Thursday, August 25, 2011

More Sadness, but There Are Kittens.

The six kittens we took from the home with the cats we were fixing for free came home with us, and that very day, were on the verge of death.  All of them had faces sealed shut with eye goo.  I made an appointment, and in the three hours it took to get them there, they had developed fevers and were extremely lethargic.  I honestly thought they were all going to die, and so did the vet.

He gave them SQ fluids, which they HATED, and clavamox.  He says he's thinking an immune deficiency disease, like feleuk, but I've seen this plenty before and I can bet you $100 it's rhino or calici.  My own cat had rhino when she was a kitten, and it took us a year before we figured out why she had developed such horrible fevers as a kitten (so bad she couldn't walk without being in pain), and since she grew up she would periodically get majorly snotty.  I wanna say the kittens have rhino, but they are in such strong quarantine (exit only by window, change clothes on entering, separate air system, betadine scrubs before going in or out, and about five showers a day, easy) and it developed so very quickly (plus all of their siblings out of three huge litters had already died), it could very well be something else.  Still thinking rhino or calici.  At least I know I didn't expose them to it, as was my initial terror.

I've gotten pretty good at quarantine, though.  Since their vet visit the babies have really perked up.  I learned a new trick, too - if you can't get stubborn, solidified, serious eye bogies out, try rubbing neosporin or other oil-based antibiotic ointment into them.  It dissolves right out and they clean it away.  I think we managed to avoid tear duct damage in all six!

They have names now, too.  Freddy is the biggest and definitely a boy.  He was originally named Fraidy because he was practically feral, but he adjusted quickly and now ALL he wants to do is snuggle, cuddle, and purr.  He's from a separate litter from everyone else, and at least 2 weeks older, despite what coked-out-bitch insisted.  The Kitty System is a seal point siamese, the next biggest, and also from a separate litter.  He is the trouble-maker!  If there's a wrestling match, you can bet KS was involved and probably started it!  Pickles is the next biggest trouble-maker, getting into pickles every play time.  He's grey and white spotted.  Traveller is a grey, white-socked well...traveller!  He goes where no kitten has gone before, and exploring is his thing (and so is talking, oh my goodness).  Dove looks just like Traveller but runted.  Dove is the only one I'm still a little worried about, but she's doin' her darndest to keep up with the big kids.  :)  Last is Cowbell.  Cowbell is sweet enough to easily medicate, love on, snuggle with, and catch, but balances his people skills perfectly with that classic kitten playfulness.

I'll post photos as they grow up - right now it's still all very hush-hush.

Meanwhile, down the street from me, I finally managed to get some photos of a trio of horses I've been concerned about.  There's not enough info right now, and they aren't on death's doorstep, so no one will do anything about it.  Yet.  Photos are the first step, though.  Click on any of the pictures to enlarge them.

Yeah...that's totally a ball of wire and debris fucking everywhere.

And right across the street from them is this poor little guy and his loose-running yippy chihuahua:

He stays chained like that all day every day, and crawls under the tractor when the weather is harsh.  That would be extremely illegal.  But, you have to go about these things carefully, or the animal winds up dead, "lost," or tossed in the high-kill shelter to be killed anyways.



Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Too Much and You Start to Really Hate People

I don't know how some people who work in animal rescue, sheltering, or anything like that can stay optimistic.  Fuck, I don't know how I can type real sentences right now.  I'm motherfucking tired.

What did I do today?  Today I told the local kill shelter I'd pay it $150 if three of it's goddamned cat carriers came back damaged.  Carriers I was told I'd be lent as part of participating in their free spay and neuter program.  For feral cats.

While signing the form, a man and his children come in.  The woman across from me places her call on hold, looks over my head, and asks how she can help him.  He says:

"Our dog is here.  He's a mutt.  We punished him for getting out by lettin' him stay here a little longer.  It's been about a week, and I need to pick him up now."

A little while later I'm half an hour North, helping my fiance fix a gate and a portion of fencing while picking up some spare cat carriers from the same woman who helped us get our dog's leg surgery when we first found her.  We talk about the $455 bill I have to deal with for taking the stray dog into the E.R. a week or so ago.  Maybe two weeks.  Not sure.

She had been hit by a car and just fucking left her.  She could barely move.  She was being eaten by ants.

What kind of person can leave a dog like that on the side of the road.  About ten years old.  Two necrotic mammary masses.  Missing and cracked teeth.  Shattered pelvis and right femur - pieces of her pelvis in her leg.  In shock, terrified.  Just a fucking pair of eyes on the side of the road by our house, on the way home from my fiance's birthday party.

We talk, we talk about how we have her ashes now, and how we want to use her story to convince our neighbors to fence their dogs or bring them inside.  I collect the carriers.  I drive to the next destination - the woman who's asked for my help before, and has come to me now.  She lives outside of the county line, so she can't offer a certain woman the free spay and neuter program we have where I live.  The woman with the cats is doped out of her mind.  It's a miracle she's alive at all.  On welfare and drugs, talking about how she almost died by choking because she fell asleep while eating.

We bring all these carriers because I've told my county program that there is a colony of feral cats by my house I need to get fixed.  It's a useless lie.  We can't catch all of her cats, because even though she does feed them (the food that's given to her for free out of donations), they truly are feral.  One, whose paws are deformed so that she can walk only on her "elbows," flips out so badly from being put in the carrier that her face is bloodied.  More and more cats zipping out of the house we aren't allowed into, under the house, under the neighbor houses, into and out of the storm drains.  Easily forty, maybe fifty cats.  Six kittens (the rest of many more litters, having died in the yard, have been removed already) are bloated with worms and none of the mothers will feed them.

The woman says things like

"I was so hoping God wouldn't force that poor creature to give birth to more" (she says of the deformed cat, who looks the size of a 6 month old kitten but has already had and nursed at least two litters)

"I already put them on two rounds of Revolution"

"Revolution is expensive, I can't afford to put them on anything"

"They're at least three months old, for sure!  They're weaned, they just keep trying to nurse."

Unfortunately, we couldn't catch the male we desperately wanted to neuter - he had a broken pelvis from the man in the house throwing him against a wall, but escaped beneath the house before we could get him safely in a carrier.

I just...I fucking hate people right now.
- Mouse

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Adopting Because It's Sad.

Don’t fucking do it.

52 horses need saved! They’re going to slaughter!  Oh NOOOO!  They’re free, get them out now!  MOST of them are gelded.  MOST of them are broken.  Some of them are with foal.

Yeah, it’s fucking tragic, but you know what this tells me?  It tells me they were neglected before their previous owner passed away.  It tells me each horse is going to need extensive veterinary care and rehabilitation.  It tells me the previous owner wasn’t gelding them, wasn’t getting 52 horses fed and trimmed.  It tells me they’re basically a feral herd.

But what it tells YOU is that YOU have to swoop in and stop this tragedy of killing them now now now now now, even if you don’t have the money to get your fucking dogs rabies vaccinations.

And what it tells YOU is that even though you have two kids to feed and a dog with zero vet visits, and no money to come to my damned wedding, that this sad, sad story with its zero details or history or vet papers tugs on your heartstrings enough to jump into something that will cost thousands of dollars and months of hard work.  You CAN’T.  It will suffer more.

And what it tells YOU is that “horse slaughter bad, mmkay,” so no horses can die, ever, even though there are NO SLAUGHTER HOUSES HERE.  Trigger word, and you’re preaching about morals.

What every fucking one of you is forgetting is that you don’t have the whole fucking story.  You don’t know where they came from, why they’re in this condition, WHAT condition they are in, who needs massive amounts of vet care and rehabilitation.  Shit, you don’t even know if this is a legal issue that should be prosecuted.  YOU DON’T KNOW.  You just see a sad story and want to make it better.  BUT YOU CAN’T.

You can not save them all.  If you want to, GO VISIT THEM.  Take a tally of the horses and their conditions.  Bring a vet.  Talk to the survivor who wants to slaughter them and the “friend” who wants to adopt them out for free.  Find out who is with foal, who needs gelded, look at the hooves, the teeth, the ribs.  Go do the goddamned work and participate.  Make profiles on the 52 horses with photographs, and look for real adopters.  Adopters who have the money for vet care and the facilities already set up.  Adopters who know what they are doing, who aren’t going to turn around and sell them for profit on fucking Craigslist.  Adopters who aren’t going to realize they can’t afford to feed it and either let it die, “set it free,” or sell it to auction.  Adopters who actually give a fuck and aren’t acting on just emotion.

THEN.  Coordinate with state-wide rescues, organizations, and fosters who can give them longer to bounce back and be better for adopting.

You mean well.  But you’re thinking with your heart, and not about the animals.