cats and kittens by offering their homes and great commitment with short term fostering while we look for loving new homes. Jenny, Corinne, Jane and Colin, Phil and Carol, Jackie, Jenny and Rob make their ‘guests’ very comfortable, they give them lots of love and quality time, which is much nicer than being in a kennel situation, as the care and company is around the clock, as it is with those who are here with me.

Our Vets at Pet Doctors are always ready to help whatever the time of day or night. When animals are sick or injured it isn’t necessarily 8.30am – 6.30pm! They are also well used to me arriving with ferals and others who can be difficult to treat/handle! That is the name of the game!

Al does all of our computer work – Posters – Printing/Designing our Newsletters – Forms – Appeals etc the list is endless – without his help we would definitely be floundering! Not a pretty sight!

So many people help in SO many ways by donating goods for us to sell, donating money to support our work, baking for our Fayres etc, circulating posters/notices, help with trapping (Andy!) the list is endless. To all those who help us to help the animals we are eternally grateful. THANK YOU

We try very hard to be available for help or advice 24/7 – I do sleep at night, or part of it, so there are exceptions, but I do try to be there for people when they need help or support most.

Until next time when I am sure we will have more stories to share with you and some more ‘Happy Tails’ to tell …………

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