•February 10, 2010 • Leave a Comment

Submitted by DeepSeaSiren:

“When I first moved out of my parents’ house a few years after graduating, I moved into an apartment complex that kind of had some shady people living there. When I was moving in with my roommate, I noticed a small dark black cat sitting on a porch with a black dog. He belonged to ( if you could call it that because these people never gave him shots. The fact that he was fixed was because he belonged to the previous tenants, and they had left him behind) this family who had a cruel son. In the short time I was there at that complex, this poor cat Eddie had been attacked on purpose by a pit bull (no offense to pit bulls as I love them, and there are no bad animals, just bad people!), thrown into a swimming pool, thrown in a box and tossed down the stairs, kicked at, spit at.  And yet, this cat remained remarkably friendly. He never scratched or bit. But he was a feisty thing, an outdoor cat forever, hating the indoors except to catch some zzz’s, and he was always getting into fights with other cats.

Eddie started hanging around my apartment. I worked a graveyard shift and he was so cute…he’d wait right in my parking stall or wait at the head of the stairs when I opened the gate to go to my apartment.  Eventually he started hanging around so often that I took him to the vet ( and therefore had to claim ownership of him), got him his shots, gave him a bath, gave him plenty of cat food ( he used eat the next door neighbor’s dog food!). Eddie pretty much then claimed me as his caretaker. In that short time period was when this kid’s friend turned the pit bull loose and the dog grabbed Eddie, puncturing his stomach and sides. I took Eddie to get surgery done. He had two bladder infections after that. He was so beat-up looking, with patches of missing fur from where he was fighting with other cats and the shaved areas where the vet had to put the IV.  He was like a little gangsta kitty.

The sad end came for Eddie when he ate some kind of bone ( he was always going through the dumpster) . I didn’t see him for two or three days and was worried.  Then, the neighbor girl came over and told me, ” Well Eddie’s been under our porch in the crawlspace and he won’t come out.” I was so pissed off about that and managed to get him out from under there. He was breathing hard and his stomach was swelled up. I rushed him to the emergency vet as it was after hours and they worked on him but told me he had severe peritonitis as a result of a punctured intestine due to swallowing that bone piece.  Right in front of me, he passed away. He was lying there in his cage and he died. I was devastated. He had been through so much. The vet estimated his age at about fourteen, and the only comfort I took from my rage at those neighbors and my own grief at losing him was that at least I was able to give him some measure of goodness and comfort in his life of cruelty and mistreatment. And that was sixteen years ago. I think of him every single day.”


The Night Goddess: Meow

•January 29, 2010 • Leave a Comment

Submitted by Kelli:

“I have always loved all animals, but I take a special love for cats. I have several painful medical conditions, making dogs sometimes a little too active of a pet for me. Cats and I are well-matched. This in mind, in December 2009 I told my husband I wanted a cat. One day I dropped my husband off at work and out looking for the local Animal Control. I found it tucked into a little back corner of the city. I had seen 2 kittens on the website that I thought were incredibly adorable and had set my heart on one of them. When I arrived, both were already gone. So I shifted my view and started rubbing and playing with the other cats. Then I came upon a cage with 3 scraggly little long-haired kittens, 2 tuxedos and one that was bright white. They were so cute! I investigated and saw that while the white one and one of the tuxedos came up to me and were eating and being affectionate and generally in good spirits, the last kitten was quite a bit smaller than them and was laying in the litterbox, not interested in food or human affection at all. I was permitted to hold this particular kitten and she was such a little sweetie, very calm and permeated with the air with a soft “mew”. I retrieved my husband from work shortly thereafter and took him to meet this fantastic little girl. He did like her, but was concerned about her inactive disposition. He told me if I named her on the spot, I could keep her. Thus she was dubbed Nyx, after the goddess of the night. And we took her home. The next day she was taken in to see the vet. She hadn’t eaten or had a bowel movement and was very emaciated and lethargic. At the vet we found out she was only 6 weeks old, had tapeworms and coccidia. She was treated for these conditions and given her first kitty booster and has been getting better since then.”

Wolf Dogs

•July 15, 2009 • 2 Comments

Submitted via the ASPCA Forums:


“September 2008 we received an email informing us of a situation involving at least 40 dogs.  The owner claimed them to be “Wolf Dogs”.   In fact, most were poorly bred Siberians, Malamutes, or crosses of the two, with a couple legitimate Wolf Dogs in the mix.  They were living in small enclosures, being fed only bones and rendered fat from a local butcher, had little to no human interaction as the pens were all nailed shut, and there was only two dry and dusty water pails to be found in the 7-8 pens.  Overall the animals were not in overly poor body/health conditions (we’ve seen worse), but as their owner had passed and left no plans for the animals future, they were surrendered by family to our care.  We went to the property early one Saturday morning with three agents from Adopt-A-Husky west (including my husband and myself), two agents from a local wolf dog sanctuary, and 3 agents from Spokanimal (a local humane society in the neighboring county).

foodBucket of food

penOne of the pens (holding 7 dogs)

water bucketsWater buckets


After an all day venture, we were able to safely and successfully capture 36 dogs (including two litters of 2-3 day old puppies).  Most were split between Adopt-A-Husky and WaMal.  Seven went with Wolf Dog, leaving one without a place to go.   He was too ‘wolfie’ for Mal or AAHI to take him, and Wolf Dog ran out of room.   The call was made to euthanize on site, and that’s when I decided to claim him and give him a home in my pack.  Having one wolf dog already, I thought I would be up to the challenge (which turned out to be less of one than I had expected… more on that later).  With everyone accounted for, and the day completely burned we transported all dogs to respective foster homes.  I took nine home with me to hold until WaMal could collect them.  One in my care, unfortunately, had to be euthanized.  She was one of the last caught by Spokanimal agents and had fought hard against the catch pole- her injuries to her neck proved fatal.  It was rough to see her go after we fought so hard to save them.

Today, all (except the wolf dogs who are in sanctuary) have been successfully placed in homes.  Timber, who turns out was the Prized “stud” dog of the whole operation, is a happy, NEUTERED, well adjusted member of my pack family.”

timberTimber Today


Just a Turtle

•May 26, 2009 • 3 Comments

Yesterday was laundry day.  That in of itself is not significant, however, on my way back from transferring clothes from the washer to the dryer, I saw a curious sight.  In the middle of the street, surrounded by gawking kids and an adult, was a turtle.   Not just any turtle, but a very angry snapping turtle.  The kids were bravely warding off any vehicle traffic, while the adult was casually reminding the kids to not get near the turtle, lest they lose a finger or foot.   I decided that the semi-aquatic turtle did not belong in our complex’s parking lot, which was devoid of water.  I rushed back to our apartment, got Jessie and her camera, a broomstick, and a cat carrier.  The kids enjoyed the show as I tried to wrangle the turtle into the cat carrier, by prodding it with the broomstick towards the open cage.  They laughed when the turtle displayed its biting prowess on the cage itself, deforming the plastic.  Eventually, I managed to coax the stubborn thing in, closed the door, and we were off to the local Lake Mayer.  At the lake, I showed off our “catch” to some more kids, before taking the top off the cat carrier and dumping the turtle into the shallow water.  It shot me a dirty look, and then disappeared into the mud.  The cat carrier was ruined, and the turtle showed zero gratitude, but in the end, I think it was worth it.


A Series of Rescues, Pt 1

•May 25, 2009 • 1 Comment

Submitted by Marissa – edited by Alpha Caldas:

“Our first rescue was a pet-shop dog (I was very little and didn’t know about shelters then).  He was a 6 month old Shih-Tzu that had been discounted in price because he was too big for his tiny plexiglass cage.  His hair was messy, matted, dirty, and his nails were curling under.  He also had extra teeth.  Knowing what I know now, I would have reported them, but at that age saving him was my only goal.  The poor thing had never been out of his cage, so it took him a few days to learn how use his legs.  He was an amazing dog; we had him until he got lung disease at age 12.  His name – Gizmo.

Dog #2 –  I found him in the classifieds of the newspaper.  I was looking for a chihuahua for my father – we had searched the Humane Societies locally and none of the rescues had one.  We got put on a waiting list at 2 Humane Societies, never got a call;  we found out they had several dogs and puppies from a puppy mill raid.  Disillusioned and rightfully angry, I called about a puppy in a classified add and when they brought the poor thing to us, he had been raised on a farm and they were feeding him Fleet Farm beef in cans!  Paquito is now a member of the family and currently undergoing chemo for cancer.

Dog #3 –  Petfinder.  After Gizmo passed, we decided to get another dog for my grandma and Paquito.  She’d always wanted to get more beagles, so we visited many Humane Societies, all hours away, and some of the workers were very discouraged that we had cats.  A dog that we filled out an application on, and who we were just about to go see hours away, was adopted and we started over again.  Finally, we saw a photo of a beagle (Dwight) in Indiana — he was sad-eyed and skinny.  He had squinted eyes, but at the time, I thought he might haven been squinting from the sun.  He was 25 lbs, and we arranged to adopt him through a pet transport.  When we met him, he was 35 lbs, not a beagle’s size, and overall clearly not a beagle.  The squinty eyes weren’t because of the sun – he was a treeing walker coonhound – coonhounds are colored similar to beagles – mixed with a foxhound.  They offered to take him back, but he was already in a crate for 8 hours — we adopted him on the spot and took him home, where he immediately became best friends with Paquito.  We don’t know what happened to him in his other life as a stray, but he was likely mistreated because he was very scared of everything and everyone and flinched constantly.  His teeth were jagged little wedges and his feet were cracked.  After a few months, he barked for the first time and played with his first toy – a sock he hid on his bed, and became the spoiled dog we know as Dwy.  But then the shelter called us to tell us that his heartworm was a false negative, simply because of the last director that worked there -he quit and neglected to pass any information along.  They again offered to take him back; they offered to pick him up, treat him if he survived, and return him, but we didn’t want to put him through that.  He survived and we love him.

Cat #1 – MAX.  The first cat I got was a kitten -he is now 17.5, so it was a long time ago when we saw him in a pet-store.  Again, I was too young to know better, and we didn’t know about shelters.  He was this tiny orange kitten in a cage with these huge Maine Coon kittens and they picked on him and stole his toys.  He sat in a little corner clutching a rattle toy.  I decided he needed saving and we bought him for $24.99 the next day.  He is the most loving, gentle boy and means the world to me.

Cat #2 – Wahlie.  About 6 years after we got Max, we saw a rescue cat being shown in a pet-store.  She was a beautiful “maverick” (which means we have no idea what to call her) tabby/Siamese mix and 1.5 years.  Max seemed a little lonely and was always throwing up, so we called the rescue, set up a home visit, and adopted her the next day.  She has feline anxiety disorder, caused when her first family moved into an apartment and “had” to get rid of her.  For years she chewed her fur, got puffy lips, and needed shots and antibiotics.  She’s pretty happy now and we changed her name from Callie to Wahlie.

Cat #3 – Mala.  I got Mala when I was 16.  We already had a dog and two cats.  She was a ragdoll kitten that a friends family owned and planned to breed.  They ran a daycare in their home and poor Mala had been chased and picked up by her head enough to make her feral.  We were only supposed to keep her a few months until her family settled in another state.  We got no money, just a litter box, and as the months passed and this poor feral cat lived in my closet hissing at everyone, she went into heat  -I called the Humane Society and explained the situation.  They said if we hadn’t heard from them in the agreed time, we could take her to the vet, have her spayed, and if they wanted her back they would have to reimburse us.  That solved the problem of her being a kitten farm and we never did hear anything.  She’s friendlier now, but will range from purring to attacking randomly – so it looks like she’s ours forever.

Cats #4 & #5 – Two years later, someone related in the family had two kittens from Texas that they spontaneously bought from a farm.  The cats were living in a car, and again we agreed to baby-sit them a few months.  Long story short, they decided they didn’t want the cats because they were allergic.  The Humane Society failed us again by saying that we’d have to pay a surrender fee, but they couldn’t guarantee that the kittens would pass the temperament test and not be put down.  I didn’t think the female would pass – she’s feisty – and at the time they were inseparable.  We decided to foster them until we could find a great home for them.  Fast-forward months later, after the kittens were fixed – the female, Traviesa, decided that she hated all other cats on the planet.  Eight years later, the male, Mr. Tigger, was adopted by his human soul mate, my boyfriend.  Travi has gotten worse and sprays the house, gets into fights, etc. We’re waiting for our vet to adopt her but she has a feline leukemia right now…

Foster cat #4, rescue cat #1 – I found Alex, a tiny brown tabby kitten in a dangerous neighborhood, wandering around and hungry.  I brought her home, quarantined her and looked for someone to adopt her.  My mother’s co-worker saw her picture and fell in love with her.  A few days later, she was in a new home with a new sister and very spoiled.

Foster cat #5, rescue cat #2 – I found Serafina in the same neighborhood, but had to chase her down.  She was gray and white and not as young as Alex.  I took her home, quarantined her, and started looking for a home.  When I couldn’t find one after a week or two, and the kitten needed more attention and more room, my vet recommended a local shelter and they agreed to take her.  I was so grateful I volunteered to help once a week.  Serafina was adopted and I spent time socializing feral kittens.

Foster cat #6 – Fiona was a tiny orange ball of anger that came in with her brother and sister.  They were adopted and Fiona, who hissed at anyone who came close to her, did not.  I worked with her for 45 minutes every week and still she was unfriendly.  One day I reached my limit and said that if she hissed at me one more time, I was taking her home to foster her.  When she hissed, I had no choice.  After a week quarantined off even though she had her shots, she got lonely and whiny.  She’d wail for hours, so I let her out of her room.  I took her to a friend’s house so she could get used to people, and that friend decided to adopt her for the fact that she got along great with her lonely boy kitty, although  she had to wait to move out because her roommate was allergic.  When she moved out, she wanted her to get spayed first.  She was on the waiting list and finally got put on to get spayed and this friend said that even after signing the adoption application and waiting months, she didn’t have the adoption fee money and had changed her mind.

To be continued…”


•May 20, 2009 • 2 Comments

n625100818_578191_2522Long after Pride and Sloth had grown out of kittenhood, we rescued our third cat. The night I found her, I was reading in my bed with the window open. Several times that evening my reverie had been disturbed by a high pitched noise I could just faintly hear. The fact that I could hear it, given my below average hearing, made me wonder why Jessie had not commented on the strange and persistent noise. I looked out the window to try and locate the source. Was it a strange bird? An alarm? I did not know, but finally frustrated by not knowing, I left the apartment in my pajamas and began wandering. I rolled my head from side to side to try and pinpoint the location of the noise, and I realized it was coming from a tree across the street. Jaywalking, I crossed the street and laid eyes upon the kitten for the first time. She was huddled at the base of the tree, visibly shaking, and letting out her plaintive cry. I approached slowly, making what I hoped were comforting noises, and the tiny cat fled from me. It was dark, and I lost track of her for a moment, but the small thing had run into a corner from which there was no escape (fortunately for her!). I approached again, slowly, but this time like a soccer goalie, determined to not let anything past me. This cat was coming with me, come heck or high water.

When it was less that two feet away from me, the kitten displayed incredible aggressiveness. The hissing, spitting storm she put up probably would have scared away any other animal, and I began to fear that perhaps she was feral, but I pressed on. I secured a grip on the nape of her neck and quickly wrapped her in my long shirt, with her throwing an unholy tantrum the whole while. I knew at that moment she would be Wrath.

I carried her back, sneaked into the apartment, and before showing my prize to Jessie, I begged her for clemency. She was instantly on alert and curious about what I was holding – the kitten having calmed down to a tired mass of fur, and I showed her.  I think she melted a little.

We quickly cleared out the bedroom of Pride and Sloth, set up some moist, canned cat food and water, and let Wrath loose in our room.  The tiny cat was immediately cautious, but hunger won out and she quickly fell upon the food.  It was too late to take her to our vet, so we decided to do so first thing the next morning.  That night, however, revealed the futility of planning to keep Wrath.

n625100818_578208_7300Our apartment complex is a “No Pets Allowed” place, so having our cats was always a big risk.  Wrath, on her first night, was a wailer.  She cried and cried, displaying the fit set of lungs that had lead me to her earlier.  It was definitely a sound both our neighbors heard, and we were terribly frightened they would be upset and report us. We continued on with the rescue, taking her to the vet, were she got a bath, a check up, and several shots. The vet said she was in great health, just a little below weight. But still, she cried and cried at night. Jessie and I were stressing over what to do with her.

Fortunately for me, I have two sisters, both great people, and while one was allergic to cats, the other adored them. We contacted her, sent pictures, and she fell in love with Wrath and agreed to take her in. Perfect. The trip up was pleasant, and Wrath proved to be a great travel kitty. She sat in my lap for a goodly portion of the trip, even going so far as to hang onto the steering wheel. Once in Athens, Wrath took to my sisters room with gusto. My sister, being a bit of a pack rat, had plenty of things for Wrath to play with. After a few days in Athens visiting my sister and making sure Wrath took to her new home, we said our farewells and went home. Wrath lives happily with my sister to this day, but no animal we rescue is far from our hearts. We miss her, but we are glad she is doing well.


Ben 10, Lilly, and J. J.‏

•May 19, 2009 • Leave a Comment

Submitted by Tina – edited by Omega Caldas:

“I have rescued a few dogs in my days. Two of my recent saves were Ben 10, a rottweiler-shepherd mix, and a beautiful little filly named Lilly, who is a dachshund-chihuahua mix. Their owners were unable to care for them anymore due to the mother of the family getting ill and not being able to take good care of her children, let alone two dogs. I took them in because my sister Sherrie could not handle two more dogs. She already had three dogs and several cats. We are all animal lovers here.

I found Lilly a home in Athens, with a very nice mother of two, who is pampering her like the princess she is. I still have Ben 10. He is a teddy bear and my daughter loves him so. He is such a big dog and it is hard to find him a home in the not-so-hot economy. So I am keeping him, even though it is increasingly hard to come up with all the food he needs to eat. He has a healthy appetite.

The other success story is J. J. He is a beagle mix I found wandering the neighborhood. He was very very skinny and undernourished when I found him. I had him for 3 or 4 months before I found the perfect couple to adopt him. They actually contacted me through a free website their daughter found. They had recently lost their beagle due to old age and were looking for companionship, and I had the perfect match. They were in their eighties and had a big farm in Georgia perfect for a growing pup. They called me several times to let me know how well he was doing and that they were treating him like the son they were looking for. He has walks in the park, lots of love, attention, and all the good things a dog can eat. I am very blessed to know them and I love the updates I get on their fun and adventures they have together. Keep the rescues going- all they need is love, care, and attention… Man’s best friends…”